Let’s Dance is in-demand Norwegian drummer Per Oddvar Johansen’s most mature musical statement yet. Already the veteran of many recordings (including work with Trygve Seim, Christian Wallumrød, The Source, Solveig Slettahjell, Adam Baldych and Vigleik Storaas for ECM, ACT, Jazzland, Universal and others), he has assembled this trio with long standing collaborators pianist Helge Lien and avant-garde saxophonist Torben Snekkestad to record an album of his own compositions.
Meditative, beautiful, stately and austere, the songs on Let’s Dance are the product of a finely tuned musicianship, developing along an organic and entirely natural and unique path, each intensely satisfying and fulfilling. Per Oddvar’s propulsive rhythms underlie each tune but never attempt to dominate. If there is a dance to be danced it’s a tranquil, dignified and sedate dance – a folk dance celebrating a grave and solemn moment.
As Per Oddvar explains: ‘I wanted to try and compose music with a rubato (no set tempo), lyrical and open soundscape. To achieve this, I have written long sheets, with not so much information in them, thus taking control over the whole structure and tonal landscape, at the same time giving everybody the possibility to shape and direct the music in the moment.
The recording was done at another friend and longtime companion (with Solveig Slettahjell) Sjur Miljeteig’s studio IsitArt in Sweden. I wanted to record there because they have a very nice old grand piano, a nice recording room, and it is situated in the deep Swedish forests, in complete solitude. A great place to create music!’