Norwegian death-free jazz-electronic band Supersilent began as an impromptu jam at the 1997 Bergen Jazz Festival between master trumpeter Arve Henriksen, tape experimenter Helge Sten (who also goes as Deathprod for solo material), Jarle Vespestad on drums, and Stale Storløkken on keyboards. The group decided to continue to play together in Helge Sten's studio and recorded endless hours of tape, eventually spliced into 1998's 1-3, a three-CD collection of wild, percussive free jazz with flourishes of Aphex Twin-like electronics. Integral to the band from this time on was their desire to only exist as a performing group -- they never "write" songs, practice, and barely even speak to one another outside of gigs. This release, like all others, is without overdubs and with minimal production.
On 4, the group incorporated the influence of fellow Rune Grammofon labelmate Arne Nordheim, an electro-acoustic composer whose dark-tinged experiments are a studio controlled kin to Supersilent. The uncreatively named 5 was compiled from over 30 hours of live recordings at live performances in Oslo, London, and Bologna in 2001. Here, Henriksen's strong skills come to the fore while more traditional jazz elements take hold in the din of noise. ~ Daphne G.A. Carr