Back in January, I saw the Alyn Cosker quartet play in London. I meant to write about it at the time, but it got lost in a trip away; and also – well, it was good, but really not my kind of music. It is harder to write about things I don’t like so much (but maybe a useful trick).
I know Cosker from his work with Scottish National Jazz Orchestra and Tommy Smith; he can be a very loud brash drummer, but he can also be very gentle and delicate, too – a rare mix.
His own music is strictly jazz fusion – the bits fused being rock-funk. He plays in complex time signatures, with great energy – there wasn’t so much of the thoughtful, gentle Cosker here.
He featured Seamus Blake on saxophone – another forceful, muscular player. It sounded to me like he was playing what he would have played in any other setting – as if there wasn’t a natural fit to their music.
Mike Janisch was on bass – both electric and acoustic. I much preferred the sound of his acoustic playing – acoustic bass just seems so much more subtle.
All in all, the music was too samey and bombastic – a bit too much. I think Cosker is a great drummer, but I think on this evidence I prefer him as a sideman rather than leader.