If anybody deserves to be called a living legend in Norwegian free jazz it must surely be saxophone, flute and clarinet player Frode Gjerstad. Born in 1948 in Stavanger, he has since the early 80s been central on more than fifty records and played with a number of free jazz players such as Evan Parker, Johnny Dyani, John Stevens, Derek Bailey, Barry Guy, Bobby Bradford, Paul Rutherford, Hamid Drake, William Parker, Peter Brötzmann, John Edwards, Louis Moholo-Moholo, Han Bennink and several others.
Detail is the group he founded in 1981 with close friend Eivin One Pedersen (1956-2012) and legendary free jazz drummer and Spontaneous Music Ensemble founder John Stevens (1940-1994).
"First Detail" is a recording from 1982 that predates the first Detail albums, hence the title. By this time Pedersen had left the group. For personal and emotional reasons Frode was sitting on the tapes until last summer before he felt ready to listen to them. Good thing he deemed them suitable for release because this is a truly great album, in our ears one of the best free jazz albums ever to come out of Norway!
It's almost unbelievable that Eivin One Pedersen had just turned 26 at the time, what an incredible player at such a young age! And John Stevens is on top form, with a very open approach in his playing and clearly enjoying the company of the Norwegians.
And Frode Gjerstad, well he is as always himself. At a time when most Norwegian sax players wanted to sound like Jan Garbarek, Gjerstad followed his own nose. In that respect there are no obvious references to other sax players. In our ears he is one of the giants still active on the international scene. Needless to say, this comes highly recommended!
Frode Gjerstad - tenor and soprano sax, bass clarinet and alto flute
Eivin One Pedersen - piano and keyboards
John Stevens - drums
Recorded at Henie Onstad Art Centre, October 2nd, 1982.
1. This Is The
2. First Version
3. Of Details