When you need tranquility, but only up to a point it’s time to tune into Steinar Aadnekvam and his trio. The Bergen, Norway-born guitarist and his trio is once again hyper-driven on Freedoms Trio II with bassist Rubem Farias and Deodato Siquir. And this viscerally-exciting trio continues to traverse the vast musical topography from Africa and Europe to Brasil resulting in a programme carrying the unique stamp of the virtuoso guitarist. This music is, however, also informed by thunderous rumble of bass and drums, all of which makes it a uniquely expressive group.
Mr Aadnekvam dominates the rarefied space afforded to top-flight virtuoso guitarists and on the aptly-named Freedoms Trio II he demonstrates his phenomenal technical strength and versatility, and combines eloquent articulation with clarity of sound. The music performances by Mr Aadnekvam as well as Mr Farias and Mr Siquir are inspired; each musician challenging the status quo. Guitarist, bassist and drummer react to the challenges of each other’s music by literally swooping down on the tricky melodies and the listener is always pleasantly surprised by their quick thinking and the infectious spontaneity of their responses. “For All”, “Alghero” and “Turn on Your Lights” are eloquent and vivid examples of this trio’s excellent musicianship.
Crowning all of this is perhaps the group’s best, wittiest and most freewheeling offering on the disc: “Funkenstein” offers an exquisite tonal lustre. At its heart lies a colourfully wild rhythmic energy; opening in a state of shimmering drift, the piece acquires a titanic momentum. The musicians take the final bars of the piece swiftly, and it pays off in an outpouring of effervescent joy. After two studio offerings from this Freedoms Trio one can barely wait to hear the results of a live performance of this new music.
Track list – 1: A Call to Action; 2: Self Empowered; 3: For All; 4: Alghero; 5: Turn on Your Lights; 6: About You; 7: Funkenstein; 8: Pick up Your Trash; 9: Freedom
Personnel – Steinar Aadnekvam: guitar and vocals; Rubem Farias: bass and vocals; Deodato Siquir: drums and vocals
Released – 2018
Label – Losen Records
Runtime – 53:36