Review: Strong moments, sad turnout

Last updated 06:28 04/04/2013

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Ilott Theatre

Wednesday, April 3

Reviewed by Simon Sweetman

Albert Dadon performs under the name Albare, much has been made of this Australian jazz guitarist (he was born in Morocco and has called Melbourne home for the last 30 years).

He leads a strong quartet but - frequently - the best bits were when Albare sat out and allowed the drums, bass and keyboard to tell the story. That's not really the idea though if you are the leader.

Albare seemed to have a limited vocabulary on the guitar, playing the same things over - generally quite tasteful but, frankly, boring.

And he has an annoying trait of playing a curly hammered-on trill that comes entirely from the rock world.

This started some songs and ended almost all of them and would only have been more off-putting if it was accompanied by a lick of the tongue as if to suggest that Nigel Tufnel had taught him to ruin all of his best guitar lines with this glottal coil.

There were plenty of reasons to like Albare though, or at least to feel sorry for him.

There were 41 people in attendance (it was easy enough to count) and Albare chuckled it off by suggesting that he was aware it would be an intimate audience.

He then urged everyone to move forward and take up the front rows; he worked hard to put across that jazz was a conversation.

But with his limited vocabulary on the instrument, tracing around the same words again and again, and with not many people to tell the story to it all started to seem a bit sad.

The backing trio provided plenty of strong moments as material from the Long Way album was the feature of the night. Strong, but never sensational.

Albare apologised for the audience having to hear new music and said the best thing to give a musician was applause and support, an open ear, rather than money.

Easy to say given the turnout. 

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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