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7. Rich sounds from an octet

Yet again I picked up a great tip during a visit to the record shop and music spot Bare Jazz. This time I got the tip from the saxophonist Bodil Niska, who is also the founder of this shop. Because of her excellent advice, the sounds of Eyolf Dale and his octet are currently increasing the audible quality of my living room.

At the time of writing, me and my neighbours are listening to the recently released album, Wolf Valley.

First, a few words about the composer; In 2009 Eyolf Dale finished his graduate studies in Performing jazz and improvisation at Norwegian Academy of Music, and in 2011 he completed the master’s program in improvisation. In addition to his work with this octet, Dale is known from both his solo work, successful collaborations with a great number of jazz artists, and from bands like Albatrosh, Hayden Powell Trio and Trondheim Jazz Orchestra.

On June 10th 2016 Dale released the album Wolf Valley. Together with him on this album he has Per Zanussi on bass and saw, Gard Nilssen on the drums, André Roligheten on tenor sax and clarinet, Hayden Powell on trumpet, Kristoffer Kompen on trombone, Rob Waring on vibraphone and Adrian Løseth Waade on violin. And they bring a variety of soundscapes to the table.

Wolf Valley contains tunes that vary in structure and form. The musicians generously give each other plenty of room to bring their own individual sound into the compositions. This provides a breath of expressions and adds a uniqueness to it. A good balance between melancholic, lyrical and groovy melodies, with reference to different musical traditions.

The Norwegian traditions are present in several of the compositions, and the octet creates a mystical «folk tale» kind of feel in some of the tracks. Furthermore, the influence of more traditional jazz scales and rhythms makes the album even more interesting. «The creek» was a pleasant standout and a bit of a surprise to me. A groovy little pearl that puts a smile on my face!

I recommend that you go and do your record collection a favour by providing it with a new member.

Visit to read more about him and his music!

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