Recorded in Germany in June this inventive duo who both grew up in the Norwegian city of Skien, the birthplace of Ibsen, made their first record Seagull Island together five years ago.
Here they gently unpeel flurries of insightful meditations, Eyolf Dale’s pianism resembling the sound of Tord Gustavsen a little in his mastery of soft textures and lapping melodic cycles, reedist André Roligheten alternating between saxophone and clarinet firmly in the John Surman mould.
The material while dotted with avant inclinations and possessing an experimental outlook nonetheless has surprisingly velvety textures and plenty of melodic invention, Roligheten skilfully adapting starker improv techniques in the service of melody on opener ‘Duvet Day.’
And there’s an appealingly circular dizzying atmosphere to ‘The Sheriff,’ Roligheten bouncing off his keys slapping and nudging a stop-start motion from Dale.
Some of the tunes, including the scurrying ‘Nut Job’ (above), have been jointly written by the pair the remainder individually penned. The writing is thoroughly convincing, the title track kept to last poised and, at heart, elegiac.
Released in January