Newbould has created record that is sure to cement his already celebrated reputation.

ZenneZ Records: ZR2024011

Sam Newbould: alto saxophone, clarinet, vocals; Bernard van Rossum: tenor saxophone; Xavi Torres: piano, synthesizer, Wurlitzer; Jort Terwijn: double bass, electric bass; Guy Salamon: drums, percussion; Beth Aggett: vocals

Recorded October 2023 by Alessandro Mazzieri at Wisseloord Studios

Now relocated from his native North of England to the Netherlands, where he teaches at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam and the Conservatory of Maastricht (and sports a fine example of a Dutch beard, albeit with added moustache), Newbould continues to be an in-demand member of all many of groups and to record his own material. On this, his third album, his compositions sparkle with wit and charm.

On some of the tracks, particularly ‘Below the Elbow’, track 2, the saxophones of Newbould and van Rossum entwine around the elegantly simple melody before shifting gears for their solos before the piece shifts further when Torres bursts in with his piano solo. The compositions are constructed around intricately shifting time signatures that are continually moving between gentle ¾ , occasionally with Aggett’s ethereal vocals, to choppier timings.

These are tunes that delight in the subtleties and complexities of crafting and honing a composition until the rough edges are smoothed into beguiling shapes. This is not to say that the tunes can be produce unexpected twists and turns. But, like the best short stories, there is a strong sense of place and character for each piece. Surrounded by a band that not only inhabits each composition but also seek to add their individual voices to these, Newbould has created record that is sure to cement his already celebrated reputation.