Jordsjø Stream Pastoralia in Full; Album out Friday

Posted in audiObelisk on May 4th, 2021 by JJ Koczan


Norwegian classic prog duo Jordsjø release their third (at least) album, Pastoralia, this Friday, May 7, through Karisma Records. It is nothing if not aptly-named. The follow-up to 2019’s Nattfiolen, it boasts eight songs across 43 minutes that bring together lush melodic vibes and an intimacy born of what seems to be largely singular composition. Even at its most active, the overarching spirit is subdued if not peaceful, and the intro “Prolog” finds guitarist, keyboardist, flutist and vocalist Håkon Oftung and drummer/percussionist Kristian Frøland working alongside a range of others but fleshing out a creative breadth of their own that draws the varied pieces and parts of pieces together. Following “Prolog,” for example, “Skumring I Karesuando” is the longest track at 7:37 until the concluding 10-minute “Jord III,” and the band’s purpose toward listener immersion could hardly be clearer.

And it works. With patient composition, dynamic layering and consistent melodic focus, Jordsjø enact Scandiprog naturalism with a vision that washes away decades. Their execution throughout “Skumring I Karesuando” and the subsequent “Mellom Mjødurt, Marisko og Søstermarihånd” is fluid and rolls easily along the ears to the brain, rife with subtle flourishes and a smoothness of production that make stretches like the Mellotron/flute break in “Mellom Mjødurt, Marisko og Søstermarihånd” and the weightierjordsjo pastoralia guitar at the end of the title-track, which follows and caps side A, stand out all the more. Having established such balance over the course of the first half, the best thing Oftung and Frøland (and company) can do is mess with it, and the acoustics and string sounds of “Fugleviskeren” that serve as the instrumental intro to Pastoralia‘s side B do exactly that, working in counterpoint to preface the more outwardly Crimson-toned progression of “Beitemark,” culminating as it does in crashes that act as setup for the sudden turn of the penultimate “Vettedans.”

Therein lies the twist. Marked out by its Deep Purple keys, chime bell and meandering guitar-then-flute, “Vettedans” comes across like a tw0-minute condensed version of the album’s arrangements as a whole. It’s an intentionally strange interlude and not at all unwelcome, but like “Prolog” and “Skumring I Karesuando” were meant to bring the listener into the world being made for Pastoralia, so too is “Vettedans” meant to clarify just how in command of that world Jordsjø are ahead of the finale in “Jord III.” As for “Jord I” and “Jord II,” they showed up on 2017’s Jord, and the piano line that brings in “Jord III” could just as easily work coming out of the cymbal wash of “Jord II” as it does from the silence after “Vettedans.” The sense of flow, the class in the delivery of its later spoken parts and guitar leads, and the peaks and valleys it creates across its course are rightfully distinguished in the closer position, and it’s one more aspect of Pastoralia that speaks to the underlying consciousness of Jordsjø in its construction, on the songwriting and presentation levels alike. If one thinks of progressive rock as that which is considered in its exploration and thoughtful about what it does, this is what that sounds like.

That they’d bear relation to Tusmørke through Oftung shouldn’t be a surprise in listening, and they’re well at home on Karisma Records among the likes of Wobbler and Lucy in Blue and others, but there is a distinct take to be found in the balance of folk and prog throughout Pastoralia, as well as the delicate guiding hand that leads the audience through the work as a whole. I’m happy today to host the album for streaming ahead of the release Friday.

You’ll find it on the player below, followed by more info from the PR wire.


In the tradition of some of last century’s best Nordic rock, Jordsjø’s duo of multi instrumentalist Håkon Oftung (Tusmørke, Black Magic) and drummer Kristian Frøland, meld Progressive rock with interesting melodies, whilst giving the whole a Folk-inspired twist. And, for Pastoralia, they have produced an album that is a musical journey that travels from minimalist mellotron passages to a full on rock tempest, and which sees Jordsjø moving further into jazzy, progressive, musical landscapes.

Thematically, the album is based on dreams, a longing for freedom and the fictional place Pastoralia, where every day is like tropical nights in Northern Norway, where the forest people dance around campfires.

Joining the duo on Pastoralia are a number of guests including Ola Mile Bruland (Actionfredag), Håkon Knutzen, Vilde Mortensen Storesund, Mats Lemjan, Christian Meaas Svendsen and Åsa Ree (Meer, Tusmørke, Wobbler).

With artwork by Sindre Foss Skancke, the album is set for release on Karisma Records on the 7th May, Pastoralia will be available on CD, digital and black vinyl formats as well as in a blue vinyl version which will be limited to 600 copies. The album can be pre-ordered right here:

1. Prolog
2. Skumring I Karesuando
3. Mellom Mjødurt, Marisko og Søstermarihånd
4. Pastoralia
5. Fuglehviskeren
6. Beitemark
7. Vettedans
8. Jord III

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Superlynx Premiere Video for Title-Track of New Album Electric Temple

Posted in Bootleg Theater on February 2nd, 2021 by JJ Koczan


Oslo, Norway’s Superlynx will issue their third album, Electric Temple, through Dark Essence Records on April 16. The title-track is the first single and is premiering in the video below ahead of a Feb. 4 standalone release. It arrives early on the record, with just opener/longest track (immediate points) “Rising Flame” in front of it, and reinforces the commitment to atmosphere and mood that song puts forth, as well as the accompanying threat of push, the morose, airy vocals of bassist Pia Isaksen and the Earth-style guitar lumber of Daniel Bakken largely holding firm as Ole Teigen‘s drumming take off into a second half freakout. Compared to that, “Electric Temple” comes across as more straightforward — do I need to say “ritualistic?” — with repetitions of its title line and a linear build of tension that plays out in post-psych fashion, the payoff that arrives swirling but still primarily dark in tone.

“Apocalypse,” shorter at just 2:37, quickly proves this brooding nod isn’t all Superlynx have to offer this time around, switching between tempos from its beginning drone and melodic ambience to a march into blastbeats before a proggy mesh of drums and guitar raises the stakes further only to recede and bookend with the initial quiet verse. Blink and you’ll miss it, but “Apocalypse” is one of several shorter pieces peppered throughout — along with the instrumental “Sonic Sacrament” that one assumes closes side A, and the penultimate “Siren Sing,” which brings Teigen to the fore on vocals — and it and its compatriots do much to enrich Electric Temple‘s overall impression. Sandwiched between “Apocalypse” and “Sonic Sacrament,” “Moonbather” feels like a culmination for superlynx electric templethe first half of the album, with Isaksen and Teigen singing together almost like a cultish chant by its end.

The second half of the 10-track/43-minute outing starts with “Returning Light,” which in the span of four minutes shifts from relative minimalism to an engrossing progression that shifts smoothly into the guitar and bass intro to “Laws of Nature,” the underlying rumble gradually coming forward as the drums hold back, a tension Superlynx have toyed with before, but one that continues to work in their favor. A particularly soulful guitar solo brings “Laws of Nature” to its apex, and struck piano notes in “Then You Move” show that the context for the record has not yet finished expanding. Teigen takes lead vocals with Isaksen holding off until the second half, and the between the keys and his delivery, and subsequently hers, there’s a particularly goth vibe to “Then You Move,” the late solo and understated, long-fade finish making “Siren Sing” a complement to the song before it.

I’m not sure if it’s strings or chamber-feedback or keys or what’s droning out behind Teigen in “Siren Sing,” but the room it adds to the atmosphere works well, and the silence that moves into the renewed march of closer “May” — almost bluesy as it is — feels like it’s being given its due for it. A spoken verse from Teigen sets up an arrival from Isaksen as the track unfurls a patient forward progression, rising to a head and receding softer to finish, it’s a reminder of how much of what makes Electric Temple work, from the initial, ambience-setting rollout of “Rising Flame” and “Electric Temple” onward, is about the mood, patience and the combination of space and depth in the procession of songs. Make no mistake, there’s plenty of heft to go around, as you’ll hear in the video premiere below, but Electric Temple is as much about the creation of the reaches in which that happens as it is about the happening itself.

Enjoy the video:

Superlynx, “Electric Temple” official video

Video by Joan Pope / Temple ov Saturn.

Band footage and photo by Carl Eek Torgersen.

From the upcoming album Electric Temple.


Superlynx is:
Pia Isaksen – Bass/Vocals
Daniel Bakken – Guitar
Ole Teigen – Drums/Vocals

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Wobbler Premiere “Naiad Dreams” from Dwellers of the Deep (Plus Official Live Video)

Posted in audiObelisk on October 14th, 2020 by JJ Koczan


Norwegian heavy progressive rockers Wobbler will issue their new album, Dwellers of the Deep, through Karisma Records on Oct. 23. The band has been active for more than 20 years, and Dwellers of the Deep is their fifth full-length since making their debut in 2005. Its four songs are intricately composed and woven together with classic progressive styling, and each serves a purpose in adding to the pastiche of the 45-minute release as a whole and bolstering a conceptual feel and the overarching melodic focus.

Keyboards run alongside guitars, rhythms play in tight, somehow-funky bursts, and pieces range in movements from grand sweeping sonic gestures to stretches of minimalist atmospherics, the Oslo-based five-piece of vocalist/guitarist Andreas Wettergreen Strømman Prestmo (also recorder, percussion and glockenspiel), lead guitarist/backing vocalist Geir Marius Bergom Halleland, bassist Kristian Karl Hultgren, keyboardist/backing vocalist Lars Fredrik Frøislie and drummer Martin Nordrum Kneppen (also recorder and percussion) creating a lush breadth and character of sound that feels at once forward and backward looking. That is, certainly there are elements of King Crimson and other such easy prog influences to note, but more an 20 years on, Wobbler are also no strangers to putting their stamp on prog, whether that’s the in the initial rush that opens “By the Banks” or the subdued acoustic-and-mellotron-driven renaissance folk sweetness of the later “Naiad Dreams,” premiering below.

Those folkish tendencies don’t just show up on “Naiad Dreams” either. That song, the penultimate of the four, might bring them most wobbler dwellers of the deepinto focus, but they’re there too even at some of Dwellers of the Deep‘s most spirited moments. The album sandwiches the eight-minute “Five Rooms” and “Naiad Dreams” with the significantly longer “By the Banks” (13:49) at the outset and “Merry Macabre” (19:00) at the finish, and the effect of doing so is to set up the long-player as precisely that — a full-length intended to be taken in its entirety rather than a collection of songs.

I don’t know if it was written that way, as one or two long pieces subsequently broken up into separate movements to fit on vinyl sides, but the flow conjured throughout makes the proceedings all the more immersive, as Wobbler keep a poise to their delivery even as they dig through the farthest reaches of “Merry Macabre,” which has plenty of time to crescendo, recede, and cap the album with futuristic synthesizer as though the band were uniting the past with what’s to come in stylistic terms. Coupled with the bouncing organ in “Five Rooms” earlier, the periods of heavier push to be found, and the sheer nuance of the material, it’s a testament to Wobbler‘s established status that the record doesn’t collapse under the weight of its own headiness, but it doesn’t at all. Wobbler are able, on a level of execution, to realize the ambitious scope of their songwriting both because they’ve done it before — 2017’s From Silence to Somewhere; also a gem — and because it’s a central part of their modus. It is because it has to be and it has to be because it is.

So. You should not approach “Naiad Dreams” thinking it summarizes the entire album. It doesn’t. At all. To be fair, neither does “Merry Macabre,” and that’s about four times as long. You take what you can get. However, on a compositional level and in terms of the atmospheric affect of Dwellers of the Deep, you’re at very least getting a piece of the greater puzzle, and one with a peaceful and pastoral melody at that. You can always go back and check out the full record when it’s out, but for now, losing your head for a couple minutes and mellowing out with “Naiad Dreams” feels like the way to go.

As always, I hope you enjoy:

Wobbler, “Naiad Dreams” official live video

Wobbler on “Naiad Dreams”:

“‘Naiad Dreams’ is special in the way that it’s our first foray into a short song that stands on its own. It came to life late in the recording process and was written and recorded on an inspired May morning. It’s a rather minimalistic composition with very few elements that gets plenty of room to shine. It is the breathing space on the coming album where playful naiads make you gaze into the depths.”

Preorders: (Karisma) (Bandcamp) (US orders)

Consisting of four distinctive pieces “Dwellers of the Deep” is a fine example of WOBBLER´s trademark creative whims and playful exuberance, and the band has offered an insight into what fans can expect from the album and what went into its creation:

The recording sessions were somewhat shaped partially by what was happening during the first months of Covid-19. In a very Decameronesque way, we sent “histories” to each other from our hermitages, while the plague waited in the shadows outside. It contributed to a sense of meaningful gravity, making it crucial that the task at hand be fulfilled with our most sincere and unparalleled endeavours.

The lyrical themes on the album deal with human emotions, and the ongoing struggle between juxtaposed forces within the psyche. An introspective voyage amongst the realms of memories, feelings and instincts, where the light is brighter and the dark is darker. The concepts of wonder, longing and desperation permeates the histories told, and the currents from the deep are ever present. The final track, “Merry Macabre”, is a 19 minute suite taking the listener through aspects of the darker sides of WOBBLER´s sound. It probably sums up what we wanted to express this time around; songs with a weirder tint, an experimental, almost impressionist splitting of themes that at the same time provides a larger frame.

Formed in Hønefoss in 1999, WOBBLER’s lineup features Lars Fredrik Frøislie on keyboards and backing vocals, Martin Nordrum Kneppen on drums, percussion and recorder, Kristian Karl Hultgren on bass, Andreas Wettergreen Strømman Prestmo on vocals, guitar, glockenspiel, recorder and percussion and Geir Marius Bergom Halleland on lead guitar and backing vocals.

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Wobbler Announce Oct. 23 Release for Dwellers of the Deep

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 17th, 2020 by JJ Koczan


Classic progressive rockers Wobbler were last heard from with 2017’s pan-flute-and-mellotron-laced From Silence to Somewhere, a listener’s buffet of proggy delights that ran through four mostly extended songs. The follow-up, Dwellers of the Deep, looks like it will take somewhat similar shape — at least in its basic construction — also playing out across four tracks, the last of which is an extended finale. If you’re not familiar with the Norwegian outfit, don’t sweat it too hard, but their melodies and the kind of stately bounce of their rhythms make their sound genuinely engaging, and they’re clearly well schooled by now in where they’re coming from as a band. They’re prog and they know it. And you know they know it. And they know you know they know it. And so on.

Karisma Records certainly knows it, which I’ll assume is why preorders for Dwellers of the Deep are up now ahead of the Oct. 23 released date.

No audio yet, but the PR wire brings art, details and links:

wobbler dwellers of the deep

Karisma Records Announces Details Of New WOBBLER Album “Dwellers Of The Deep”!

When WOBBLER’s fifth album “Dwellers of the Deep” hits the streets on the 23rd October, it´s exactly three years since the Norwegian’s last release “From Silence to Somewhere”, and if anyone is expecting an identical album, they may have to think again, because, according to the band, the new album will be a different beast entirely:

When we set out planning the new album we agreed that we couldn´t make the same album over again. With “Silence” we did things without wanting to fit into a progressive box, and the process behind “Dwellers of the Deep” was even more along those lines. In that sense it´s more experimental.

Some songs contain rock blast outs while others provide the calm of a foggy morning in the woods; all have their place in what eventually became a thematic dive into the depths of human emotion. Our take on it, anyway.

“Dwellers of the Deep” promises to serve up an exciting blend of both carefully planned and passionately jammed compositions encompassing everything WOBBLER has done up to now. These new musical directions will no doubt further enhance the quintet’s aural idiosyncrasies, and solidify the band’s burgeoning stature as one of the most exciting and interesting bands on the global music scene, independent of genre.

The production is open, detailed, warm and punchy, making the soundscapes put together by Lars Fredrik Frøislie to an aural feast. “Dwellers of the Deep” will be available in Digipak CD and digital formats, as well as in four different 180 gram gatefold vinyl editions; black vinyl, two different limited edition coloured vinyls, and a limited edition transparent vinyl. All the limited editions come with a poster.

Side A contains two pieces at medium length showcasing the band´s mastery of dynamics and flow, with passages and themes veering from the scenic and serene to the downright rocking.

Side B opens with the welcome respite of four minutes serenity, cradling the listener in pastoral and mystic swathes of acoustic guitar, glockenspiel and gentle vocals before an album closing 19 minutes journey into the unknown with the band in full blast.

Track listing for “Dwellers of the Deep” is as follows:

1. By the Banks (13:49)
2. Five Rooms (08:28)
3. Naiad Dreams (04:24)
4. Merry Macabre (19:00)

“Dwellers of the Deep” is now available to pre-order from:

Dwellers Of The Deep is now available to pre-order from:



US Webshop:

Consisting of four distinctive pieces “Dwellers of the Deep” is a fine example of WOBBLER´s trademark creative whims and playful exuberance, and the band has offered an insight into what fans can expect from the album and what went into its creation:

The recording sessions were somewhat shaped partially by what was happening during the first months of Covid-19. In a very Decameronesque way, we sent “histories” to each other from our hermitages, while the plague waited in the shadows outside. It contributed to a sense of meaningful gravity, making it crucial that the task at hand be fulfilled with our most sincere and unparalleled endeavours.

The lyrical themes on the album deal with human emotions, and the ongoing struggle between juxtaposed forces within the psyche. An introspective voyage amongst the realms of memories, feelings and instincts, where the light is brighter and the dark is darker. The concepts of wonder, longing and desperation permeates the histories told, and the currents from the deep are ever present. The final track, “Merry Macabre”, is a 19 minute suite taking the listener through aspects of the darker sides of WOBBLER´s sound. It probably sums up what we wanted to express this time around; songs with a weirder tint, an experimental, almost impressionist splitting of themes that at the same time provides a larger frame.

Formed in Hønefoss in 1999, WOBBLER’s lineup features Lars Fredrik Frøislie on keyboards and backing vocals, Martin Nordrum Kneppen on drums, percussion and recorder, Kristian Karl Hultgren on bass, Andreas Wettergreen Strømman Prestmo on vocals, guitar, glockenspiel, recorder and percussion and Geir Marius Bergom Halleland on lead guitar and backing vocals.

Wobbler, From Silence to Somewhere (2017)

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Lucy in Blue to Release In Flight at Roadburn 2019; New Single Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on February 5th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

lucy in blue

As far as release shows go, you can’t do much better than Roadburn. The room’s gonna be packed, and even if people aren’t familiar with you’re stuff, they’re probably going to open-minded enough to go buy the thing you’re celebrating when you’re done playing. Kudos to Lucy in Blue for doing it right. The Reykjavik four-piece will release the delightfully progged-out In Flight on April 12 through Karisma Records, but yeah, their release show will be the week before at Roadburn 2019 in Tilburg, the Netherlands. They were snuck into the final lineup announcement there and after listening first to the single “Matricide” — about, of course, the slaughter of one’s own mattress — and then to the offering as a whole, it seemed easily worth highlighting with the paltry few words you’re currently reading. So, you know, words words words.

In no small part, this is a note to myself to remember to do my best to mark them on my schedule once the day-plan is out for Roadburn, so if you take it as a similar reminder or hear something you hadn’t heard before, bonus. That’s kind of what we’re here for, and what we’re there for.

From the PR wire:

lucy in blue in flight

Album Details and New Single Matricide from Psychedelic Prog Rockers LUCY IN BLUE Revealed

Karisma Records have revealed the details of the upcoming full-length album from Iceland’s Psychedelic Prog Rockers Lucy In Blue. The eight-track album, titled In Flight, will be the second full-length release from the young band who are making considerable waves on the Icelandic Prog Scene with their elaborate grooves and delicate chord movements, performed with a skill that belies their age.

To give listeners a taste of what they can expect from Lucy In Blue, Karisma Records have today released a single from In Flight. The single, titled Matricide can be downloaded and streamed at:

In Flight is an album that amply showcases Lucy In Blue’s ethereal harmonies and philosophical lyrics, which deal not only with the whole spectrum of human emotion, but also touch on more political themes as well.

Formed in 2013, Lucy In Blue released their self-titled debut album via Bandcamp in 2016, and, since then, the band’s young lineup of Arnaldur Ingi Jonsson on keyboards and vocals, Kolbeinn Þorsson on drums, Matthias Hlifar Mogensen on bass and vocals, and Steinþor Bjarni Gislason on guitar and vocals have been stunning crowds in their native Iceland with their soaring guitar solos and intense build-ups that take the listener for a ride through the psychedelic soundscapes and the progressive song writing styles of the 1970’s.

Lucy In Blue has a unique take on early psychedelic prog rock, and it’s a pleasure to invite you to go In Flight with them.

Lucy In Blue will play a release show at the Roadburn Festival 2019.

1. Alight, pt 1
2. Alight, pt 2
3. Respire
4. Matricide
5. Nuverandi
6. Tempest
7. In Flight
8. On Ground

Lucy in Blue, In Flight (2019)

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Virus Disband, with Particular Charm

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 19th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

If you felt the planet get a little more boring the other day, that’s because Virus broke up. They make a graceful exit some two years after what will be their final full-length, Memento Collider (review here), which was the Oslo troupe’s fourth LP since their start in 2000. I suppose the least you can say about what they accomplished in their time is that they were the kind of band who refused to follow any whims other than their own, and while their path took them into uncharted reaches of jazz, black metal, prog rock and who the hell knows what else, apparently they’ve gotten tired of confounding those who would try to place them into some genre or other and have decided to move on with their lives. Not gonna say I don’t get it. 18 years is a long time, folks.

And I’ll say that of all the we-were-a-band-now-we’re-not notifications I’ve read, Virus‘ stands among the most charming and the most appropriate to the band itself, from Einz‘s reference to Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy to Czral‘s inadvertent namedrop of Voivod. It’s good fun all the way through.

So long, Virus. Thanks for all the stylistic innovation:

virus (Photo by Trine and Kim)

A message from Czral. Some of you knew this, a lot of you didn’t. What can one say really? Thanks for all the fish!
– Einz

“Good evening y’all. Or good morning or afternoon, depending on where you are in the world which is made up of time-zones and landslides. We are now into our 18th year of existance, and as you all know, in 1918, in plymouth, Charlie Chaplin forgot his drivers-license at the chemist’s while simultaneously thinking about tunafish and batteries. An odd moment, yes, but it has reminded us (in Virus) that it’s time to throw in the towel..

It’s been 4 full-lengths, a demo and a mini-album and a few handfuls of gigs, plus the odd whale-shark encounter. Einz has become voivod of bulgaria (1155-1299), Plenum has become the prime minister of Equador while simultaneously working as a paediatrician in Ukraine. Czral has become a well known Elvis -and Bret Michaels-impersonator whilst working as a moped-vendor machine-operator in birmingham. So that’s why we’ve decided to lay down our deplorable riffs and beats and bass-lines, rather than being «on ice, don’t know what’s happening» -mode, for an unforeseeable future…

You know, you can’t devour an apple more than three times: the time you buy it, the time you put it on your kitchen-counter, and the time you decide to throw it away because it’s gone bad. Only thrice. But I digress.. My point is: at some point, you realise that what you set out to do has now been done, now, so now.. Thank you, bye bye, we were Virus.. “

Virus was:
Czral – guitars, vocals
Plenum – bass
Einz – drums

Virus, “Rogue Fossil” official video

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Review and Full Album Premiere: Tusmørke, Fjernsyn i Farver

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on April 30th, 2018 by JJ Koczan


Norwegian ultraprogger weirdos Tusmørke release their sixth album, Fjernsyn i Farver, May 4 via Karisma Records. The temptation is going to be to try to keep up with where the Oslo-based five-piece go on the follow-up/companion-piece to 2017’s Hinsides, but I’m not sure that’s either the way to go when it actually comes to listening or what the band intends for the listening experience. With strong currents of flute and various organs and keys, New Wave-style rhythms, bilingual lyrics and enough turns of mood and sound to be legitimately dizzying, I think Tusmørke on these six tracks are happy doing their own thing. They are way, way out there. Way gone.

Mind you, I’m not saying that an attempt to hold pace with Tusmørke on the six-track/43-minute outing isn’t worthwhile, and if you’re the type to keep tabs literally or figuratively on every move a band makes on a given record, then you should at least know that songs like the opening title-track, its proclamation-laced eight-minute compatriot “Kniven i Kurven” — the similar title construction of which to the track preceding and the album itself hardly feels coincidental — will keep you busy for some time to come. There’s a plan at work, and these songs are crafted rather than kitchen-sinked — elements like flute and Wurlitzer aren’t just thrown in. They serve no less purpose to the overall proceedings than vocals, guitar, bass or drums, and as the band careens between genres and a chiaroscuro thematic, they mostly depart the serene and classic progressive feel of Hinsides — the three-minute “Borgerlig Tussmørke” notwithstanding — in favor of a late-’70s, semi-electronic spirit that’s alt-universe danceable on “Kniven i Kurven” and given more to spacey swirl and Magma/Amon Düül II-ish headspinning on “3001,” which arrives ahead of the English-language “Death Czar,” Tusmorke Fjernsyn i farverthe penultimate inclusion, on which declarations about the cosmic egg from which the universe hatched and other such ideas are laid bare.

The title Fjernsyn i Farver translates to “color television,” and while I’m not entirely sure how that plays into the ideas explored about reflected light — also, my ignorant American ass speaks not a lick of Norwegian beyond a few choice words picked up from repeated exposure in black metal: “skog,” “svart,” etc. — the depths of the arrangements throughout the title-track, “3001” the percussively insistent “Death Czar” and the sense of reconciliation in the prog-boogie of closer “Tøyens Hemmellighet” give the record as a whole a richness of character that the utter hack in me almost can’t stop himself from calling “colorful.” Nonetheless, the sonic variety and diverse personality that Tusmørke adopt for this album and the ease with which they prove malleable to that intent, can only be considered a win on the whole. And while the exploratory complexity of the material is a central factor to the listening experience, neither is Fjernsyn i Farver without a sense of songwriting and craft at work. I alluded to it somewhere above, but this isn’t a happenstance collection, and the chorus of the title-track proves it as much as the obvious consideration put into the flowing instrumental grace and far-away echoes that bring “Tøyens Hemmellighet” to its end.

Rather, opaque though it might be especially for those of limited linguistic skills such as myself, Fjernsyn i Farver brims with purpose in its execution, and each element at work is a part of it. The active nature of their rhythm, the clarity of thought put into each track and the variety they present throughout may be difficult to trace step by step, but taken in its entirety, the sweeping breadth that ensues is both immersive and affecting in any language.

I have the pleasure today of hosting the full premiere of Fjernsyn i Farver below ahead of the release later this week. You’ll find it on the player here, followed by the best band quote I’ve gotten in a while to go with one of these streams, which actually goes a long way toward explaining what Tusmørke are up to conceptually here. There’s also more background from the PR wire, which includes what I assume is a complete list of the instruments used on these tracks.

Please enjoy:

Benediktator on Fjernsyn i Farver:

Fjernsyn i Farver is a companion piece to our last album Hinsides. All the songs came about in roughly the same mindframe and spacetime. We then sorted the songs into two categories, Death and Space. Hinsides was thus the death album (“death” is pronounced “dess” in Norwegian), while this is the space album, both sci-fi-wise and psychedelically.

Don’t expect the sound of ’67, though; we are more inspired by Goblin, Norwegian new wavers Kjøtt, Norwegian hardrockers Høst and bird watching. How come? Well, space is full of horror, hardness, rocks and waves. Also, Benediktator and Krizla are keen ornithologists. The world was hatched from the cosmic egg, laid by the bird of paradise. The yolk of our existence is still surrounded by the white, the blinding light that blocks our true sight. The question isn’t: Where do visions come from? The question is: Where do they go? The answer is, unfortunately, in Norwegian.

“Fjernsyn i farver” (“Colour Television”) is Tusmørke’s sixth full length album, loosely based on two concepts of light, time and reality. How everything we see is a reflection made by light from the sun hitting an object – The reflected light is registered by our eyes, but the reflection is also sent out in all other possible directions, travelling at the speed of light. The unobstructed reflections would travel forever onwards into space. If we could devise a means to move faster than light, we could overtake these reflections and view them again, seeing history backwards.

The second idea is that light is not seen as anything until it hits something and is reflected back, creating an image in colour for the human eye. So if there were no physical objects to reflect the light, there would be an eternal totality, a darkness of sorts, since light would not be seen.

With artwork by Linn Solveig Halvorsrød and design by Tom Korsvold, tracklisting on the album us as follows:

1. Fjernsyn i farver (Colour Television)
2. Kniven i kurven (The Knife in the Basket)
3. Borgerlig tussmørke (Civil Twilight)
4. 3001
5. Death Czar
6. Tøyens hemmelighet (The Secret of Tøyen)

Featuring members of WOBBLER, JORDSJØ and ALWANZATAR, TUSMØRKE’s lineup fields an almost dizzying variety of instruments, and is comprised of Benediktator on Bass, vocals, Glockenspiel and percussion, Krizla on Flute, vocals, electronics and percussion, The Phenomenon Marxo Solinas on Minimoog Model D, Korg CX3, William de Blaise on harpsichord, Steinway & Sons Grand Piano, Hohner Clavinet D6, Mellotron M400, Hammond C3, Wurlitzer 200 and Solina String Ensemble, and HlewagastiR on Drums and percussion.

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Tusmørke on Bandcamp

Karisma Records US webstore

Karisma Records EU webstore

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Himmellegeme Release Myth of Earth Oct. 6; New Track Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 20th, 2017 by JJ Koczan


If you’re anything like me, you might dig into ‘Hjertedød’ by Norwegian atmospheric/progressive heavy rockers Himmellegeme at the bottom of this post and have some real trouble not wanting to go further. The Bergen-based five-piece will release their debut album, Myth of Earth, on Oct. 6 via Karisma Records, so you don’t necessarily have to wait long to find out more about the record, but suffice it to say that the vibe of “Hjertedød” persists pretty fluidly throughout the 37-minute offering as a whole, which blends melancholy emotionalism and proggy poise to an effect that’s neither overly cold nor hyper-dramatic — the band clearly working to find a balance somewhere between ambience and human sensibility and, it would seem, succeeding. Plus they rock out a bit on “Kyss Mine Blodige Hender,” and that’s cool too.

This announcement actually came in a little while ago and kind of slipped under my radar, but the track and the release are right on, so yeah. See if it hits the same kind of chord with you as it did with me:


Himmellegeme – Myth of Earth

Himmellegeme release their new track “Hjertedød” from upcoming debut album Myth Of Earth!

It’s been lifted from the Norwegian outfit’s upcoming debut album Myth Of Earth which is set to arrive on October 6 via Karisma Records.

From the dark psychedelic shadows of Bergen, Norway, Himmellegeme emerge with their unique bittersweet debut album Myth of Earth.

Himmellegeme’s music is influenced by both psych rock and atmospheric prog rock, which together combine to create an otherworldly and timeless sound. With their heavy-hitting riffs, chilling melodies and melancholic lyrics, written both in Norwegian and English, Himmellegeme creates music that depicts past events in their own lives, as well as in the lives of others.

Himmelegeme’s lineup consists of Aleksander Vormestrand on guitars and vocals, Hein Alexander Olson on lead guitar, Lauritz Isaksen on keyboards, Erik Alfredsen on bass and Thord Nordli on drums. Together, they have spent the past year exploring different sounds, and putting the finishing touches on their extraordinary new material. The album was recorded at one of Bergen’s top studios, Broen Studios, and was produced by Anders Bjelland (Electric Eye / Hypertext) who also worked his sonic wizardry on the album.

1. Natteravn
2. Hjertedød
3. Myth of Earth
4. Breath in the air like fire
5. Kyss mine blodige hender
6. Fish
7. Fallvind

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