Achim Kaufmann - Piano
Robert Landfermann - Bass
Christian Lillinger - Drums
Grünen (“the greening”) was formed in April 2009 when Landfermann invited Kaufmann and Lillinger to participate in his ongoing concert series of improvised music at the Loft in Cologne.
Their first – completely improvised – encounter was recorded and subsequently released by Clean Feed Records.
For their second disc, the trio mixes spontaneous improv with some predetermined structures – taking new turns with written material, some of it rhythmically quite intricate and/or evoking images of surrealistic jazz and song: a strategy the three have adopted for their highly unpredictable concert performances as well.
On the occasion of Achim Kaufmann's receiving the Albert Mangelsdorff award, grünen performed at the Berlin Jazz Fest in November 2015 where they were joined by poet gdr guenther.
Clean Feed press text for Pith and Twig:
“No, the piano jazz trio format is far from being at an end, and here is one more example of that, one of the best to boot. German players Achim Kaufmann, Robert Landfermann and Christian Lillinger show us that the traditional combination of a grand piano, a double bass and a drumset can adopt experimental configurations and explore new situations. When the pianist isn’t the leader of the band – in Grünen, no one is – it could even be problematic to call it a piano trio. The usual hierarchy of the instruments dissolves, and the functions of the three musicians change radically. There’s no soloist and there’s no rhythm section which means everybody solos and everybody supports the others. And when you have three virtuosos with an eccentric, or even punkish, anti-virtuosic approach to the music, anything can happen: lots of tension and lyricism, powerful playing and deconstructions en miniature, crazy flights and rigorous organization of sounds. Prepare yourself (again: “Pith and Twig” is Grünen's second opus) to be surprised.”