Jan 21, 1999

Norwegian jazz talents – Line Up CD 1999

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Thomas Winther Andersen

Two new CDs confirm last year’s impression that talents stand in line to renew and enrich Norwegian jazz.

Bass player Thomas Winther Andersen resides in Amsterdam, but is gradually ensuring that he is becoming more noticeable also in his native country. At any rate, his internationally made up quintet Line Up will not be less in demand, neither here nor there, when the group now has also their CD debut.The album offers 11 different themes, and the undersigned must just ascertain that one and all of the tracks are fascinating. A “declaration of loyalty” to cool jazz and one of this music form’s foremost representatives, the pianist Lennie Tristano, must not scare away those who feel that this style represented a sterile jazz digression. As cool jazz is just the starting point for the quintet’s tour of a rich and varied repertoire.

In addition to the orchestra conductor the quintet consists of the American tenor saxophonist Jimmy Halperin, the drummer John Engels, the trumpeter Torgrim Sollid and the guitarist Håkon Storm-Mathisen. The group is so co-ordinated at such a high level that it would be unnatural to emphasize anything in particular amongst the musicians. We are content to state that Thomas Winther Andersen, in addition to having the honour for the actual project, ensures that a warm pulse runs through the album, also in the trucks with reference to USA’s west coast in the 1950s. In the duo with Engels, “No 2″, Andersen also expresses roots even further back in jazz history. Many listeners will feel themselves tempted to hum the refrain of “My Melancholy Baby”.

Stein Kagge
Aftenposten – Thursday 21 January 1999