Time Out June 25th-July 2nd 1982
THE LOST JOCKEY "Professor Slack" (Operation Twilight)
This extended 10 inch just about edges towards album status, but as the first take home'n'keep broadcast from this excellent young band, it deserves notice. The main piece, Schaun Tozer's "Professor", crams side one with ideas, tortuous rhythm athletics hammering away somewhere between The Big Country and Bali, bright and needle sharp but always one step ahead of the numbing repetition systems music is prone to. Andrew Poppy's "Animal Behaviour & Crude Din" has an odd pop feel to it, going up and down like a funky Guinness Clock, and could probably insinuate its way into a hip disco. John Barker's "Rise & Fall" is probably the most tradtional systems piece, a sweet, mesmeric and almost melancholy work, gentle and delicate in its movements like (last horological simile for 50 miles) a swiss watch. Three different, fascinating views on systems from three of the group's composers, and a fine, teasing taste of the two full-length albums due later this year. (John Gill)
City Limits July 2nd-July 8th 1982
THE LOST JOCKEY Africa Centre
Spawned from an original lineup of live keyboard players, the systems music ensemble THE LOST JOCKEY (Africa Centre, Friday) now accounts for a mere twenty-five musicians; the group having expanded to include a variety of strings, percussion, wind instruments and a choral section. Although the influence of American minimalist composers Steve Reich and Philip Glass remain uppermost, there are now signs of change and development. Unlike many groups involved in systems music, they are open to performing the work of more than one composer, thus giving all of their six participating writers a share in the credits. Consequently they boast a diversity of style that is all too rare in the field; responding not only to classics but also to the phraseology of rock, jazz and funk. A sample comes in the shape of the excellent "Professor Slack" (a 10" EP on Operation Twilight) which is itself a taster for the band's upcoming album for the Belgian Crepuscule label. Occasionally prone to over-stretching their ideas, there will doubtless be moments during their set when a crafty visit to the bar is in order. But for the most part, The Lost Jockey figure as a versatile and potentially groundbreaking musical force and are thus recommended. (David Ilic)
NME July 10th 1982
THE LOST JOCKEY Africa Centre, London
On their ten inch single The Lost Jockey render a certain scrappy charm. Played softly the homely textures percolate not unpleasantly as an accompanyment to some chore or other. Their London concert last weekend -- at the tiny and surprisingly packed Africa Centre in Covent Garden -- elicited no such amusement. The 18 participants, intensely busy over their violins, saxes, drums etc (an organ the sole concession to electricity) ran through a clutch of prepared scores that spoke only of deliberations, tricksiness and being very careful. Call-and-response ideas, overlapping motifs, rhythms grown out of crisscross lines: all devices conservatoire graduates get out of their systems as therapeutic ejection, not artistic substance.
Pale, blotchy echoes of Poulenc, Schoenberg and Braxton only succeeded in tainting the whole enterprise with a dusty aura of Guide To The Bargain Classics. A live performance should properly have grafted fresh dimensions to the industry John Leckie muted to successful end on vinyl, but here tension was missed for a wearisome straining to avoid wrong notes or beats.
Natural certain felicities escaped the overall hunch and jostle of an overcrowded frame: a sudden flooding of tones would occasionally tingle through. Mostly, though, monotony took precedence. the chamber-like mood of onrushing melodic drift is better crafted by John Taylor's Azimuth; the sense of bunched-up extravagance by Philip Glass. The Lost Jockey stayed mislaid in earnest and unrewarding workmanship. (Richard Cook)
THE LOST JOCKEY "The Lost Jockey" LP (TWI 062)
Cadenza (Andrew Poppy)
Phrase Book (John Barker)
Matters Of Theory (Andrew Poppy)
Hoovering The Beach (Orlando Gough)
The Lost Jockey is a group formed earlier this year to perform and record music which has been given various labels such as 'systems music', 'crossover music' (between Rock and Classical), 'minimal music' and 'repetitous rubbish'. The group aims to be both innovative and historically aware. There are five composers in the group who write about two-thirds of the repertoire; the other third is by Steve Reich, Philip Glass and earlier related composers such as Bach and Perotin.
Originally, there were five members of the group; now there are eighteen -- not a homogenous collection of hired virtuosi, rather a democratic gropu of interested musicians from varying backgrounds chosen as much for their musical ideas as for their performing ability. It consists of a large keyboard section (electric and acoustic), winds, strings trio, percussion and voices. We intend soon to add two more wind player, another percussionist and a small brass section.
THE LOST JOCKEY "Professor Slack"
LP © 1983 Battersea Records
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