All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

487

Anders Christensen Trio: Dear Someone

Jakob Baekgaard By

Sign in to view read count
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

Related Articles

Read Brothers CD/LP/Track Review
Brothers
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 24, 2018
Read The Fearless Flyers CD/LP/Track Review
The Fearless Flyers
by John Bricker
Published: September 24, 2018
Read Super Mood CD/LP/Track Review
Super Mood
by Glenn Astarita
Published: September 24, 2018
Read Beheaded Totem CD/LP/Track Review
Beheaded Totem
by James Fleming
Published: September 24, 2018
Read New Hope CD/LP/Track Review
New Hope
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 23, 2018
Read The Nobuki Takamen Trio CD/LP/Track Review
The Nobuki Takamen Trio
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 23, 2018
Read "Picking Up Steam" CD/LP/Track Review Picking Up Steam
by Friedrich Kunzmann
Published: May 12, 2018
Read "Home Boy, Sister Out" CD/LP/Track Review Home Boy, Sister Out
by Chris May
Published: July 22, 2018
Read "VISIONS: Coast to Coast Connection" CD/LP/Track Review VISIONS: Coast to Coast Connection
by Glenn Astarita
Published: March 11, 2018
Read "Any Other Way" CD/LP/Track Review Any Other Way
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: October 16, 2017
Read "Spirit Fingers" CD/LP/Track Review Spirit Fingers
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 10, 2018
Read "Concentric Circles" CD/LP/Track Review Concentric Circles
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: May 11, 2018