Covid-19 is dangerously impacting the social-economic category of musicians. No concerts, poor political and social consideration, uncertain earnings. As a consequence, an ever-growing number of musicians, especially those from the experimental area, are trying to promote their music on BandCamp in digital format only. It is increasingly difficult for me to follow and review this incredible flow of music. I therefore decided to open this section on my blog Neuguitars where I propose music in digital format that I consider particularly interesting and worthy of attention. I hope you like it. Let’s support musicians. They need it.
Snow Catches on her Eyelashes by Eivind Aarset & Jan Bang, Jazzland 2020
Jazzland is proud to present the brand new opus from two of the brightest luminaries on the Norwegian scene. “Snow Catches on her Eyelashes” emanates musical authority, a hyperconscious layering of textures and musicality, at once evocative of some otherworldly space, yet familiar at a deep human level that resonates with each sonic flourish.
While Aarset and Bang have worked together in many projects, particularly on Aarset’s “Dream Logic” (ECM 2012), “Snow Catches on her Eyelashes” is a different kind of creation. Where “Dream Logic” was distinctly an “Eivind Aarset” album, albeit one where Aarset explored new territory with his guitar and playing, this new album is clearly the work of a duo.
Immediately noticeable is the lack of obviously “guitar” sounds. Aarset uses his instrument extensively as a textural device, conjuring all manner of electroacoustic noise and hum, glitches, and disruptive sonics. However, on “Two Days In June”, a track created for the late dancer/choreographer Christine Brunel, the harmonic and melodic aspects of Aarset’s playing come to the fore.
Bang’s manipulation of field recordings, samples, found sounds, and of Aarset’s playing provides a musical and textural continuity and coherence to the album. His skilful interweaving of a huge array of disparate sonic material into new soundscapes and auditory artefacts, densely layered without obfuscation, whether like nebulous visions or vivid hallucinations, gives clarity to the overarching spirit of the album.
Featuring contributions from Nils Petter Molvær (trumpet), Hilde Norbakken (piano), Anders Engen (drums/percussion), Audun Erlien (bass), and a vocal sample from Sidsel Endresen, there is an endless diversity to the tonal characteristics of each piece while maintaining the consistency of the musical language the duo have created and evolved during their many years of collaboration.
released March 13, 2020