If music is a language, then maybe, vice versa, words can be used to imitate specific sounds. This fascinating phenomenon of onomatopoeia is the point of departure for the Helge Lien Trio’s 9th album Guzuguzu: Each track is based on a different onomatopoetic Japanese term and the rich field of associations it opens up.
The conceptual angle may seem to point at a rather cerebral recording process. In fact, the exact opposite is true: “We were able to record the album in a single take”, Lien recounts, “We spent close to an entire year preparing the recording of Guzuguzu, so when we met in Rainbow studio for the actual sessions, the album was more or less complete, not to say ‘garari’. Listening to how it came out, it strikes me how closely it resembles a live experience.”
With just a single exception, all tracks emerge from the same melodic theme, constantly oscillating between improvisation and composition and combining the spirit of jazz with symphonic development. When the last notes have subsided, the listener is led into a sublime state beyond music and words, best described by Wittgenstein’s famous aphorism: “Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.”