Danish, Esbjerg-based guitarist Martin Lau has a sound of his own, different and bound-free from all the Nordic jazz clichés. He has great interest in classical Western music as well as in Middle-Eastern music and he experimented with fretted and fretless guitars and an electric sitar before. He also works in rock and pop settings.
«Ansigtets Lagte Folder», Lau duo with drummer Casper Mikkelsen, known from the local avant-jazz group Magnus Fra Gaarden, was recorded in just two hours of spare studio time on November 2014. This recording radiates a totally new side of Lau as presented before in the nuanced, multi-layered compositions for extended ensembles, collected on «The Menorah Trilogy» (2016). Lau and Mikkelsen duo burst with surprising freshness and nervous urgency.
Lau can still sketch captivating, melodic themes that reflect his respect for the jazz legacy and the short ballad «Den dag der netop er den yderste» highlights his refined, melodic sensibility. But this recording becomes more interesting – much more interesting – when Lau and Mikkelsen just having fun and getting wild, loud and dirty on the super-intense «Når vi kommer tættere på» and «Den verden som har forladt dem». The primitive, reckless power of these loose, free-jazz meets prog-metal pieces threatens to crash all that is on its way. Similar thing happens on «Vores hjerner savlende». Lau and Mikkelsen groove over a simple rhythmic pattern but sometimes you don’t need more than such a precise riff. The last «Enkle løsninger og fugler» allows Lau and Mikkelsen to improvise with weird noises, effects and sounds and to suggest a nightmarish, cinematic piece that, surprisingly, has its special own charm.
Only 28-minutes long but every second counts.
Martin Lau (g), Casper Mikkelsen (dr)