About the band

About Huntsville: 

After playing together in lot's of different projects for many years, we started working with Huntsville repertoar in 2005. British journalist Andy Hamilton had been covering much of our previous work, and in 2006 we asked him to write some words about our (new) direction.


«Huntsville is the all-Norwegian trio of Ivar Grydeland, Tonny Kluften
and Ingar Zach. These players have been working together since 1998, as
the core of improvising ensemble No Spaghetti Edition and in the
quartet HISS with British keyboardist Pat Thomas. The HISS CD from
2003, Zahir, shows the group's intense, listening application of the
strategies of so-called free improvisation.

the Huntsville project contrasts sharply with their earlier work, and
on the evidence of the forthcoming CD, reveals a quite different, more
groove-based approach with strong elements of composition. "In
Huntsville, improvisation is just one of the tools we use," Zach
comments. "It still is a very important factor in the way we make
music, but during the last two or three years, our interest in country
music and electronic music has developed into a sound we really wanted
to investigate – also Feldman and Cage, dronemusic, folk music…"

group's multi-instrumentalism means that this is no conventional
guitar-bass-drums trio. On acoustic and electric guitar as well as
banjo, Grydeland mixes finger-picking technique with various types of
bow, as well as acoustic and electronic devices. Tonny Kluften on
double-bass uses various bows, sticks and rubber bands, while Zach
produces a wide range of sounds on drum kit – but with all players
indulging in idiosyncratic devices, it's almost impossible to know
who's producing what unusual or bizarre sound. It's striking also how
they take the marvellous polyrhythmic approach pioneered by Ornette
Coleman on "Lonely Woman" several steps further. On the album we hear
Zach's locomotive groove gradually contrasted with the free tempo of
plangent, folk-like acoustic guitar, in a kind of fractured descendent
of the railroad blues – or alternatively, the drums setting up a tight
but furious high-tempo groove, with the other instruments either at a
slower tempo, or out of tempo completely, while the banjo's traditional
or trad-jazz associations make a bizarre and intriguing contrast. When
the group lower the energy levels, plangent arpeggios on acoustic
guitar are heard against percussive objects and a lone, rather erratic
bass drum – these effects are spare, haunting and quite beautiful.

the cv of the participants, the quality of this music shouldn't have
been too surprising. What is remarkable, though, is how much further
Huntsville have been able to develop their striking and original
soundworld – a genuinely musical use of unexpected sounds and textures,
allied with echoes of traditional genres in a radical new conceptual
language. Those who associate these players with Improv are in for a
pleasant surprise.»

Andy Hamilton, March 2006