If the most interesting elements of 90s dance music taught us anything it was how prominent Jazz was to the DNA of unique, progressive, electronica. Goldie, Ronnie Size, Daft Punk, Air; all huge champions of not just jazz as a genre, but also as a form of composition, took its beatnik rebelliousness and used it to challenge the narrowness, and branding, of dance labels and publications. Moving back to the jazz pioneers was a way to move the future forward.
Tonight’s line up all possessed highly accomplished, superbly executed, live shows grounded in the heavy grooves, funky basslines and jazz stylings popularised at the turn of the century. Underpinned by frenetic musicianship, and a heavy reliance on jazz improvisation, each band made you dance and get lost in the mesmerisation of their musicianship. They were rebels who wanted to rebel by taking jazz stylings and playing them with electronic instruments.
Headliners Vels Trio, leading the evening with Daft Punk themed basslines, and Air styled electronic atmospheres, delivered an interesting, genre-spanning set, hinged on impressive playing styles. Slightly harder than support acts purpleshirt and Slow Loris, there’s was a set as much for the dance floor as it was for the jazz hall. It’s funny how the past continues to inspire the most interesting elements of our future.