Nearly four years after their demise following the tragic death of pianist and composer Esbjörn Svensson in a diving accident in June 2008 a newEST studio album, 301, is set for release on 30 March on the ACT label.
Formed in Sweden in the early-1990s EST grew to be the biggest and most influential new presence on the jazz scene during the millennium decade, releasing 12 acclaimed albums and reaching beyond the core jazz audience to hundreds of thousands of fans worldwide.
Their extraordinary empathy, highly tuned melodic imagination, powerful improvisation, hunger for change and that all important “magic touch” saw them redefine the piano trio, taking jazz to new audiences, from Radiohead fans to classical heads, without compromising the integrity or soul of the music.
From Pat Metheny and Brad Mehldau to Courtney Pine and Jamie Cullum few were not won over by their unique talent, and their appetite to continually evolve and experiment saw the trio’s final album, Leucocyte, recorded in 301 Studios, Sydney Australia just prior to Svensson’s death, become their most radical departure yet.
In addition to the released album nine hours of music were tracked at the Leucocyte sessions and it was Esbjörn’s initial plan to edit it down to a double album, or release two consecutive albums. In the circumstances following his death it was decided to release it just the single album.
In November 2011 after both recording solo albums and touring, bassist Dan Berglund and drummer Magnus Östrom decided to revisit the sessions and together with their sound and recording engineer Åke Linton, whose electronics played a key part in these recordings, decided to edit the remaining material. The result is 301, an album of new unreleased EST music named after the Sydney studio where it was recorded.
Just to remind you that EST performed at Jazz Fest Sarajevo in 2003.