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Bands and Music Review

10:35 Thursday 09 February 2012  Written by Nicola Hine

Album review: Justin Swadling's Modus

Smooth jazz which breaks down the barriers between genres is being created by a musical trio. Justin Swadling's Modus, fronted by Burnham saxophonist Justin Swadling, has written, produced and recently released an album ahead of a packed summer tour.

The London-based group, which also features Emily Francis on keys and Liam Waugh on drums, creates a sound which Justin described as 'smooth jazz, mixing soul, hip-hop and funk'.

"We've tried to make music that's accessible to everyone not just musicians and hardcore jazz listeners," he explained.

"Heavy grooves and singable melodies will hopefully tempt people who usually only listen to mainstream music to give us a try." 

Recording of the album, titled Justin Swadling's Modus, began in November and production continued throughout the coming months.

Influences were drawn from distinguished musicians such as Steely Dan and Bill Withers.

The finished product is slick and manages to sound both modern and traditional, which will no doubt help in winning the band new audiences.

Perfect for playing at a dinner party or in the background of a stylish high street boutique, it would be equally as enjoyable in the garden on a hazy Sunday afternoon.

Snappy single word song titles such as Fix and Adoration run hand in hand with its sharp production, and Justin's hopes to create a live album should definitely be fulfilled.

Modus' forthcoming tour is set to include both club and festival dates.

"One we're particularly looking forward to is the Isle of Wight Festival," Justin said.

"It's one of the few pop festivals we're playing and is always well attended by such a diverse and open minded audience."

Catch them if you can - and if it happens to be outside in a sunny field, all the better.

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