Wayne Shorter at 80, London Jazz Festival, Barbican, London – review
By: Mike Hobart
When Wayne Shorter left Miles Davis in 1970, his body of work had pushed jazz harmony to its limits and he had managed the transition from acoustic to electric jazz. He went on to found Weather Report and in the 1980s developed a fractured, somewhat bleak electronica that is only now being fully appreciated.
In 2000, he distilled these experiences into his first acoustic quartet, creating a free-flowing maelstrom of invention still at the forefront of acoustic jazz. Their performances are marked by jagged angles, shifting shapes and audacious changes in pace that leave audiences gasping for breath. And it was this band that was the focus and climax to Sunday’s day-long event marking Shorter’s 81st year.
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