The sense of discovery is superbly supported by the band that Pohjola has brought together
Edition EDN 1125
Verneri Pohjola: trumpet; Kit Downes: piano; Jasper Høiby: bass; Olavi Louhivuori: drums; Tuomo Prättälä: programming and synths; Linda Fredriksson: Baritone and Alto Sax; Jusu Berghäll: alto ﬂute; Raoul Björkenheim: guitar
Recorded 10-12 February 2023 by Jyri Sariola at Mimix studios and 9 March 2023 by Tommi Vainikainen at Sonic Pump Studios
Well known for his ability to wring all manner of sounds out of a trumpet, this set has Pohjola playing straight for many of the tracks. And this just goes to show what a great trumpeter he is, and how effortlessly he can produce a sound that is easily recognisable across all manner of jazz idioms.
This doesn’t mean that he loses any of his ability to startle. The surprise of the opening track, ‘Party in the Attic’, is the way in which the music almost seems to fall apart under the buzzing attack of Pohjola’s trumpet before he relaxes and draws the music back into itself. In the space of a few minutes, the music pushes into such a wild array of possible directions that the listener is pleasantly disoriented.
The sense of where on earth is this going is coupled with the relief of the music converging to a defined point – and then rushing off elsewhere before it settles on a quite different defined point, and then slowly fading like ghosts leaving their haunted attic.
For the most part, the album is played by the quintet of trumpet, bass, drums, piano, synths, with guest appearances from the other instruments.
On ‘Space Diamonds’, the rumbling bass which, in places, ominously combines double bass, left hand on the piano and synth, underpins discursive piano and trumpet solos – both of which create a sense of exploration and discovery, and the challenge of articulating what has been found.
The sense of discovery is superbly supported by the band that Pohjola has brought together and the ways in which each player strives to not only ground the compositions, particularly as these are apt to slip away from them and need to be recaptured, but also to express their unique playing styles and voices.