September 30, 2021

Joshua M-R gig review

Knats Quartet at Prohibition Bar, Newcastle, Saturday, 25th September

There is a healthy interest in Jazz at NSB, largely down to Joshua M-R’s (Year 13) interest in this style of music and his popular Jazz Club held each Friday after school. Mr Hopkinson went to see Josh perform outside of school on Saturday, 25th September at Prohibition Bar (formerly the Jazz Café) in Newcastle, as part of his Jazz Band, Knats Quartet. You can read his review below:

The retro themed venue was the perfect setting for a Jazz gig and Josh and his band mates certainly did not disappoint, creating atmosphere in abundance: Pink Lane could’ve been downtown Manhattan for a couple of hours. Their set, comprising of originals and a few covers, encompassed a range of styles and influences, the traditional sounds of jazz segued into hip-hop, samba and even 90’s club-dance vibes on one occasion, but it was always very clearly ‘their sound’ with their own unique take on this sometimes daunting musical genre. The skill of each player was showcased in the many rounds of solos and the odd nod to jazz greats could be heard occasionally, one trumpet part had a Miles Davis vibe and Josh’s electric piano sound sometimes had a feel of Chick Corea.

The audience was made up of some local jazz die-hards and hipsters as well as a scattering of proud parents and friends but one thing united them all, their astonishment and appreciation of this group of talented teenagers seemingly gliding through this complex music almost effortlessly. They’ve been together less than a year and already they have had radio play and lots of gig bookings, the world is their oyster. Their sound is unique, their skill is impressive for such young musicians and their approach is cool and understated. They have injected life and into a waning local jazz scene and ears are pricking up.