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«Meuf Vol. 1»

Meuf Vol. 1 is a compilation of 9 different new constellations by 23 remarkable female musicians on the Nordic experimental music scene. The album was released on March 8, International Women’s Day, and marks a new annual tradition on the initiative of Danish sax player- composer Maria Dybbroe. Apparently, even in supposedly enlightened Nordic countries, female musicians still feel marginalized. «The hope is also to provide an opportunity for female musicians to start completely new musical collaborations, and in this way forge new ties between female artists in the Nordics, who, due to their minority in the music industry, do not always meet as many colleagues who, by virtue of their gender reminds of themselves», declares Dybbroe. Obviously, Meuf Vol. 1 is a multi-colored and multi-faceted album that offers a journey into endless sonic possibilities and experiences, but its ten short pieces maintain a reserved and introspective atmosphere.

The compilation begins with the new trio of Dybbroe, Danish trumpeter Anne Efternøler and Irish, Copenhagen-based Carolyn Goodwin in a Live-recording at the ILK stage during Copenhagen Jazzfestival in July 2022 that gives a taste of its upcoming debut album. «Vi bærer på dråber» (‘We carry drops’) captures beautifully their fragile and naked dynamics where everything is negotiable. The duo of Norwegian electronics player-vocalist Maja S. K. Ratkje and the processed trumpet of Hilde Marie Holsen (Ratkje produced her first album Ask, Hubro Music, 2015) is represented in two live pieces recorded from Tønsberg in October 2019, and both are enigmatic and poetic drones. The Danish quartet of sax players Laura Toxværd and Julie Kjær with percussionist Marilyn Mazur and the only man in this compilation, bassist Peter Friis Nielsen, is a leisured improvisation that highlights the then strong, interwoven voices of Toxværd and Kjær.

Another new band features Danish multi-instrumentalist Maria Laurette Friis, German, Copenhagen-based pianist-vocalist Johanna Borchert and Efternøler, who plays the beautiful and playful «Hvem sorterer luften?» (who sorts the air?).  Danish, Oslo-based vocalist- multi-instrumentalist Cisser Mæhl and Norwegian sound artist Jenny Berger Myhre follow with the delicate and enchanting «Omsonst». Danish, Oslo-based sax hero Signe Emmeluth and Lithuanian, Oslo-based pianist Guoste Tamulynaite play the open and urgent improvisation «Banshee 4.3». The double trio Coriolis x ilinx – the three sax players of Coriolis – Danish Nana Pi, Goodwin and Dybbroe, and the three Danish vocalists of linx – Anna Mæhl, Laura Marie Madsen and Amanda Appel, investigate how their tonal possibilities can be united as one poetic voice on the engaging melody of «Pale Like My Sun».

The duo of Swedish double bass master Nina de Heney and vocalist-electronics player Qarin Wikström began to work together in 2019 and immediately explored restless, curious and direct dynamics and their mysterious and imaginative «CHO OYU» introduces their forthcoming, debut album QOMOLANGMA. Italian electronics player Mirjana Nardelli, now based in Kraków, and vocalist Andrea S. Giordano, who is based in Oslo, follow with the like-minded «Skhh» that explores the vulnerable almost transparent outlines of vocal and electronic sounds.

An excellent compilation. Most likely you may want to hear more from all the nine new outfits.

Eyal Hareuveni 

Maja Ratkje, Hilde Marie Holsen, Nina De Heney, Maria Laurette Friis, Qarin Wikström, Carolyn Goodwin, Nana Pi, Laura Toxværd, Marilyn Mazur, Julie Kjær, Signe Emmeluth, Anne Efternøler, Guoste Tamulynaite, Maria Dybbroe, Andrea S Giordano, Mirjana Nardelli, Cisser Mæhl, Jenny Berger Myhre, Johanna Borchert, Laura Marie Møller Madsen, Amanda Appel Olsen, Anna Sophie Mæhl & Peter Friis Nielsen

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