Review Scene: Tamil Rogeon Electric Band & GoGo Penguin, Forum Theatre, 27th October 2023 by Karen Dean

Jazz lovers experienced an unforgettable evening at the beginning of the Melbourne International Jazz Festival. 

The night commenced with the opening performance by the Tamil Rogeon Electric Jazz Band.  This Australian band offered a preview of tracks from their upcoming album to an enthusiastic crowd. The group seamlessly merged jazz and electric music, receiving a warm reception from their fans with the notable highlights included their tracks “Mountain Bike” and “Axe to Grind,” showcasing the band’s innovative musical approach.

Nevertheless, the highlight of the event was the debut performance by the UK-based jazz trio GoGo Penguin, featuring Chris Illingworth on piano, Nick Blacka on bass, and Jon Scott on drums. Throughout the night, the band’s commitment to pushing boundaries was evident as they expertly fused diverse genres, blending traditional jazz, electronica, and classical elements. The trio created layers of complex, harmonious sounds that added a richness to their music, enthralling the audience in the jam packed venue. The audience appreciated the band’s selections from their earlier albums, the real standout moments came from their latest release, ‘Everything Is Going to Be Ok.’ 

The intricate rhythms and deeply emotive melodies transformed the audience, spanning across a diverse range of age groups, to create an unforgettable experience.