Last year Gjerstad and Nilssen-Love released a scalding duo set called Gromka (Not Two) that captures their trademark energy and endless sonic seeking. While looking over Gjerstad's website I was stunned to read that the two have been working together since the drummer was only 15—he's now 36. Considering that Nilssen-Love has played with the reedist for so much of his life, it's hardly surprising that the two of them have an almost telepathic musical communication—tamping down, blowing out, digging in, and simmering on in perfect synchrony, but also pushing and pulling against each other to keep the performances fresh and surprising. Nilssen-Love has become one of the greatest free drummers in the world, and he's in high demand; it's hard to think of another player who's on the road as much as him. So there's something admirable, even touching, about his commitment to Gjerstad. You can hear it in the music. Below you can listen to a track from Gromka.
Frode Gjerstad/Paal Nilssen-Love, "Klopotec":
Iti, Artifact: Iti Live in St. Johann (Okka Disk)
J Æ, Balls and Kittens, Draught and Strangling Rain (Hubro)
Marc Cary, Focus Trio Live 2009 (Motema)
Carlou D, Muzikr (World Village)
Microscopic Septet, Friday the Thirteenth: the Micros Play Monk (Cuneiform)