Sunday, March 25, 2007

Take it to The Bridge Bellatrix

On Friday evening I went along to The Polish Club to see the band my friend Eric Barton plays in - The Bridge. When I got there they were already on stage and playing. I was surprised and a little annoyed as I had wanted to catch the whole of their set.

The Bridge are an eight-piece band - drums, bass, keyboard, two guitars, three saxes and they play a mix of reggae, ska and afro-beat music. All very danceable, very well done. The mix on some of the reggae numbers was great - eat you heart out King Tubby - with wonderful drum and sax sounds. Worth seeing again.

The Bridge's performance was in two parts, with an appearance by Bellatrix Beats, a human beatbox, in between. I have to admit that Friday was the first time I'd encountered this art form. I was amazed. Actually, Bellatrix goes way beyond being a human beatbox; on stage she also plays bass guitar and cornet, sings and uses a Boss RC50 Loop-station which lets her sample herself. In her short set she covered a variety of styles but left me feeling her heart was really firmly in the jazz tradition (no - not Trad Jazz) - her version of Fever (think Peggy Lee, not Kylie or Madonna) was wonderful. I don't think the version on her My Space pages does do her live performance justice.

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