Kieran Hebden and Steve Reid’s final concert gets November release; give thanks!

Kieran Hebden and Steve Reid's final concert gets November release; give thanks!

On November 14, Norway’s Smalltown Superjazzz label will release Live at the South Bank, the final concert and collaborative album from Kieran Hebden (a.k.a. Four Tet) and jazz drummer and percussionist Steve Reid. The 2xCD/LP release is believed to be Reid’s last authorized recording before his untimely death back in 2010.

The performance in question took place in the foyer of the Queen Elizabeth Hall at London’s Southbank Centre on June 20, 2009, as part of the Meltdown festival curated by multi-instrumentalist and free jazz legend Ornette Coleman. Accompanying Hebden and Reid for this particular concert was Swedish “power saxophonist” Mats Gustaffson, who has previously worked with such influential acts as Sonic Youth and Jim O’Rourke. Likewise, Reid himself had worked with numerous musicians who, to be sure, need no introduction, but a few of whom I’ll mention anyway: Miles Davis, James Brown, Freddie Hubbard, and Sun Ra. Needless to say, the curricula vitarum of each of the artists on this recording is astoundingly impressive.

In an article from JazzTimes, the author remarks on how Reid used to refer to Hebden as his “musical soul mate.” It would be fair, then, to consider this fifth and final recording between the two to be a tribute to Reid, and what ended up being a providential confluence of two innovative musical figures.

Live at the South Bank tracklisting:

Disc 1:
01. Morning Prayer
02. Lyman Place
03. People Be Happy

Disc 2:
01. Untitled
02. 25th Street
03. The Sun Never Sets

• Four Tet:
• Steve Reid:
• Smalltown Superjazzz:

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