The Thing is a trio formed around the Norwegian drummer Paal Nilssen-Love. The trio was founded in 2000 and the musicians (the Swedish woodwind player Mats Gustafsson and the Norwegian bassist Ingebrigt H. Flaten) are musically completely comfortable with each other in the world of free jazz. The Thing made their name with three CD’s and became known as an energetic jazz band, with intuitive interplay as one of the most important motives. At first they were inspired by the music of free jazz trumpeter Don Cherry. It was no coincidence that the band was named after the Cherry composition The Thing. Later the band’s repertoire was broadened with compositions by David Murray, Frank Lowe, Norman Howard and even The White Stripes. The Thing will perform with the clarinetist and saxophonist Ken Vandermark, who also had renewed the music of Cherry, for instance the Complete Communion suite, with his DKV Trio. Paal Nilsson-Love and Vandermark, who is a representative of Chicago’s controversial, contemporary improvisation scene, have been a duo since 2000. With the hardcore free jazz he plays with his band Vandermark 5, he succeeded in reaching a young, hip audience. Since 1985 the American has had the overview of finding new possibilities for improvised music, especially after he moved from Boston to Chicago, where he started working with various improv ensembles.