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Boomkat Product Review:
Morton Qvenild has to be the busiest man in Norwegian music. In addition to being The Magical Orchestra part of Susanna And The Magical Orchestra, Qvenild plays in prog-jazz combo The Shining, indie band the National Bank and is an erstwhile member of Jaga Jazzist to boot. For this second 'In The Country' album, Qvenild showcases a second collection of solo compositions within the format of a jazz trio completed by Pal Husken's drums and Roger Arntzen's double bass. This album augments the sound In The Country debuted on This Was The Pace Of My Heartbeat, by adding guitar contributions from the incredible Marc Ribot, as well as some additional production duties from Deathprod. The trio even sing as a chorus on some tracks: 'Everyone Live Their Life' features the rather depressing mantra "Everyone live their life/Everyone's going to die" repeated over and over to a New Orleans-style funeral dirge accompaniment. The bulk of the album is a highly satisfying continuation of the group's characteristically melodic jazz, however, when Qvenild is left to his own devices on 'Medicine Waltz', a whole other side to his playing is revealed. It's the kind of sensitive economy he applies to his role in Susanna And The Magical Orchestra or the spine-tingling cover of Ryan Adams' 'In My Time Of Need' from the previous album. A great sophomore recording and no mistake.