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Retrograd by Afenginn

Afenginn is a Danish band exhibiting excitement, flair, and an overall sense of emotional diversity. Retrograd contains pieces with influences ranging from gypsy music all the way to jazz and everything in between. Prepare yourself for a great ethnic stew.

Tivoli Invalid kicks things off with it's off beat twist and relentless swing. Skovmand's propulsive violin drives the group to new heights. Hints of traditional Russian folklore as well as other ethnicities prevail throughout.

From it's sombre beginning, Kaszubstep gains momentum slowly but surely. Picking up steam with a joyful romp, that is soon not to be forgotten. Bassist Krejniuk turns in a brilliant Jaco influenced bass solo. Burning up the strings along the way. A brief interlude from Vesterdahl adds a touch of balance before the group returns to form with the original melody. A real joy.

An extended piece of music, Nacken is a journey into the unknown, or so we are lead to believe. The first few bars conjure up a sense of loneliness and despair. One can visualize a person walking through the snow with no one in sight. A travel through self exploration. Sensitive contributions from the band as they explore various aural landscapes and textures. Afenginn succeed by using various instrumentation's to achieve their goal.

Elg Polska explores heritage be it ever so briefly. Taken at a relatively slow trod-ding pace, there is a sense of contraction and expansion.

Positive throughout, Tattar Humppa sings of joy and exuberance. Fun and excitement pervades. A joining of family friends and community celebrating as one.

Clapdance contains funk elements while building on odd time signatures. A fine example of musical prowess. So much excitement. So much joy, solidarity and fire.

Kroyer's beautiful and heartfelt clarinet introduces us to the poignant Tsar Nob Yid. Like a rose blooming in the Spring, we are introduced to a yiddish like celebration. With never ending staccatos and pizzicatos everyone seems to be on the same page celebrating the moment. And we are all the better for it.

From beginning to end, Afenginn is all about the joy of celebrating life. With so much to offer, each musician (with evidence of some classical training) has established a platform in which to further develop their sound. With this kind of infectiousness the sky's the limit.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Afenginn
  • CD Title: Retrograd
  • Genre: Folk Jazz
  • Year Released: 2004
  • Record Label: TVTL
  • Tracks: Tivoli Invalid, Kaszubstep, Sumpdronten A La Schwennske Oriente, Tattar Intro, Tattar Humppa, Tsar Nob Vid, Nacken, Ultravenos Svovlkage, Niels Pa Faeoerne, Morka Turcke, Clapdance, Elgen Kommer, Elg Polska, Dodstoget, Andante Definibus
  • Musicians: Kim Nyberg (mandolin, mandola), Rasmus Kroyer (clarinet, bass clarinet), Niels Skovmand (violin), Andrzej Krejniuk (electric bass, acoustic bass), Rune Kofoed (drums, percussion, xylophone)
  • Rating: Four Stars
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