Norwegian trumpeter Arve Henriksen and hyper-pianist Kjetil Husebø followed each other’s musical journeys for years. Henriksen was fascinated by Husebø’s melodic sense and his ability to merge acoustic and electronic sounds in his playing, and Husebø has been a fan of Henriksen since he first heard him playing with the band Veslefrekk at Vossajazz in 1995, and shared with him a similar aesthetics which blend organically acoustic and electronic soundscapes.
Henriksen and Husebø’s first project, Sequential Stream, was developed over time, but it began when Henriksen heard and spontaneously responded to Husebø’s piece «Reflection» (from Piano Transformed, Optical Substance, 2017), now transformed into «Seeding» on the new album. Henriksen and Husebø worked remotely in separate studios – Henriksen in the Swedish town Mölnlycke near Gothenburg, and Husebø at the GrandisStudios in Oslo in 2019 and early 2020.
Sequential Stream offers seven spacious and contemplative pieces, all with suggestive-melancholic cinematic qualities. The acoustic, breathy and shakuhachi-sounding trumpet of Henriksen and the grand piano of Husebø are often treated and processed with different effects, and together with the processed vocals live sampling, samples, synthesizers and post-production effects create an intriguing, untimely atmosphere that references ambient and fourth world music, folk and contemporary music. These soundscapes are layered meticulously, rich and nuanced and flow naturally in their own dreamy and poetic course, and the patient and balanced dynamics of Henriksen and Husebø feel organic as if they have been playing together for years and recorded Sequential Stream in the same space.
Henriksen sings a song, «Single Sentence», but his fragile vocals are processed heavily. «Sonic Binoculars» and «slow Fragments» are the most adventurous and darker pieces here, flirting with the abstract, chaotic and sometimes noisy soundscapes of Henriksen’s Supersilent band (and Sequential Stream was mastered by Supersilent’s Helge Sten). But this impressive album ends with a lighter touch, the subtle and most beautiful (and aptly-titled) «Serendipity», which already calls for more of this right stuff.
Arve Henriksen (tp, synth, v, elec, edits), Kjetil Husebø (p, synth, sampling, live sampling, elec, edits)