The saxophone quartet is not exactly a common beast in jazz circles, but it is a well-enough established combination to be recognised as a regular format in the music. Brass Jaw began life in that guise, with Martin Kershaw alongside Paul Towndrow (alto), Konrad Wiszniewski (tenor) and Allon Beauvoisin (baritone).
They issued their debut album, Burn, in that guise in 2006. Baritone saxophonist Allon Beauvoisin was also a member of the Glasgow-based all-sax outfit Hung Drawn Quartet, and Brass Jaw broadly adopted a similar approach, with clever melodic hooks and attractive arrangements that exploited the tonal and timbral possibilities of the instruments, while allowing the distinctive musical personalities of the players to emerge.
The group then took an unusual step when trumpeter Ryan Quigley stepped in to fill the gap left by Kershaw. Their imaginative interweaving of instrumental voices and rhythmic energy has continued unabated, but Quigley’s dynamic soloing and the different timbre of the trumpet have given the group an even more distinctive feel.
They will officially launch their new album featuring that line-up, Deal With It, at the Glasgow gig. Ryan Quigley, meanwhile, should have had his own gig at The Lot on 20 November, but BBC Children In Need made him an offer he couldn’t refuse for his big band that night, and the scheduled Sextet gig will be re-arranged in the New Year.
Drouthy Neebors, Dundee, Thu 19 Nov; City Halls (Recital Room), Glasgow, Mon 23 Nov