Jazz Fest – Tortured Soul sets the stage on fire

2011-03-26 11:14

I have been to many live concerts and seen bands move audiences.

I have seen entire dance floors move to one beat. But never have I seen the mean bouncers at the door nod their heads to music. Well, that was until last night.

Tortured Soul, the three-piece live house band that had many a jazz purists cringing at their inclusion on the jazz line, set their stage on fire with their performance last night at the 12th annual Cape Town International Jazz Festival.

The audience was singing along word for word from the first song right through to the last, proving that South Africans are the band’s greatest fans.

Band drummer John Christian Urich said our major radio stations had given the band the most airplay worldwide.

“SA just loves our music. I don’t know why we would be so popular here, but whatever the reason, I’m glad we are,” he said.

With each performance Urich takes multitasking to new heights. Not only is he the drummer but lead vocalist too. He even had time to open an ice cold beer during their set.

“It always amazes me how this Tortured Soul dude who sings lead still remembers all the breaks on the drums. That is so difficult,” said festival goer Kabomo Vilakazi.

The performance, however, did not go without its faults.

The sound technicians seemed to be showing fatigue at the 1am show.

Keyboardist Ethan White, who holds the melody of each song together, could not be heard for close to 20 minutes, with technicians frantically trying to find a solution, while Urich and recently joined bassist, Jason Kriveloff, kept crowds well entertained.

“I have only been playing with the band for six months, but I’m excited to be learning the music, and getting into the nuances of the songs and the style and the sound too.

These guys have been doing this for a while and they have a strong concept and approach. My job is to honour that,” said Kriveloff.

Some jazz lovers came to the Bassline stage with great apprehension, but left with a new-found love for the house music genre.

“I’m not that big on house, but Tortured Soul is something kinda serious,” tweeted Nick Kaoma.

Johannesburg audiences can catch the band’s performance on Thursday, March 31 2011 at Anologue Nights at Melrose Arch’s Moyo restaurant.

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