6

Clockwork: The Contest

Eyal Hareuveni By

Sign in to view read count
Clockwork: The Contest Trondheim, Norway's jazz conservatory has an excellent reputation for nurturing countless original musicians and outfits. Clockwork, a Norway/Sweden quartet, was formed in that conservatory in 2009 and, after numerous tours, now has The Contest, a debut co-produced, mixed and mastered by Swedish saxophonist Jonas Kullhammar.

The compositions were written by three quartet members: pianist Oscar Grönberg (a member of Norway's Friends & Neighbors and Hanna Paulsberg's Concept, appearing on their respective Øra Fonogram debuts, 2011's No Beat Policy and 2012's Walz for Lilli); guitarist Odd Steinar Albrigtsen (of the as-yet-unrecorded Norwegian trio Hijack, as well as his own quartet); and bassist Peder Waern (of Sweden's Quiet Night Orchestra). Clockwork reveals its roots in American bebop, but with its own modern expression.

After years of playing together the quartet has formed its own solid aesthetic which includes balanced interplay, clever compositions that do not follow obvious narratives, patient, slow-burning structures and a clear affinity for calm, melodic articulations. This temperament is open to numerous variations. On Grönberg's brilliant "Valseri," the pianist's repeated, disciplined chords construct a subtle tension released by Albrigtsen's impressionist linear flights. Grönberg's playful, Thelonious Monk-like theme on the title track pushes the quartet towards a rare, urgent and muscular approach. Waern's "Slingshot" has a similar formula, stressed by a tight, swinging rhythm, while his "Festivus" revolves around a gentle, reserved theme explored on double bass with minor abstractions from Albrigtsen, Grönberg and drummer Truls Rønning. Albrigtsen's compositions—"Café Bentsebru," "Minor Leaps" and "Ballato"—feature his lyrical and highly melodic phrasing. His acoustic solo introduction for "Ballato," and later the fragile interplay that he develops with Waern, charge this beautiful composition with profound emotional impact.

A very promising debut.


Track Listing: Café Bentsebru; Valseri; The contest; Festivus; Minor Leaps; Löt; Slingshot; Ballato.

Personnel: Odd Steinar Albrigtsen: guitar; Oscar Grönberg: piano, rhodes; Peder Waern: double Bass; Truls Rønning: Drums.

Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: Recorda Records


Related Video

Shop

More Articles

Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark CD/LP/Track Review The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Les Deux Versants Se Regardent CD/LP/Track Review Les Deux Versants Se Regardent
by John Sharpe
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Molto Bene CD/LP/Track Review Molto Bene
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read "Double Septet" CD/LP/Track Review Double Septet
by Glenn Astarita
Published: September 10, 2016
Read "Live In Ludwigshafen 1961" CD/LP/Track Review Live In Ludwigshafen 1961
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 21, 2016
Read "Rhythmic Movement" CD/LP/Track Review Rhythmic Movement
by Karl Ackermann
Published: December 22, 2016
Read "City Of Poets" CD/LP/Track Review City Of Poets
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 3, 2016
Read "Boston, 1954" CD/LP/Track Review Boston, 1954
by Richard J Salvucci
Published: October 1, 2016
Read "Swan Song" CD/LP/Track Review Swan Song
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 17, 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!