Norwegian guitarist Håvard Volden – known from the Moon Relay group and his collaborations with singer-songwriter Jenny Hval (in the Nude on Sand duo), tuba player Martin Taxt and noise master Lasse Marhaug – and Italian, New York based percussionist Carlo Costa – known from his Natura Morta trio, the Acustica ensemble or Frantz Loriot Systematic Distortion Orchestra, as well as the founder of the Neither/Nor experimental label, are no ordinary improvisers. Both explore in every new project new means to expand their respective instruments vocabularies and sonic scopes.
This duo first recording together, «In The Wake», was captured in Brooklyn, New York on May 2016, focuses on Volden and Costa acoustic instruments. Both sketch slowly and gently repetitive and minimalist, drone-like patterns, but filling them with healthy doses of space and silence. Surprisingly, this subtle approach suggest rich sonic textures, full of arresting sonic events.
Often, both Volden and Costa weave such a delicate, resonating texture, as on «Pool», that sound as if their instruments extends each other’s sonic ideas, even blending into a colorful universe of floating, evocative sounds. «Ripple» offers ascetic, dramatic narrative that sound as a part of a mysterious ritual, but with surprising playful aspects that brings to mind the masterful ECM album of guitarist Steve Eliovson with late percussionist Collin Walcott («Dawn Dance», 1981). The last piece «Ebb» is a monotonous drone that manages to alternate between meditative ambience and a disturbing, cinematic texture, almost on the same time.
Håvard Volden (g), Carlo Costa (perc)