The Nature of Connections
Norwegian trumpeter Arve Henriksen follows up last year’s stirring and gorgeous Places of Worship with latest album, The Nature of Connections. Here his treated trumpet and electronics are on hold and it’s back to an acoustic setting, a fresh set of collaborations, Henriksen’s horn still soars and sounds, so often, like a flute or shakuhachi but set against strings it works to create a set of pieces that move from proudly folkloric (something of a Celtic melody is coaxed for Hamboplskavalsen) to softly neo-classical (Budbringeren).
Henriksens’ sole composition this time around is the lilting opener, Bla Veg. Here we hear his horn-as-flute, slightly Japanese-sounding with the strings adding a film score-like accompaniment.
The players involved all contribute tunes to the album which speaks to Henriksen’s generosity of spirit, and makes the title proudly significant, for as the music wafts into place there’s a feeling, a flow to the album, that seems so organic. As if this music was – for all its lush arrangements and intricacies, composed on the spot, in this order, created as if its own world – a world away from any traffic and bustle, a small group of musicians hiding out for a week or weekend, immersed in the sound as and when they’re conjuring it.
There’s a moment of cinematic jazz with Keen, the almost-baroque textures of Arco Akropolis and a loping, wistful, reassuring closer (Salm) that all combine to make this yet another example of Henriksen’s ability to create and channel in making music as balm.
You could stare out the window for the duration of this album. You could long to be anywhere else, your world on hold. And for the briefest of moments in this lifetime – for the 40 minutes while it lasts – this music will take you there.