Home » Jazz Articles » Album Review » Daniel Herskedal: Slow Eastbound Train


Daniel Herskedal: Slow Eastbound Train


View read count
Daniel Herskedal: Slow Eastbound Train
Sometimes, album titles tell all: sometimes they tell little or nothing. Slow Eastbound Train sits somewhere in between. Train? No obvious examples. Eastbound? Hmm. Slow? That pretty much describes the pace of much of the music on this album, by Norwegian musician and composer Daniel Herskedal. But none of these three words come close to describing the grace, inventiveness and beauty of this lovely recording.

Herskedal plays tuba and bass trumpet, both with a fluidity and melodic strength that are not always associated with these relatively unusual instruments. His tone on tuba especially is warm and soft, which lends a comforting friendliness to his every appearance on the instrument. He's been recording since the early '00s but really came to the attention of the jazz world with Neck Of The Woods (Edition Records, 2012), which paired him with saxophonist Marius Neset. On Slow Eastbound Train he's joined by pianist Eyolf Dale, percussionist Helge Andreas Norbakken and the Trondheim Soloists, a string chamber orchestra.

Herskedal's compositions are strongly atmospheric, readily creating musical imagery that for the most part fits well with the title of each piece. A quick glance at the track listing makes it clear that weather and climate are key influences—the stately "Slow Eastbound Boat" and "Slow Eastbound Train" being exceptions. "The Mistral Noir" is an exceptional scene-setter, Heskedal's playing taking center stage on a tune that evokes a sense of warmth and calmness, in contrast to the Mistral wind of the title. On Mussorgsky's "Bydlo"—the one non-original track—Herskedal's tense, upper-register, playing is counterbalanced by the stately Trondheim Strings.

Pianist Dale sets the tone on the skittering, anxious, "Monsoon Coming" before Herskedal and the Trondheim Soloists enter and the anxiety gradually dissolves. "Daniel's Dust Devil" acts as a coda to "The Solar Winds' Effects On Earth" and the introduction to "Slow Eastbound Boat": a solo tuba performance with its emphasis on rhythm, Herskdal plays with a rasping, fruity, tone that gives the tune a touch of light-heartedness. "Snowfall" is a joyful celebration, the strings and piano playing swooping, darting rhythms like children chasing snowflakes.

Track Listing

The Mistral Noir; Rainfall; Monsoon Coming; The Solar Winds' Effects On Earth; Daniel's Dust Devil; Slow Eastbound Boat; Slow Eastbound Train; Snowfall; Crosswind Landing; Bydlo; Sea Breeze Front.


Daniel Herskedal: tuba, bass trumpet; Eyolf Dale: piano; Helge Andreas Norbakken: percussion; The Trondheim Soloists: strings.

Album information

Title: Slow Eastbound Train | Year Released: 2015 | Record Label: Edition Records

< Previous

Next >



Support All About Jazz

Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

How You Can Help

To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.



Painter Of Dreams
Misha Tsiganov
Eclectic Vibes
Ken Silverman
The Recursive Tree
John Blum / David Murray / Chad Taylor
Natsuki Tamura, Satoko Fujii


Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.