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Supersilent with John Paul Jones, Arches, Glasgow

The speculation beforehand was whether any musical references to John Paul Jones's old band, Led Zeppelin, might feature.

I didn't hear any but the appearance of a theme that Miles Davis made his own, Joe Zawinul's In A Silent Way, really was gobsmacking.

Norwegian experimentalists Supersilent aren't known for doing cover versions – their plan is that there is no plan – but their trumpeter, Arve Henriksen will have grown up with Davis's music and lo and behold, among the ambient sounds, gurgling bass guitar responses from Jones and Stale Storlokken's itchy fingered keyboard work, in crept what we should, I suppose, call In a Supersilent Way, Zawinul's already affecting melody given added nuance by Henriksen's individual trumpet tone.

Henriksen, one of European jazz's modern marvels, seemed to be almost the clearing house for all the many ideas that emerged in this improvised set. Everything went through him. His trumpet playing was a known quantity but he emerged as a really effective drummer, in Jarle Vespestad's absence, adding urgency and colour as the music developed a truly satisfying momentum that belied its spontaneously conceived nature.

It probably shouldn't have been a surprise either, given his pedigree, that Henriksen is also a beautiful singer. Some of his on-mic work was spoken word, eerily portentous and apt for the sometimes industrial throb of the ensemble and the electronic sound world they created. But what stayed in the mind longest was his choirboy-like coda to the last improvisation, a lovely, pure-toned eulogy, part sacred song, part Norwegian folk-soul music.


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