Rikke Normann (Norway) – Spare Key (single)

Reading time: 2 minutes Anyone following this publication will know by now that I have a lot of time for Rikke Normann. When we ran the rule over her EP ‘The art of being home alone’ back in August, a collection of previously released songs in acoustic format, it was evident that she has a voice that carries a […]

Ivan Blomqvist (Sweden/Norway) – Tomheten (single/track from forthcoming album)

Reading time: 2 minutes If there’s one certainty it’s that you’ll always get high quality releases from Oslo-based label Jazzland Recordings. This time it’s the turn of Ivan Blomqvist, known both as a member of the band Rohey and for his solo projects. Another certainty is that the jazz output from Norway is also always of a high standard. […]

Josefin Winther (Norway) – Walking home (single)

Reading time: 2 minutes Josefin Winther is one of those artists who get a lot of exposure in these pages but it is fully justifiable. She’s a skilful song writer and performer, capable of writing compelling work in both Norwegian and English. Last time out she released her version (in English) of a song, ‘Silent Storm’ she had written […]

Nordic Sad (Sweden) – ’Here to survive’ (single/track from EP Unity)

Reading time: 2 minutes Feeling down in the dumps? Need a bit of cheering up? Then don’t come here. I haven’t heard of a more aptly-named band than Nordic Sad even though the five countries, and especially Sweden, are replete with melancholia. Aren’t they, Lars?This track from their recently (November 25th) released EP, ’Unity’ and which was also their […]

Lowly (Denmark) – You are good and I love you (single/track from forthcoming album)

Reading time: 2 minutes Lowly is a new band to me but the quintet is well known in Denmark where they are classed as dream pop experimentalists. This track, ‘You are good and I love you’, is the second single to be released from their forthcoming album ‘Keep up the good work’ (17th February 2023 via Bella Union), following […]

Hög sjö (Sweden) – Gnosienne no. 6 (EP, forerunner to a debut album)

Reading time: 2 minutes Hög sjö translates as ‘high lake’ in Google. But ‘heavy sea’ according to the press release. Perhaps I’ll middle it and go for ‘heavy lakes’ even if he does make light work of this three-track EP, ‘Gnosienne no. 6’, which is intended as a taster for his eponymous debut album will be released on January […]

JUNI HABEL (Norway) – Rhythm of the Tides (single/track from forthcoming album)

Reading time: 2 minutes JUNI HABEL hails from rural Southern Norway where she lives in a converted school house with her grandmother. It was here, in an old classroom, a bedroom and a hallway, that she recorded her new album ‘Carvings’, replete with songs described as “odes to life and death, the beauty of belonging and human kinship with […]

Nightwish (Finland) live at Resorts World Arena, Birmingham, 22 November

Reading time: 7 minutes It has been four long years, a twice postponed tour, a pandemic and several major events within the band since Nightwish last visited these shores, but to say that this show was “worth waiting for” would be the understatement of the century. Structurally, Nightwish lost male vocalist and bass guitarist Marko Hietala early in 2021, […]

Maja Kristina (Sweden) – Someone I used to know (single)

Reading time: 2 minutes Having just watched a bore of a World Cup opening game I was looking for a pick-me-up and I didn’t anticipate it would come in the form of a Christmas song, namely Maja Kristina (Strömstedt)’s ‘Someone I used to know.’ Truth to tell though, it isn’t a Christmas song as we know it Captain, rather […]