Ottawa’s Nero brings jambient space fusion to Boot Pub 

Who: Nero

Where: The Boot Pub

When: May 20

Fusion band Nero bring you jazz-influenced grooves this Monday.

The trio – Jay Mcconnery, Dave Lauzon, and Shane Clark – play from their album Jambient Space Fusion , mixing up electronic, rock and jazz influences from masters of the improv like Herbie Hancock.

And they go heavy on the art of instrumental.

"We (do a lot of improv) but we’re not the kind of band that puts emphasis on the solos. Instead we’re more about the group – we like to keep it interesting for the crowd, and don’t play from any one set list," says Mcconnery, a trooper ringing through on tour from a payphone beside a highway, trucks zooming by in the background.

Unfazed by the highway noise, he is enthusiastic about the band’s plan to go full-time after a stellar 100 shows performed last year.

Ottawa-based Nero was formed four years ago and promote their new album, is it morning? , on this Western tour.

Picked up by west coast booking agent Craig Glen of Hipstar Productions, they play 35 dates from Toronto to Tofino.

Previously they shared stage time in Ottawa with bands like Recipe from a Small Planet and completed five tours of the Maritimes.

"We see ourselves as an alternative to the testosterone bar scene, and want to have an environment where guys and girls can just hang out," Mcconnery says.

Festival-side, they will appear at "Canada’s Jamband and DJ festival" Evolve, Aug. 23 to 25 in Antigonish, N.S., and at Come Together, held just north of Toronto.

The band credits much of their success to fan tapers, a trend among fans of jam bands who post live recordings of shows on the Internet for music-thirsty surfers.

In addition to originals, including 25 new songs written for the next two albums, Nero perform covers of Jimi Hendrix’s Third Stone from the Sun and various Jeff Beck tunes.

And while the band would consider a record label, at this stage keeping true to their music mission – pushign the "boundaries of instrumental music (exploring) the beauty of spontaneity" – is most important.

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