Fredrik Ljungkvist (SE) – saxophones
Magnus Broo (SE) – trumpet
Håvard Wiik (N) – piano
Ingebrigt H. Flaten (N) – bass
Paal Nilssen-Love (N) – drums
Atomic’s debut CD Feet Music received standing ovations from critics and music lovers worldwide: “Debut of the year!” John Fordham in The Guardian (UK) described music and musicians as “One of the most exhilarating new groups on the European circuit!”
Not surprising at all, their second release, Boom Boom, was looked forward to with thrilling impatience – and was met with great applause! Critic Terje Mosnes (Norw. paper Dagbladet) gave Boom Boom 6 out of 6 possible marks, and wrote: “A classic from Atomic! A strong candidate for The Jazz Cd of the year! Not since the Garbarek-Stenson Quartet’s high-times in the 70’s, a Swedish-Norwegian jazz cooperation has reached such successful heights as what is about to happen with Atomic right now. Their latest release Boom Boom definitely contributes to confirm this fact! Atomic is not only a classical jazz quintet; these musicians also demonstrate an original approach where jazz history from the 20’s towards today sparkles and boils through a highly vital contemporary expression. It is classical Coltrane, blue note-grooves, Miles Davis’ 64-68-quartet. It is modern expressive jazz from the “top shelf”, a Europe/American jazz classic of noblest mark! And Ken Vandermark’s liner notes give a brilliant observation from the inside on the meaning of it all.”
Arild R. Andersen in Norwegian paper Aftenposten gave 5 out of 6 possible marks, and wrote: “Either this band do their own original music or other’s compositions, they present pure innovation on behalf of tradition. They are bloodsuckers in one moment, blood givers in the next. They demonstrate a highly developed ability to loosen from the sources without forgetting the reference points. Atomic consist of 5 individualists who give generous lessons in collectivism and fellowship.”
Atomic and/or the band members are more or less regularly given attention by music magazines like Down Beat, Jazz Times and Double Bassist. Stuart Nicholson (Jazz Times) ranked Feet Music as the No. 5 album of the year 2002, worldwide, and Atomic’s 2002 concerts in London and Stockholm as the 2. Best music experiences, everything else taken into consideration (after Tomasz Stankos concert in Warsaw).
The Atomic musicians all belong to the upper class, the top level of the younger generation of contemporary Scandinavian/European jazz. As Atomic started playing together in 1999, Ingebrigt, Håvard and Paal already had worked together for six years, completing the rhythm section of the Coltrane-influenced group Element. Their elegant and strongly communicative interplay, along with an astonishing ability to take the music into new directions, also resulted in collaborations with international notables such as Chris Potter (US), Iain Bellamy (UK), Jukka Perko (FIN) and Per “Texas” Johansson (SE).
Fredrik and Magnus have their backgrounds from a list of leading Swedish jazz groups, such as Per “Texas” Johansson Group, Stockholm Jazz Orch. and LSB (Ljungkvist/Strid/Berthling) Trio. Through years of co-operation they have developed an exceptional musical interaction. In 2002 Fredrik received the annual Swedish jazz prize “Jazzkannan”, alongside the title “Musician of the year”.
Atomic have performed and toured in Europe, USA and Canada, they have played at festivals in Vancouver, Edinburgh, Helsinki, Perpignan, Reims, Nancy, Umeå (S), Kongsberg (N) and Molde (N), and clubs like the Pizza Express in London, Hemlock Tavern in San Francisco and Blå in Oslo.
Happy New Ears
Jazzland, Universal, Jazzland Rec
1. Nära Grensen
2. Longing for Martin
3. Do It
4. Den Flytiga Magneten
6. El Coto
8. Fifth Circle
9. Krilons Resa