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Tusmørke - Bydyra CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

3.15 | 27 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars This album has two preceding reviews, both surprisingly favourable 4-stars. Therefore I feel I have to bring the more negative point of view as a warning to anyone who is trying to decide whether to buy the CD or not. The crucial question is: can you imagine enjoying a happy-go-lucky CHILDREN'S MUSICAL (in Norwegian), with the children's choir backing on most of the openly naiive songs? Because, if you are generally not a friend of children's music, chances are that this music will irritate you too. This is not progressive rock for adult listeners, this is primarily children's music. Yes, the instrumentation does lean towards Prog Folk, there are flutes, Glockenspiel, Mellotrons and vintage synthesizers, but the vocals are VERY central and VERY pure children's music, not only for the presence of children's choir but also for the irritatingly naiive singing style of Benediktator (as the Tusmorke vocalist and multi-instrumentalist wants to call himself). The few vocal-free moments and perhaps also some choir- free moments with B's vocals only, are like glimpses of an album that a Prog Folk fan might wholeheartedly enjoy.

Some background information: the music is taken from two children's musicals staged at flautist-vocalist Krizla's workplace, a primary school in Oslo, in 2015 and 2016. For Tusmorke it "has been one of several long-term plans for expanding the creative output of the band into new areas". The musical was to be "about urban wildlife, the skyrocketing prices of housings in Oslo, the financial crisis, social issues, global warming, and good and bad magic." The main characters in the story are some animals that lose their home tree, or something like that. Some songs like 'Rottekongen' (= Rat King) are extremely irritating in my opinion. The choruses are very very simple and heavily repeated. Moreover, nearly all songs are rather similar with each other. I'm afraid I'm sounding like a children's hater -- which I'm definitely not -- but to me the continuous presence of the kid's choir, and the childish singing style of Benediktator, really eats the music's potential.

Frankly, I have listened to better children's music -- and also more progressive; especially Finnish children's music from the early seventies -- when it comes to the eclectism in compositions. The playing, ie. the Prog Folk arrangement, is charming, but unfortunately it has a minor role in this music. What a pity! Subjectively I can't rate this musical recording any better than two stars as I choose not to re-listen it ever again, and I bet that an average fan of Tusmorke's 'adult' output will be disappointed. But if you're a friend of children's music and enjoy the plain bright naivety in it, or if you wish to find some prog-related children's music for your kid(s), then by all means get it.

Matti | 2/5 |


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