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Record Flight

Artist: Heads South

Date of Release: 04/10/2010

Catalogue no: ARCD0010

Label: Aline

Price: £9.60

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Track Listing

No

 

Title

Duration

1

 

Carioca

5.05

2

 

Petalos de Tierra

5.37

3

 

Juntito

6.45

4

 

Sweet Swan

5.07

5

 

Mack the Knife

3.23

6

 

Heyday

4.03

7

 

Carion

5.08

8

 

Nowhere To Go

5.13

9

 

Milonga del Angel

6.23

10

 

El Cardenal

5.47

 

 

 

 

Record Flight is the first full-length album from Heads South. It features a choice set of tracks from the Band’s repertoire of original compositions and arrangements of classic tunes. The hallmarks of this music are emphatic Cuban and Latin rhythms and tuneful melody lines. Most of the originals on Record Flight are penned by the Band’s pianist John Harriman, ranging from the happily imperious El Cardenal and Iberian flavoured Petalos de la Tierra to the sonorous Sweet Swan and pretty ballad Juntito. Nowhere To Go is the main theme from Steve Waterman’s Concerto for Congas. The album kicks off with the lively Youmans classic Carioca and includes Pissaro’s beautiful slow tango Milonga del Angel and a salsa version of Mack the Knife Record Flight was released in October 2010 and was recorded at Red Gables Studios in London and mixed at Clowns Pocket Studios.

 

Reviews

 

01/12/2010 Jazz UK Rob Adams

***** London's Heads South join the salsa flood with 'Record Flight' (Aline), an effervescent collection of Latin favourites and original compositions in the Cuban tradition with plenty of jazz content from excellent players including trumpeter Steve Waterman.

 

17/11/2010 All About Jazz, Robert Sutton

There can be joy in solitude. While the London-based band Heads South basks in the partying vibes of Latin jazz, the strongest moments on their debut album, Record Flight, are ironically when they ease off the gas pedal. The haunted "Juntito" is a powerhouse ballad, a surprisingly introspective track from a group that often mirrors a steamy summer evening in the tropics. Composer John Harriman's elegiac piano has the lonesome beauty of a moon-kissed lake while Steve Waterman's velvety trumpet caresses each of its notes like a cool wind. It is downright gorgeous, the stuff that romantic dreams are made of. Similarly, the band's sublime rendition of the tango "Milonga del Angel" is profoundly moving; Harriman's measured piano work strips away layers of slow-burning passion.
Heads South's quiet breaks appear after the group has worked up a sweat; they don't overshadow the rest of the album, and nor do they crash its mostly quick pace. Waterman's spirited trumpet, Harriman's jumpy piano, and Buster Birch's fervent drumming make Heads South achieve lift off on the opening cut, a sprightly cover of Vincent Youmans' 1933 classic, "Carioca." The band's salsa-flavored remake of "Mack the Knife" injects a new identity and vigor into the somewhat tired staple, especially Waterman's buoyant trumpet.
The focus of Heads South may be to entertain but that doesn't belittle the group's seriously on-target musicianship. It takes top-drawer talent to pull off the percolating rhythms in "Carion" as well as crafting other original Latin jazz songs that distinguish themselves in an often cluttered, derivative field. As the group's beat frenzy catches a hot streak on "El Cardenal," it becomes obvious that their compass is upside down. Heads South is rocketing to a different direction, up higher north where the sun and the moon dance night and day.

 

01/11/2010 Chris Parker CD Reviews, Vortex Jazz Club

The salsa quintet Heads South was formed for the best of reasons: its members – pianist/composer/leader John Harriman, trumpeter Steve Waterman, Cuban percussionist Chino Martell Morgan, drummer Buster Birch and New Zealand-born bassist Tim Robertson – simply enjoyed playing together on an ad hoc basis, so decided to make the arrangement more formal.
'Salsa', in this case, covers everything from the Vincent Youmans classic 'Carioca' (written for Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers's first screen dance in Flying Down to Rio), through a number of Cuban/Iberian-flavoured Harriman originals, to a latinised 'Mack the Knife' and a visit to Astor Piazzolla's languorous 'Milonga del Angel', but whatever precise musical category they're operating in, the quintet infuse everything they play with appropriate pep and vigour, Waterman in particular firing off a series of blazingly bright, pin-sharp solos over Morgan and Birch's taut but supple rhythm-section work.
Harriman himself performs on electric and acoustic piano with equal facility, and his compositions are bright, breezy and accessible; Record Flight is an enjoyable calling card for a refreshingly unpretentious but musicianly band.

 

26/09/2010 The Observer, Dave Gelly

This band's strong points are the compositions and keyboard playing of leader John Harriman and the trumpet of Steve Waterman, which combine to create a spare, crisp, invigorating set of Latin jazz. Waterman, who ranks among today's top British players, is famous for sounding at home in virtually any genre, but his mastery of this idiom is quite outstanding - spiced with just the right touch of bravura. This approach suits Harriman's deceptively simple melodies to perfection. Among the scattering of other material are clever and unexpected adaptations of "Mack the Knife" and Astor Piazzolla's "Milonga del Angel".


 

01/09/2010 The Musician

Pianist and composer John Harriman has joined Steve Waterman (trumpet), Chino Martell Morgan (percussion), Buster Birch (drums) and Tim Robertson (bass) for this exciting new project, which specialises in sophisticated jazz-salsa. Cool, cultured and exhilarating, Carioca sets the tone with panache, but while this CD includes refined covers (Mack The Knife, Milonga Del Angel), John's originals fully encompass the Latin spirit but allow traces of inspired improvisation. Credit also to Derek Nash for his outstanding mixing and mastering. The start of something very special

 

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