logo   Mouth Eating Trees and Related Activities (OD12010)
Musicians Mats Gustafsson — fluteophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone
Barry Guy — double bass
Paul Lovens — selected and unselected drums and cymbals, musical saw
Cover and Artwork cover

Painting by: Edward Jarvis
Photographs: Mats Gustafsson (Snasahögarna 1995)
Cover concept: Olof Madsen with kind help from Lo
Graphic assistance: Louise Molnar

Songs 1. Part I (4:25) (MPEG2)
2. Part II (12:25)
3. Part III (6:40)
4. Part IV (27:15)
5. Part V (3:45)
total time: 54:45

all compositions by Mats Gustafsson (STIM/NCB), Barry Guy (PRS/MCPS), and Paul Lovens (GEMA)
Recording Info Recorded December 11, 1992 by P2 Sveriges Radio (the Swedish Broadcasting Corporation) at the Radio House in Stockholm

Original recording produced by: Lars-Göran Ulander
Engineered by: Lars Hedh
Mixed by: Lars Hedh and Mats Gustafsson
Executive Producer: Bruno Johnson

Reviews **** (4 stars)

Mouth Eating Trees rather squares the circle, a trio performance of great concentration and one which, despite the extraordinary title, gives away little more about itself, creating a sequence of five engimatic numbered canvases, each with a sweep out of all proportion to actual size. Numbers one and five are tiny and yet seem to contain an extraordinary amount of musical information. The very long part four, on the other hand, makes a whole out of tiny elements, almost like a mosaic, but with much less sense of developing, unfolding structure.

— Richard Cook & Brian Morton, The Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD, fifth edition

Swedish reed player Mats Gustafsson has displayed his prowess as a member of the Gush trio and in duet with both Paul Lovens and Günter Christmann. The Chicago OkkaDisk label first championed him in the U.S. with the release of Parrot Fish Eye where he was paired with several Chicago musicians. Though any of the above would serve as a great introduction to this phenomenal young player, Mouth Eating..., in company with masters Guy and Lovens, is nothing short of spectacular. Recorded live in a studio during a Swedish radio broadcast, this recording kicks in from the very first hushed phrases of the opening solo by Gustafsson and builds to a sustained level of intensity that never falters. Faced with masterful collaborators on the level of Guy and Lovens must be a daunting task for a young player, but Gustafsson flourishes. The three connect immediately, with a level of subtlety and detail that Guy and Lovens have grown to command over their years of collective explorations of spontaneous inventions. Rather than an interaction of give and take, the three seamlessly lock in, perfectly attuned for dynamically charged results. The music unfolds with an open sense of sonic space and incendiary tensions, moving in and out between hushed sections of delicate filigrees and dense barrages of skirling tempests. All three aptly draw from the full sonic and textural range of their instruments, from clattering keypads, scrubbed strings, and the eerie timbers of bowed saw to caterwauling cascades of reed overtones, scrabbled skeins of double bowed bass, and arcing forks of crackling toms and shimmering cymbals...

— Michael Rosenstein, Cadence Magazine, April 1997