Berlin-based pianist Julia Hülsmann returns to the trio format for Sooner And Later, an album which distils the experience of journeys to distant destinations. In the last couple of years Hülsmann, bassist Marc Muellbauer and drummer Heinrich Köbberling have taken their music around the world, from Europe to the US, Canada, Peru, Central Asia and China, “where something special developed. It helped to open up new sonic territory for us”. The Central-Asian weeks find their most explicit echo in the form of “Biz Joluktuk”, a tune the band heard in performance from a 12 year old violinist in Kyrgyzstan and which was later re-harmonized by Julia.
Once again all three members of the trio have contributed compositions to the album. The title of Hülsmann’s “Thatpujai” is an anagram of “Jutta Hipp”, and its theme is comprised of phrases from the late German jazz pianist’s solos. The program is rounded out by a cover of Radiohead’s “All I Need” which, like the Hülsmann-penned tracks “J.J.”, “Soon” or “Mond” with their sometimes almost clubby grooves, emphasizes the subtle rhythmic aspects of the trio’s music. Sooner And Later was recorded in September 2016 in Oslo’s Rainbow Studio, and produced by Manfred Eicher.