I´ve been to some really good concerts in Oslo the last couple of weeks. The first one was with a trio called The Thing, and the venue was Victoria. The band consists of the hard-hitting swede Mads Gustafsson on saxophones (this guy can make the saxophone sound like a wounded T-Rex!), and the well known Norwegian power duo Ingebrigt Håker flaten and Paal Nilssen-Love on bass and drums, respectively. The Thing plays loud free jazz, and their repertoire is really varied – classic rock songs mixed with lesser known jazz pieces and other stuff, all treated very freely and with ferocious energy. I´ve heard this trio several times, but never enjoyed them as much as I did on this occasion. The music had much more dynamics than the previous concerts I´ve heard with them – perhaps in part because of the relatively spacious venue? Anyway – a really good concert.
The other concert I´d like to mention was an in-store mini concert with Swedish singer-songwriter Folke at Platekompaniet Oslo City. This music is by no means jazz, but rather classic singer-songwriter stuff more related to folk music and the music of Vincent Gallo. But that´s besides the point – good music is good music, no matter what genre it belongs to. The short session featured beautiful tunes and strong playing, and despite (or because of?) the totally unplugged setting, the power of the music really came through. Highly recommended!
I´ve done some fishing, too: A couple of trips to the lakes of Nordmarka, just outside of Oslo. Typical autumn fishing – slow action, but beautiful scenery. The many lakes in Nordmarka all hold brown trout, and some of them can have decent fishing at times – of course it´s never as good as the fishing we had on this summer´s tour, but still it´s pretty good for being so close to a big city. I caught some small trout on the first trip, lost a good one, and my friend (the excellent bassplayer Roger Arntzen) and I had a really good time. On my second trip I brought a real Nordmarka expert, Vegard Veberg, with me to see if I could pick up some of the secret tricks of the trade. Fishing in these dense forest landscapes is quite different from the Lapland/mountain fishing I normally do, so I really needed some expert advise to get confident with this style of fly fishing. Vegard is not only an expert fly fisherman, but also an accomplished writer and photographer. And, sure enough, Vegard managed to catch a pretty good Nordmarka trout on a small, black dry fly – it was around 750 g. I caught nothing, but picked up quite a few tips for future trips. Great fun!