Album review

Ill Considered – ‘Liminal Space’

Ill Considered – Liminal Space

(New Soil. Review by Fiona Mactaggart)

This tenth album in four years from London-based free jazz quartet-turned-trio, Ill Considered marks a departure. Whereas their first nine albums of full-blooded improvisations were released without any post-production massaging, Liminal Space has undergone significant studio development and polishing. In consequence, it might well attract a wider audience than its predecessors.

It also features a number of guests (see personnel below) and has ten tracks, lasting a full hour. The volume and levels of energy and testosterone-infused emotional intensity are matched by the speed and supply of ideas in each track. The shifting, often North or West African rhythms and unmistakable presence of free-spirited improvisors make it downright impossible for the listener to keep still. 

Presented with such riches it’s hard to pick favourites. However, the lyrical, Tinariwen-evoking Loosed is especially striking and Ethio-jazz favourites Getachew Mekuria and Mulatu Astatke spring to mind during the moody yet pretty Pearls. The almost orchestrally rich The Lurch, with its playful tempo changes and electronic warping, confirms that here is a band now stepping into the serious big-time. No wonder Brian Eno and electronic music specialist David Holmes are said to be fans.

A final word. Should you be lucky enough to see Ill Considered live, make sure you’re wearing your dancing shoes.

Band line-up: Idris Rahman (saxophone), Liran Donin (bass) and Emre Ramazanoglu (drums).

Guests: Tamar Osborn, Ahnanse and Kaidi Akinnibi (saxophone), Sarathy Korwar and Oli Savill (percussion), Theon Cross (tuba), Ralph Wyld (vibraphone) and Robin Hopcraft (trumpet). 

Liminal Space was released by New Soil on 11 November digitally, on double vinyl, CD and cassette.

LINK: Liminal Space on Bandcamp

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