Posted on by jdoerck | Posted in Review | Tagged , , ,

This trio of improvisers from Wuppertal, Germany, and Brakel, Belgium, have, according to their label, named this collection of improvisations after a dredger, baggerboot, used to clear canals in the Lowlands. Quite why I don't know, except perhaps as a surrealist gesture.

They come with no less a recommendation than that of their sleevenote writer, none other than the legendary Pauline Oliveros, who, perhaps as an accordionist herself, and a sometime colleague of fellow accordionist Ute Völker (Wuppertal), appreciates the rich sonorities this free jazz trio produce.

With violinist Gottschalk (Wuppertal) and double bassist Jacquemyn (Brakel), Völker conjures up incredibly rich textures that remind me of the magisterial Jokleba and, weirdly, even early Weather Report. The accordion sometimes acts like an organ, the bass blocks out the picture, and the strings - viola as well as violin - supply the tension.

Comparisons are, however, ultimately self-defeating here; they are, to plagiarise Whitman, singing the song of themselves. So much free music can sound like being dragged backwards through mud, but from the first of these three lengthy improvisations you can sense an interaction and empathy similar to, but different to, AMM. They have found a unique voice - imagine maybe a mini-me version of the Globe Unity Orchestra - and they express it with aplomb, brio, and no little humour. They have discovered shocking and delightful new sounds on their instruments, and range boldly between contemporary classical music and anarchic free jazz. A free music recording you'll find yourself playing again and again.