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As Deafness Increases: As Deafness Increases

Eyal Hareuveni By

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The musicians of the new Norwegian trio As Deafness Increases (borrowing its name from the composition of Paul Rutherford and drummer Paul Lovens from their duo album, Po Torch, 1978)—double bassist Inga Margrete Aas, Guitarist Rudolf Terland Bjørnerem and trombonist Henrik Nørstebø Munkeby met in the Czech Republic in the summer of 2010 while they played and recorded with the Önczkekvist improvising orchestra. All three graduated from the music academies in Oslo and have a classical education and experience with improvised music.

The trio adopted a spartan and highly disciplined approach for their debut. The music is sound-oriented, and features focused, minimalist soundscapes that research the options of sonic structures through extended techniques. The trio creates sound clusters that grow patiently and methodically beyond its components or the typical roles and sounds of the instruments and stresses silence as a key element.

The longest composition, the 20-minutes "Svalbard," was created as the trio accompanied a compilation of film clips from the 1930's, documenting the natural scenery of the archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, the northernmost part of Norway. This demanding composition is bare of drama or obvious emotional articulations. It emphasizes the high level of control and precision of this trio while forming its shared sounds. The trio has an impressive vocabulary and imaginatively that keeps shaping and moving deeper and deeper into the sounds of brutal, poetic, irritating, otherworldly, with brief glimpses of melodic passages which are all arresting.

The three remaining pieces— "Adia," "Adib" and "Adic"—explores specific musical ideas. "Adia" features the trio's attempt to develop a shared theme in constant alternating dynamics, from the dense and energetic to the static and silent. "Asib" reference the Norwegian school of Sofa Music label, especially of percussionist Ingar Zach, in sculpting dense and detailed textures based on minimal progression of percussive sounds, now produced with extended techniques of using the bow, breathes and prepared strings. "Adic" explores the deeper, lower tones of the double bass, trombone and guitar, blended as spare, haunting soundscape.

Challenging, demanding but always arresting soundscapes.

Track Listing: Svalbard; Adia; Adib; Adic.

Personnel: Inga Margrethe Aas: double bass; Rudolf Terland Bjørnerem: guitar; Henrik Nørstebø Munkeby: trombone.

Title: As Deafness Increases | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Va Fongool

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