Mats Eilertsen Trio: Sails Set
Norwegian releasedate: February 2013
On the album Sails Set, recorded at Rainbow Studio in Oslo, we can hear the same trio line-up as featured on the critically acclaimed album Elegy: bassist Mats Eilertsen (Tord Gustavsen), pianist Harmen Fraanje (Michael Moore) and drummer Thomas Strønen (Food, Meadow).
Sails Set offers exclusively improvised material, relatively short and often melodic pieces in solo, duo or trio format. “Our goal has been to create improvised tunes, sounds and situations that could equally well have been composed and produced,” says Eilertsen. The members of the trio communicate seamlessly and effortlessly, and all three possess a richly varied palette of sounds and make a creative contribution to the ensemble, both as soloists and accompanists./h1>
Mats and Thomas have joined forces on a wide variety of projects since they met at the conservatory in Trondheim in the mid-90s. Among these are bands such as Food, the Maria Kannegaard Trio, Parish and Turanga. Pianist Harmen Fraanje met Mats when the latter lived in the Netherlands for a period of time, and since then they have stayed in touch and played together regularly in various connections.Sails Set asserts its subdued and sometimes understated qualities with the resonance of piano, bells and gongs, or in the lower registers of the bass and percussion instruments. There are passages with a refrain-like feeling (“Sails Set”), sonorous and slightly plaintive solo sections with the double bass (“Lunar Light”), more chant-like, monotonous and somewhat grandiose passages (“Monument”), and sonata-like piano segments (“Stellar”). As Mats Eilertsen explains, “For us it’s all about shaping a trio where the three of us are equal members in creating our sound and where we take turns being the focal point, carrying the melody, developing the sound, determining the basic principles, being storytellers and prime movers, and varying how each of us is distributed in the soundscape. On this album it’s about being selective, condensing and concentrating, and prioritising.” Sails Set is Mats Eilertsen’s fourth release on Hubro, following Radio Yonder (quartet), Elegy (trio) and SkyDive (quintet), and here he is returning to the trio format.