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VINE VOICEon 6 March 2008
I bought this album after seeing Aarset playing live with Nils Petter Molvaer, whose music I had already come to know and love. Aarset's guitar work on the night was incredible, and possiby the highlight of the show (which is saying a lot, because Nils was incredible). I'd only heard one of Aarset's solo tracks prior to buying this record (The String Thing, from his Light Extracts album), and it is quite different to the tracks here.
This is quite a raw album, and I think Aarset was still really seeking out his style when he made it. I have since bought Sonic Codex, which is a much more coherent album (not to mention the far superior production).
I didn't really take to it when I first heard it, but I have persisted and this has paid dividends. It is a really different and adventurous album in terms of modern jazz. To think that it was made 10 years ago is incredible. The man was way ahead of his time.
Tracks 3-7 are the best part of the record, with tracks 1 and 2 being my least favourite. 3-7 have a much more 'modern-Aarset' feel to them -softer and more progressive in their construction, while tracks 1 and 2 are much rockier and less easy on the ear.
All in all, if you like other artists from the Norwegian jazz stable, you should give Aarset a try. I think most Hendrix fans would also enjoy this record.
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VINE VOICEon 17 January 2002
This album is worth buying just for the opening track 'Dark Moisture'. It is simply one of the best fusion tracks of the past ten years. The album as a whole might seem a bit patchy and the improvisation a little thin but what it lacks in 'scales' it makes up elsewhere. It has the seeds of an idea of Jazz that I find very stimulating. Listen to it and you'll see what I mean.
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