Golden, the debut album by the Kit Downes Trio has been nominated for this year’s Mercury prize. Pianist Downes, a former member of Empirical, and a winner of the 2008 BBC Jazz Award For Rising Star leads his trio of bassist Calum Gourlay and drummer James Maddren and released the album last year on Basho Records.
A former pupil of the Purcell School and a graduate of the Royal Academy of Music, Downes, 24, also is a member of the prog jazz group Troyka (playing organ) and during his time with Empirical performed on the group’s critically acclaimed eponymous debut recorded for Courtney Pine’s Destin-e Records label.
Downes took the brave decision to leave the group, embarking on a new career which saw him forming new groups including the KDT and joining Troyka.
Other albums nominated are by Biffy Clyro for Only Revolutions; Corinne Bailey Rae for The Sea; Dizzee Rascal for Tongue 'N’ Cheek; Foals for Total Life Forever; I Am Kloot for Sky At Night; Laura Marling for I Speak Because I Can; Mumford And Sons for Sigh No More; Paul Weller for Wake Up The Nation; Villagers for Becoming A Jackal, Wild Beasts for Two Dancers and The XX for XX.
– Stephen Graham
The Kit Downes Trio perform at the Brecon Jazz Festival in Wales on 7 August. For more go to www.hayfestival.com/p-2654-kit-downes-trio.aspx