Meet East of West, Australia’s most unique jazz band

Meet East of West, Australia’s most unique jazz band

Words by Tom Parker

We spotlight the band before their live stream performance this weekend.

Inspired by the Balkans and the Mediterranean, East of West combine a rich fusion of world music and jazz that draws from the essence of improvisation. With their music, the trio create an experience that feels both strange and familiar at the same time – their experience in jazz and Middle Eastern classical forms merging to create an indistinct music lifeform.

East of West is made up of Bosnian-born double bass-player Goran Gajic, percussionist Malindi Morris as well as Philip Griffin on the oud, all three of which are revered professional musicians in their own right. Gajic is a member of Queensland Music Award-winning band Mzaza who are slowly taking over the world with their Gypsy-inspired folk music, while Griffin has toured and recorded with the likes of Linsey Pollak, Frankie Armstrong, Ross Daly and Tunji Beier.

Morris can also boast experience extending far and wide. Throughout the last four years, she has been living in Sweden and Slovenia, where she has been studying folk music and composing for five-piece band Lastovka.

Together, the trio embody a visceral force in music and now they’re set to showcase their work as part of The Boite’s ongoing live stream concert series, ‘Adapt, Not Cancel’. On Sunday June 7, East of West will launch their debut album, Little Harbour, to the world. Recorded in the Yama-Nui studio, a recording space hidden amongst the Sunshine Coast hinterland, the release mirrors the experience of meandering through the back alleys of a Mediterranean port city, where moments of serenity can be quickly upended by hustle and bustle as spontaneity rules the streets.

The record mimics the exuberance of a band that innately bounce off one another to create a transcendent listening experience. For East of West are no regular jazz band, they’re like nothing else.

East of West will perform as part of The Boite’s live stream concert series on Sunday June 7. Grab your tickets via Trybooking. Find out more about ‘Adapt, Not Cancel’ here.

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