Swedish drummer and composer Martina Almgren offers a swinging, open and highly contemporary listening experience on this, her second solo album.
In contrast to her previous album, This Song Of Mine, which saw her working within the tighter, more disciplined area of chamber jazz and the exploration of poems by Tagore, Peace Of Mind celebrates interaction, spontaneity, and finds the quartet putting out some vibrant performances influenced by a range of musical cultures and styles.
The album’s opener, Peace Of Mind, draws on Eastern rhythms with a pulsing, repetitive burst of notes from Elin Forkelid on sax. Fly Eagle is based around a powerful joik (native songs from the Sami people from Sampi in Northern Europe), and Tenderfoot Chant celebrates Native American music, inspired by saxophonist Jim Pepper.
To complete this eclectic, engaging mix of influences, Strax Fore Solnedgangen (Just before sunset) is a composition to the lyrics by Swedish poet Werner Aspenstrom. If that particular performance sounds a little underpowered, then all is forgiven on some of the other tracks, where Mattias Torell and Owe Almgren offer shimmering, atmospheric rock accompaniments to Martina’s compositions.
Clearly a composer and performer at home in a range of settings, Almgren has served up a really engaging second album that grabs and holds attention from start to finish.
Peace Of Mind; Fly Eagle; Strax Fore Solnedgangen; Kindred Spirits; Tenderfoot Chant; Enter; Oh; After (45.43)
Almgren (d, p, v); Mattias Torell (g); Elin Forkelid (ts); Owe Almgren (elb). No location, February 2019.
Oh Yeah Records OYR014