Snarky Puppy dude turns Raleigh venue the Pour House into a 21st century jazz haven.
PHOTOS AND TEXT BY TODD GUNSHER
On a typically quiet Monday night, GroundUp Music artist Bill Laurance (one of the Snarky Puppy crew) brought some 21st century jazz to Raleigh’s Pour House. Following area jazzers Eric Hirsh Quartet, keyboardsman Laurence took the stage for a well received 90 minute set. Laurance, Jamison Ross (drums), Chris Smith (bass) and Felix Higginbottom (percussion) packed the stage with various instruments both acoustic and electronic, and filled the room with stellar musicianship, rhythms from around the world and outside the box compositions.
I didn’t get all the song titles, but mid-set Laurance spoke of how the original Cosmos inspired “Aftersun” and later, of writing “Money In The Desert” while on a trip to Dubai. Many of the compositions featured Ross & Felix who weaved together complex rhythms that Smith would glide into while Laurance floated above. Whether he wowed us with a quick run or an extended chord it always sounded just right.
Laurance is currently on a solo tour hitting a handful of east coast cities before heading to Europe. If you’re into modern instrumental jazz and don’t know Snarky Puppy you should, and if you do know them then you definitely need to check out Bill Laurance who brings his own take on that sound.