Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Two For Your Ears: Housemate - Atlanter

Housemate - Wild Gardens.

Background promo - Housemate has never been one to conform to musical genres and "classification". A self-taught disciple in the craft of genre-splicing, "Wild Gardens" embodies the contrasting influences and conflicting diversity personified by his Stop Out Records back catalogue and live shows.

'Wild Gardens' coolly dissolves from its eccentric outset into a backdrop of acidic jazz trombones and cinematic melodies to disclose a calculated trapstep killer ominously lurking underneath its kooky leftfield exterior.

From the opening notes 'Wild Gardens' was one of those pieces of music that gained my total attention. Different, and yes a little eccentric, however immensely pleasing. With so many directions being taken, they somehow come together as a strange, but wonderful piece.


Atlanter - Jareeze (Radioedit).

Background promo - Atlanter washed over Norway like a tidal wave in 2013. Their debut album, Vidde, became a favourite among both record buyers and critics, with its beautiful and natural mix of African desert blues, American delta blues and German “motorik” from the 70s. “Vidde blues” was a new and self-made term at that time - a term that summed up the quartet’s wish of uniting music from several corners of the world in “Norwegianised” and timeless attire. They fully succeeded. “Atlanter are a straightforward pleasure”, the NME wrote about their debut album. With a Norwegian Grammy nomination and several high positions in some critics’ summaries of the music year 2013, we’re allowed to have high expectations. The Atlanter wave is here again.

‘Jewels of Crime’ is both a natural sequel and a long step forward for the quartet. A conceptual album about diamonds and pearls. An album that Atlanter have spent three long years recording, but that really has provided the musical gems to befit the subject matter.

Arild Hammerø (guitar, vocal), Jens J Carelius Krogsveen (guitar, vocal), Jonas Barsten (drums) and Morten Kvam (bass) have all the time kept and developed their astounding knack for improvisation, their joy of playing and their intuitive musical understanding, which also in a live setting is central to the band’s sound. They’re proving on ‘Jewels of Crime’ that they also master the art of songwriting completely. Jewels of Crime will be released on Jansen Plateproduksjon on 22 January 2016.

'Jareeze' reminds me of the days of jazz-rock in the sense of just how tight and funky the music is. Vocally it has a more indie feel to it. Overall it is a fascinating taster for the new album, which on the strength of this, promises to be, quite something.


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