Thursday, December 29, 2011

Best Albums of 2011: Sunna Gunnlaugs

JazzWrap revisits a great year of discoveries in 2011.

Sunna Gunnlaugs (piano)
Long Pair Bond (self produced;2011)
Scott McLemore (drums)
Thorgrimur Jonsson (bass)

On Sunna's seventh album, Long Pair Bond, she really steps into her own. Her language has always been very intimate. But within this trio setting she has writing material that is well suited for the format. There are also a few numbers written by others (including drummer, McLemore).

The intimacy and calm that Long Pair Bond has a chamber like quality to it that could easily be place along side Keith Jarrett or Fred Hersch. But there is also the vitality in her work that shines for me, as evident on "Autumnalia" and an older number "Crab Cannon."

As an independent artist, Gunnalaugs has the liberty of writing, produced and recording when and what she pleases. I think this allows the really artist's personality to shine through. I discussed in our original piece on Long Pair Bond about the unique process on how this record was being produced. It's an interesting venture for musicians who have solid and devoted base. It's not for everyone but it is worth looking at. And in today's music/economic environment, not a bad idea at all.

On the musical side, after continually listens over the last month, I really have to repeat, Long Pair Bond is phenomenal.

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