Beats & Pieces Big Band make a splash at Ronnie Scott’s, review

The Telegraph

Beats & Pieces Big Band, Ronnie Scott’s ★★★★☆

Few sounds are as instantly recognisable as a big band. And that’s its problem. Those choirs of trumpets and horns raised in ecstatic harmony carry one irresistibly back to a different, more glamorous age. It seems a genre that’s good only for peddling nostalgia. 

Ben Cottrell, musical director and composer-in-chief of the young Manchester-based band Beats & Pieces, is determined to prove the cliché wrong. The band’s line-up at Tuesday night’s gig – part of a three-night residency at Ronnie’s – was the familiar one: three trios of trumpets at the back, trombones in the middle, saxes at the front, and a standard rhythm section with the addition of guitar.

And yet, the sound of the band was anything but ......

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