Engine Room Favourites

Music: Bands - Engine Room Favourites

In the band:

Martin Archer
Sopranino, alto, baritone saxophones, bass clarinet, bass recorder
Mick Beck
Tenor saxophone, bassoon
Graham Clark
Laura Cole
Piano and Fender piano
Corey Mwamba
Seth Bennett
Double bass
Peter Fairclough
Drums and percussion
Johnny Hunter
Drums and percussion
Walt Shaw
Steve Dinsdale

Upcoming Gigs:

25th March 2013
Liverpool, Hope University
Sunday March 9th 2014
Millenium Hall, Sheffield
Friday April 4th
Gregson Arts Centre, Lancaster
Thursday July 24th 5pm
Manchester Jazz Festival
Thursday July 24th at 5pm
Manchester Jazz Festival
October 19th
'Schmazz', Newcastle-on-Tyne
Thursday, November 27th
'Lost Voices', Liverpool

Related Links:



In the words of Martin Archer who formed 'Engine Room Favourites' -

"The band was formed in 2012, after a Sheffield gig initially intended as a one off, at which Martin played solo reeds with three of the percussionists. The idea for this gig - that the percussionists should follow a detailed score, while Martin played a variety of themes and improvisations in an order which was not predetermined - seemed like an idea worth developing with a larger group. This is exactly what we did as the first CD "Blue Meat, Black Diesel and Engine Room Favourites" was created over the following months with a group of players many of whom are bandleaders and composers in their own right. Structurally some of the music played by the live band continues to follow the initial model, with the percussionists inhabiting one layer of activity while the other players improvise with material which forms a second layer, with interactions left to chance. The outcome is that no two performances of some of these pieces will ever have even the same structure, let along the same detail of the improvised solos. Of course, some of the music is structurally more conventional. We like a good cover version as much as the next player, and we've made some textural pieces too whose structure is more transparent to the naked ear.

The band aesthetic harks back to Archer's earliest experience in creative music, as a follower of the AACM school of music pioneered by Art Ensemble of Chicago, Leo Smith, and Anthony Braxton. This is a style which has never been really followed up by European musicians, nevertheless it remains the model for Archer's contributions to jazz based music. Archer has said "the appeal of this style to me is that it remains considered, spacious and open, without sacrificing any of the improvisational heat and energy which places its exponent players firmly in the avantgarde tradition. And crucially, it never disconnects from its own past, in particular the blues, no matter how high falutin' it gets".

Engine Room Favourites are not postmodernists, not retro stylists, but instead keep their eyes and ears firmly on a forward path jazz might have taken in the next period, but never quite did."


ERF Flyer


Martin Archer

Recorded at Yellowarch Studio, Sheffield by Robin Downes, at Piano Recording, Sheffield by James Bacon and at Discus Music Studios by Martin Archer. Produced by Archer / Fairclough. Mastered by Ian Stead. Manufactured by Akcent Media. Cover painting by Martin Decent. 

Track Listing:
1. Engine Room Induction
2. Of The Above
3. Blue Meat, Black Diesel & Engine Room Favourites

Sample Track:


Blue Meat, Black Diesel & Engine Room Favourites

Engine Room Favourites - Pt. 1

Video courtesy of Freenoise Sheffield

Millennium Hall Sheffield 9th March 2014

Engine Room Favourites - Pt. 2

Video courtesy of Freenoise Sheffield

Millennium Hall Sheffield 9th March 2014

Engine Room Favourites

Video courtesy of Steve Dinsdale

Millennium Hall Sheffield 9th March 2014