Mysterier (Mysteries) is the third album of one of the most exciting outfits in the Nordic scene, the Andreas Røysum Ensemble that already released two spellbinding albums. This passionate 12-soloist features some of the most brilliant and creative musicians in the Norwegian scene. The new album was recorded at the legendary studio Athletic Sound in Halden in September 2022.
Clarinetist-composer Røysum is well-versed in the spiritual and liberating free jazz of the sixties that embraced poetry and incorporated close and distant folk traditions and his own compositions address this legacy, update and expand it. The Ensemble features the poetry of trombonist Øyvind Brække and covers the English folk songs «Hares on the Mountain» and «Barbara Allen» with the compassionate, sweet delivery of new vocalist Sofie Tollefsbøl. Mysterier suggests a feeling of being in an uplifting and close community musical ritual that echoes the folk-rock of the British Fairport Convention, the free jazz of South African Chris McGregor’s Brotherhood of Breath, the American gospel cries of Albert Ayler, the political anthems of Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra, and the musical journeys of Don Cherry in Africa.
The seven pieces sound as if they evoke and call upon the creative and mysterious forces that affirm our lives, especially during times of doubt and crisis, and ask us to act and contribute to the healing of our planet. The Ensemble acts as a determined and unstoppable unit of gifted sonic magicians who realize inside and out its sacred mission. The Ensemble is ready to upscale the power of the transcendental, compassionate elements in our psyche and reality and inspire us to open the doors of perception and cultivate the humane. We all should join the endlessly expanding musical universe of the Andreas Røysum Ensemble.
Quantum Teleportation tells a completely different story. Røysum’s intimate duo with his comrade in the Nakama quintet, clarinetist-alto sax player Klaus Ellerhusen Holm was recorded in three different locations in Trondheim: Vår Frues Church, Øra Studios and Bymarka, with a close collaboration with sound engineer-producer Kyrre Laastad. Røysum and Holm wanted to investigate the same material in three completely different acoustic settings and explore such phenomena as sound in motion and the perception of depth and dimensions in sound.
Quantum Teleportation focuses on the patient, introspective and methodical research of sound – in distinct acoustic spaces, of raw, naked sound, and of shaping and sculpting resonant sounds in free improvised settings, as well as the exploration of unchartered sonic territories using interference, multiphonics, tonal structures and microtonality. The six duets, with their suggestive titles, may hint back to Røysum and Holm’s seminal, mutual influences from early American minimalism, formative AACM solo albums, the cutting-edge reductive music in Berlin of the 90s Berlin, and, obviously, their work in the Nakama quintet and collective. They cover a piece («Dharani no. 4») by the quintet and collective leader, bassist Christian Meaas Svendsen, and the last piece, «Sheep Chant» corresponds with Svendsen’s Buddhist chants, but adds to it some local, eccentric twist. Still, Røysum and Holm’s voices are idiosyncratic, inventive and always in search of expanding their sonic horizons.
Sofie Tollefsbøl (vocals), Henriette Eilertsen (flute), Signe Emmeluth (alto saxophone, flute), Marthe Lea (tenor saxophone), Andreas Røysum (Bb clarinet, bass clarinet, flute), Erik Kimestad Pedersen (trumpet), Øyvind Brække (trombone, poetry,; Hans P. Kjorstad (fiddle), Joel Ring (cello), John Andrew White (double bass), Christian Meaas Svendsen (double bass, electric bass), Andreas Wildhagen (drums, percussion, tubular bells), Ivar Myrset Asheim (drums, percussion, vibraphone), Klaus Ellerhusen Holm (Bb clarinet, alto saxophone)