Andrea Keller on Five Below release ‘Life is Brut[if]al’

What are we listening to?

Miriam talks to composer and bandleader Andrea Keller about the Five Below June 2020 release Life is Brut[if]al.

The recording is being launched at Melbourne International Jazz Festival online event These Digital Times.

Andrea talks about her research into the work of Estonian composer Arvo Pärt.

Music played

  1. Life is Brut[if]al  (Life is Brut[if]al, 2020)
  2. Blip (Life is Brut[if]al, 2020)
  3. Fern Tree (Family Portraits, 2013)

Listen here

Length: 39:34

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L-R Sam Anning, James McLean, Andrea Keller, Stephen Magnusson, Mick Meagher
L-R Sam Anning, James McLean, Andrea Keller, Stephen Magnusson, Mick Meagher

About Five Below

Five Below formed in 2017 as part of Andrea Keller’s Monday night residency at iconic Melbourne venue, the Jazzlab.

In 2018, Five Below released Five Below Live (recorded at the Jazzlab) and following on from the success of this album the band won the 2019 Australian Jazz Bell Award for Best Australian Jazz Ensemble. The name Five Below comes from the big rhythm section that makes up the band which includes piano, guitar, two basses and drums.

Five Below includes some of Melbourne’s finest players who meld acoustic sounds with electronics, pedals and effects, drawing from an eclectic array of styles including doom, contemporary classical, minimalism and contemporary jazz, producing a unique and arresting voice in Australian jazz.


Andrea Keller – piano
Stephen Magnusson – guitar
Sam Anning – double bass
Mick Meagher – electric bass
James McLean – drums


Scott McConnachie soprano & alto saxophone (tracks 1, 2, 3, 4 & 6)

Julien Wilson tenor saxophone & bass clarinet (tracks 2, 4, 5, 6 & 7)

Jim Keller voice (track 7)

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