THE COOKING CLUB
Sydney Underground (michaelgordon.bandcamp.com)
Pressing play on this album is a bit like detonating a bomb. What initially hits you smack between the eyes is the sheer vitality of the sounds, so you are engaged before you’ve heard a complete line, let alone a whole piece. This sonic vivacity is shared equally by Michael Gordon’s tenor saxophone, Ken Allars’ trumpet, Tom Wade’s bass and Finn Ryan’s drums. Once you’ve been welcomed into the music by these sounds you find the vivacity replicated in the playing and compositions. Big Job mixes bebop, anarchy and friskiness in equal measure, Chumba Chumba nods a sly wink to Balkan Gypsy music, Crips Up is ostensibly a breezy blowing tune, only the breeze turns out to have the grit content of a sandstorm and Christchurch unleashes some seismic shocks.