- 1Be Patient02:56
- 3Loose Gore05:21
- 6Before Now02:03
- 8And Then00:45
- 10Please Stay02:16
- 13Get Ready02:21
- 16Crossing The Lake On A Kicksled04:38
- 18Berlin Basement01:16
- 19Berlin Blues07:48
Info for 10
Everything and Everything at Once: The sessions to the new Helge Lien Trio album were not supposed to be special. And yet, they could never be business as usual. After the departure of founding member Frode Berg, the group were "at a crossroads," says Lien, and in need of a fresh start. They found it by leaving their comfort zone: For the first time in 15 years, they did not record at the Rainbow studio in Oslo. The change of location turned out to be productive. In the end, the musicians had two full records' worth of material – and none of it fit the glove of a conventional trio recording.
The sheer abundance of approaches and concepts makes 10 feel like a factory of ideas, an expansive world for letting go and losing yourself in, like a clockwork ticking at the pulse of passion. It presents a panopticum of this unique formation's versatility, including onomatopoetic piano paintings and hypnotic grooves, experimental abstractions and runic jazz. Lien is known for being capable of everything – this time, he just did everything all at once. It was obviously critical how new bassist Mats Eilert would fit in. All doubts, however, are quickly dispersed on opener "Be Patient". Appearing behind Lien's crystaline piano cascades, Eilert turns his instrument into a poetic device, imbuing the music with a sense of magic and mystery. The other members, too, are awarded their spot in the limelight. In the solo pieces, their individual voices sound more recognisable than ever, while forging an even tighter unit in the band settings.. Some have referred to the trio's style as 'new chamber music' – it is not hard to understand, why.
Lien himself especially has grown as a composer and performer. Some of the most striking passages are reminiscent of his ambitious solo record Kattenslager from 2012. On other occasions, he pushes the beat forward with impulsive staccatos, at times separating himself from the rhythm section, at timese closely aligning himself with it.
There's no easy way of explaining this album. Some of the pieces are autumnal and consoling. Others feel more forceful and disturbing. But they are all connected. Like twins in a dark room. Like all the different and sometimes contradicting ideas that haunt Helge Lien whenever he sits down behind the piano - and which all suddenly make perfect sense.
Helge Lien, piano
Mats Eilertsen, bass
Per Oddvar Johansen, drums
A little nation with a big jazz tradition is the land of fjords and trolls. Fascinating new artists and acts sporting a huge zest for playing and an irrepressible urge for experimentation keep pushing out of Norway to conquer the rest of the jazz world. The Helge Lien Trio, who have already won a large circle of fans in Scandinavia and Japan with their five albums and inspiring live concerts, are especially significant. They maintain the balance between jazz traditions and the avantgardist art of improvisation like hardly any other classic piano trio, par excellence.
Helge Lien, who besides his own trio project performs with other Norwegian acts like Silje Nergaard, has developed his very own unmistakeable style of trio playing with band colleagues Frode Berg (bass) and Knut Aalefjær (drums & percussion). With instinctive sureness, the musicians develop a „chamber music“ jazz that stands out through its harmonically complex tone colors. Building on Bill Evans’ lyrical power and the exhilaratingly melancholic playing of Esbjörn Svensson, Lien, in constant dialogue with Berg & Aalefjær, creates distinct moods on 'Hello Troll' – moods that he presents with ease.
Doubtlessly pianist Helge Lien, who is very skilled at playing to the gallery with his modal piano art, is one of the most exciting young talents in Scandinavia. After the honorable Dagbladet from Norway already described the forerunner CD 'To The Little Radio' as „the best Norwegian Piano Trio Album in a long time', we can be looking out for a similar reaction to their new longplayer. Playing their way into the hearts of a steadily growing circle of listeners with classic-impressionistic patterns and rhythmical-melodic jazz, this trio’s resourcefulness seems to truly know no bounds.