Christian Wallumrød Ensemble (CWE)
‘..with this latest salvo his creations have never sounded more bewitching and elusive (..) the luminescent sound of the group is practically enough to dazzle the ears for hours.’
Peter Margesak / Downbeat
‘..a music that is, by turns, of the head and heart, celebratory and mocking (..) Is it jazz? No. It’s music that makes its own space.’
Ray Comiskey / Irish Times
The work of pianist and composer Christian Wallumrød and his ensemble continues to surprise and develop in strong, playful and intriguing directions. His recordings with this group (on ECM Records) has all been met with praises throughout Europe and the US. A new album with CWE is due this spring.
Christian Wallumrød - piano / harmonium / toy piano
Eivind Lønning – trumpet
Gjermund Larsen - violin / hardanger fiddle / viola
Espen Reinertsen – saxophone
Tove Törngren – cello
Per Oddvar Johansen - drums, vibraphone
Each of these players brings a wealth of experience to the total group sound. Per Oddvar Johansen and Wallumrød has worked closely in various constellations for more than 20 years, and Johansen has contributed to countless groups and recordings, a.o. with Trygve Seim, The Source and with Solveig Slettahjell. Gjermund Larsen is considered one of the most prominent young musicians on the Norwegian folk music scene. In addition to his own trio he works a.o. with Majorstuen and Trondheimsolistene.
Despite their young age both Eivind Lønning and Espen Reinertsen are already experienced and highly versatile musicians who has developed a personal sound with their special focus on extended techniques. Together they form the duo Streifenjunko, and they are also part of the Japanese / Norwegian group Koboku Senju (w/Tetuzi Akyama and Toshimaru Nakamura. Swedish cellist Tove Törngren is an active chamber musician, and she is a member of the Dutch Duo Estivo, the Swedish Music for ten strings and the Norwegian Tango Twist.
Apart from his work with CWE Christian Wallumrød plays in the Norwegian / French group Dans Les Arbres (w/Xavier Charles, Ingar Zach, Ivar Grydeland).
Christian Wallumrød (1971)
acoustic and electronic keyboards / composer
Christian Wallumrød has worked as a musician and composer since 1992, and he is considered one of the most prominent musicians of the younger Norwegian generation.
He made his debut on ECM Records with the album “No Birch” (issued in 1996) to considerable critical acclaim. The album “Sofienberg Variations” with a new ensemble (Christian Wallumrød Ensemble: with Nils Økland, Arve Henriksen and Per Oddvar Johansen) was released on ECM in 2003. Wallumrøds third album ”A Year From Easter”, with the same ensemble, was released in spring 2005 on the German record label. An extended version of his acoustic ensemble (sextet with long time partners Henriksen and Johansen in addition to Gjermund Larsen on violins, Tanja Orning on cello and Giovanna Pessi on baroque harp) played Wallumrøds com- positions on the album ”The Zoo Is Far” (ECM, 2007). In 2008 the trumpeter Eivind Lønning replaced Arve Henriksen in the sextet version of CWE, and the ensemble recorded and released the album ”Fabula Suite Lugano” in 2009. The record was nominated for the Nordic Musicprice 2010. Since 2002 the Christian Wallumrød Ensemble has regularly toured and played festivals in Norway, Scandinavia, Europe and the US.
In addition to composing and performing with his ensemble, Wallumrød is also part of the quartet Dans Les Arbres, with fellow Norwegians Ivar Grydeland (guitars / banjo) and Ingar Zach (percussion / grand cassa) and French clarinet player Xavier Charles. The group was formed in 2006 and works solely with acoustic and improvised music. The first Dans Les Arbres album was released on ECM Records in spring 2008.
Wallumrød has had long term collaborations with a.o. singer Sidsel Endresen (w/ Merriwinkle and w/ Jan Bang) and drummer Audun Kleive (with his Generator X), resulting in various recordings (Jazzland Records). He has also recorded several albums on Norwegian labels, a.o. with the trio Close Erase.
Wallumrød has generally focused on small and fixed ensembles, both as a performer and a composer. Over the years he has also done several solo performances and participated in various ad hoc constellations within the field of improvised music. Since the beginning of the 90’s he has toured, played festivals and made broadcasting recordings in Norway and Scandina- via, Finland, Germany, UK, Ireland, France, Switzerland, Austria, Czeck Rep., Hungary, Estonia, Slovenia, Italy, China, Canada and the US.
At the Ultima Festival for Contemporary Music 2000 (Oslo) he participated as an improvising soloist on Fender Rhodes (el-piano) on Eivind Buene‘s (N) „Objects of Desire“ with Oslo Sinfonietta, conducted by Christian Eggen.
For more information please see also: www.christianwallumrod.com
Oslo, February 2013