As soon as I heard about this concert, I was straight onto the excellent King's Place to get my tickets. The day of the concert couldn't come soon enough. The thought of seeing Sidsel Endresen and Jan Bang together was so exciting. I had seen both perform apart but not as a duo.
There really is no other vocalist like Sidsel. Before each piece she sits on her chair and in a trance like state, concentrates and psyches herself up. The vocals are almost like conversations with herself, sometimes happy, sometimes sad, sometimes like she is trying to explain something to you but can`t quite get it across, forever deep in thought.
Jan has his box of tricks and creates loops, pulses and other sonics as the perfect partner to Sidsel`s vocals. He is more animated than usual tonight, bending his body to match each rhythm, sometimes almost like Charlie Chaplin changing direction, sometimes flamenco dancer, but always entertaining.
On one piece, he records Sidsel vocals onto a Dictaphone and remixes it with excellent effect. On another he starts by drinking from a bottle of water, putting the top back on and shaking the bottle into a microphone, next we hear this as a speeded up remix before slowing it down a notch or two: I hope the effect didn`t make the audience too seasick but the effect was simply stunning.
The vocal and electronic word play had you turning you head left to right to see who was making what noise, from the stage it must have looked like we were watching a tennis match.
There is no album to promote, no song titles to give reference to, just two top solo artists improvising as one. Well done to Jazzland Recordings for presenting us with this concert.
What a fantastic evening.