Ivo Neame's twisting grooves and harmonic ingenuity have helped establish his distinct voice in international contemporary jazz. The celebrated Phronesis pianist returns to Whirlwind for ‘Glimpses of Truth’, a powerful artistic statement marking the first time Neame's big band compositions have been committed to disc. Neame's most assured body of work to date will undoubtedly be remembered as one of this period's most impressive artistic achievements.
"Having lots of people play this intricate polyrhythmic music can be really emotionally powerful," says Neame. Taking inspiration from Phronesis' large ensemble projects, the compositions also played a didactic role, as a way of introducing newcomers to complex rhythmic structures. The pandemic flipped that idea on its head: faced with dwindling opportunities to hear these compositions live, Neame thought "'I'm just going to plough on regardless and record it all'." Composed, multi-tracked (Neame plays all the tutti sax lines), videoed, mixed and mastered remotely over the pandemic period, ‘Glimpses of Truth’ embraces the digital on a global scale, as Gilad Hekselman, Jim Hart and Ingrid Jensen appear alongside a stellar selection of UK musicians.
Neame stumbled across an article which claimed that 12 million Americans believe interstellar lizards run the United States. "I wanted to write a tune that would encourage people to wake up and question their beliefs" - 'Rise of the Lizard People' is what followed, immediately dropping you into Neame's world of pulsing rhythms and shifting feels.
The album finds Neame well equipped on his continued search for hard-fought truths.