Christian Wallumr¿d Ensemble

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COMPOSERS: Christian Wallumrød Ensemble
LABELS: ECM
ALBUM TITLE: A Year from Easter
WORKS: A Year from Easter
PERFORMER: Christian Wallumrød (piano), Nils Økland (violin), Arve Henriksen (trumpet), Per Oddvar Johansen (drums)

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CATALOGUE NO: 982 4132
Composer/pianist Wallumrød is now a stalwart of the ECM stable, having headed up various recordings for the label in which, as here, his role as catalyst is paramount. He’s also in effect a ‘second generation’ ECM artist, as he cites the label’s early recordings as formative influences.

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Wallumrød’s thing appears to be the cultivation of common ground between various musics and the musicians who play them. This is certainly the defining philosophy of the CD, which knits improvisation, European folk traditions and contemporary chamber music into a cryptic and bleak but intriguing sequence. The jazz element is subtle and is injected by Wallumrød by way of a series of delicate operations – a lilting pentatonic figure here, an insiduous rubato there – which manage to imply rather than state the presence of the jazz tradition within the music. Roger Thomas