Niels Van Heertum: JK's Kamer +50.92509° +03.84800°

Mark Sullivan By

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Belgian brass player Niels Van Heertum is in no hurry on this album, and you shouldn't be, either. For his entry in the solo performance series by Granvat he improvised on euphonium, tuba, trumpet and electronics. It's a predominantly low, droning sound, similar to the recent group recording Felt like old folk with the Linus duo and Hardanger fiddle player Nils Okland. The quote in the album liners says it well: "On the other hand, if I don't think about what comes next, I mustn't even hurry and I can linger in this moment a little longer."

At first listen, there may not seem to be much happening—this is not an album that is well served by a 30-second sample. But Van Heertum is slowly building a shifting, textural sound world. There's a lot of activity; it just happens gradually. Any listener willing to focus for forty minutes—there are four tracks, the final "Zon" the longest, at fifteen minutes—will be rewarded with a complex soundscape.

Far denser than the "solo" description would usually imply, JK's Kamer +50.92509° +03.84800° is a rich listening experience. As with previous Smeraldina-Rima releases, the physical CD is a lavish multimedia package. Artist Levi Seeldraeyers has provided a striking screen print, with the CD decoration echoing the owls in the design, along with a printed DVD-sized clear plastic sleeve for the print + CD. While the music stands very well on its own, downloaders will miss out on a striking physical product.

Track Listing: Stroom; Schim; Tocht; Zon.

Personnel: Niels Van Heertum: euphonium, tuba, trumpet & electronics.

Title: JK's Kamer +50.92509° +03.84800° | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: Smeraldina-rima


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