The low lamp-lighting and enforced silence of Ronnie Scott’s can make it an intimidating place to play. The atmosphere is thick with the legacy of previous performances, immortalised in the portraits that adorn the jazz venue's maroon walls.
Yet the Japanese-born and Brooklyn-based trumpeter Takuya Kuroda displays no nervousness as he begins a two-night residency at the club. His confidence is absolute as his trumpet bursts through fusion, funk, soul and afro-beat arrangements.
It's this seamless blending of styles which forms the cornerstone of Kuroda’s latest release Zigzagger, his second major-label album. As its title implies, it's a work that meanders through genres, unified by a keen sense of swing and impactful rhythms that push the work forward.
Kuroda opens his set with R.S.B.D from the album, which showcases the impeccable synth-work of his keyboard player Takeshi Ohbayashi as he skips over subaqueous, metallic and buzzy sounds.
Read the rest of the review in The Morning Star.
[This piece was originally published on 05/05/17]