The new violinist in Eick's ensemble is Håkon Aase, one of the up-and-coming players of the new Norwegian scene, whom attentive ECM listeners will already know from his work with Thomas Strønen's group. The core Eick road band is further shored up by the addition of Helge Andreas Norbakken, who interacts excitingly with fellow drummer Torstein Lofthus.
Eick is in great form as a writer on this showing, deploying driving rhythm at the bottom end of his music and soaring melody at the top in this series of pieces which add up to a kind of collective family portrait, touching upon "all the emotional situations we experience on the stage where we mostly hang around. That is: home." Embodied in the music, with its strongly melodic themes and improvisational exchanges, are ideas of relationships, dialogues, longings, games - and journeys.
'Ravensburg' was recorded at Oslo's Rainbow Studio in June 2017 and produced by Manfred Eicher and it is issued on both CD and 180g vinyl (with a free download code).
Personnel: Mathias Eick (trumpet, voice), Håkon Aase (violin), Andreas Ulvo (piano), Audun Erlien (electric bass), Torstein Lofthus (drums), Helge Andreas Norbakken (drums, percussion)