Ken Vandermark: tenor & baritone saxophones, bass & Bb clarinets
Paal Nilssen-Love: drums, percussion
The fifth duo album between Ken Vandermark and Paal Nilssen-Love may well be their best one. The two musicians find each other blindly for these three lengthy pieces, that vary between rhythmic funky improvisations, slower, more meditative moments and adventurous searches of new sounds. And needless to say, all this in one piece, switching easily from one mood to the other, from one mode to the other, without losing a sense of focus and musical coherence.
The first piece, on tenor, is intense, joyful, full of swing and drive, full of power and subtletly. The second track shows a darker and more experimental side of both musicians, yet the power picks up again on the third piece, with long circular breathing on baritone sax, with Vandermark's sound evolving in some of the strongest volumes that you can get out of it, filling the entire available space, then the thing collapses for some heartrending cries, propulsed into full agony by Nilssen-Love's rhythmic thunderstorm, worthy of the mighty Thor, the ancient Norwegian god, but of course after the storm everything becomes quiet again, yet equally full of tension, maybe because it is the calm before the next storm ... to be heard on the next album, for sure.
You hear two musicians full of confidence in themselves and each other, moving into every possible musical region together, in perfect symbiosis, with the pleasure of playing dripping from every note, from every beat.
Don't miss it. (from Free Jazz)
2010 MILWAUKEE VOLUME PART 1 & PART 2