4

John Russell / Ståle Liavik Solberg: No Step

Mark Corroto By

Sign in to view read count
John Russell / Ståle Liavik Solberg: No Step Like a pair of jugglers, free improvising musicians John Russell and Ståle Liavik Solberg excel at keeping multiple objects in the air and in constant motion. No Step is a brief recording from May 2013, and although clocking in at just 33-minutes, the session leaves the impression these two connect with each other at multiple junctures.

Separated by two generations, Russell's guitar and Solberg's percussion work share the same DNA. The guitarist was a key figure in the founding of the London improvising scene of the 1970s, traveling a similar path as Derek Bailey. His musical vocabulary eschews convention for originality and a unique sound. Unlike Bailey, he is comfortable in solo, small settings and larger ensembles.

Russell and Solberg have toured as a duo and in quartet settings with Englishmen John Edwards and Steve Bereford. Solberg, like Norway's other drumming export Paal Nilssen-Love subdues his punk rock inclinations for a more inward-looking, thoughtful sound here. With excellent sound, the recording of the pair intersects throughout with no conspicuous soloing to be found. Russell applies micro-bursts of itchy scratchy sound that pours forth with percussive touches and cascading notes. Unique to his approach to free music is that his sound is never masked as something else. He is comfortable making music with a guitar that sounds like a guitar.

Perhaps Russell's comfort is why he is a perfect compeer. He gives Solberg permission to rub out passages on cymbal, twiddle pulse on snare, and reply without hesitation to his notes. The percussionist's playing is equally self-possessed and imperturbable. That makes for a excellent free improvisation.


Track Listing: No Step.

Personnel: John Russell: guitar; Ståle Liavik Solberg: drums, percussion.

Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Hispid


Shop

More Articles

Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Live at PafA CD/LP/Track Review Live at PafA
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Ocean of Storms CD/LP/Track Review Ocean of Storms
by Troy Dostert
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Transparent Water CD/LP/Track Review Transparent Water
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Billows Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read "Away With You" CD/LP/Track Review Away With You
by Glenn Astarita
Published: November 9, 2016
Read "Super Petite" CD/LP/Track Review Super Petite
by Geno Thackara
Published: July 13, 2016
Read "Rings" CD/LP/Track Review Rings
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: July 3, 2016
Read "Psichedelica" CD/LP/Track Review Psichedelica
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 23, 2016
Read "Ariha Brass Quartet" CD/LP/Track Review Ariha Brass Quartet
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 22, 2016
Read "Surrounded by the Night" CD/LP/Track Review Surrounded by the Night
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 29, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!