Since his 1997 debut album "Khmer", Norwegian sound painter Nils-Petter Molvær has fought just as many inner battles in numerous editions of his music. With sometimes painful directness, he revealed the contrast between his gentle and his aggressive side, which often clashed abruptly. This personal conflict was expressed differently on each album, sometimes subliminally, sometimes offensively. On his new CD "Stitches" the trumpeter seems to have made peace with himself. Sure, there are moments here, too, in which things get mighty, but these are peacefully embedded in a continuous maelstrom that gets by without harsh breaks.
"Most people say the record sounds very dark," Molvær muses, apparently feeling misunderstood in light of this interpretation. "Basically, I try to completely avoid emotions in my music. I don't think about feelings I want to express with my music. Instead, I strive to express myself as accurately as possible on the trumpet. That doesn't mean I'm emotionless, but I don't want to clog up the music with emotions that may not be there. That happens way too often anyway. Besides, I have a fantastic band by my side. I don't have to tell anyone what to do, everyone provides their own personal input."
He would never really find peace in the studio, Molvær adds. For that he would have to go hiking in the mountains. But thanks to his fantastic band, he can now at least relax a little better during the recordings than was the case a few years ago. The 61-year-old's sound blends so organically with that of his companions that it is often completely irrelevant in the overall picture which sound is coming from the trumpet, guitar, bass or even drums. "This is exactly why I decided to use a pedal steel guitar, because its sound is very similar to that of the trumpet. I myself worked a lot more with the volume pedal, different effects and also my voice. I wanted to deliberately blur the lines between each instrument."