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Little North
While You Wait

VÖ: 29.02.2024

Genre: Junge Talente, Jazz, Neu bei ACT

CD

€18.00*

ACT 9982-2, 614427998224
Benjamin Nørholm Jacobsen / piano
Martin Brunbjerg Rasmussen / bass
Lasse Jacobsen / drums

Featuring:
Oscar Andreas Haug / trumpet


Any conversation about the piano trio in the European jazz of recent decades will inevitably touch on the topic of the "Nordic sound". The leading exponents of it – Jan Johansson, Bobo Stenson, Bugge Wesseltoft, Esbjörn Svensson… – have not just drawn on the vast palette of American jazz, they are also musicians steeped in the songs of their homelands, as well as in the European classical music canon and contemporary music. With their strong feeling for melody, harmony and dramaturgy, pianist Benjamin Nørholm Jacobsen, bassist Martin Brunbjerg Rasmussen and drummer Lasse Jacobsen create a cinematic sound, music which can at times be melancholic, at others enchantingly beautiful, and which is full of twists and turns.

The three musicians, all of whom were born in the early 1990s, met while studying at the conservatory in Denmark. In the few years since the first album they made together in 2020, they have quickly managed to build up a loyal following both on- and offline, something remarkable considering that their beginnings were during the time of the coronavirus pandemic. The audience they reached is young; these people tend not to be jazz aficionados. Pianist Benjamin Nørholm Jacobsen says: "I think the song-like, atmospheric character of our music makes it easy for people to connect with. The ingredients are quite complex, but it is never something intellectual, either for us or for our audience; the most important thing is emotion. At our concerts I always hear that people have been impressed by the way the band plays together. They can intuit that there is a real connection between us, and that something new is always emerging from it."

The album "While You Wait" consists of eight instrumental tracks in which Little North, in a purely acoustic trio setting, creates very different, haunting moods. That is one of the band's special qualities. Rather than a focus on the "what" of their music, or its formal and conceptual aspects, it is on the "how", in other words the trio’s sound, the interplay between its members and the fascinating narratives which they develop. For their ACT debut, the trio has expanded its line-up for the first time to include young Norwegian trumpeter Oscar Andreas Haug. Like Little North, he is also clearly blessed with the kind of musicality and presence which not only builds on Norway’s unique jazz trumpet tradition, but also carries it into the future. His airy, vocal tone may have echoes of the greats - Nils Petter Molvaer or Arve Henriksen - but at the same time there is something new and without precedent. It is also impressive to hear how closely and dynamically Haug's playing connects with the rest of the band, how his nuanced melodic lines go beyond normal semitones, to open up the world of micro-tones. This is the kind of melodic line that the Sami, the indigenous people of Scandinavia, have been practising for centuries. This is another fascinating and genuinely "Nordic" colour which enriches the spectrum of the music on the album.

Reflecting further on things "Nordic", the trio’s original name was simply "North", but that proved to be completely untraceable in the digital space, so it was changed to "Little North". Drummer Lasse Jacobsen reflects: "We all come from the north and I guess Denmark is the smallest part of the north. And at the same time, "Little" also refers to the closeness and compactness of the trio line-up. “It’s where we feel most comfortable, because it allows for such direct, close musical communication." There is, however, nothing little about what the Danish broadsheet Politiken has called their “seriously original expression.” "While You Wait" features four extraordinarily talented young musicians whose hearts, minds and considerable skills are dedicated entirely to the purpose of some superb musical story-telling.
Little North
Any conversation about the piano trio in the European jazz of recent decades will inevitably touch on the topic of the “Nordic sound”.The leading exponents of it - Jan Johansson, Bobo Stenson, Bugge Wesseltoft, Esbjörn Svensson…- have not just drawn on the vast palette of American jazz, they are also musicians steeped in the songs of their homelands, as well as in the European classical music canon, and contemporary pop. And whereas their music may be known for stillness and spaciousness, it is no wallflower: the Nordic piano trio has a huge audience worldwide, and its influence on subsequent generations of musicians has been incalculable and profound. The Danish piano trio “Little North” - pianist Benjamin Nørholm Jacobsen, bassist Martin Brunbjerg Rasmussen and drummer Lasse Jacobsen - has what it takes to open up a new and significant chapter in this story.With their strong feeling for melody, harmony and dramaturgy, these three young musicians create a cinematic sound, music which can at times be melancholic, at others enchantingly beautiful, and which is full of twists and turns.