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Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | INDIE

Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Jazz Fusion


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Fat Suit Live at Stereo"

Rob Adams


There's a buzz circulating about Fat-Suit and it's one that's been well-earned. Just getting this rugby team, numbers-wise, of a band with busy individual schedules into the same room is an achievement in itself but over the past year they've also organised a work load including numerous domestic festivals and a European tour that took them into Ukraine, where they lifted local spirits dampened by personal losses in a war zone. Evidence of the latter can be seen on YouTube.

Back home on Tuesday they created the sort of occasion that people clearly want to be part of, a veritable Mardi Gras, appropriately enough, their very own Fat-Suit Fat Tuesday to officially launch their second album, Jugaad. It's a sun-bright, pulsating blast of energy, tempered by mood changes that offer quietude and repose between an insistent rhythmical bounce and earworm-like melodies and motifs carried on brass and strings. In person these qualities are magnified.

There's much that's celebratory about this music, a comingling of genres where the sort of heavy metal bebop that the Brecker Brothers once tore into with force majeure blossoms from decidedly romantic Scottish fiddle refrains and tricky-dicky, utterly in synch guitar, bass and keys riffing energises exploratory blowing on trombone, saxophone or flugelhorn. Air guitar buffs also get a good few chances to scratch their midriffs as high octane plectrum and string manipulation adds to the ferment.

It's possibly the sheer togetherness that Fat-Suit has developed that thrills the most, though. That and the new material worked up since Jugaad's recording suggesting that the band might be just getting started. Watch this space - it's going to be an experience. - The Herald

"Fat Suit JUGAAD Equinox"

Thanks to the internet, being a young and jazzy experimental band is currently more prosperous than it ever has been.

BadBadNotGood are three albums into blazing a critically acclaimed hip-hop trail out of Toronto, Manchester’s Gogo Penguin made it onto the Mercury Prize shortlist earlier this year, and of course Snarky Puppy and their almost forty-strong collective remain hugely influential.

Fat-Suit are Scotland’s answer to this trend, and it feels almost patronising to note that its fifteen members are all seriously impressive musicians.

Their compositions sit on a spectrum which, at one end features warped, technical jazz and at the other end shows off a tenderer penchant for creating trad-inspired, melody rich songs.

Their second album, Jugaad, is a powerhouse of instrumental music; it kicks off with ‘Don’t Die Octopi’, unleashing a keyboard sequence that flies madly around like a techno song.

The band effortlessly transition from section to section, bouncing back and forth from the theme before dropping into an unexpectedly gentle saxophone solo to set up the songs big climax.

Regarding the previously mentioned “spectrum”, the group slide up and down it on ‘Mistaken for a Hat’, which begins with the piano-y, gentler side of Fat-Suit before churning into funk jams, jazz solos and a hammering pinnacle taking the song just short of six-minutes.

‘Hypnic Jerk’ is a real standout track in among so many gems, as two slower, trumpet-led sections of trilling fiddle bookend a long middle section of jarring, incredibly cool grooves.

Special mentions go to ‘Illusions’ for allowing the groups guitarists to indulge in some hectic solo-ing fun, and to ‘April Lake’ for showing off a similar feel to my favourite song ‘No Regrets’, from the first album.

Jugaad is an incredibly successful album for Fat-Suit in that it displays virtuosity without stepping into the realms of showing off, shows an exciting mix of stylish composition that at points even manages to seamlessly interweave Latin-sounding rhythms with traditional-Scottish-sounding fiddle, and perhaps most importantly, puts this collective firmly in a league that will hopefully see them recognised for their brilliance by more and more music fans around the world. - Ravechild

"Fatea review Fat-Suit"

Fat-Suit are a large collective of young musicians who met while studying music in Glasgow. Still based in Glasgow, the band are making a real impact on the jazz scene in Scotland and they brought their instrumental juggernaut to Edinburgh's Voodoo Rooms on 4th March as part of a Scottish tour to promote their second album, "Jugaad".

Fat-Suit's thirteen-strong line-up for the night consisted of a four-piece brass section, two guitarists, two keyboard players, two fiddlers, two drummers/percussionists and a bassist. It would be fair to say that the band and their instruments made for a snug fit on the confines of the Voodoo Rooms stage…

The versatility of the line-up enables Fat-Suit to weave elements of funk, rock, folk and chamber music into their uncompromising modern jazz sound and create a richly satisfying musical stew. The venue was pleasingly full for this gig and Fat-Suit responded to the audience's clear enthusiasm by kicking into gear immediately with a pulsating opener, "Sound Logic". Like many of Fat-Suit's compositions, this featured infectious grooves and rhythms, punchy riffs and impressive soloing from individual band members. Indeed, given the complexity of the arrangments and the regular changes of tempo, the band's ensemble playing was quite breathtaking, owing much to the obvious chemistry between the individuals and the sheer joie-de-vivre of their playing. In spite of the intensity and high volume, the arrangements allowed the often intricate melodies to shine through and provided ample opportunity for the band to showcase their chops as solo players.

With a few exceptions, the set majored on the eleven excellent tunes on "Jugaad". All were played impeccably, but the full range of the band's individual and collective talents were perhaps best exemplified by the wondrous ebb and flow of "The First Man On The Sun"; the sparkling "Hypnic Jerk"; the catchily insistent "Don't Die Octopi"; and the delicious funk of "Mistaken For A Hat". Fat-Suit took the tempo right down on occasion, with a few lyrical, folk-tinged tunes, which highlighted the lovely fiddle/violin playing of the female string section. In April Lake", the strings soared gloriously above a plaintive guitar melody and the tune built to a kind of sedate hoe-down before reaching a soothing chamber music finale. "No Regrets" (from the first album, "Kambr") fused modern jazz with folk to sumptuous effect, recalling the superb Celtic jazz of Colin Steele's Stramash.

The girls took a well-earned breather during the extended workout of "Intensive Purposes". This tune (which closes the "Jugaad" album) was a tour-de-force, starting with moody guitar and keyboards over a menacingly loping bass riff, which paved the way for a succession of top-drawer solos. An interlude of elegant piano chords, sinuous bass and a soothing "ah ah" vocal chorus led into a blistering finish, with a stand-out bass solo and some blues guitar licks worthy of "Old Slowhand" himself.

Closing number, "Diversao", was a riot of musical colour. Hand-claps ushered in bouncy Latin horn riffs intercut with funky keyboard and guitar fills. The horn players all contributed searing solos, over irresistible percussion and organ runs, and the tune ended joyously with a towering, horn-led funk-fest reminiscent of the Brecker Brothers in their pomp.

"You do realise this is jazz you're listening to?!" joked one of the band, in acknowledging the audience's rapturous acclaim. Jazz it most certainly is, but Fat-Suit's music is so multi-textured and draws on so many other genres that it has a very wide appeal. Fat-Suit are the real deal and they look set to become prominent players on the Scottish music scene for some time to come. - Fatea

"CD REVIEW: Fat-Suit - Atlas"

Fat-Suit - Atlas
(Equinox Records EQX004CD. CD Review by Dan Bergsagel)

A solitary violin leads in distant, patient horns, a slow crescendo gathering the rest of the band to climax before breaking in to four-to-the-floor electronic fuzz, and back out again. For a philharmonic philistine like me its final frontier space odyssey stuff, and for Fat-Suit it is a distinctive sound marking new musical territory, and increasing the size of their string section 700% for their third album Atlas.

At the London Jazz Festival in 2015, Fat-Suit held forth in the Southbank Centre's Clore Ballroom in the slot before Average White Band in the Royal Festival Hall. They were promising, exciting, and a leaner version of the 27 musicians featuring on Atlas, but the stage architecture didn't help them; their sound swallowed up in to the cavernous lobby. Atlas couldn't be any more different, a diverse collection of instruments crammed in to the Cottiers Theatre in Glasgow, with the rich acoustics at the fore.

With the new record come new sonic experiments: the other worldly orchestral opener Colours Burst Behind Eyes, the journeyman sound of far-off places of Mr Hinomaru, and the more local-sounding anthemic folk of Cowfords. However the album's core appeal comes from developing the base Fat-Suit model – fast-paced progressive mix of jazz fusion full of driving drums, infectious horn lines and meandering synth. Nuscle In My Link is full of energy, different chapters, and perhaps brings the inevitable comparisons with US multi-instrumental mega-collective Snarky Puppy in to the sharpest contrast. The jumping funky Sparks and jaunty time signatures and brooding rhythm section of For The Wicked demonstrate the bands collective understanding, but cry out for live performance.

Writing duties are shared, and each composer is leaving their mark. The rhythm interplay in drummer Mark Scobie's For The Wicked shines through, and the meandering horn lines of saxophonist Scott Murphy's Weather Report-esque Messiah Complex stand as a signature, but perhaps it's the keys player Craig McMahon contributions which leave the clearest marks, bringing electronica and experimentation to the heart of the penultimate track Septimus, swaggering through genres and moods before a strident finale.

Atlas is an ambitious album, and while the extended line up brings plenty of compositional opportunities, it feels Fat-Suit are at their strongest on the tracks where they've shed the extra weight. On this evidence they're a band evolving fast, and conducting fascinating experiments as they go. I'd try and catch them live at one of their rare dates soon, before they evolve again for their next project. - London Jazz News


Still working on that hot first release.


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