Danish bassist Nils Bo Davidsen
is a prolific musician in the vibrant Danish jazz scene who performed and recorded with such greats as John Tchicai
, Dave Liebman
, Tim Berne
, Marc Ducret
and Dr. Eugene Chadbourne. He led his own ensembles (Jazz til Tiden
Ilk Music, 2011), collaborated with trumpeter Kasper Tranberg (zone Blue
(Ilk Music, 2012) and experimented with various keyboards on his solo FaKIRGIRaF
(Ilk music, 2013).
In 2013 he decided to record himself playing the double bass in various spacesthe legendary Rainbow Studio in Oslo, the mighty Grundtvigskirken church in Copenhagen, and private recordings at Heimdalsgade Laboratoriesfor Noget at Glæde Sig Til
(Something to Look Forward To in Danish). Three videos- one by art director Sara Lubich, and two live videos from Grundtvigskirken were added to the audio recording.
Davidesen defines the solo bass pieces as outbursts and as such all have a compact and clear expression and a unique vibe. These qualities arise out of three years of experience in solo double bass, free improvisations, and a deep understanding that the with the total freedom of such demanding settings also requires full dedication, responsibility, and wide-open ears and awareness.
The sound of Davidsen's double bass fills the room with its big, deep- toned voice, almost like a small string orchestra, and responds to each spaces unique acoustics. His technique, sense of time and articulationboth arco and pizzicatois simply superb and at times reminiscent of the captivating articulation of the great Danish double bassist, Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen
. His compelling command of the instrument, rich imagination, and flowing ideas enable him to structure vivid, moving images and moods, all in coherent, melodic narratives.
On several pieces he adds gongs as a means of delicate ornamentation or to punctuate the progression of the improvisation. On "M/S Kissavik" he was recorded playing arco on two double basses corresponding gently with each other. One stressing the light, almost transparent high register, seeking to express almost human voice while the other focusing on the low, dark register. "Osiris in 4 parts" features Davidsen as imaginative an highly original improviser, well- versed with many extended techniques, but opting for the intimate chamber atmosphere that the double bass can suggest. The three double basses gentle talk on "Extraterrestrial Breakfast" is moving in its simplicity and sheer beauty. "Just Turn Red" demonstrates Davidsen's resourcefulness and the manner of him using the double bass as a singing instrument with an emotional voice similar to the human one. The videos demonstrate Davidsen's fantastic arco technique on "color charge" and him imaginative usage of sticks between the strings on "Bloodsoup."
Masterful, beautiful and highly moving presentation of the double bass.
CD: Now Is a Time; Just Turn Green; M/S Kissavik; Antsisters; Osiris
in 4 Parts; Woody; Extraterrestrial Breakfast; Just Turn Red; With No
Hands; Disruptive Coloration; What Do You Mean??. Video: You return,
therefore; Disruptive coloration; Bloodsoup.
Nils Bo Davidsen: double basses, gongs.