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Review: 'The NJE'
'Live at The Three Kings Clerkenwell'   


-  Genre: 'Soundtrack' -  Release Date: '10.2.18.'

Our Rating:
This show was billed as being an Egg Saturday special and for those of you that don't know that on the Saturday before Ash Wednesday it is traditional to eat Eggs apparently! This is probably why the main food on offer in the pub was Scotch Eggs and Pork Pies!! Either way The Three Kings is a great old pub that has 1970's music papers used as wallpaper throughout and some great posters up as well as good beer high up on the east bank of the River Fleet.

The trio were set up at one end of the pub and although we arrived early the only table left was by the door with only one chair, but then the Landlord decided it would be better to move our table so it was at the end of the bar closest to the band and they also found us another chair so we had a perfect front row view for all the action when Mark Bedford, Simon Charterton and Terry Edwards came on.

They opened with the opening track from the bands recent album Afloat and played a super Shaft style version of St Leonard's Suite that made me feel we really had gone up and across Old Street from the bands normal Whitechapel stomping ground as Terry only managed to play Alto Sax maracas and Egg Shaker on the opening song either way the fluid lines got everyone grooving along nicely.

Simon then switched to using Mallets and Terry picked up his Melodica so they could get a proper East of the River Fleet feel to what I guess may have been the first part of St Mary's Suite as usual I'll imagine any song titles I don't know but this had that great almost dub jazz feel to it. For the second half of St Mary's Suite Terry played his alto and tenor Sax's simultaneously to really widen the sound and Simon switched to playing his drums with brushes that helped to keep things full on funky.

They then got a bit chilled out as Terry picked up his Cornet and tried not to look at that poster of Chet Baker that was right behind him as he brought a very cool feel to it before adding some Maracas and then picking up the Alto again that he played with some reverb to really get us feeling quite relaxed.

The next tune I put down as Drum Thang as it opened with a drum solo from Simon before Marks sinuous bass lines came in and Terry joined in on alto before switching to Tenor sax as it got deeper and funkier and eventually Terry was channelling Gil Scott Heron who was also on a poster behind him as he played flute in a proper 70's funk style.
We then got The NJE's classic Hoo Ha or whatever it's called that meant Terry needed a Mute for his Soprano sax and chose to use his Knee rather effectively as he also looked like he wants a second career as a contortionist either way it sounded great.

They then did what I have as a tribute to local boy Karl Marx that was full of Reverb laden Alto Sax that made the room wobble a good bit before finishing the first set with Diamonds For Breakfast that is deeply funked out take on Funky Town crossed with The Pink Panther Theme that had Terry on Alto Sax and Egg shaker it was damn cool and great end to the first set.

After a short break they came back and opened the second set with a tune I guessed as Knife Edge when that was actually the second tune either way they were back in the Blackbyrdsian pocket with some cool alto sax parps to get us going in time for Knife Edge to really get things down and groovy with more Soprano sax squiggles.

The next tune reminded me a lot of Nico's old backing band The Faction with Terry's Cornet playing sounded very Chetesque and this might have been the tune that he used a pint glass as his Mute for his cornet before he switched to playing the maracas at the same time before finishing the tune on Soprano Sax and just sounded very eastern.

Terry then handed out egg shakers to everyone to add to the band's sound and I guessed it was called Fleet Foot a great funk dance tune with the full on twin sax attack it needed as we all shook for all we were worth.

We all kept shaking on what I have as Janes Been no idea what it was really called but the Soprano sax worked a treat and they got down with it before closing the set with a brilliant version of Voodoo Chile with Terry playing the guitar parts on his Soprano sax and then Cornet for the main solo.

This was another really great show by The NJE who really do need to be seen live to be believed, a very happy Egg Saturday was had by everyone there.
  author: simonovitch

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