Sjunne Ferger was a Swedish drummer with his roots in the blues, who was encouraged to experiment – musically – after a meeting with Don Cherry. Strangelove select 6 tracks from Ferger`s catalogue – highlighting a couple of 45s and his sole LP – to produce a primer – in readiness for reissuing that LP, Mindgames, later this year. Romance and Beginner`s Mind are lifted from a 1978 promo 7”. The former mixes classical systems music with jazz – keys creating shimmering snippets of sound, in Reich-ian repeats, playful like light catching the crests of waves. I was thinking of the marvelous Man Jumping as a comparison. The latter builds from gentle wind chime percussion to a full band fusion groove – with perfect piano, scat harmonies, rhythmic stops and starts. After a moment of calm, when the track heads off again, it does so a pace, with an electric guitar leading the chase, before fading to stretched metallic arcs. In my notes I’ve written “Cortex” and “Mary et Jeff”. It doesn’t really sound like that, but the tone`s the same if that makes sense.
Childrens Mind dates from `82. Its baseline racing, taking an ethereal siren, dancing marimba and machines, along for the ride. The comp also includes the single`s original flip, Night Rituale – where zithers and idiophones, big, ringing, rock chords, poetry and prose, colour an increasingly tumbling timpani, while its female vocals lend the song a post-punk jazz vibe. Similar, for example, to Factory’s Swamp Children and Rough Trade`s Weekend. There are alternate takes of LP cuts Destiny – classic 4AD-esque, icily reverb-ed ambience, and Candlelight – a brilliant, very balearic keyboard vamp, modular sequences in the background blinking like stars in its distance. Then there`s a 7th track, Awakening, – I don’t know where it`s from – but it`s a serene, sunset, stretch of assorted synths and cymbals, traveling toward the pop end of new age. Its melodies on a par with say, Suzanne Ciani.
You can order a copy of Sjunne Ferger`s Childrens Mind directly from Strangelove.