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Monday, December 10, 2012

Dark Poetry (Creative Sources, 2012) ****½

 By Stef

The title of the last - and fourteenth - track on this debut album is called "For Sale - Baby Shoes, Never Worn", and gives you an idea of the chilling darkness of "Dark Poetry", a trio consisting of Norwegians Dag-Filip Roaldsnes on prepared piano, Kim-Erik Pedersen on alto saxophone, and Tore Sandbakken on drums and percussion.

The approach is minimalistic, shimmering between normal and extended techniques, slow and ominous, restraint and intense, in the same category of Dans Les Arbres or Mural and other endeavours by fellow countrymen Christian Wallumrød, Kim Myhr and Ingar Zach. This younger generation is far removed from the expansive coldness of broad skies that Jan Garbarek or Terje Rypdal opened for us. They offer us intimate coldness instead, very close to you, very penetrating and moving, of things happening in your immediate reality, in your house, in your room, in your head ... disturbing, sad and bone-chilling.

It frightens at the same level as it attracts. It has a rare eery beauty, as discomforting as it is soothing. It creates environments as dark as night that invite further exploration, dragging you into the unknown with the expectation to understand more, to find meaning, yet the only thing you find is even more mystery, luring you even further into the dark.

And like with all good music, the listening journey is never over. You listen to it again and again, and it remains as mysterious and compelling as the first time.


© stef


Richard said...

FYI, the title "For Sale - Baby Shoes, Never Worn" is actually a short story by Ernest Hemingway. The legend is that he bet someone he could write a good story in less than 10 words. Here's an article:

The idea of flash fiction fits in nicely with the minimalism of this music.

As for this album, everything I've bought with Kim Myhr on it has been great. The last sentence of the second paragraph does a great job of describing his music in general.

Stef said...

Thanks Richard! I was not aware of this Hemingway story (probably too short to get published). Good to know.