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Henriksen, Arve: Cartography

Norwegian trumpeter Arve Henriksen has appeared on many recordings issued by the esteemed ECM label, but he never helmed his own project until Cartography. This is a low-key, moody affair that gently massages the ears with often improvised elements of jazz, electronica, ambient and classical music. As the press materials that accompanied Cartography declared, the album "belongs to an alternative tradition of music making that includes improvisation and sound-sculpturing, dubs and remixing and awareness of ambience."

Ex-pop singer David Sylvian (Japan) makes two guest appearances, wearily but dramatically reading his own lyrics on the spoken-word pieces "Before and Afterlife" and "Thermal" (sample line: "Morning, you lay sleeping/Your small body clinging tightly to mine") and backed by Henriksen's mournful instrument. Ana Maria Friman sings fragments of Williams Brooks' "Anima Mea" on the eerie "Famine's Ghost," the celestial "Recording Angel" features sampled voices of the Trio Mediaeval and closer "Sorrow and Its Opposite" plays like the somber soundtrack to a three-hanky film. But the painful shrieking of Henriksen's trumpet and Jan Bang's samples on "Loved One" belie that song's precious title.

All in all, Cartography maps out a musical path to a place of acquired taste.

Track Listing:
1) Poverty and Its Opposite
2) Before and Afterlife
3) Migration
4) From Birth
5) Ouija
6) Recording Angel
7) Assembly
8) Loved One
9) The Unremarkable Child
10) Famine's Ghost
11) Thermal
12) Sorrow and Its Opposite

Added: February 4th 2010
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Related Link: Official Arve Henriksen Web Site
Hits: 1445
Language: english

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