Reprinted here in its entirety:
Denmark always pops lots of talents out, all generously leading interesting ventures: Søren Gemmer is one of them. All the compositions on “At First” are his (except two contributions by Møllehøj and Fryland, in line with the leader’s pieces). They show that the young pianist from Aalborg already has clear ideas about his music, and can blend modern jazz with his love for the classical composers: listen to the soft and dark “Stay Silent”, inspired by Visions fugitives n. 1 by Prokofiev and Shostakovich, where piano, guitar and Toivanen’s mellow double bass merge perfectly.
Gemmer is particularly dedicated to sound: he cares about it during his keyboard blasts, like in the two-faced “Chords”, first wrapped into stillness and then storming under Fryland’s well delivered drum hits; or in the more contemporary approach of “Russians”, whose lopsided paths deploy themselves and harmonize on Møllehøj’s guitar strings, blending pentatonic lines with clean and dry phrases.
An equally frank and pondered work, which turns on the spotlights on Gemmer and his excellent collaborators.
(translated by Francesco Bigoni)