Eyolf Dale | Being Review
By Eberton Cisnero
Eyolf Dale is a Skien, Norway born pianist that is a graduate with studies in Performing jazz and improvisation at the Norwegian Academy of Music, and in 2011 he completed the master’s program in improvisation. Dale is known for both his solo work and successful collaborations. He has worked with Albatrosh, Hayden Powell Trio, Trondheim Jazz Orchestra, and more. Dale is a touring and frequently recorded artist who has contributed to most Norwegian jazz festivals and international festivals such as the North Sea Jazz Festival, 12 Points!, Shanghai Arts Festival, and Südtirol Jazz Festival. His solo work showcases the mature lyrical introspection that’s often associated with Norwegian jazz. Equally, an explorative curiosity and restless free elements become an emergent hallmark of the younger Nordic improvisers. His latest project is titled Being. Dale is joined by Audun Kleive on drums and Per Zanussi on bass.
“The Lonely Banker” opens the album, and instantly the Norwegian jazz influence is evident. The rhythmic texture and attention to space are of paramount importance. Eyolf explains: “Being is my first trio album. I wanted to be ready to say something before I made a trio album. The interplay with my heroes Audun Kleive and Per Zanussi evolved naturally and grew from numerous tours with Wolf Valley octet the past few years, and with them, I’ve found a truly collaborative trio with just the right temperament and musical awareness for my compositions. To me, Being feels highly personal, reflective of my experiences from childhood to adulthood, and encompasses the space and freedom to be playful and in tune with Per & Audun’s unique touch. The album is about a search for contentment, for peace, for being present.” The trio visits many colors and densities within five minutes and fifteen seconds, but nothing is rushed or not given attention to development. The rhythmic pulse is ever-present as the dynamics and harmonic, and melodic colors swirl around the center feel. A very satisfying listen.
“Northern Brewer” is an exciting composition with a catchy melody and excellent playing by the trio. The rhythmic figures and segues between sections make the composition fun to listen to and easy to follow along with. Dale’s playful piano solo is all about layers and building a melodic story as he interacts with the other two musicians. Kleive’s brushwork is excellently recorded and panned in the stereo field. Zanussi’s bass growls and has depth and power. Together, the trio creates beautiful music.
Being is eight tracks that are impassioned and highly personal. The music is serene, beautiful, and profound, marrying a subtle groove with intense lyricism. The music is rooted in jazz while also having a classical approach. The trio makes a powerful, nuanced musical statement that is precise and deeply emotive.
Release Date: February 5, 2021
Label: Edition Records