487

Anders Christensen Trio: Dear Someone

Jakob Baekgaard By

Sign in to view read count
Anders Christensen Trio: Dear Someone Throughout the years, Danish jazz has been blessed with a host of talented bassists such as Bo Stief, Jesper Lundgaard and Jesper Bodilsen, but one name, in particular, has reached across the country's borders and become synonymous with virtuosity and melodic invention. The late Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen was most famous, perhaps, for playing with Oscar Peterson and Ed Thigpen in what has to be one of the legendary pianist's most successful formations. The shadow of the great Dane has, however, loomed largely over the aesthetic landscape of Danish jazz and no one has really been able to take his place in terms of stylistic innovation—until now.

If anything, the 2009 Copenhagen Jazz Festival proved that a shift in paradigm has taken place in Danish jazz. This change in aesthetic can, in many ways, be seen as embodied in the playing of the young bassist Anders Christensen. Whereas the strength of Ørsted Pedersen was his lightning fast figures and impeccably tight swing, Christensen makes a virtue out of playing slower and with fewer notes. Unlike Ørsted Pedersen, he doesn't fill the empty space; he plays around it, giving his sound a loose, almost floating feeling that still manages to groove.

The reference to tradition is also different. If Ørsted Pedersen was a traditionalist whose pillars were Danish folksong and the standards, Christensen is much more eclectic in his choice of repertoire. This is evident on his long-awaited debut, Dear Someone, which finds him enlisting iconoclastic drummer Paul Motian and one of the most talked-about pianists of the moment, Aaron Parks.

The cover, with its allusion to iconic singer/songwriter Bob Dylan's The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan (Columbia, 1963), speaks clearly of the post-modern nature of an album whose title track isn't a standard but a country-waltz by folksinger Gillian Welch. But Christensen doesn't shun classics; in fact, the trio plays a pretty, swinging version of "Stompin' at the Savoy."

The highlights of the album are three Motian compositions: "Split Decision," "Arabesque" and "Once Around the Park" which all display the drummer's uncanny knack for combining abstract swing and impressionistic lyricism. Parks, like Christensen, is an eminent interpreter of Motian's music, and his reading of "Arabesque" is one of the most beautiful versions of this melancholy ballad committed to record.

There is a variety of genres and moods on Dear Someone, and Christensen gently guides his trio through them all. More than anything, his talent lies in the way he elegantly puts himself aside and lets the musical voices of the past and present speak in a musical language of joy and sorrow.


Track Listing: Dear Someone; Split Decision; Arabesque; Conception; Spend All The Money; Once Around The Park; Stompin At The Savoy; The Wedding; I'll Be Seeing You; Little One.

Personnel: Anders Christensen: bass; Aaron Parks: Piano; Paul Motian: drums.

Title: Dear Someone | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Stunt Records/Sundance Music


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read The Better Angels of Our Nature CD/LP/Track Review The Better Angels of Our Nature
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 20, 2017
Read What Brought You Here? CD/LP/Track Review What Brought You Here?
by Troy Dostert
Published: July 20, 2017
Read My Head Is Listening CD/LP/Track Review My Head Is Listening
by John Sharpe
Published: July 20, 2017
Read Passin' Thru CD/LP/Track Review Passin' Thru
by Ian Patterson
Published: July 20, 2017
Read Ugly Beauty CD/LP/Track Review Ugly Beauty
by Nick Davies
Published: July 20, 2017
Read Relaxin’ With the Miles Davis Quintet CD/LP/Track Review Relaxin’ With the Miles Davis Quintet
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: July 19, 2017
Read "Jambú" CD/LP/Track Review Jambú
by Joe Gatto
Published: February 13, 2017
Read "Prototype" CD/LP/Track Review Prototype
by Jeff Winbush
Published: April 13, 2017
Read "Live in Tokyo" CD/LP/Track Review Live in Tokyo
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: November 18, 2016
Read "Split Kick - Live In Sweden 1972" CD/LP/Track Review Split Kick - Live In Sweden 1972
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: August 14, 2016
Read "Make The Changes" CD/LP/Track Review Make The Changes
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 12, 2016
Read "Volume 1" CD/LP/Track Review Volume 1
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: November 19, 2016

Support All About Jazz: MAKE A PURCHASE  

Support our sponsor

Upgrade Today!

Musician? Boost your visibility at All About Jazz and drive traffic to your website with our Premium Profile service.

Donate!