With lyrics adapted from work by some of NZ’s most noteworthy poets, Norman Meehan, Hannah Griffin and Hayden Chisholm‘s ‘Small Holes in the Silence’ is a really intriguing listening experience. It can be quite strange to hear words you know by heart, or close to it – for me, James K. Baxter’s High Country Weather and Hone Tuwhare’s Rain in particular. But it’s the best kind of strange because the music that Meehan, Griffin and Chisholm have created is utterly beautiful. It’s a record that should be equally at home in the music library of a jazz aficionado as a poetry buff – because it will open up something new for both listeners.
In Bill Manhire’s liner notes, he writes about poetry’s earliest days, when it was song, and the ways that the trio have ably interpreted the source material. All three performers are extraordinarily talented, there’s no question about it. Hannah Griffin’s vocals have just the right balance between crisp diction and decadent tone. Norman Meehan’s jazz piano is elegant and powerful, while Hayden Chisholm’s sax is wistful and evocative. Further your local poetry and jazz education in the best possible way.