Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Pram Trio - Saga Thirteen (2016)

Pram Trio is a Toronto-based ensemble formed in 2009. Awarded the 2014 Grand Prix de Jazz from the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal by a unanimous panel, it is a collective of three Ontario-born musicians: Mark Godfrey on bass, Jack Bodkin on piano and Eric West on drums. Dan McClenaghan of describes Pram Trio as: “edgy and interactive, often urgent, and very much in the school of the modern-leaning piano trios.” Influenced by a wide range of traditional and current jazz artists as well as many other styles, their music is “very contemporary, composed and multi-sectional” (Peter Hum/Ottawa Citizen Jazz Blog). Pram Trio puts a strong focus on collective improvisation and creates an experience that appeals to listeners both familiar and unfamiliar with jazz. 

 “…it’s not enough to play very well; you have to do something that’s actually going to be compelling and original.  Pram Trio was like that.” - Michael Bourne, Newark New Jersey’s WBGO 88.3 FM

Founded by Mark Godfrey and Jack Bodkin, they released their debut album in the fall of 2013. The album garnered rave reviews with particular emphasis on their writing style. Specifically, Pram Trio’s compositions “often develop into territories unlike from whence they began and elicit a sense of drama from the relative peacefulness of the piano trio environment” (Dave Sumner/17 Dots Blog, eMusic). Eric West first performed with the band on their CD release tour that year and officially joined the group before their 2014 Canadian Jazz Festival tour.

In March 2016, Pram Trio will be celebrating the release of their new EP with a Canada-wide tour. This will be the first EP that includes the current lineup of the band. The group has been featured at jazz festivals across Canada including Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Halifax, Rimouski and Prince Edward County and they are very excited to take their music on the road once again.

Mark Godfrey - Bass // Jack Bodkin - Piano  // Eric West – Drums

Saga Thirteen is a six-track album recorded by Pram Trio in July 2015. This collection of compositions represents a period of constant change in the ensemble’s history. Featuring all original music composed by bassist Mark Godfrey and pianist Jack Bodkin, Saga Thirteen is the group’s second official release.

The record chronicles a period in which Pram Trio’s approach to writing and performing was in a state of flux as they developed their new sound with the addition of drummer Eric West. The music takes the listener on a journey exploring the breadth of Pram Trio’s compositions, visiting hard-hitting grooves (Mrs. Kim Visits the Living Room Alone, Undercurrent), soulful melodies (Bucket List), elaborate improvisations (April, Treptower Park) and a simple through-composed ballad (Control). Saga Thirteen is a small sample of the group’s new musical direction and further establishes Pram Trio as a strong artistic voice in the Canadian jazz landscape.

Released March 8, 2016 

Jack Bodkin - Piano 
Mark Godfrey - Bass 
Eric West - Drums

1. April 07:01
2. Bucket List 04:36
3. Mrs. Kim Visits the Living Room Alone 03:36
4. Control 02:46
5. Undercurrent 05:42
6. Treptower Park 07:05

Recorded July 10th and 11th, 2015 at the Canterbury Music Company. 

Mixed by Jeremy Darby (Canterbury Music Company), mastering by Peter Letros (Wreckhouse Mastering), artwork and design by Camille Lauren.