21 July 2010


Arrive in Molde, Norway on Tuesday, first solid night of sleep since I arrived in Europe on July 7th. Wednesday proves busy- visit the exhibition of Terry Nilssen-Love’s new paintings (the work seems to add a center section of Richter-like abstraction); finalize and re-copy my charts for the trio (got the major work done on them before Berlin by composing the music in Hans Falb’s office bedroom during the soundchecks at the Nickelsdorf Festival); perform to a packed house with Chad and Haavard (the concert felt like a well played first performance, with 9 pieces of music to learn and interpret correctly there were, not surprisingly, problems with some of the execution of material, but the energy and trajectory of the music were strong enough for the audience to want an encore); had dinner with Ab Baars, Ig Henneman, and the guys before heading to hear Hairy Bones (Brotzmann, Kondo, Nilssen-Love, Pupilo) for the first time. The balance through the PA was problematic (definitely a group that would benefit if they could travel with their own sound tech), but the sustained energy was astounding, and not just because of the volume. Massimo’s bass playing in conjunction with Paal’s drumming kept things shifting and driving, and Kondo seems meant to be the sparring partner to Peter’s indefatigable lines. Some time spent catching up with friends who I won’t see again until the autumn (I’ll meet up with Haavard and Ingebrigt Haker Flaten on the Atomic/Vandermark 5 tour in September), and then time to pack and a few hours sleep before the 6am pickup to the airport and the journey back home to Chicago- just in time for the 11am rehearsal on Friday with Topology…The last couple of weeks have been an amazing learning experience: concerts with Powerhouse Sound, Lean Left, the duo with Paal Nilssen-Love, the Ex & Brass Unbound,The Thing XL, the trio with Christof Kurzmann and Martin Brandlmayr, and the trio with Chad Taylor and Haavard Wiik; and getting to hear Chalachew Ashenafi/Mesele Asmamaw/Mesale Legesse (with Kat Bornefeld sitting in!), Guenter Christman/Christian Munthe/Raymond Strid, Agusti Fernandez/Ingebrigt Haker Flaten/Paul Lovens, Swedish Azz, Andrea Neumann/Clare Cooper/Clayton Thomas, John Lindberg/Ab Baars playing themusic of John Carter, and Hairy Bones. Amazing! A clip of the Ex &Brass Unbound from Nickeldorf: