's quintetencompasses free improvisation, modern and free jazz, techno, electronica, metal, noise and experimental ambient sounds. But his musical universe is even wider, as his debut solo album reveals.
Drumming Music's title corresponds with the seminal work of composer Steve Reich
The very short 28 minutes consist of two acoustic compositions. Both release Nilssen from the role of powerhouse rhythmic time-keeper and introduce his highly inventive concepts of creating rich and colorful sounds out of his arsenal of percussion instruments, constructing them into a cohesive composition. The first one, "Live, Work, Create!" reference Zorn's cut- and-paste compositional methods and plays with lush, ambient gong sounds, powerful, hypnotic drumming, minimalist gong and cymbal sounds and spare rubbing and hitting of the drums skins. All these sounds ebb and flow, morphed into the other organically. creating a dramatic and intense sonic experience.
The title of second piece, "Rinzen (suddenly awakening)" is inspired by Zen Buddhism, describing an experience that leads to a spiritual enlightenment. This piece uses the drum set, gongs and vibes as orchestral instrumentsexploring the infinite sonic qualities of the skins of the drums, surfaces of the cymbals, the sticks themselves and eventually the whole set as a massive sound generator, featuring Nilssen in full command of this exploitative experience. Nilssen sounds at times as a musician possessed with these sounds, surrendering to the captivating and intense sonic experience, insightful and powerful as seminal solo percussion and drumming journeys of American drummer-shaman Milford Graves