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ALBUM REVIEWS

The Thing: Again

Read "Again" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Wait for it. Wait. At some point during a performance or recording by the trio known as The Thing, the band attempts to rip your face off, beginning with your ears. It's been that way since they were founded in 2000. The Swedish/Norwegian free jazz/garage band have become a kind of jazz/punk royalty, cutting huge swaths into jazz conventions without ignoring jazz traditions. Yeah, their apparent contradictory nature is part of the attraction. Again is their 20th release, ...

LIVE REVIEWS

French Connections - The Jazzdor Experience

Read "French Connections - The Jazzdor Experience" reviewed by Henning Bolte

Jazzdor is a French festival with two annual editions. The main part is held in the Strasbourg area (France) in November and the other one in Berlin (Germany) in June. Both editions present a considerable number of bilateral and multilateral collaborations; an essential part of the festival's philosophy and policy. The Strasbourg festival is the older part and home of the organization. The Strasbourg festival covers two weeks in November, collaborating with the neighboring German city of Offenburg ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

The Thing: Boot!

Read "Boot!" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Somebody should inform the members of the Scandinavian free jazz trio The Thing they are not rock stars. I repeat, somebody tell saxophonist Mats Gustafsson, bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten and drummer Paal Nilssen-Love, you are not lizard kings. The release of Boot!, their sixth studio album since forming in 1999, is a follow-up to the widely celebrated session The Cherry Thing (Smalltown Supersound, 2012) with Neneh Cherry. The band has also collaborated with the likes of Thurston Moore, ...

LIVE REVIEWS

The Thing, London, October 4, 2011

Read "The Thing, London, October 4, 2011" reviewed by John Sharpe

The ThingCafe Oto,London, UKOctober 4, 2011 Back in London for the second time in under a year, The Thing held court in north London to a Cafe Oto rammed with a gratifyingly young crowd. When the Scandinavian trio, comprising the Norwegian rhythm pairing of drummer Paal Nilssen-Love and bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten, in consort with Swedish saxophonist Mats Gustafsson, started out back in 2000, their book contained mainly tunes by trumpeter Don Cherry (hence the ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

The Thing: Bag It!

Read "Bag It!" reviewed by Andrey Henkin

One of the most appealing facets of The Thing-- saxophonist Mats Gustafsson, bassist Ingebrigt Haker Flaten and drummer Paal Nilssen-Love--is the visceral experience of seeing them play live. Huddled closely on stage, wearing matching Ruby's BBQ of Austin t-shirts, dripping with sweat and manhandling their instruments, the trio is one of the modern wonders of avant-garde jazz. The band, with Gustafsson solely on tenor instead of the expected baritone, headlined a bill at Brooklyn's Zebulon last month ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

The Thing: Action Jazz

Read "Action Jazz" reviewed by Eyal Hareuveni

The Scandinavian trio known as The Thing--Swedish saxophonist Mats Gustafsson and two Norwegians, bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten and drummer Paal Nilssen-Love--seems to be rewriting the definition of its brand of brutal jazz. After being compared to Peter Brötzmann's early trios, being called a power jazz trio, and being compared to garage rock, The Thing has settled on the term Action Jazz to describe this delicious hell of a noise.

Action Jazz, recorded in Stockholm in December 2005, is the fourth ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

The Thing: Live At Blå / Mats Gustafsson: Catapult

Read "The Thing: Live At Blå / Mats Gustafsson: Catapult" reviewed by Andrey Henkin

Last summer, this reviewer was first exposed to the Scandinavian group The Thing in the best possible way; he was run over by them. The trio, Swedish saxophonist Mats Gustafsson, bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten and drummer Paal Nilssen-Love (both Norwegian), played a brutal set at the Oslo club Blå as part of that city's Jazz Festival. Blå, Oslo's answer to Tonic, is The Thing's homebase and a new record documents a performance from there in June 2003. ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

The Thing: Garage

Read "Garage" reviewed by Eyal Hareuveni

This is a disc you know you are going to love from the first sound of the pounding, kick-ass drums.

Garage is the third release by The Thing (a trio named after Don Cherry's seminal piece “The Thing"), following two hard-to-find releases on Swedish reed master Mats Gustafsson's now defunct Crazy Wisdom label ( The Thing , 2000 and with Joe McPhee, She Knows... , 2001). It consists of high-energy, slightly extended covers of left-of-center art/punk songs and free jazz ...