Three fellows collaborate

Chris McCluskey plays a song for you.

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A trio inspired by a concept first employed by Jerry Granelli during last year's Atlantic Jazz Festival has wrapped up its first record with a similar notion in mind. TFC—made up of Jeff Torbert (guitar), Adam Fine (bass) and Doug Cameron (drums)—is releasing an album of original and improv jazz recorded in front of a live recording studio audience.

"The CD is one show, start to finish, with no editing. It was all recorded at Sonic Temple with an audience...under a full moon, with skylights," says Torbert. "It changes the whole studio dryness."

The group, who assembled in late 2005, calls the album Rhivomatics—a name that reflects the cohesiveness between the members of the band and their music.

"A rhivo is a root that connects different plants below the ground, sort of a non-hierarchical structure," he says. "In some bands there is the music and the people in the band who play the music. In this band there's no separation between the people in the band and the music. Just because of the nature of the music, like, to change one member it would be such a different band and not be even close to the same thing."

TFC celebrates its finished debut effort on March 2 at the Seahorse.

Tonal shift

As many local venues feel the crunch of being approached by bands with fewer options to play in the wake of Stage Nine's closure, the ill-fated bar's Thursday staple found it easy to relocate. Bassist Mike Farrington of nine-piece funk and soul cover act The Mellotones believes it was easy to find a new home at the Seahorse because they fill a need.

"It seems to me there are two scenes, there are a lot of people doing the indie thing and people who do the sloppy covers," says Farrington. "And we aren't in either of them."

Regretful another venue has come and gone, he says the Mellotones are happy to carry on around the corner at the Seahorse with what—in the band's experience—made Stage Nine a hospitable venue for them to play.

"The staff and everything there was just great," says Farrington. "The cool thing is Dex, the soundman, is at the Seahorse now. That's a huge plus for us. That's what it was, the people that were there were awesome."

The Mellotones play Thursdays on Argyle.

Sweet release

It has been routinely quiet for several months, but luckily you saved your dough for March's spree of CD release parties, right? Our multi-genre walk-and-rock tour of the city begins on the Common March 3 with The Letter Unfolds then heads downtown to Sackville Street with Glory Glory Man United at Reflections on March 7, followed by Joyless Streets at The Attic on March 9, MacCrimmons Revenge at St. Matthew's on March 10, Great Plains at the North End Pub on March 15 (and the Pavilion the following night), Jonny Stevens at Tribeca on March 21 and The Superfantastics on March 30 at The Seahorse.

Also look forward to April when two of Halifax's favourite heavy hitters come out swinging: Joel Plaskett's latest full-length Ashtray Rock hits store shelves on the 17th, and Jenn Grant's long-awaited full-length debut Orchestra for the Moon launches at her old stomping grounds, Queen Elizabeth High, on the 27th.

Who’s playing in your old stomping grounds? Email: scene@thecoast.ca

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