Norwegian keyboardist producer Wesseltoft has been a serial collaborator for many years, notching up interesting partnerships with the likes of Sidsel Endresen and Henrik Schwarz. This duo with DJ-producer Prins Thomas, a prime mover on the Oslo club scene of the ‘90s, shows that Wesseltoft still has a taste for adventure, although the pair settles into an all too sedate safety zone on occasion.
Epic opener “Furuberget” is a case point. A slinky mid-tempo groove, laced with a mild Afro-Asian flavour, has an array of subtle motifs and samples, but the narrative voice doesn’t hold the attention over 18 minutes. Much more satisfying is the spare, icy but emotionally charged ballad ‘Sin Tempo’, where legendary drummer Jon Christensen proves a welcome guest, and ‘Bar Asfalt’, which has a dizzyingly beautiful patchwork of balaphone and mbira riffs into which Wesseltoft weaves silvery melodic threads.
Bugge Wesseltoft & Prins Thomas [Smalltown Supersound]