Saturday, February 28, 2009

Kjetil Møster jazz sessions

Bergen Jazzforum invited Kjetil Møster and some friends to do a session at the USF Verftet Friday evening. Møster brought along Stian Westerhus (Khan, Puma, Monolithic), Ole Morten Vågan (Motif, Maria Kannegard Trio), Bjørnar Habbestad (Lemur) and Kenneth Kapstad (Motorpsycho, Monolithic, Animal Alpha).
Of course this turned out to be a great evening, with some free impro, some jazz, some noise and Vågan and Kapstad even built a jazz rock groove towards the end. The band seemed very happy to play, and came running on stage to do an encore. Tough gang!
I salute serious musicians who smile on stage! Always!
You may watch a video on YouTube, but be warned, the sound is terrible.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Unknown legends of Rock 'n' Roll

Unknown Legends of Rock and Roll
Originally uploaded by svennevenn

Robert Wyatt is interviewed in Richie Unterbergers book "Unknown legends of Rock 'n' Roll" (Backbeat 1998). Wyatt claims he makes music because he's got a strange feeling of a "constant sense of disappointment with what I've already done". He also talks about cover tunes, of which he has made some (I’m a believer, At last I am free, Grass etc), and he doesn't see the big difference between doing cover songs and his own material. Example: Elvis Presley was never known to sing Big Mama Thornton covers, since he made every song his own.

You'll find some obscure artists in the book, but to the well educated readers of this blog, several will be well known (of course!). More on the artists in the book here. If you read "Unknown legends of Rock 'n' Roll" you are ready for a third degree pop quiz anytime. Marc Bolan? Oh he was in Johns Children!
You also get a CD with 12 songs.

Again thanks to john b.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ian Carr (1933-2009)

Originally uploaded by svennevenn

We loose too many musicians these days, and the blog may start to resemble a graveyard, but we have to say goodbye to trumpet player and author Ian Carr who died 25 February. I listened a lot to Carr in the 70s and loved some of the Nucleus albums. Later i read (and liked) the books on British jazz and Miles Davis.
More on Ian Carr at All About Jazz, Speakeasy Jazzcorner and on the Carr/Nucleus site.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Chicago Tentet in Oslo

Check out jirdavis' pictures of Chicago Tentet on Flickr from the Oslo concerts this month. At the bottom of the post you get a drum duo from Michael Zerang and Paal Nilssen-Love, and you may watch the whole gang here. review (in Norwegian) Peter Brötzmann Chicago Tentet Festival, and tell us that The Fat is Gone didn't play as scheduled. Pity for the ones who were there. Buy the CD with the live recording from Molde!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Portugise magazine Blitz (#33, 2009) does a piece on Robert Wyatts' reissues on Domino.
They say: "As recentes reedições de ROBERT WYATT inspiram a Rui Miguel Abreu uma página de reflexão".

Monday, February 23, 2009

Electric Ladyland

We are living in times of 40 year celebrations (1968 and 1969 you know). One of the milestones of the old days is out again as Jimi Hendrix Experiences "Electric Ladyland: 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition". This edition has a DVD documentary. Has anybody here seen it, and is Robert Wyatt on it (or in the booklet)?
Soft Machine and Hendrix toured together, and Wyatt has described Hendrix as a real gentleman.

Vince Taylor

Let's a get a bit of rockin' in this blog!
No, "Brand New Cadillac" is not a Clash song. I've got Vince Taylor and The Playboys' version on a sampler (various artists) with this (pretty rude) cover, and it's the only Taylor song I have so far. Now Ace have issued a new Vince Taylor album called "Jet Black Leather Machine", so my knowledge of this artist just might get a bit better.
Watch "Twenty flight rock" from 1960, or find some other ones on YouTube. Leather pants were cooler in the 60s than the 80s, weren't they?

Sunday, February 22, 2009


Robert Wyatt is still getting press on the reissues of his solo albums on Domino. Here you have Swedish Sonic ("Oändligt vacker ödslighet", no 45, 2009), who conclude that the future looks bright for Robert, and Icelandic Morgunbladid (Sunday, 15 february, 2009) in "Meistaraverk í nýju ljósi". My Icelandic is a bit rusty (even if Norwegians may understand quite a lot of the words) but "meistaraverk" is "master works", so I think we agree with the author here.

And in this review of "The Black Ghosts" we get another example of Robert Wyatt as a reference. "There's also the mysterious inclusion of "Full Moon," which combines the band's more typical sound with a bit of freak-folk Robert Wyatt would be proud of". So Wyatt's gone "freak folk" now?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

From Frozen Feet Heat Came

Eldbjørg Raknes (vocal, electronics, sampling) is out with a new album called "From Frozen Feet Heat Came" (MYrecordings, 2007). She brings along Eirik Hegdal (saxes, clarinet) and Stian Westerhus (guitar and electronics). Raknes wrote her own lyrics for this one, but I'm not too focused on the words. The voice and instruments work together as a band, and it's good to hear Hegdal and Westerhus get going on their own too.
Listening to the CD I get a good "album feeling" here, more than hearing a collection of single tunes. They start off with "Some Day" and end it all with "Everyway, Everyday".
Not for background listening, while you are having a chat with someone.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Vandermark 5: Beat Reader

I have to admit I was a bit slow at discovering Ken Vandermark. Oh yes, he's on the shelves here with Paal Nilssen-Love, the Thing, Chicago Tentet and Fire Room, but when I finally got myself a Vandermark 5 record ("Beat Reader", Atavistic 2008), I realised it's their album number 10 since 1997. Oops.
The musicians of the band (these days) are Ken Vandermark (baryton, clarinets), Dave Remis (tenor), Tim Daisy (drums), Ken Kessler (bass) and Fred Lonberg-Holm (cello). This is a great and varied album (in fact every single tune is varied!), with hard swinging jazz, contemporary classical, free impro and rock. When the cello player gets going, I smell rock guitars all over the place.
Every tune is dedicated to persons from music, literature and movies (I only know a couple of them), and there might even be connections to the Beat movement?

Ken Vandermark is active on the net too. Check out his site and follow him on Twitter (where it seems like their fighting bad acoustics in Norway these days)..

NPM at Obrestad Lighthouse

Nils Petter Molvaer, Jan Bang, Eivind Aarset, Pekka Stokke (visuals) and Johnny Skalleberg (sound), live at Obrestad Lighthouse 2008. This was a commissioned work for Stavanger 2008, On The Edge.
All info stolen from vuzak.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Some old stuff

Over at HOK Music I found a link to 3 hours of radio at NRK P3, where Lars Finborud (Plastic Strip) is allowed to play his own records, records from the Archives at Henie Onstad Arts Center and recordings from the Norwegian Broadcasting Co. (NRK). He plays a lot of strange stuff, and the most interesting might be the examples from NRKs archives. The contracts clearly stated that only NRK were allowed to play or broadcast these recordings, and they haven't been out on LPs or CDs (so far?).
Listening suggestions: After 24 minutes you get Miles Davis in Oslo 11 September 1971, probably with the crew from the "Cellar Door Sessions". After Davis comes a band fronted by Terje Rypdal from 1972 and around 60 minutes the Sun Ra Archestra come dancing at the Kongsberg Jazz Festival (1982). I'm not sure if these programs stay on the net for a long time, so hurry up if you're interested.

Robert Wyatt Anthologie

7 March there will be a concert in Baume-les-Dames in France, with Pascal Comelade playing Robert Wyatt tunes. All this to celebrate what looks like an anthology of the MW books by Jean-Michel Marchetti, Robert Wyatt and Alfreda Benge, that I have posted earlier.
My French isn't very good, but you may test your's here.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Signed plastic ear

Lasse Marhaug's box set edition of "Ear Era" is out now: "Ear Era Deluxe Edition". There are only 50 numbered copies of this excellent work of carpentry. You get Ear Era CD, Ear Era triple cassette, postcards, photos and a plastic ear signed by Lasse Marhaug!
I guess it's still almost possible that Soft Machine with Robert Wyatt might be hidden in these recordings.

Bergenfest 2009

Bergenfest is happening 28 April - 3 May. The program is only in Norwegian (yet?), but you get Gang Gang Dance, I Was a King, Candi Staton, Angie Stone, Jason Ringenberg, Jim White, Woven Hand and lots of others. They even have a free concert with Rachel Unthank & The Winterset in the festival bar, late Friday night! I repeat: Norwegians - bar - Friday night and Rachel Unthank. I just hope we are able to behave, just this one day.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Fred Frith 60

Let's celebrate Fred Frith's birthday number 60 with a short impro from 2006. Frith is known from Henry Cow, Art Bears, Massacre and Skeleton Crew, he cooperated with Robert Wyatt (and a few others!) and you may start to shop from his discography, if you dare.

Monday, February 16, 2009


What you may find on your camera after a friday night! I still lack this double edition of "Rock Bottom/Ruth Is Stranger than Richard" (1986). He stayed close to it all evening.

Svarte Greiner

Svarte Greiner (Erik Skodvin) just released "Kappe" (Type, 2008). Oh my, this is spooky music. The four tracks are some kind of horror ambient, and it comes sneaking upon you, giving you the nerves (without any drinking at all). I walked around the house with the I-Pod turned up quite loud yesterday, but didn't dare go down into the basement with this soundtrack. Lovely stuff!
Kjetil Møster is blowing on one track, and Boomkat is selling both the hard copy and the files.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Chicago Tentet

19th - 21th February the club Nasjonal Jazzscene in Oslo hosts the Peter Brötzmann Chicago Tentet Festival! Check out the videos from Amsterdam (recorded 13th February 2009).
The musicians: Peter Brötzmann (reeds), Ken Vandermark (reeds), Joe McPhee (trumpet), Jeb Bishop (trombone), Johannes Bauer (trombone), Conny Bauer (trombone), Fred Lonberg-Holm (cello), Kent Kessler (bass), Michael Zerang (drums), Paal Nilssen-Love (drums). Thanks to jacquestourneur.

Read "Peter Brotzmann Chicago Tentet: Bridging the Future with the Past" in AllAboutJazz.

Die Stille im Kopf

There is a chapter called "Ein Besuch bei Robert Wyatt" (18 pages) in Karl Lippegaus' book "Die Stille im Kopf" (Nieswand Verlag 1991). The first edition of the book was on Amman Verlag (1987). Both editions have to be bought used.

Thanks to Joe B.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Me the bandit

Friday I was on a seminar in Bergen on the topic "copyright in archives, museums and libraries", and have to conclude that the list of things you may do on the net is far far shorter than the list of what you are not allowed to do.
I understand the need to protect the rights of the people who produce literature, research articles and music, but I wonder if the laws were made for medieval times?

My blogging and flickering has nothing to do with my job, but in my private life I'm probably a crook, a bandit and a pirate, even if I do not share sound files or scan and share whole articles or books (or earn anything on this!). To use pictures or scans of CD covers or book covers is probably not 100% legal either, but damn isn't that a bit strict? What we really want to say by doing it is "buy this record or book". (Well, a lot of bloggers will say "don't buy this shit" too of course, but not me. I only write about the stuff I like).

Friday, February 13, 2009

Some things Wyatt from the net

As far as I understand(after Google translating) from Italian Il Resto Del Carlino, it seems like "Roberto Gatto on drums, John De Leo heading to Gianluca Petrella trombone, Luke MANNUTZA keyboards and the piano, the sax Maurizio Giammarco, Fabrizio Bosso on trumpet, Roberto Cecchetto guitar and drums and on bass Francesco Puglisi" are going to play some kind of prog tribute, where they also play some Robert Wyatt material (12 and 13February).

In Wire Lars Horntveth says he listened to Robert Wyatt in the process of making "Kaleidoscopic".

Timeturk is interviewing Gilad Atzmon.

I see quite often now, that Robert Wyatt is used as a kind of a reference, like in "sounds like". Here is Azita Youseffi from


At the Trinity concert Wednesday, I also bought the CD "Elise" (Compunctio 2008) by Ingebrigt Håker Flaten (bass) and Håkon Kornstad (sax). They play music inspired by religious folk songs from Oppdal, Norway. The opening tune is sung by Flaten's grandmother (Elise Flaten), but the rest of the album is the duo at work.
I admit I am not too fond of the mixing of folk and jazz, but here everything is forgotten. The record is just great, not much more to say about that. Keith Jarret's "Death and the flower" fits in well too.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

This Heat

The Quietus have a pretty long interviw with Charles Hayward on This Heat. The interview is from the book "Totally Wired: Post-Punk Interviews And Overviews" by Simon Reynolds (Faber & Faber, 2009).
You may find some Canterbury or Wyatt-related material too, through groups like Quiet Sun and Raincoats. More info on the book in Reynolds' blog.


Thanks to the friendly people of Bergen Jazzforum who gave us another free concert at the Landmark club Wednesday. This time Trinity with Kjetil Møster (sax, clar), Morten Qvenild (keyb), Thomas Strønen (dr) and Ingebrigt Håker Flaten (b) played two long sets with contemporary free jazz impro (ah, the genres), being both quiet and lyrical, and blowing up a full storm. Qvenild even fronted the band in a beautiful lullaby (Brahm's lullaby I think).
Since my pictures were even worse than usual, I hereby give you the cover of the album they have just released on Clean Feed called "Breaking the Mold" (the concerts are free, but the money is spent on the records they sell!). This one was recorded at the Molde International Jazz Festival in 2006, and the title just might be a response to Karin Krog's "Break of day in Molde". The record sounds good too, and since I'm fond of crazy titles, here they are:"Mold", "MoL ded", "MolDer" og "Breaking Them Old".

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Lol Coxhill solo

Lol Coxhill on soprano, at the Battersea Arts Centre, London, 6 February 2009.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ane Brun

In January we were in a taxi wih Richard Thompson, and now we go along with Norwegian singer Ane Brun! She is singing "Lullaby for Grown Ups".

She may also be heard, singing "True Colours" in the Björn Borg commercial.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Elvis Presley

We all need some Elvis records in our collections, no doubt about that. I'm not sure if I will sign a statement that he is the king of rock and roll, but it's essential stuff. If you need some more Elvis, Proper issued a 4 CD box called "The Tupelo Mississippi Flash" (2008), and this is good value for money. The recordings are from the period 1954-1957, and it's both rocking and pretty sweet (of course). One of the CDs contain live material, and the sound quality isn't exactly fantastic on this one, but the rest is good.
Let's see a video of Elvis singing "Hound Dog", and Elvis is cool here, but we have to see Big Mama Thornton's version of the same song (with Buddy Guy). Coolest!

Lyon Biennale

They have a biennale in Lyon from September 2009 - January 2010. A bunch of artists will be there of course, and among them is a guy called Robert Wyatt. Is this our man?

I'm quite sure that "The impact of nectar-robbing ants on the pollination system", is not our Wyatt's work!

The Neanderthals rocked!

Even the Neanderthals needed music! The composer Simon Thorne was commissioned to make music the Neanderthals just may have composed, for the National Museum in Wales. You may listen at BBC.
Of course they had music! I bet they had Eurovision Song Contests and Idol too.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Recently I got the book "Untitled. Street art in the counterculture." (Pro-Actif communications, 2008) from Amazon. This is a nice collection of street art from all over the world (well, that's pushing it a bit). Gary Shove is the editor, the text is by Patrick Potter and design is by Sharon Jones. The pictures speak for themselves, and you don't get a lot of info on the artists or where the pictures are taken. For one reason or the other, there are several pictures from Bergen (Norway), and a couple of them (1,2) are even credited to people like "Svenn Nevenn" and "Sven Neven".

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Arve Henriksen Trio

Arve Henriksen (trumpet, vocal) visited Bergen Jazzforum Friday, with Morten Qvenild (keyb, vocal) and Martin Horntvedt (perc). Beautiful, playful and lots of fun! Henriksen is able to play and sing so beautiful that you may have to hide a tear, but he lets us off the hook with a lot of humour. Qvenild and Horntvedt were given lots of room to play both piano solos and percussive attacks on a doll's head! They even claimed to have been playing a ZZ Top cover too, probably inspired by Horntvedt's beard. It just might have been "Cheap Sunglasses", or rather not.
And the audience behaved well too! Around midnight Henriksen and Qvenild played "Sorrow and its opposite" from "Cartography", and I swear, it was not one drunken shout in the room, something you seldom experience a Friday night in Norway.

Friday, February 6, 2009


Codona was Don Cherry (trumpet, flute, melodica and more), Nana Vasconcelos (percussion and more) and Colin Walcott (sitar, tabla and more). They had three albums out in 1979, 1981 and 1983, and they are now collected in an ECM box ("The Codona Trilogy", 2008). You get so much great music here, most of it composed by Walcott, Cherry, and Ornette Coleman. I guess it's jazz and "world music" (if you buy that description) and even the sounds of the rain forest. Check out this trio!
The videos are recorded in New York in 1984.

An audience with..

Robert Wyatt answers questions from fans and other musicians in Uncut no 142 (2009), pages 12-14. As uasual it's about music and politics, spiced with some smoke and alcohol.
On being an artist in times of war, Wyatt says: "It seems such a whimsical occupation. What did you do in the war daddy? Oh, I expressed my deeep melancholy. Yeah, right. Fuck off!".
And Evan Parker is a Dionne Warwick fan too!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Commercial break!

I give in! We will send some commercials. You get Dylan for Pepsi, Iggy for car insurance and John Lydon for butter, and not one ironic comment from me, not at all!

Darc on Wyatt

Daniel Darc talks about Robert Wyatt (in French). Wyatt is on one of the tracks on Darc´s 2008 album, with his voice and some breathing.

Hello Goodbye

Kevin Ayers talks about his Soft Machine days in MOJO´s "Hello Goodbye" (p 154, no 184, 2009). We get a nice toilet picture of Ayers, Wyatt and Ratledge, the usual stories (Hendrix included), and the breakdown on the second US tour is partly blamed on a macrobiotic diet! "Your libido falls to zero on brown rice and veg"! Oh, that´s why there are so few people in India.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


BOREALIS 2009 is happening in Bergen 24 - 28 March. The program is out now, and so far I've underlined "Bergen Electronic Racetrack" with John Hegre, Lemur, MoHa!, Biosphere and Faust!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

More Memories

Yesterday I wrote about the beautiful Soft Machine tune "Memories" (Hugh Hopper), and admitting to like Damon & Naomi's version and Material's with Whitney Houston. Today I went shopping in iTunes for Mars Volta's version of the song. "The Bedlam Goliath" (2008) seems to have been issued in a special edition with extra tunes (including "Memories"). Good one too!
Robert Wyatt is still the king of this song, and you'll find his versions on Soft Machine's "Jet-Propelled Photographs" and with Robert Wyatt and friends on "Theatre Royal Drury Lane".
Finally we send some warm thoughts to Hugh Hopper, the man behind the tune, who had to get more treatment for his cancer. Get well!

The Day The Music Died

Today it is 50 years since “The day the music died” (Don McLean, “American Pie”). Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens died in an airplane crash on their way from a concert in Clear Lake, Iowa.
Time passes, rock lives on.

Monday, February 2, 2009

No more Safe As Milk

Sad news from Haugesund: The festival Safe As Milk is history. Unfortunately I only visited the festival one year (2007).


Last year a remastered version of Damon & Naomi's "More sad hits" (from 1992) was out. On this record you'll find a quite nice version of Soft Machine's "Memories", written by Hugh Hopper (it's on "Jet Propelled Photographs"). Buy the tune at eMusic or iTunes, or visit your local record store (if you still have one). Robert Wyatt on Damon & Naomi: “Like real water in a world of soda pop.”
Damon & Naomi are pretty good, but stand no chance against Whitney Houston and Material's version of "Memories" from 1983, with Archie Shepp on tenor sax. Listen here!

Sunday, February 1, 2009


I visited Galleri s.e. in Bergen today, to see physician and photographer Regin Hjertholm's pictures of sleeping people. He used an automatic camera to take pictures of pairs, single sleepers and families (including pets) through the night. How vulnerable and beautiful people may be in their sleep!. See the pictures here.

Let's just stay on the mattress for a while, and see Oren Lavie and “Her Morning Elegance” too (found it on Mainly Music Meanderings). Not totally relaxed perhaps.