Two very different musicians from the wide range of the jazz spectrum, Mats Gustafsson and Craig Taborn played together just once, for the 2015 edition of the Ljubljana Jazz Festival, and that explains the chosen title of this LP.
The meeting seemed improbable, but in what concerns improvisation, if the protagonists are committed explorers of spontaneity anything can happen, even the most extraordinary music. That was the case – the encounter was recorded and here it is, documented, as it should. Particularly happy with the results, Gustafsson said in an interview: «It was like a kick in the ass; please, give me more challenges like this one, in order to keep my sanity!» Imagine the refined chords defining Taborn’s piano music. Now, mix with it some slap-tonguing in the way only Gustafsson knows how to do with a baritone sax. Does it sound good in your head? Well, in “Ljubljana” it sounds even better, because these two fantastic improvisers created music with their differences, entering each other’s territory.
Who said art is a question of compromise? It isn’t. This may well be the jazz album of the year and a landmark on the label as Clean Feed’s number 400.