“New Ansonia”

“An unfailing inventive, artfully produced, and delightfully sunny debut.”
The Telegraph ★★★★
“The kind of album I expect of musicians who have spent more than forty years on the Jazz stages of the world.”
Concerto Magazine ★★★★★
“An impressive debut with a mature balance of complex orchestration and jazz looseness.”
The Guardian ★★★★
more press cuttings…


Front cover finalAlbum liner notes:

Since before I was born I have been surrounded by an immense volume of music; I would practically not exist without it. Whether Bach, Byrd, Brahms or Basie, Igor Stravinsky or Stevie Wonder the influence of the music that I am playing or listening to gives me such joy when I’m writing my own pieces.

“New Ansonia” is a collection of songs written during the last two years that have seen the beginning of my life as a jazz bass player. Whilst writing these nine pieces I have set out to honour the things that are most important to me in music; melody, counterpoint and groove, and within these three to communicate the different sides of my personality from the sensitive and sentimental to the joyful and ecstatic to the eccentric and irregular.

I would like to thank my quintet for all the hours that they have spent learning and performing my music. It would not be possible to communicate all the things I have wanted to without Scott Chapman’s incredibly supportive and complementary grooving, Jacob Collier’s sharp inventiveness and rich understanding of all the music, Tom Green’s individual and harmony-lifting voice, and Matthew Herd’s beautifully sensitive and melodic playing. I would also like to thank: Jim and Nick for so generously offering their talents and playing on three of the songs; my parents Vika and Matthew for not only being the biggest source of inspiration in the world but also playing on one of the tracks; Julian Joseph for practically running the show whilst in the studio; Alex Killpartrick for taking such good care of the music during the recording and the many days after; Jeremy Brown and Michael Janisch for demonstrating the mysteries of the double bass; Jasper Høiby for the groove and Tom Herbert for instruction in the art of the improvisors. To Pete Churchill for homilies on jazz harmony; Nick Smart, Dave Stapleton and Evan Parker for enabling this work of art to be created in the first place; Ellie for being wonderful and always making me happy; and my father Claudio who I never got to see very much before he passed away last year, but still provided me with so much musical inspiration. “Heal Me On This Cloudy Day” was written on his last day before moving on, and was first performed at his funeral two days after his passing.

The word ‘Ansonia’ is completely made-up and so has no meaning, other than the fact that when I wrote the song I had just moved house to a place with a similar-sounding name. But as it’s a happy and uplifting song I thought it would be fitting as the title track.

Misha Mullov-Abbado double bass, french horn, bass guitar       Matthew Herd alto & soprano saxophones

Tom Green trombone    Jacob Collier piano, fender rhodes, shaker, tambourine    Scott Chapman drums & djembe

Additional musicians & credits…

James Davison trumpet & flugelhorn (3. 4.)    Nick Goodwin electric guitar (4. 5.)    Viktoria Mullova violin (7.)    Matthew Barley cello (7.)

Julian Joseph producer      Alex Killpartrick engineer & mixing     Sam Barnes assistant engineer     Donal Whelan mastering


1. Circle Song 7.07
2. Lock, Stock & Shuffle 7.22
3. Real Eyes Realise Real Lies 7.56
4. New Ansonia 7.52
5. Satan, Oscillate My Metallic Sonatas 8.18
6. Ode To King Michael 4.30
7. Heal Me On This Cloudy Day 5.06
8. September 8.47
9. Just Another Love Song 10.44

Recorded at Giant Wafer Studios in Wales