12/03/2023 – 16:30
Oorstof and Trix present a first in a series of matinees/afternoon shows – starting at 17h00 – with a stellar double bill featuring Arashi: Akira Sakata, Paal Nilssen-love (Large Unit, The Thing) and Johan Berthling (Fire!, Angles), one of the most dynamic and energetic trio formations of today and Soundbridges, an impressive new quartet with Ken Vandermark, Martin Blume, Matthias Muche and Thomas Lehn in the ranks.
About ten years ago, a special pact was forged between three prominent figures of free jazz and improvisation resulting in Arashi. When the famous Japanese saxophonist Akira Sakata encountered the Swedish bass player Johan Berthling (Fire!) and the Norwegian drummer Paal Nilssen-Love (The Thing), he found the ideal accomplices for what can now be called one of the most dynamic and energetic trio formations of today.
The extraordinary stamina of the three musicians and the will to push themselves and the music beyond traditional boundries, made their first performance at the Molde Jazz Festival in 2013 a huge success. They translated that a few days later to the studio, where they recorded a modern classic with the album ‘Arashi-Storm’ (Trost Records). Two years later, the trio released a follow up record, ‘Semikujira’, which was also used as a soundtrack. Their most recent CD ‘Jikan’ was recently released on PNL Records. After succesful tours in Europa and Japan and a series of cancellations due to the pandemic, Arashi finally embarks on a highly anticipated new series of European concerts.
Sakata, born in 1945, represents the hard core of Japanese free jazz and has a reputation of never leaving the stage dry. Through the work with pianist Yosuke Yamashita and drummer Takeo Moriyama, he has toured throughout Europe and the US. Sakata amazed in 2022 with a set on the Claus stage with the scorching Entasis (Di Domenico, Damianidis, Skoric). With Arashi, he continues his quest to spread that powerful Japanese freejazz worldwide.
Berthling has for many years established himself as a powerfull player through bands like Tape, Fire! and Angles 9. He is also founder and head chief of Häpna Records and delivered with Oren Ambarchi and Andreas Werliin ‘Ghosted’ for the Drag City label, on of the best releases of 2022.
Nilssen-Love is one of Norway’s most active drummers and has established himself as a powerful and a most dynamic musician through regular groups with Mats Gustafsson (The Thing), Peter Brötzmann, Dave Rempis (Ballister), Ken Vandermark and Terrie Ex (Lean Left), and bigger bands like Large Unit and Circus.
The German-American quartet Soundbridges is a relatively new group with four superb improvisers whose paths regularly crossed in the past. The initiator is drummer Martin Blume, who together with Thomas Lehn (synthesizer) and Matthias Muche (trombone) provides a German majority for the band. The American reed player Ken Vandermark completes the line-up. The group first came together – after the nasty COVID-19 lockdowns – for handful of concerts in the fall of 2021 and released a debut album in November 2022. To promote this release they are touring throughout Europe for the second time.
With two horns up front and an intriguing rhythm section of analog synths and drums, Soundbridges creates improvised music in which the fun is clearly audible. That can be heard on the CD the quartet released in November 2022 on the Jazzwerkstatt label, a live recording of their concert at the Ruhr Jazz Festival a year earlier. Blaring free jazz and refined interactions go hand in hand and cause sudden dynamic movements that blur the expectations of the listener. Lehn’s contribution on analog synths, sometimes subtle or strikingly dominant, creates quirks within the soundscape, which Vandermark and Muche eagerly pick up on, while Blume keeps everything together in a brilliant way.
Martin Blume has been one of Germany’s most respected improvisers for several decades. He played in the Quat Quartet, the last real group of pianist Fred Van Hove, which played in deSingel in 2017.
Reed player Ken Vandermark from Chicago needs little introduction. With an almost endless list of bands and projects (Vandermark 5, Resonance Ensemble, Made To Break, Marker,…) he is one of the pivotal figures of the international improvisation world. He has been a loyal guest in our Oorstof series for years.
Since the early nineties the work of keyboard player and composer Thomas Lehn has a focus on analog synths. He often collaborates with John Butcher, with whom he has released many recordings, including some in a trio with Matthew Shipp.
Trombone player Matthias Muche – who played at the Summer Bummer Festival earlier with fellow trombonists Jeb Bishop and Matthias Müller – over the last couple of years has gained world wide respect for his groups Bonecrusher and T.ON, in which he experiments with free improvisation and contemporary composition.
A collaboration between Oorstof and Trix
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