RNCM Big Band with Eric Marienthal
RNCM Theatre, 3 November 2018
It was perhaps the best RNCM Big Band concert ever.
There was the precious pleasure of seeing someone – Eric Marienthal, saxophonist – do something supremely well. Nor did the RNCM Big Band disappoint: there was much urgency, a constant forward propulsion always, the pace brisk and always accelerating, to all of the twelve tracks, many of them composed and arranged by Eric’s colleague Gordon Goodwin.
We heard the brazen confidence of a sweetly blaring city, mellow and spacious, swarming with colour and sound. Resplendent solos on piano, guitar, trumpet and (naturally) saxophone softly ruffled the ear; and, on drums, Joshua Savage took part in a kind of dialogue with Eric’s saxophone. It was much more than a pair of solos, with these two; more of a beck and call.
Now the only question is: how will the RNCM Big Band top this?