This recording is a special one, and my most high-risk and personal album to date. It’s an unedited live-recording from Nov 13th 2019 at Dokkhuset, Trondheim, with only improvised music. I’ll post the whole story later, as it provides valuable context to the listening experience. For now, just listen with your ears and heart and I hope you enjoy my album!
With the help of the amazing Juliane Schütz, we have made some new videos which have been published in the advent of new album, Fjære. These videos were filmed during our rehearsals at my place in April 2021, just before we went to Propeller Music Division in Oslo to record.
The reviews are in! Top image shows that F2P were chosen as one of the top jazz albums of September by Mezzo (FR). Here’s some highlights from some of our many reviews so far:
Undoubtedly one of my favourite albums of this year, “Free To Play” is a richly rewarding experience, from a trio who are proving to be not just one of the best in their field of music, but also beyond boundaries. Fabulous music that I have a feeling Iʼll be enjoying for many years to come.
UK Vibe, Oct 2019 – 5 out of 5 stars
Like all the best music, this album reveals something new and pleasing on each successive hearing.
BBC Music Magazine (UK), Oct 2019 – 4 out of 5 stars
Free to Play, a perfect title for the Espen Berg Trio’s new recording, doesn’t mean that the group plays nice. It suggests that the band takes pleasure in its inspiring interplay.
Downbeat (US), Dec 2019 – 4 out of 5 stars
EBT are rapidly becoming an important new voice in a crowded field of post-E.S.T. trios, and while their two preceding albums have much to recommend them, on Free To Play the trio have really hit their creative stride.
Jazz Journal (UK) – 4 out of 5 stars
Free to Play immediately places itself with instant proximity to the top of the list of the best Norwegian jazz albums ever.
Jazznytt (NO), Sept 2019
On ‘Free to Play’ the Espen Berg Trio shows off its skills with catchy compositions and virtuoso improvisations and also shows that it is looking ahead.
Jazzenso (NL), Sept 2019
This third album of the trio confirms the qualities already observed: an original approach to melody and harmony, a “journey without end and without borders” where everyone enjoys the freedom evoked by the title.
Jazz Magazine (FR), Sept 2019
Espen Berg and his accomplices stand out, however, from many artists from Scandinavia in that they play music which is extroverted and always accessible. But we all know what simplicity hides: a lot of discipline and precise details that allow Berg to alternate between the fluent music and the colliding music with a certain mastery. And that’s what gives this recording its particular brilliance.
Culture Jazz (FR), Sept 2019
Summer 2017, we flew to Lofoten together with video artist André Løyning to create a few spectacular live videos. These are made entirely on site, with actual sound recording (6 channels only), piano tuning at location (a bit short on time, bare with me on that), and with some amazing drone footage as well.