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Nils Petter Molvaer

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http://www.molvaer.de/ http://www.nilspettermolvaer.info/


Kjell Kalleklev Management AS
Georgernes Verft
12,5011 Bergen/Norway
Org.nr. 995637774, tlf:+4755557637
Fax:+4755557631 / mob: +4791103280

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The Norwegian trumpeter, composer and producer Nils Petter Molvær has changed the face of improvised music in Europe in the past few decades. Besides leaving a mark as a trumpeter, creating his own unique sound, he has also recorded soundtracks for a number of films, TV-films, documentaries and plays, and has released nine albums under his own name. His debut album “Khmer” (ECM) sold over 250,000 copies worldwide and established his reputation as one of the leading voices of the new European jazz movement of the Nineties. The follow-up albums “Solid Either”, “NP3”, “Streamer”, “ER”, “Re-Vision”, and “Hamada” were all released successfully by Universal/Emarcy worldwide. Molvær stretches himself out at will in time and space, subjecting himself to the new technology of the moment in order to give ever new expression to his timelessly unbridled romanticism. His music is full of radical tenderness, compact vulnerability and robust fragility. Nils Petter Molvaer is a living contradiction, and that is what makes him so human as an artist. Photo: Anja Elmine Basma






With a quartet in which he himself plays trumpet, electronics and effects, Geir Sundstöl contributes a storehouse of exotic guitars and banjos, Jo Berger Myhre works out on bass, keyboards and more guitars and the former Madrugada drummer Erland Dahlen is responsible as one of Europe’s most versatile sound-painters for drums, percussion, xylophone, piano and any kind of everyday object you can imagine, Molvaer sallies forth on a journey through the horizontal, vertical and temporal. All four musicians back up their formidable arsenal of sound-generators with their personal integrity and with an incredible wealth of experience that each has collected independently of the others. The new album Buoyancy is a band album. More than ever, Molvaer has involved his fellow-music-makers in the concept. Switch brought him closer to Sundstöl and Dahlen, while new boy Jo Berger Myhre had considerable influence on the form the album would take, not least as Molvaer’s co-producer. The fact that it is a band venture doesn’t mean that Molvaer could deny himself a few highly poetic solo passages along the way. But in a wonderful way he succeeds in folding the whole band sound into his trumpet, so even the solo passages come across as collective achievements.


2017 line up:

Nils Petter Molvaer, trumpet
Geir Sundstøl, guitars, banjo
Jo Berger Myhre, bass
Erland Dahlen, drums

Johnny Skalleberg, sound design
Tord Knudsen, visual design



Molvaer’s topography of sounds reaches unforeseen dimensions on Buoyancy. Impressions when diving form the conceptual starting-point of the album as a whole and of each track. Molvaer and his merry men are simultaneously everywhere and nowhere. Each song offers the Norseman new deals between various composites of tradition and avant-garde. More than ever, his sounds are grouped around imagined spaces whose contrary parameters can be best described in terms of silence and chaos. Each piece describes a new primal impulse in the sense of a genuine process of creation. Molvaer gives the listener insight into the perpetual cycle of coming-to-be and passing-away. The music is beautiful and yet full of contradictions. It follows a logic that has far more to do with life than with artistic concepts.

Regardless what direction we approach the music on Buoyancy from, its hypnotic power and intoxicating magic is hard to resist. Seldom if ever has the effect of Molvaer’s music been so psychedelic. Some of the songs come across like swoops past imaginary underwater landscapes, others seem like camera journeys through nocturnal cities. Stoic serenity alternates with a driving pulse. Indonesian tropics evaporate into cyberspace. The music is full of contrasts, both in microcosmos and in macrocosmos. Buoyancy is a persistent search for the roots of the future in the present – or in the just-now, or the just-after-that.



“Letting go is an important discovery on this CD.” Nils Petter Molvaer

Life’s wheels turn full circle. That is as true of artists as of other mortals. And the new album “Switch” closes a long-turning circle for Norwegian trumpeter Nils Petter Molvaer. Mid-Eighties, he attracted attention alongside Norwegian jazz pioneers Jon Christensen and Arild Andersen in their band Masqualero, a decade later he was busy with his band Khmer laying the foundations of the now-typical Norwegian symbiosis of jazz and electronic music. Since then Molvaer has broken new ground in countless projects, most recently on the hypnotic ambient CD “1/1” of 2013 in duo with the Berlin electronic producer Moritz von Oswald.

Molvaer finds a new musical and narrative approach on each CD, but the guiding light that shines through all his work is the search for the optimum balance between the synthetic and the organic. The new CD “Switch” marks a new climax in this continuing search. Once again, the ingenious iconoclast operates simultaneously in two worlds and on several temporal planes. His complex sounds, some electronically generated, others acoustically elaborated sonic worlds that have an uncannily electronic sound, sends him into a future of urban globalisation, while he retreats with the sound of slide guitar and his own folk-tinged improvisations into a little village remote from metropolitan life.

Molvaer has brought together pedal steel guitarist Geir Sundstol, pianist Morten Qvenild and drummer Erland Dahlen to form a new band, with the slide guitar playing a central part. “I knew from the start that I was going to use a slide guitar,” comments the trumpeter with relish. “I was on the brink of buying one from the noted Norwegian guitarist Stian Carstensen myself. Then events took a different course. I’ve known Geir Sundstol for many years. He is one of Norway’s most in-demand musicians and was really keen to work with us on this. When he began to play, I was enchanted by his sound from the start and knew I had to make this album. I’m not so much in search of my inner reservations on this record as I was on earlier albums. I’m more interested in finding the right way to package particular things. This disc is more peaceful. Perhaps I’m mellowing with age.”

Molvaer certainly sounds uncommonly relaxed on “Switch”. All the Norwegian’s previous albums were characterised by an insurmountable inner polarity between an extremely peace-loving individual and a radical provocateur. This mental conflict sometimes took painful forms. This time, the trumpeter is looking for other contrasts, but the expression of his personality reflects a far more homogeneous whole. “I had some battles to fight with myself on the way to this music,” admits Molvaer. “When we finished recording, we had over 150 minutes of music, for which we had to find a focus. There is a tribute to Joni Mitchell, specially in the titles of the songs. Many of those titles make direct allusions to her lyrics. This train of thought was sometimes more important to me than the melodic aspect.”

The compositional curve that Molvaer takes with his pieces is not unrelated to Pink Floyd. Wherever and whenever we as listeners enter the musical process, we are at once caught up in the depth and the constantly changing colour of his world. It is an endless expanse that brooks no escape. It is almost immaterial at what point one accesses the CD as a listener; the music functions as an endless loop without beginning or end. The commencement of each piece is almost as arbitrary as the start and finish of the whole CD. Just as this album closes a circle in Molvaer’s own musical career, the music itself describes a perfect closed circle.

A major part in this endeavour was played by Erland Dahlen, percussionist on Molvaer’s penultimate album “Baboon Moon” and promoted on “Switch” to omnipresent multi-instrumentalist, whose complex soundscapes form the basis for the band’s concerted sound. Dahlen began his career in the Norwegian cult rock band Madrugada, rising quickly to a pivotal role in Scandinavia’s multistylistic jazz scene. Molvaer cannot speak too highly of his drummer’s input. “I regard Erland as extremely important. I simply stuck him in my studio with all its devices, instruments and playthings and let him do whatever he fancied. Letting go is an important feature of this CD. Why should I reduce such a multi-tasker to a single function? He has set his stamp upon the music one hundred per cent.”

Pianist Morten Qvenild from the band In The Country represents another star turn from Norway’s current jazz community for Molvaer’s ensemble. The last of the famous five is sound producer Jon Marius Aareskjold. The line-up and philosophy of “Switch” are faintly reminiscent of Molvaer’s first solo album “Khmer”. This is not a deliberate return to the past, however, and “Switch” is anything but self-referential. We should see it rather as the self-assured statement of a gifted sonic artist, who has discovered himself on life’s logical orbit. Nils Petter Molvaer took one giant step to retrieve his own personality from the past and set out with new energy into the future.

Switch was released on March 28, 2014, immediately followed by a European tour. March 28 also marked the re-release of a major part of Nils Petter Molvaer’s back catalogue exclusively on Okeh: Recoloured, NP3, Streamer, ER, Remakes and Re-Vision.

Ord har gått i førevegen, men når Molvær etter hamskiftet med albumet «Baboon Moon» nesten med andakt opnar sitt nye album «Switch» med steelgitar av Geir Sundstøl, med Erland Dahlen på trommar og perkusjon, Morten Qvenilds blanding av piano og elektronika, har det sjølvsagt hendt noko. Etter tidenes vakraste Molvær-opning får vi eit mangefasettert, sterkt og vakkert album, frå musikaren som etter å ha halde oss stangen i «Khmer»-land lenge, runda middagshøgda i selskap med Stian Westerhus, før han med ein norsk svitsj ikkje reiser til eventyrland, men let det beste han har gjort gå opp i ein høgare einskap. Og eg tenkjer på det eg høyrde då jazzlegenda og pianisten Terje Bjørklund nyleg gav oss albumet «Jazz Tracks (1972-82)» der vi fekk friska opp Molværs tone alt frå tida før Masqualero, bandet som var første steg i eit musikalsk livsløp der han skulle prege jazzen i både inn og utland. Gløym heller ikkje platene «So I Wright» og «Exile» som Molvær på vegen gjorde med Sidsel Endresen, før han med «Khmer» plasserte seg på ein sokkel i jazzlandet, og Bugge Wesseltoft frå ein annan kant gjorde New Conception of Jazz til eit omgrep. Med dette for øyret er «Switch» ein forundringspakke av eit overgangsalbum ikkje berre til det mjukare, men det mangefasetterte under himmelen til hans alltid sfæriske, lyse, no og då modulerte trompettone – med eit namn på det heile som var det eit trylleslag. Roald Helgheim, Dagsavisen



Molvaer's new album "Baboon Moon" marks the self-assured new start of a musician who has already travelled a long way. He began his career in the bands of Jon Christensen and Arild Andersen, but gradually broke out more and more beyond the confines of jazz, starting with his 1997 album "Khmer".
His musical journey took him through a wide variety of styles, and he tried out different degrees of abstraction along the way. He experimented together with musicians like Bill Laswell, Sidsel Endresen and Eivind Aarset, and surrounded himself with DJ's and VJ's, but he also worked on his own. His language of expression remained vivid throughout. On his last album, "Hamada", he switched to and fro between very harmonious and extremely brutal passages, while on "Baboon Moon" these two opposite poles blend into a unified whole again. In order to arrive at this point, he formed a new band. His two fellow players on "Baboon Moon" have come to jazz 'through the back door', as it were. Stian Westerhus is one of Europe's most innovative, and in the meantime most sought-after guitarists.

A former member of the post-rock band Jaga Jazzist, he runs the industrial-improv duo Monolithic together with Motorpsycho drummer Kenneth Kapstad. For Westerhus, the electric guitar is not just an instrument: it's a whole orchestra, a creative museum of physical and spiritual possibilities for producing electronic sounds. He manipulates his instrument with every conceivable material and effect, and even produces indefinable sounds by shouting into the strings. Erland Dahlen has played his way into the hearts of alternative-rock fans as drummer of the Norwegian psychoblues band Madrugada. He contributed this deep and earthy but also progressive blues feeling to Eivind Aarset's Sonic Codex Orchestra first of all, and now he brings it to Molvaer's trio.



anmeldelse HER



Hamada, meaning dead or inanimate, is an Arabic word also used to describe desert rock without sand or water. The term suits Molvaer's parched mournfulness very well and acknowledges the influence of Middle Eastern music on the Norwegian trumpeter, but it's also a little counterintuitive because Hamada sees Molvaer successfully explore new territory after a period of relative inactivity. Hamada has an impressively cohesive structure. The music begins hushed and blue before gradually building to the first of two climaxes on Friction. After further passages of murmured ambience, the group roars into life again on the howling, eight-minute Cruel Altitude and then gradually cedes to silence via the solo Lahar. The peaks are remarkably thrilling, as though Molvaer had summoned angry djinn to wreak vengeance on the listener. The djinn is guitarist Eivind Aarset, who can be favorably compared to Pete Cosey, Miles Davis' fiery lead guitarist in the 70s, and Audun Erlien whose drumming drives the music irresistibly forward.

Full BBC revivew HERE

Hamada sounds unlike anything Molvær has done before, though it would be impossible for him to have achieved it without traveling the path he has since the groundbreaking Khmer (ECM, 1997). Stunning growth and unexpected directional shifts make Hamada one of Molvær's most moving and challenging records to date.

Full AllAboutJazz Revivew HERE

Naknere og mørkere enn noensinne. «Hamada» er en studie i renskåren musisering. Molvær våger å gi rom til enkle, men tydelige melodiske setninger. Med Eivind Aarset, Audun Kleive, Jan Bang og Audun Erlien har han samlet musikere som forløser en klar musikalsk visjon.Med sørgmodig syngende trompetstemme åpner «Exhumation» det musikalske rommet, etterfulgt av «Sabkah» der Aarset er nøkternt tilstedeværende. Groovelementene er mer sparsomt utnyttet en tidligere, det er en meditativ avklart, grunnstemning med en underliggende melankoli som preger albumet. Men i «Cruel Altitude» eksploderer musikken i mørk, foruroligende energi. Et helstøpt album fra en musiker med noe på hjertet. 5/6



Also available in 2017:

Nils Petter Molvær - Lucid Dream

A sound and light installation set in a forest at night– with LUCID DREAM, the Norwegian trumpeter, composer and producer Nils Petter Molvær enters another challenging artistic field. He leaves the stage and takes his rich world of dense atmospheric sounds out into nature. LUCID DREAM is a one-of-a-kind new audiovisual installation whose unique character is constituted by its geographical location and the cultural-historical dimension of the forest it takes place in.

“I would like to create something of outstanding beauty“ says Nils Petter Molvær while he walked through the forest in summer 2012. In his vision sounds, lights and images are united to become a walk-in installation, where the atmosphere changes between the purity and truthfulness of beauty and its dangerous, destructive side. READ MORE ABOUT THIS PROJECT HERE


Band bios 2017:

Jo Berger Myhre er en norsk bassist som har bachelor i utøvende jazz/improvisert musikk fra NMH. Han har jobbet med blant andre Ingrid Olava, Solveig Slettahjell og Hilde Marie Kjersem. Jo Berger Myhre har flere egne prosjekter, mest aktiv er han med trioen Splashgirl som har gitt ut fire album.

Jo Berger Myhre  is a Norwegian upright bassist, known from performing with the likes of Splashgirl, Blokk 5, Ingrid Olava, Solveig Slettahjell Slow Motion Quintet and Finland: Grydeland/Qvenild/Hausken/Myhre. Living in Oslo, Myhre holds a Bachelor degree in performing improvisational music from the Norwegian Academy of Music. In addition he attended one year studies under Anders Jormin at the Music Academy in Gothenburg, Sweden. He has a series of his own ongoing projects, but is most active with Splashgirl.



Erland Dahlen har spilt på over 160 plater siden midten av 1990-tallet, og har turnert med en imponerende liste over topp-ranking artister i mer enn 30 land, inkludert Madrugada, Xploding Plastix, John Paul Jones, Pantha du Prince og Bell Laboratory, Årabrot, Kaada / Mike Patton, Eivind Aarset på "Sonic Codex", Serena Maneesh, Anja Garbarek, Arve Henriksen, Hanne Hukkelberg og Ane Brun, sammen med mange andre. De siste årene har Erland har vært fast medlem av Nils Petter Molvær Group.

Erland Dahlen has played on over 130 records since the mid-1990s, and has toured with an impressive list of top-ranking artists in a variety of genres: Kiruna, Mike Patton/Kaada, Ingrid Olava, Eivind Aarset Sonic Codex Orchestra, Mathias Eick, Serena Maneesh, Arve Henriksen, Hanne Hukkelberg and Marit Larsen, to name just a few. He is probably best known as the drummer in the successful band Madrugada for the last years of the band’s life, and as the drummer in Nils Petter Molvær’s explosive new trio

Strengevirtuos Geir Sundstøl har vært en viktig skikkelse innenfor norsk musikkliv i flere tiår, og har ornamentert utgivelsene og konsertene til en meget lang rekke artister. Men han tenker også sitt, noe som er åpenbart på det aldeles strålende soloalbumet “Furulund”(2016), der country, world music og noe dypt personlig åpenbarer seg. Plata «Langen Ro» er Sundstøls oppfølger til den Spellemannsnominerte debuten. Lydbildet er igjen vart/melodisk basert på hans eminente steel- og slidespill

The Norwegian guitarist and self-taught multi-instrumentalist Geir Sundstøl, from Halden, has been making music for a living since 1988. He has left his unique musical mark on 260 records featuring everyone from a-ha to Nils Petter Molvær. “Furulund” (2016) is the first record he is releasing under his own name, and is a long-awaited debut from an extremely popular musician. Sundstøl has toured all over the world, and has been the most frequently played performer on Norwegian radio for several years. A concert he held with country artist Jimmie Dale Gilmore in the USA in the 1990s gave film directors and brothers Joel and Ethan Coen the inspiration for Gaear Grimsrud, Peter Stormare’s character in the film “Fargo”. His music draws inspiration from jazz, blues, roots and country, but can be characterised most of all as original, eccentric and lovely. Sundstøl is an avid collector of instruments, and his home studio is full of rare and unusual finds. Langen Ro, his second solo album was released in  autumn 2016.












No tourdates.

Past bookings


La Petite Pierre , France

Au Grés Du Jazz Festival


Millau , France

Millau Jazz Festival


Lillehammer, Norway



Guadalajara , Mexico

Teatro Degollado


Voss, Norge



Bærum, Norway

Bærum Kulturhus


Budapest, Hungary

MÜPA - Béla Bartók National Concert Hall


Yverdon, Switzerland

Nova Jazz


Oslo, Norway






Biel, Switzerland

Le Singe


Zürich, Switzerland

Moods im Schiffbau


Mannheim, Germany

Alte Feuerwache


London, UK

Ronnie Scotts Club


Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Künstlerhaus Mousonturm


Tilburg, Netherlands



Prague, Czech republic



Dudelange, Luxembourg

CCRD Opderschmelz


Yverdon, Switzerland



Landsberg, Germany

Stadttheater Landsberg


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