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På skive



Dekorum is the new band of Swedish, Copenhagen-based guitar hero Samuel Hällkvist, featuring old and new comrades-fellow Danish guitarist Stephan Sieben, who played with Portuguese sax player Paul Chagas («Days Are Not Days», Creative Sources, 2016), long-standing partner; Danish/Norwegian drummer Knut Finsrud, who has played in Hällkvist’s bands Return to Center, Television Pickup and Variety of Rhythm, and Norwegian, Malmö-based bassist Anne Marte Eggen, known from the We Float band with whom Hällkvist guested on its last album «What’s Really Real» (Havtorn, 2018). The new quartet was recorded live at Inkonst , Jazz I Malmö on September 2018.

One of the new pieces of Dekorum is titled «Gitarr Al Dente» and this title reflects Dekorum essence. This band has a punchy, raw rock sound, but Hällkvist‘s compositions for this band allow enough space for improvisation and high degrees of freedom. He says that he always was fascinated by the sound of two electric guitars, but more important, he adds, he needed to find the right people to correspond with his demanding ideas, ones that he can also laugh with.

The seven pieces highlight Hällkvist’s resourceful language that encompasses free jazz, fusion, prog and art rock and free-improv, but relies on complex, multilayered rhythmic patterns that always tempt the listener to move. Dekorum expands beautifully his challenging themess like it was already a working band. Some of the new pieces like «In Girum II» stress Hällkvist’s seminal influences – the long, sustained lines of Terje Rypdal or the layers of loops of David Torn. The lyrical and dramtic ballad «Stilstand I Vand» may convince you that Hällkvist is actually a romantic who simply likes to push the distortion pedal. The loose framework of «Four & Return» allows Dekorum to free-improvise before it gravitates into tight rhythmic groove. «Swarm Robotic» and “Parabloa” plays gently with elements of tension-building and layers of rhythm, but the first ones ends with another great Rypdal-like solo. The driving energy of «Gitarr Al Dente» enables Hällkvist and Sieben to dance around each other with dense, effects-laden textures. The last piece «Svedjebruk» returns full-circle to the tight, almost mathematical yet thorny interplay of the first piece before it explodes with another burning solo of Hällkvist that may call back all of Mahavisnu Orchestra’s «Birds of Fire».

41 minutes of guitar(s) bliss.

Eyal Hareuveni

Samuel Hällkvist (g), Stephan Sieben (g), Anne Marte Eggen (b), Knut Finsrud (dr)

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