The highest wave ever measured by a fixed installation hit a Norwegian gas transporter in the North Sea. The wave was marked at 25.6 metres high. Award-winning pianist Espen Berg would probably approve such statistics, having named his trio's second album Bølge—the Norwegian name for wave. Berg is also keen to point out the many levels that 'wave' can be perceived from, including the mathematical.
None of which should imply that Bølge needs logical analysis. But it is a demanding listen, full of signals, crests and fluctuations. We also get the sense of a compact trio in full flight. In the way that giant waves are caused when a single wave steals energy from others, so Berg thrives on the vigour of his two partners.
Double bassist Bárður Reinert Poulsen is a member of the Faroese Symphony Orchestra and offers rich plummy tones. Drummer Simon Olderskog Albertsen is, like Berg, a graduate from the renowned jazz programme at Norway's University of Science and Technology. Berg is a masterly pianist, pitching his stall somewhere between the skittish ripples of McCoy Tyner, Dave Brubeck's adventurous metres and the classicism of Andreas Ulvo. Melodic waves rush into a rhythmic whirlpool, amid one swiftly-rolled chord after another.
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