Gig review: Brian Kellock Copenhagen Trio, Stirling

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The first show of a three-date mini-tour as part of the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival, one of the city’s great jazz players Brian Kellock took the opportunity here to bed in a new musical ensemble he’s been working with.

Tolbooth

****

Inspired by regular visits to Copenhagen two fine players from that city joined him, creating a line-up of Kellock on piano, Daniel Franck on double bass and Niclas Campagnol on drums.

There was a great sense of exploration, of mutual uncertainty giving way to smiling, sure-footed understanding within the space of a few notes. All are great players, of course, with Kellock’s intricate patterns lifting the mood and Franck’s bass displaying a certain sense of mischief with its subtly-dropped, wrong-footing pauses. They breezed through a version of Cole Porter’s Everything I Love, with every exit door open, the air conditioning on and the beers lending a summery informality.

While they are players of an equal standard it’s fair to note that Campagnol was the most wonderfully watchable showman. At one point he threw himself into tumultuous rolls, breaking at the point of uncomfortable volume into a precisely whispered shimmer of cymbals, at another his twitchily expressive eyebrows jousted with Franck’s tantalisingly drawn out notes as he waited impatiently to come in. As the others carried on he nodded tight-lipped encouragement, their lack of acknowledgement a clear sign that what they were doing was working.

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