Sunday 11 September 2016

On Stage: New Cool Collective with Mark Reilly @ NSJ Club

The coolest jazz collective on the face of this planet and beyond, New Cool Collective, regularly teams up with artists from every part of the musical spectrum. In the past they played with afrobeat legend Tony Allen, Dutch local hero Guus Meeuwis and Orchestra Baobab's Thierno Koite. Recently they recorded a record, The Things You Love, with no one less than Matt Bianco's Mark Reilly and they are now touring with him.

New Cool Collective and Mark Reilly at North Sea Jazz Club Amsterdam, September 8 2016

Needless to say that this collaboration is guaranteed to be a hot dancing party. The record already proves this with new arrangements of Matt Bianco and New Cool Collective songs but mostly brand new compositions. Captain of the ship is of course Benjamin Herman and the band first starts out with a few of their own songs to warm up. Since this is a hot summer's night, that doesn't take long and Herman quickly introduces Mark Reilly.

Reilly is looking sharp, blending in perfectly with the cool combo. Some wonderful swinging songs follow with Reilly's warm voice fitting the music like they are made for each other. The Matt Bianco classics have been reworked for New Cool Collective without losing their swinging edge. Reilly certainly looks like he's enjoying playing with this brilliant combo.

I forgot how many good songs Matt Bianco wrote. The swinging 'Whose Side Are You On', a brilliant version of 'More Than I Can Bear', both not on the record and of course the smash hit 'Don't Blame It On That Girl'. It's wonderful to hear these great songs come to life again. New songs like 'We Should Be Dancing' and the funky 'Double Stitch' sound even better and get the best of both worlds. The band is not allowed to leave without playing an encore and lays down a couple more sizzling hot songs, leaving the crowd in an overheated state.

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