Samo Salamon & Hasse Poulsen: String dancers
This is a guitar duo that goes beyond the post-bop mainstream and doesn’t take music so much into ‘new’ territory on purpose as it stakes out its own stimulating space and offers an object lesson. on how to use it while improving the environment. For this reason, the resulting music (thankfully) defies easy categorization outside of the reductive and lazy music of “improvisation”.
Everything is purged of indulgence and the effect is from two exceptionally focused musicians. It serves the practical end of lending the immediacy of music for all of its disconnected nature, as imposed by the era of the pandemic. A kind of mutual respect emerges at the opening of Ultra Serieux, where the two guitarists meet the needs of passing moments as if they were together in the same room at the same time; the fact that they were not is quietly extraordinary.
Austrian Lake’s liquidity is most appropriate, and so is the tension of lyricism which is also a hallmark of the play. Once again, the duo pull off the sizable feat of invoking a spirit of spontaneity under highly adverse circumstances, and the overall vibe is maintained in a way that justifies the title.
Free Noses is undoubtedly a title rich in comedic potential and the duo rise to it in a way that allows a depth of jocularity likely to raise many eyebrows. The spontaneity quota is once again particularly high, while a concern for the natural world, understandable in the face of the harmful follies of which some human beings prove capable, perhaps manifests itself in titles like Soft Grass and The Scent Of Rain. , both of which are distinguished by accents of what one might call post-Bill Evans lyricism, as if quality were heard through a prism informed by the contemporary world.
Ultra Serious; Austrian lake; Without cover; Two sides of a mountain; Improvisation I – Sometimes a bird; Free nose; String dancers; Improvisation II – Mind Fuel; Turn; The smell of rain; A word we heard (52.16)
Salamon, Hasse Poulsen (g). No location indicated, June / July 2020.