The Balderin Sali – “Variations – Boreal Delights At the Soundscape & Soundportraits Festival – 2018” (Leo Records, 2019)

CD LR 870/871

“Variations” is a new album recorded in 2018 by “The Balderin Sali” orchestra. Instant improvising, surprising, inspiring and expressive ways of playing, splendid virtuosity and invention are the main compounds of this ensemble’s music. The music is bright, luminous and dynamic – musicians are experienced improvisers which never hesitate to get on brave adventures, ambitious and crazy turns, passionate thrills and astonishing experiments. Here together improvise Evan Parker (tenor & soprano sax), Philipp Wachsmann (violin & live electronics), Paul Lovens (drumset & cymbals), Teppo Hauta-aho (double bass), Sebi Tramontana (trombone), Matthias Bauer (double bass), Harri Sjöström (soprano & sopranino sax), Veli Kujala (quartertone accordion), Libero Mureddu (piano), Dag Magnus Narvesen (drums & percussion) and Emilio Gordoa (vibraphone and percussion).

“Variations” was recorded at “The Soundscape & Soundportraits Festival – 2018”. he album has especially bright, expressive, driving, dynamic and variable sound. It has an enchanting stylistic variety. Though all the music is based on free improvisation and avant-garde jazz, there are many relations to other jazz styles. Eclectic stylistic allusions are made – steady cool beats, modern mainstream, extravagant and complicated bebop, aggressive hard bop are connected to awakening and fresh contemporary academical music, evocative experimental music and other similar genres. Sometimes the music is gentle, light and fabulous – here come independent melodies accompagniedby flowing passages, gorgeous tunes and sonoristic experiments. Suddenly it gets bursting, frantic, hollowing, hysteric and furious – tremendous blow outs, full blasts, spills of energy, hot thrills, stitching, hurling, waining and shrieky riffs of saxophones bring energy, brightness and drive to the compositions. Reeds section is simply amazing – musicians start from silent, light and solemn pieces and are heading directly to amazing blowing culminations, furious riffs and wild sonoristic experiments. Cracking, heavy, deep or solemn trombone brings steady, sophisticated and sensible sound. These tw ogroups of instruments are highly contrasting with each other – noisy, loud, frantic and expressive saxophones go against deep, calm, steady and solemn trombone. Piano is the source of surprises and original decisions. Perturbating culminations meet frustrating tremendous riffs, frantic sequences, breaking sessions or pass down to suggestive and lyrical episodes. Here comes the moment of calm and solemn mood – meditative pieces full of repetitive series, monotonic beats, steady chords are suggestive and interesting lyrical contemplations played in sensible and calm mood. These episodes are frequently changed by stormy thrills, wild culminations and driving melodies. There are many relations to contemporary academical and experimental music, and electronics, as well. Awakening, sometimes – sharp, frantic and aggressive – violin tunes are modified and mixed up with live electronics. Light, expressive and passionate melodies, flowing passages, pizzicatto, glissando, arpeggio and all kinds of other playing techniques make an effort to original and vivid sound. Ambient, computer sounds, glitch, drone, dubs, in-puts, sonoristic system’s experiments, amplifications, modifications and alterations are the parts of violin’s improvisations. It has modern, bright and innovative sound. Some exotic and unusual tunes related to Asian music are brought in by quartertone accordion. Luminous culminations, wild riffs, blooming expressive melodies, gorgeous ornaments and flowing passages are these elements which make an exotic, bright and original sound to the music. Drums and percussion section is rich and independent. All kinds of rhythms, sounds and timbres are used here – it’s melted together and make a great combo. The rhythms and timbres of all ranges and colors are extracted here – musicians are demonstrating their capacities, splendid technique and innovative point of view. It makes a colorful, bright and expressive drums line. The music of this album is created with passion, drive and expression – it has inspiring, exciting and simply impressive sound.

 

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