We’re flying off to Norway tomorrow. That if anything is exciting! Sticking to the theme we decided to list our favorite music from our nordic neighbour. This one is full of wild cards since none of us really has a lot of Norwegian artists in our back pockets. Without further ado: Music from Norway!
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1. Dimmu Borgir – Mourning Palace
This list would’t be a true Norwegian list without Dimmu Borgir! I really fell in love with “Enthrone Darkness Triumphant” when I first heard it. It’s dark,melodic,raw,agressive… Even today when I hear Mourning Palace I will get a really nice nostalgy trip back to my teens! (that’s like two years ago, right??) … I know Dimmu represents the “satanic” side of music, but I really don’t care if music is religious or not. Good song is always a good song. If it sticks, it sticks.
2. Kvelertak – Spring Fra Livet
This one is really interesting. Combining punk, black metal, Norwegian sung lyrics and six band members. Only band that I really listen that sings in Norwegian…. I don’t understand the lyrics, but I really like the songs and how the band sounds. I cannot really say any other band that will sound like Kvelertak, and that’s rare today! Their album artwork is awesome also, I really recommend that you check em out too. Or with todays CD-selling business, GO AND BUY ONE! 🙂
3. Ylvis – Stongehenge
Finland isn’t the only country with great comedy. If you haven’t heard Ylvis’s songs you really should. I know this isn’t “a real band” but lets face it. This guy can really sing, and is funny as hell. You should also check out his other songs, but I quarantee that this one (check the music video also) will make you spill milk from your nose!
4. Emperor – I Am The Black Wizards
Nowadays it’s almost ironic to state that Norway is the cradle of black metal. My first touch to the genre was this very song. At least it was the touch that got me into it. The guitar lead in the main riff is a legend in my books. The chaotic madness of Emperor is simultaneously scary and intriguing. Besides Emperor I’ve listened to a bunch of other black metal orchestras, too. Black metal has to have an extreme and a bit uncomprehensive edge. Emperor has remained extreme in a way that it’s still very challenging to listen through to a whole album of their music.
5. Ulver – Funebre
Ulver is an unique band for the chilling moments. Starting out as a black metal band they quickly evolved to play mysterious, ambient-like music with vibes of electronica. Shadows Of The Sun is my favorite album simply because it has the least electronica parts and the gloomiest songs. I also noticed that they have a new album out, which I will check out immediately! I recommend this to be served in a dark and relaxing atmosphere. At least it helps you recover from Emperor.
6. Edvard Grieg – Peer Gynt – Solveig’s Song
I didn’t want to fill my list with metal, but found out that my knowledge of Norwegian non-metal bands is almost non-existent! After a bit more finding out I recalled my favorite classical composer, who happens to be from the very country we’re writing about! During my years at the lower elementary school I was lucky enough to have a teacher, this old fellow with a mad passion for classical music, whose music lessons were nothing but piano and strings from an endless pile of vinyl discs. Being one of his favorites, Grieg became well known to me. Grieg’s most famous work Peer Gynt was a heavy piece to explore through, scene by scene. It’s a story of a guy named Peer traveling the world and returning to his loved one Solveig, of whom this sad yet hopeful track is about. I didn’t want to make the obvious choice by picking “In the Hall of the Mountain King” or “Morning Mood”, which two you should check out if you already haven’t!
7. Donkeyboy – Drive
I’m gonna kick this one off with a favorite from last Summer. I heard this band on the radio, and while I rarely pay attention to what they play on the radio, this one really stuck into my ear. The song wasn’t actually this one but the other hit song Pull Of The Eye from the same album. When listening to the album though, Drive quickly rose as my favorite. The uncompromisingly poppy songwriting and a slight 90’s edge stroke straight to my weak point.
8. Kaizers Orchestra – Hjerteknuster
Kaizers Orchestra is probably the most Norwegian band I know. Norwegian in the sense that they actually sing in Norwegian. I know and listen to a lot of artists that are from Sweden and sing in Swedish but Norwegian artists that sing in Norwegian are a somewhat rarity. Kaizers Orchestra is one of those bands that really succeed in sounding like no one else. I have no idea what they sing about but I love the way it sounds.
9. Röyksopp – Röyksopp Forever
To me Norway is the land of two music genres: Black Metal and Electornica. I’ve burned through some intense Black Metal albums in my days but recently I’ve found myself listening to the latter of the genres. That’s why I’m going to end my part of the list with another recent favorite. Röyksopp is an awesome sounding electronic duo that has some cool collaborations with other known artists. This one is a great song by it’s own right though. And a different take since it has no vocals at all. Actually Röyksopp Forever is closer to a film score than electronica in my books. But as always, genres don’t matter – the music does! And this one is nothing but good music.
10. Gluecifer – Ducktail Heat
I remember Gluecifer from the time I was searching for similar bands to Backyard Babies and Hellacopters. Gluecifer toured with swedish bands like Hellacopters during the nineties, and when you start listening to this one you’ll notice quite soon why. This is pure action rock in the same style as Hellacopters was in payin the dues, while dregen was still in the band. Ducktail Heat is a straightforward rock song filled with tons of energy, it doesn’t really bring anything new on the table, but works as it is.
11. Turbonegro – The Age Of Pamparius
The Age Of Pamparius opens the album Apocalypse Dudes, which was the first and only Turbonegro album I’ve heard. Usually I’m not into about long tracks, but this time I can make an exception. Main reason for this is the awesome main riff of the song. It’s similar octave based riff as the chorus riff in Rise Against’s Behind Closed Doors, which I happen to like a lot. These guys have also very strong garage rock vibes – the lead guitar in chorus is very hellacopterish alongside with 8th note piano riff and tambourine in the last chorus.
What I definitely like about Turbonegro are their turbojugends, which have spread all over the world. It’s almost impossible for me understand how they did it! My favorite and strangest turbojugend moment was when I saw guys with Turbojugend Olari jackets in Provinssirock some years ago.
12. The Kovenant – Spaceman
I don’t even like this song, but at least the chorus tries to be good.
Briefly in Finnish:
Tällä viikolla soittolistan aiheena on Norja. Norja siksi, että lähetään sinne keikalle huomenna! Aikamoista sillisalaattia tää lista. Ihan senkin takia, ettei meistä kukaan oo mikään norjalaisen musiikin ammattilainen. Mutta ehkä se tekee tästä sitäkin kiinnostavamman.
Tsekkaa soittolista ja perustelut yltä.