Right from the start, Here and Now had my interest. You don’t often hear such talent on a debut album. You can hear Jo’s influences coming through on every song. The sounds from her sax are not overstated, nor are they stuffy or boring. The combined experience of all her bandmates comes across as clean and well arranged.
Miss Fooks composed all the songs and lyrics herself, and in so doing, has shown her talent for writing and arranging also. She has used several influences in her song including Latin and even a touch of reggae.
Reminiscent of the sounds that were heard coming out of the jazz clubs of San Francisco in the 60’s, every note is light and enjoyable. Her drummer, Buster Birch studied under Jo Morello, and it shows. He has that classic rhythm and a skill that can not be denied. The bass is also classic in its aspect. Val Manix seems to be at one with his instrument. The piano is not overpowering and soothing and flows naturally from the hands of Simon Purcell.
Altogether, this album is light, smooth and completely enjoyable. I look forward to more new and refreshing sounds from Miss Fooks and her quartet in the future. She certainly has a promising career ahead of her.