Frode Gjerstad: A Sound Sight (2008)
A portion of Gjerstad's discographyfor his own label, Circulasione Totale, and othershas been given over to the saxophone trio. Even with Swell in tow at Downtown, the threesome of Gjerstad, Storesund and Nilssen-Love generated most of the momentum. Ten years and a few months prior, Gjerstad had another gig in New York with another impressive rhythm section: late bassist Wilbur Morris and drummer Rashid Bakr. This Knitting Factory concert has now been released as part of Ayler Records' download-only series and demonstrates that Gjerstad is above all things a committed improviser.
With Morris and Bakr, perhaps Gjerstad's aesthetic is a little more "American" and the rhythms more stable, but lengthy exploration is still the catchall. The disc is composed of three involved improvisations: "Sound (at over 30 minutes), "Sound Sight," which at four minutes is a slow breather after "Sound"'s fire and "Sight," 27 minutes of rested and restive Gjerstad.
What one takes away from this disc, the concert or indeed his whole career, is that Gjerstad, as any improviser worth his salt should, embraces challenging playing situations with a range of individuals yet is steadfast in remaining himself.
Track Listing: Sound; Sound Sight; Sight.
Personnel: Frode Gjerstad: alto sax; Wilber Morris: bass; Rashid Bakr: drums.
Record Label: Ayler Records
Style: Modern Jazz