Touring in the UK now, this Grammy-winning singer and bassist you may never have heard of puts on more of a show by standing still between keyboards and drums than most bands manage with more space and more gizmos.
The electronics are used to enhance rather than crowd out the musicianship of these three performers. They all sing and produce a BIG sound.
'Drunk' is Thundercat's third album and if you listen to BBC 6 Music or JazzFM, you may have heard 'Them Changes' and wondered where it came from. This is it. And when he played it early in the set yesterday in his London show at Heaven, the crowd went wild. Already a sell-out show, even the front door security were bouncing to it under the arches, where they were turning away touts and Heaven regulars.
The Fender Rhodes balances with Thundercat's bass and those drums! Jazz can sometimes feel chaotic, but at its best that chaos resolves into something like this. Three guys on stage. Doing their thing. And doing it well. The sax on 'Them Changes' was sadly missing, but you can't have everything.
There's a touch of Gil Scott-Heron about Thundercat - the songs are from the heart and this is not just music outside the box. That box is invisible, somewhere in the distance.