Norwegian double bass player Olderskog Albertsen began to compose the pieces for his debut album on the winter of 2014 while he was keeping his friends’ apartment. He began to experiment with compositional concepts of moving of backwards and forwards that played a key role in this project, both verbally and musically, reversing music notation in his music notation program. Soon Albertsen discovered that there is more coherency than cacophony in these compositional ideas.
Albertsen, known from the groups Akmee and Filosofer, framed his compositions in a futuristic sci-fiction story about the Seekers of the Origin. These Seekers save the planet RødssalG nE that is dangerously close to the borderline of the 4th dimension and may disappear in a black hole, by transcending this planet to the 5th dimensions. There is also a subplot about this planet’s moon Nano that somehow manages to return to the 4th dimension and collides with RødssalG nE. But much more important is Albertsen’s choice of experienced and upcoming musicians – pianist Kjetil Jerve, sax player Martin Myhre Olsen, trumpeter Erik Kimestad Pedersen, drummer Andreas Wildhagen and trombonist Nilas Granseth.
This fine ensemble charges Albertsen’s complex, modern jazz composition with a sense of joyful playfulness and restless urgency. There are no signs of schizophrenia, despite Albertsen’s unique compositional ideas. Once the sextet settles on a tough groove it plays like any jazz outfit that explores an edgy, intense interplay, even if Albertsen’s charts dictate parallel tempos, chaotic sounding chord changes and counter-melodies that go forward and backwards simultaneously.
Still, one wish that this long journey to the planet nEEn will be much shorter and focused, even though it offers enough enjoyable moments.
Kjetil Jerve (p), Erik Kimestad Pedersen (tp), Martin Myhre Olsen (as), Nilas Granseth (tb), Andreas Wildhagen (dr), Erlend Olderskog Albertsen (b)