Over the course of my life, much of my music listening has been devoted to the great fusion players and bands of the past 40 years – Pat Metheny & Lyle Mays, Gary Burton, Allan Holdsworth, Bill Connors, Jan Garbarek, John Scofield, Weather Report & Oregon, amongst many.
I had finished my Doctorate in classical composition, but now wanted to reflect what I’d learned from those wonderful musicians listed above and, hopefully, add something new to the jazz-rock genre. So, in 2010 I began to write music for a guitar trio setting and formed The John Irvine Band in 2011 – the result became my first album, ‘Wait & See’.
Two more albums followed in this vein ‘Next Stop’ (2013) and ‘Metaphysical Attractions’ (2018) until I decided to add a more progressive rock element to the music resulting in ‘The Machinery Of The Heavens’ (2020) and ‘Psychopomp’ (2022). Of course, being a child of the 70s, my interest in prog has always been there – Yes, Genesis, King Crimson, U.K., Max Webster, Rush, Gentle Giant… and so many other great bands.
All five albums have received awards and plaudits from many Progressive Rock and Jazz Fusion magazines and websites. Several tracks have been played on internet and terra firma radio stations, such as: The Prog Rock Palace, Xymphonia, El Ritorno Del Gigante, Canvas Prog Hour, Friday Night Progressive & La Villa Strangiato. I was delighted when ‘Metaphysical Attractions’ was awarded 3rd place in the Fusion category in the 2019 Friday Night Progressive ‘IndeProg’ Awards.
Both ‘Wait & See’ and ‘Next Stop’ were recorded with the same band lineup: myself: Guitars, Keyboards, Alan Emslie: Drums, Percussion and Doug Kemp: Bass. ‘Metaphysical Attractions’ featured a new line-up: renowned Scottish drummer Rich Kass, with Rob Ironside and Gwen Kelso on sax and flute. The fourth album ‘The Machinery Of The Heavens’ featured the ‘DUO Mk.I’ lineup with Rich Kass. ‘Psychopomp’ featured a new drummer in the JIB ‘hot seat’, the Kirriemuir-based Calum McIntyre. Thus creating a DUO Mk.II lineup. A DUO Mk.III will be recording the next JIB album ‘Scanning The Dark Horizon’ in 2022. This time featuring the Edinburgh-based drummer Andrew Scott (King King/Paul Gilbert).
“The progressive rock album that Allan Holdsworth never made.” – René Yedema (Radio Xymphonia)
“Irvine just about revolutionizes the entire jazz-rock instrumental concept.” – Robert Silverstein (MWE3.com)
‘With “Next Stop” Irvine proves himself to be just as good as Holdsworth at his best, in both writing and performing.” – Joseph Shingler (Prognaut.com)
“Intelligently written progressive fusion: 14.5/16” – Warren Barker (Progression Magazine)
“A group that, ultimately, can become one of the most high-profile acts of this kind worldwide: 9/10” – Alfredo Tapia-Carreto (Manticornio.com)
“These are musicians that are worthy of global attention.” – MJ Brady (ProGGnosis.com)