There is probably no way to avoid the parochial mindset of the American jazz listener. Take the release Revolution Before Lunch
by the Scandinavian trio of Thomas Johansson, Øyvind Storesund, and Paal Nilssen-Love
. You might listen to a few notes of Johansson's trumpet as "Close As Hail" opens the affair and think, oh yeah, it's Magnus Broo
performing. Well, no, Broo is Swedish and JohanssonNorwegian. Mistaking a Norwegian for a Swede is just about as wrong as assuming a New York player sounds the same as one from L.A. or Texas. That's blasphemy.
Let me, though, make the connection, the universal free jazz connect-the-dots, between Johansson's trumpet and the citizen of the world Joe McPhee
. This new trio picks up where drummer Nilssen-Love's collaborations with McPhee left off. Their collected works Candy
(PNL, 2015) is the touchstone for this recording, as is, to a lesser extent, the drummer's power trio, The Thing.
Johansson is a member of the Paal Nilssen-Love Large Unit, the Ornette Coleman
inspired Cortex, and the free jazz quintet Friends & Neighbors. Bassist Øyvind Storesund splits his time between the alternative rock of Cloroform, Frode Gjerstad
and the Circulasione Totale Orchestra. In the latter ensemble, you can often find the busy Nilssen-Love.
These three lengthy tracks present a deliberate flow of energy, as opposed to mayhem. "Close As Hail" gains momentum from the the trumpet/bass warm up with Nilssen-Love's goading brushwork. As the energy picks up, Storesund's bass solo maintains the bulwark time and they pause for an acute and concise drum solo that morphs the piece into a blues groove you might want to loiter in all day. "Pouch Of Skin" gets even quieter. Bass and drums lay down a clover field for Johansson's calisthenics. His command of the edges of the horn and a slurry of melting and growling notes is delivered as a soapbox sermon. "Incomprehensible Beats" walks the knife's edge, threatening to have all its wheels come off. But they never do.
Close As Hail; Pouch Of Skin; Incomprehensible Beats.
Thomas Johansson: trumpet, flugelhorn; Øyvind Storesund: double bass; Paal