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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Otomo Yoshihide & Paal Nilssen-Love: Otomo Yoshihide & Paal Nilssen-Love

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The musical bond between Japanese guitarist and sound sculptor Otomo Yoshihide and Norwegian powerhouse drummer Paal Nilssen-Love was solidified through previous successful collaborations. First with Nilssen-Love Scandinavian power trio The Thing's Shinjuku Crawl, (Smalltown Superjazz, 2009), then with Peter Brotzmann's Chicago Tentet Concert for Fukushima Wels 2011 DVD, (PanRec, 2013) and finally with an ad-hoc trio with fellow Norwegian noise master Lasse Marhaug Explosion Course, (PNL, 2013). The new recording of these expressive musicians was recorded at the Jazzhouse Club in jny: Copenhagen, but, as can be expected, there is no attempt to form an intimate ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Peter Brotzmann/Paal Nilssen-Love: A Fish Stinks From The Head

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In his seventy-second year, Peter Brötzmann shows no signs of decline. The fire-breathing saxophonist and hero to all free jazz musicians embarked on yet another tour, releasing this limited edition recording (only 400 copies) with a silk screened cover A Fish Stinks From The Head with drummer Paal Nilssen-Love who is 33-years his junior. Recorded in April, 2013 at Cafe OTO in London, the two- track disc packs a Herculean blast into just 33 minutes of music. But then, connoisseurs of such matters know this. The saxophonist has recorded many stunning duets with drummers. Early on, in the ...

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Close Encounters Of The Skronky Kind

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Paal Nilssen-Love is one of the hardest-working musicians in the European free jazz and free improvisation scenes. Amongst his near-countless activities, the Norwegian drummer collaborates on a regular basis with Chicago reed multi-instrumentalist Ken Vandermark, in their ongoing duo, in the Double Cement trio and Lean Left quartet, as a member of Peter Brötzmann's Hairy Bones quartet and Roma Trio, and the now-defunct Chicago Tentet. He's also a member of the Swedish-Norwegian power trio The Thing and Atomic quintet, and collaborates in Norwegian reed player Frode Gjerstad's trio, in addition to organizing the All-Ears festival in Oslo. And he has ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Bobby Bradford / Frode Gjerstad / Ingebrigt Haker Flaten / Paal Nilssen-Love: Kampen

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If Kampen sounds like old friends settling down to chew the fat, then that's because that's exactly what's happening. Norwegian reedman Frode Gjerstad has waxed ten discs in the company of veteran American cornetist Bobby Bradford since they first met on tour with drummer John Stevens in England in 1986. However, this 46-minute live LP stands as one of their best since Through The Woods (CIMP, 1997). All four cuts are spontaneous compositions, the product of collective listening and playing at a very high level. They generate an organic flow which draws on all the available permutations inherent in the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Frode Gjerstad & Paal Nilssen-Love: Side by Side

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Prominent Norwegian improvisers Frode Gjerstad (alto saxophone, clarinets) and Paal Nilssen-Love (drums) toured North America in 2008 sans a bassist, and recorded this album at a studio in upstate New York, accentuating their synergy via a largely rough and tumble implementation. Gjerstad shows a fondness for the upper-register and produces a myriad of microtonal and edgy sound-sculpting statements atop Nilssen-Love's bustling polyrhythms, infused with perpetual motion and resonating counter-maneuvers. Gjerstad's scathing tonal swashes and darting lines embody a whirlwind approach. And Nilssen-Love's buoyant underpinnings offer a relentless pulse and broad foundation, where sparks seemingly bounce off the walls ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Kumiko Takara/Massimo Pupillo/Paal Nilssen-Love: Raids On The Unspeakable

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This limited edition, 12" vinyl album features a rare meeting of threeof-a-kind powerhouse musicians who blur the boundaries between contemporary improvised music, avant-rock and shifting grooves. Norwegian drummer Paal Nilssen-Love and Italian electric bassist Massimo Pupillo (founding member of punk-jazz trio Zu) are the driving rhythm section behind saxophonist Peter Brötzmann's Hairy Bones quartet, and collaborated before in the trio OffOnOff with The Ex guitarist Terrie Ex, among countless other collaborations. Japanese percussionist Kumiko Takara plays contemporary music and collaborates regularly with like-minded sound sculptors like guitarist Kazuhisa Uchihashi's Altered States and Otomo Yoshihide's New Jazz Orchestra. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Frode Gjerstad / Paal Nilssen-Love: Gromka

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It is hard to choose which duo partner of drummer Paal Nilssen-Love to favor over another, as there are simply so many to pick from. There are his collaborations with Ken Vandermark, heard on their Chicago Volume and Milwaukee Volume (Smalltown Superjazz, 2009); the fine Peter Brotzmann session, Woodcuts ((Smalltown Superjazz, 2010); Mats Gustafsson's Splatter (Smalltown Superjazz, 2007); or, a personal favorite, Joe McPhee's Tomorrow Came Today (Smalltown Superjazz, 2008). Nilssen-Love can also be heard with Magnus Broo, Nils Henrik Asheim, John Butcher, Lasse Marhaug, Anders Hana, and, perhaps his longest sustained partner, multi-reedist Frode Gjerstad. The two ...

Paal Nilssen-Love: Transforming the Boundaries of Creative Music

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He learned to play the drums before he could walk, battled cancer before the age of thirty, and is a driving force behind several of today's most innovative and progressive bands (Atomic, The Thing, Ken Vandermark, Frode Gjerstad and the Peter Brotzmann Tentet) just to name a few. He has taken the drums to new creative levels, has been a part of thirty-three recording projects, and that's just in the last two years. If there is a common set of traits amongst the bands mentioned above, it's the energy, intensity and commitment that each one of these ensembles ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Ken Vandermark, Paal Nilssen-Love, Kjetil Mster: the Chicago/Oslo Axis of Freedom

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Two young Norwegians, drummer Paal Nilssen-Love and saxophonist Kjetil Møster, 32 and 30 respectively, have crossed each others' musical paths several times in recent years. Nilssen-Love is associated with many of Ken Vandermark's projects--their ongoing duo releases, FME, Territory Band, Atomic/School Days, Peter Brötzmann's Chicago Tentet and the newly formed, yet-to-record Fire Room and Powerhouse Sound--and the exposure has introduced him to a wider audience. He shares many qualities and characteristics with Møster, who won last year's International Jazz Award for New Talent, and who also plays in at least ten active bands.

Both men have collaborated in the Norwegian ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Paal Nilssen-Love: Townhouseorchestra

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Given the instrumentation on this album (tenor sax, piano, bass, and drums), the involvement of Evan Parker, and the format of long group improvisations, it's natural to think first about Parker's long-standing quartet with Alex Von Schlippenbach, Peter Kowald, and Paul Lovens. But that would be a mistake; a better comparison, though unnecessary, is an earlier group with Iréne Schweizer, Kowald, and Pierre Favre. European improvisation is a national thing. The three Norwegians here--drummer and leader Paal Nilssen-Love, bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten, and pianist Sten Sandell--are closer to the Swiss players mentioned above than Parker's usual German ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ken Vandermark/Paal Nilssen-Love: Dual Pleasure 2

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Ken Vandermark and Paal Nilssen-Love return for another series of take-no-prisoner duets on Dual Pleasure 2, a sequel to their pairing last year. This two-disc set presents a collection of studio performances and a concert appearance. The studio work presents nine relatively short pieces that catalogue a wide range of mood and color. The live disc delivers three extended works that measure the musicians' remarkable rapport, creative drive, and endurance. Moving from bass clarinet to Bb clarinet and tenor sax, Vandermark crosses fire with earth, capable of blistering outbursts and introspective obsessions with small sounds. Whether rhythmic or not, Nilssen-Love ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Paal Nilssen-Love/H: Schlinger

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Norwegian drummer Paal Nilssen-Love is certainly a star on the rise. On the US and European scenes, he is much in demand. You can find him in bands fronted by Ken Vandermark (FME, School Days, and in a duo), Mats Gustafsson (The Thing and also a duo), Raoul Björkenheim's Scorch Trio, Frode Gjerstad's trio, Håvard Wiik's Trio, and with the band Atomic. He made Schlinger, his fourth duo recording, with fellow Norwegian and band mate Håkon Kornstad. This intense 34-minute outing was recorded in New York and Norway.

The disc opens with Nilssen-Love's processional solo. From the muted ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Paal Nilssen-Love/ Mats Gustafsson: I Love It When You Snore

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If the duo is the most conversational form of jazz, the script for I Love It When You Snore could have been written by Samuel Beckett. Paal Nilssen-Love and especially Mats Gustafsson are a couple of the best known players to emerge out of the '90s Scandinavian free/avant jazz scene, having recorded plenty with the likes of Ken Vandermark and Peter Brötzmann. This brief thirty-two minute duo recording is more unusual than most of the other of the already exceptional recordings either has been involved with. Gustafsson really brings it on with his unique vocabulary of abstract, pops, clicks, squeaks, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Paal Nilssen-Love/Ken Vandermark: Dual Pleasure

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The association between Norwegian Drummer Paal Nilssen-Love and Chicago saxophonist Ken Vandermark has seemingly been one of continuously paring down boundaries and borders.

As members of the band School Days, the two musicians have met up with equal parts Chicago and Norway in quartet/quintet settings to make the records Crossing Division (2000) and In Our Times (2002). Later Vandermark and Nilssen-Love formed the trio FME (2002) with bassist Nate McBride. Each cropping away of players took away more form and structured music.

This duo recording for the Norwegian label Smalltown Supersound prunes things even more ...



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