Taylor's Free Universe / Peter Friis Nielsen - On-Plugged in Elsinore,
This is the 12th Taylor’s Free Universe album, where they joined bassist Peter Friis Nielsen for a concert of improvised and eclectic jazz. As with all other TFU releases, this is either a masterpiece or something that you would play just a few seconds of before using the disc as a gun target. There really is no middle ground with these guys, you either love them or hate them and I definitely fall into the former camp. The musicianship, as always, is incredible and the interplay between the five musicians is awesome. Peter is a great bassist, but what really makes this album work is the way that all of the guys can (and do) take the lead, driving the band along before it is time for someone else to define the path. There are times when all of the guys seem to be at the front, all vying to be heard, but it all still works. “Picnic At Moon” features some great violin, both bowed and plucked, but within the background is a maelstrom of sound from the rest – all of which works to make this an incredible tour de force to my ears, although it may not seem the same to everyone.
I don’t think Robin knows how to release a bad album, this is yet another killer and when released in 2004 was nominated for a Danish Jazz Award. But, if you want your jazz to be mild and meek and behave itself then be warned, this is not like that!