Monday, November 08, 2004


I am a fool and missed my chance to see these gentlemen in Chicago just recently...

Norwegian death-free jazz-electronic band Supersilent began as an impromptu jam at the 1997 Bergen Jazz Festival between master trumpeter Arve Henriksen, tape experimenter Helge Sten (who also goes as Deathprod for solo material), Jarle Vespestad on drums, and Stale Storløkken on keyboards. The group decided to continue to play together in Helge Sten's studio and recorded endless hours of tape, eventually spliced into 1998's 1-3, a three-CD collection of wild, percussive free jazz with flourishes of Aphex Twin-like electronics. Integral to the band from this time on was their desire to only exist as a performing group -- they never "write" songs, practice, and barely even speak to one another outside of gigs. This release, like all others, is without overdubs and with minimal production. features a vivacity, excitement, and sense of danger unheard of. In the course of these long improvisations the group moves through countless moods, drawing from ecstatic jazz, avant rock, noise, and electro-acoustics to produce captivating music that pushes far into experimentation and yet remains immediate, even at times accessible. Henriksen's finely chiseled lines evoke Miles Davis' fusion period, while Sten's electronics occasionally bring to mind Merzbow's harsh constructions. In between, listeners get the full avant jam treatment without the psychedelic leanings of Jackie-O Motherfucker or the No-Neck Blues Band -- and something in the cold warmth of the music (yes, an oxymoron)- AMG

All of the releases have the most minimal artwork (albeit luxurious paper quality) as well as no named songs.


Supersilent 1-2


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