Through the Noise announces their new season of concerts for 23/24


Through the Noise, the London-based concert promoter, celebrated its second birthday last night with characteristic unalloyed exuberance.

Headed up by schoolfriends Jack Bazalgette and Jack Crozier, Through the Noise puts an eclectic mix of musicians in club-like settings in events that meld a jazz-vibe with a sophisticated fusion of ‘yoot’ and classical.

On paper that could read like a hideous mish-mash devised by pound shop iconoclasts. In practice Through the Noise is an intimate live performance with rock, jazz and soul sensibilities that succeeds simply because all involved know no one needs to apologise for the music or try too hard to make the experience appealing.

TTN’s Sheku gig is a case in point. At the time of writing the video has inexplicably been viewed 640 times, surprising given the cello and piano arrangement of the Mahler 5 Adagietto is heartbreaking. Here TTN demonstrates not only as people with a canny idea of what a particular demographic are more inclined to attend, but also with a view to how they see themselves. Part promoters, part producers, even part TV producers. Move over Jools Holland. Maybe it’s time for classical to have its own late-night regular TV spot.

The 23/24 season sees how much the recording industry has bought into the TTN ethos, seeing no doubt an opportunity to be part of something that defies convention in pursuit of something a little more relaxed. A big round of applause then for Warner Classics who are buddying up with Jack and Jack, offering up some artists for their season including Fatma Said and Thibaut Garcia at OSLO Hackney and Lafayette respectively. All great of course, but Warner Classics Director Sean Michael Gross misses the mark when he says, “through the noise is doing incredible work breaking down barriers in classical music by making it exciting and accessible to young, enthusiastic music lovers.”

What Through the Noise is doing builds on the pioneering work of Will Norris and the OAE’s Night Shift, putting classical in locations where young people want to go. As ridiculously nuanced the point I’m making might be, it remains tiresome that Warner would even entertain the idea of trotting out such a tired line which ultimately works against the industry it’s trying to celebrate. There are no barriers, other than the assumptions inadvertently created by industry professionals and their poorly thought-out copy.

Nonetheless, there is good reason to pay close attention Through the Noise. Jack Bazalgette on stage at last night’s birthday party fused self-deprecation with easy humility, articulating a thirty-something deference for classical live performance. Crozier is a likeable compere conveying just enough bumbliness without poking fun or undermining the end product. Bringing up the rear is the equally affable Jack Crozier who displays the kind of enthusiasm I remember having twenty years ago before bitterness and resentment rocked up and demanded they move in rent-free. That luminaries from the classical music industry appeared to be happily in attendance choosing not to take advantage of the bar tab says something of Crozier and Bazalgette’s influencing skills. It appears, if I’m not mistaken, that the key to all of this is to be A Nice Person. How did I miss that lesson at school?

In addition to their Warner Classics partnership, Through the Noise is pairing up with Manchester Collective who appear to be successfully combining establishment praise (see their Southbank residency) whilst maintaining their go-to underground vibe. Manchester Collective perform at TTN concerts in Birkenhead, Newcastle and Birmingham with music by Reich, Bach and Hildegard of Bingen.

Also on the bill guitarist Alexandra Whittingham joins forces with TTN to go on a UK-wide tour. She performed last night to warm applause. Easy stuff given her technical proficiency and seemingly effortless expressive melodic line. Her face didn’t necessarily communicate that as she walked off the postage-stamp stage. More relief than actual joy. Don’t be misled though. She’s fab.

Through the Noise business model invites would-be supporters to pledge money for individual events in the season. If the necessary funds are reached then the event goes ahead. For more details on their upcoming season in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Liverpool, Birkenhead, Newcastle, Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester, Brighton and London, visit the Through the Noise website.