John Zorn, Masada and The Spike Orchestra
The music of John Zorn was a crucial influence on the Spike Orchestra, from the beginning both Naked City and the Masada Books were huge formative influences both on the concept and approach of the band.
Zorn's monolithic Masada, a Radical Jewish Culture project comprising of 613 tunes across three Books has featured recordings by legendary Downtown and jazz artists including; Pat Metheny, Marc Ribot, Jamie Saft, Dave Douglas, Medeski, Martin & Wood, Bill Frisell, Uri Caine, Cleric, Zion80, Banquet Of The Spirits, Mary Halvorson and many others.
The Spike Orchestra became the first big band and the first British artists to feature when in 2015 Zorn invited the band to record volume 26 of Masada Book Two: The Book of Angels. Cerberus was released in November 2015 and became an Amazon.com #1 bestseller described by Tzadik as "one of the most imaginative and manic masterpieces in the whole series"
This was followed in 2017 by Zorn again inviting Eastmond to record Masada, this time as part of the upcoming 2018 release of Book Three: The Book Beriah. Hugely honoured not only to have worked with the music once but to return for the final installment, the band's album Binah is a culmination of five years of creative experimentation and is the most personal and extreme of the Spike Orchestra projects to date.
"John Zorn from a full on big-band with some delicious arrangements of ten tunes.....has gone straight into my 'Best of the Year' selection."
London Jazz News
review of Cerberus