"This is the chill-out as a state of grace, and it can go as deep as you like. Sublime," wrote the Independent of the Tord Gustavsen Trio's Being There, released in 2007. Over the last decade Tord has experimented with other ensemble forms and formats, but on The Other Side - recorded at Oslo's Rainbow Studio in January 2018 – he returns decisively to the piano trio, with faithful drummer Jarle Vespestad, and excellent new bassist Sigurd Hole. Hole's approach to his instrument, drawing on folk influences as well as modern jazz, is ideally suited to Gustavsen's slowly-developing, deeply melodic pieces. The album, produced by Manfred Eicher, is issued on the eve of a major tour.
"The repertoire is a dialogue between original compositions and J. S. Bach chorals (plus a couple of gorgeous melodies from ancient Norwegian hymns). While clearly relating to the 2003-2007 trio trilogy, the album also reflects everything I have been doing since then - and we have a deeper soundscape now, using some subtle electronics, with more bass and a different bass drum than the earlier trio had (turn it up on good speakers or in a good headset to really feel this...). Most of all, it is still about staying grounded while reaching out in different ways; and about cherishing the melodies in an unsweetened way. The music is still a kind of ‘abstract gospel' or ‘wordless hymns'." - Tord Gustavsen