Seven collective compositions by the performers, Mats Gustafsson, saxophones, Barry Guy, double bass, Raymond Strid, drums, and Marilyn Crispell, piano. Recorded 22 January 1996 by the Swedish Broadcasting Corporation in Stockholm. Total time: 64:49. [DDD]
CD-1003(1) THE GUY-GUSTAFSSON-STRID TRIO with MARILYN CRISPELL, PIANO: THE FABLED 1996 RADIO SWEDEN CONCERT: gryffgryffgryffs
Writes the session producer Lars-Goran Ulander in his liner notes: "We were rehearsing Barry Guy's orchestral pieces 'Theoria' and 'Harmos,' preparing the Swedish premiere of these masterpieces of structured improvisation with the Swedish Radio Jazz Group After hours of rehearsing, the 'Gang of Four'–Mats Gustafsson, Raymond Strid, Marilyn Crispell and Barry Guy–remained in the studio with the tape recorders of Rune Andreasson still running. Although everyone was quite tired, there was an excitement in the air–even nervousness. Four musicians–reeds, piano, bass and drums–I guess that's about as common as you get. A perfect situation for a nice little 'after hours' jam session. Four master improvisers creating music with little or no agreement beforehand. Four musicians who know each other well yet still have the ability to surprise each other, as they did in this fringe benefit session. The recording went very smoothly–it was all over in a couple of hours–more or less one long take with very short breaks between sections. Not much said–no need to. What turned out was quite out of the ordinary, far from a nice little jam session with a common jazz setup. Incredible music, actually." About the Guy-Gustafsson-Strid Trio, critic Chris Blackford wrote in The Wire: "The Anglo-Scandinavian trio of Barry Guy, Mats Gustafsson and Raymond Strid have shorn away virtually all references to free jazz in their pursuit of a self-sufficient abstract soundworld…This is marvelous trio improvising." Crispell's recent recording on Music & Arts (CD 4964), a duo with Joseph Jarman) has been widely acclaimed in this country and abroad and has fast won a "best of 1997" award in France's Jazz Magazine.