OKER // Susurrus (LP+CD)
€10.90 – €19.50
Torstein Lavik Larsen . trumpet
Adrian Fiskum Myhr . double bass
Fredrik Rasten . acoustic guitar
Jan Martin Gismervik . drums, percussion
01 – Filament 10.27
02 – Lichens 8.27
03 – Learning to Float 7.47
04 – Formation of Starlings 10.46
The instrumentation of this quartet from Oslo could suggest that this is an ensemble rooted in jazz – a rhythm section consisting of double bass and drums plus two “soloists” on guitar and trumpet. However, here you won’t find any burning solos or rapid changing chords, and neither will you hear the gestures or outbursts associated with free form jazz or improv.
Even if these musicians have a clear connection to the aforementioned genres, Oker’s project is a more egalitarian approach to acoustic music making, not only implicating equality between the members, but also between their different creative approaches, existing somewhere between composition and free improvisation. There are inspirations here from folk, minimal composed music, improvised music and maybe even post rock, all formed in a way that sounds like nothing but Oker. “Sussurus” gives us a kind of concrète, acousmatic music where tapes or electronic devices are replaced by acoustic instruments. This involves a fair amount of what is normally labeled “extended techniques”. But in Oker’s hands these techniques never sound foreign – a trumpet mute used as a percussive extension of the trumpet, a guitar producing long stretched drones with electronic bows, the drumkit extended with coffee mugs and glockenspiel, the dampen strings of the double bass being rapidly plucked – all these things sound just as natural as any conventional rhythmic or toneproducing approach in the fabric of Oker’s music.