Saturday, November 19, 2016

NORWAY: Haakon Graf/Erik Smith/Per Mathisen (Losen Records 2016)

This release of both a CD and DVD gives you as a listener and a viewer a unique opportunity to both seeing and hearing these 3 incredible musicians live in action. These performances are the raw truth, straight in your face, with no over dubs, edits or cut & paste producing, they just show you how super and hip Graf, Smith and Mathisen sound both as individuals and together. Haakon Graf is close to a living musical legend in Scandinavian jazz, he has played with all the greats ever worth mentioning and his carrier spans for over 45 years. On these recordings he sounds just as fresh, with endless new ideas, exactly like he did in the 70's. His ability to master 2 keyboards with different sounds at the same time is formidable and his compositions are subtle but still transparent and unique. Hope you like to see and listen to this trio, with their amazing performances, as much as I do. Graf, Smith and Mathisen are playing their hearts out, pulling you into a world of beautiful grooves, melodies, harmonies and sounds - Jonathan Widran. Since they first began performing live together in 2011, keyboardist/composer Haakon Graf, drummer Erik Smith and bassist Per Mathisen have been indisputable Norway's number one jazz-funk trios. They have enthralled capacity crowds, a large number of times, around the country and performed at major jazz festivals, in concert halls and clubs, always leaving the stage with standing ovations and the audience in euphorically state of mind. Presenting world class funky jazz performed in a lively and humorous fashion, with a super virtuous touch from three Norwegians, their debut CD/ DVD recording package is a unique and multi-faceted audiovisual presentation of two of the Haakon Graf Trio's live performances, perfectly capturing their innate chemistry as an ensemble and virtuosity as individuals.