Wed 8 Nov, 8.15pm | Tickets £11 (£8.50) | Hexagon Theatre
Black Top is a duo consisting of Orphy Robinson on vibes, marimba and assorted electronics and Pat Thomas on keys and electronics. Their freely improvised sets always feature a guest artist and draw on grooves, loops, samples with a strong influence from their Afro-Caribbean roots. This is one of the most innovative groups on the contemporary scene. The guest artist on this occasion will be Jean Paul Bourelly, who played on Amandla, one of Miles Davis’ last albums. He moved to Europe in the 1990s and his music has increasingly drawn on his Haitian roots, as well as African rhythms, blues and rock since then.
Orphy Robinson is one of the major figures of the jazz scene - he has released records on Blue Note and played with Don Cherry, David Murray, Henry Threadgill, Courtney Pine, Jazz Warriors and Andy Shepherd.
He has composed for Film and TV- including “In answer to your question” for the Balanescu String Quartet and “ 42 Shades of Black” for Phoenix Dance Theatre,which was performed at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta.
Currently leads the groups CODEFIVE- NUBIAN VIBES - he also plays in the groups BRUISE and CLEAR FRAME as well as co-leading Black Top with Pat Thomas
Pat Thomas studied classical piano from aged 8 and started playing Jazz from the age of 16. He has since gone on to develop an utterly unique style - embracing improvisation, jazz and new music. He has played with Derek Bailey in Company Week (1990/91) and in the trio AND (with Noble) – with Tony Oxley’s Quartet and Celebration Orchestra and in Duo with Lol Coxhill. He co-leads Black Top with Orphy Robinson
Pat Thomas has a somewhat imperious charisma that’s immediately amplified when he starts to play. Unlike other pianists whose virtuosity seems to be racing ahead of their thought processes Thomas always seems supremely in command of his gift, and his playing, no matter how free and ready to tangle with abstraction, always carries a charge of authoritative exactitude.