Opsvik & Jennings | Floyel Files

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Electronic: Experimental Jazz: Avant-Garde Jazz Moods: Type: Improvisational
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Floyel Files

by Opsvik & Jennings

While blending an electronic palate with arco bass, pump organs, theremin, tape loops, guitar, and a collage of other sounds, "Fløyel Files" resists meandering and maintains the strength of song structure - a rare and successful hybrid of the acoustic an
Genre: Electronic: Experimental
Release Date: 

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1. Thread Opsvik&Jennings
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4:11 $0.99
2. Aaron's Hat Opsvik&Jennings
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7:09 $0.99
3. Double Stop Opsvik&Jennings
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3:39 $0.99
4. Still The Tiger Town Opsvik&Jennings
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5:31 $0.99
5. Place For My Things Opsvik&Jennings
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2:51 $0.99
6. Floyel Fil Opsvik&Jennings
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7:11 $0.99
7. Loyal Retainer Opsvik&Jennings
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7:08 $0.99
8. Mello Vibro Opsvik&Jennings
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5:19 $0.99
9. Cut Up Clocky Opsvik&Jennings
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5:19 $0.99
10. Luminosity Opsvik&Jennings
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2:22 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Opsvik&Jennings
If you've ever wondered what it would sound like if a bass player from
the underground jazz scene in Oslo teamed up with a strange guitarist
from the sticks in Oklahoma to make music - well, here it is

"Opsvik&Jennings" is a project from Eivind Opsvik and Aaron Jennings
which merges styles from experimental to jazz to electronica while
also paying great attention to pop and song-like structures. Aside
from the genre blending style, there are a ton of great sounds such as
Arco bass, old pump organs, guitar parts cut into lots of tiny pieces,
Theremin melodies, tape loops and plenty of room sound pulses and
beats.

Eivind and Aaron met after they both decided to move to new york city
around 1998. their paths crossed while working the downtown
scene in a variety of different groups. Lately, they can also be heard
in other projects and bands with musicians like Bill Frisell, Craig
Taborn, Kenny Wollesen and Tony Malaby.

Aaron Jennings:
electric and acoustic guitars, samplers, software, electronics and more
Eivind Opsvik:
upright and electric bass, drums, keyboards, theremin, drum machines,
pump organ, software, tape loops and more


Reviews


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Hella

Suspense
Floyel files: relaxation and suspense, trance and expectation.

Tom Preest

Oslo and Oklahoma collide in New York
My copy of Floyel Files the new album by Opsvik and Jennings was delivered in CD Baby's environmentally friendly fashion, without an unnecessary plastic cover. The artwork for the LP is beautiful and itself explores an environmental theme, being a close up line drawing of a thorn bush. The effect, surely intentionally becomes somewhat mechanical on further inspection, with the plants almost representing cogs in a wheel. In many ways the music on offer further explores such a fusion of the pastoral and the technological.

The lush melodic patterns are never allowed to dominate, almost being held to account by the back beats layered across them. The two artists collaborating on this wonderful album are Elvind Opsvik and Aaron Jenning, who hail from Oslo and Oklahoma respectively, but are now both based in New York. Elements of all three places seem present in the different structures on the 10 songs here. The effect is particularly prevalent on the aptly titled "Still The Tiger Town", which evokes that rare early morning city stillness, the effect of which is magnified by the urban backdrop.

Floyel apparently means "velvet" in Norwegian, and as such this CD does not aim to communicate through its noise levels. Opsvik and Jennings find quieter means of subverting conventional song structures and challenging the senses of those prepared to listen. The opening track "Thread" does exactly the opposite of what the title suggests, throwing open a number of potential routes for the music, rather than providing a clear indication of where the album is heading. This range of possibilities continues throughout the CD, but does not detract from its overall direction.

The centrepiece, both structurally and musically is "Floyel Fil". Lasting over seven minutes in
the middle of the album, the song is constructed around a beautiful refrain. This is repeated again and again until the listener is lulled into thinking it will simply continue to loop until the plug is pulled. At this point a new beat pattern emerges, not so intense or incongruous as to jolt the senses, but enough to indicate that things have moved on. The judgement in the way that such disparate elements are used provides the album with both its highlights and a unifying theme.

"Cut Up Clocky" and "Luminosity" are perfect closing pieces, both of which demonstrate the strengths of the music on Floyel Files. The former is all disjointed snatches of melody, literally cut up across arrhythmic backbeats to stunning effect. The latter is sublime, with the sustained organ sounds hinting at religious and epic themes. However, this comfortable conclusion is denied by the disarmingly simple technique of limiting the song to still perfectly symmetrical 2 minutes 22 seconds.

None of this happens by accident, and one can only hope that Opsvik and Jennings return to the studio for more non-accidental exploration of similar territory in the near future.

"Ali B.ometer Rating": The whole album.



The Ali B.ometer is based upon the reaction of my partner (Alison Brine, hence Ali B) to any new CDs. She has the power of veto on first listen, and can turn them off at any point. Recent Ali B.ometer Ratings include the following:

Susan Brokesh - Emerald Stars: First 4 songs (the Bowie cover proving a step too far).
John Duncan/Mika Vainio/Ilpo Vaisanen - Nine Suggestions: 53 seconds.
Christina Kubisch - Armonica: 26 minutes.
Colossal Yes - Acaulco Roughs: The whole album
Ovro - Gegendurchgenzeit: 18 seconds
Jacob Kirkegaard - Eldfjall: A surprising and very creditable first 8 songs, although she may have been asleep for some of this.

Chris

Awesome, beautifully crafted and inspirational
Floyel Files is an excellent example of how improvisation can combine beautifully and so successfully with the structure of electronic engineering. A very inspiring album to musicians and non-musicians alike, one that makes you shut up and listen! Congratulations!!