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JORDSJØ

Symphonic Prog • Norway


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Jordsjø picture
Jordsjø biography
Founded in Oslo, Norway in 2014

JORDSJØ is one of those bands that help me to keep my faith in Symphonic survival intact, because when I believe that there's nothing able to resurrect my capacity of surprise, this relatively new bands from countries like Norway take me by assault with original material that combines several genres creating a new breed of Symphonic.

Photo by Kai Mauseth

The band was formed around 2014 by Håkon Oftung (Vocals, flute, guitars & keys) and Kristian Frøland (Drums & Percussion) and their debut "Jordsjø" saw the light on September 6, 2016, and even though blended Symphonic with some sort of Prog Folk, immediately caught my attention.

In their next album "Jordsjø II", they retake the original path, but with less folk passages but a more aggressive edge that captured me as a fan.

Their third release (Well, a joint album with the Norwegian Synth Project BREIDABLIK) "Songs From The Northern Wasteland" didn't impressed me as much, being that it was oriented towards Electronic Prog, a genre that I don.t listen very often, but it was obvious that the magic touch was there and we only had to wait and see how they would evolve.

But the moment of truth came in January 2017 when they release the fantastic "Jord", a clearly Scandinavian album, with reminiscences of ÄNGLAGÅRD, one of my top then desert island bands, but in this case apart of the pristine symphonic, they blend different sounds and styles that make the genre richer.

As usual, only time will tell and the band will decide what path to take, but I?m sure they will keep providing us interesting music that will save Symphonic Prog from oblivion.

Iván Melgar-Morey ::::: Peru

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JORDSJØ discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

JORDSJØ top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.05 | 73 ratings
Jordsjø
2015
3.87 | 44 ratings
Jordsjø II
2016
3.19 | 32 ratings
Jordsjø / Breidablik: Songs from the Northern Wasteland
2016
4.02 | 220 ratings
Jord
2017
4.12 | 274 ratings
Nattfiolen
2019
3.91 | 96 ratings
Pastoralia
2021

JORDSJØ Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

JORDSJØ Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

JORDSJØ Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.65 | 35 ratings
Jordsjø
2017
4.20 | 5 ratings
Jord Sessions
2022

JORDSJØ Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

4.63 | 8 ratings
Nattfiolen (demo)
2018

JORDSJØ Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Nattfiolen by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.12 | 274 ratings

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Nattfiolen
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Review Nº 542

Jordsjo is a progressive rock band from Norway based in Oslo that was founded in 2014. Jordsjo is a duo featuring Hakon Oftung on vocals, guitars, flute and keyboards, and Kristian Froland on drums and percussion, with some additional musicians. Jordsjo is quite an unusual band. It's one of those bands that fly the flag of the classic traditional prog, the prog that is commonly called symphonic. Their apparent prog influences include Genesis, King Crimson and Porcupine Tree. However, they have also expressed admiration for classic horror films, soundtracks and Scandinavian folk music. Their music is earthy, ethereal, and dramatic. Flutes, piano, Hammond organ, and analogue synths blend in with acoustic and electric guitars, bass and drums providing an immersive experience that will bring joy to fans of the 70's prog, but also to more modern bands like Anglagard and Wobbler who have embraced this classic soundscapes.

The debut album of Jordsjo saw the light of the day in 2015. It connected the symphonic prog to some sort of prog folk. On their next album, "Jordsjo II", they took the folk parts back a little and instead turned up the rock parts. After an experience with the Norwegian synth project Breidablik, "Songs From The Northern Wasteland" released in 2016 that was oriented towards electronic prog, they released their album "Jord" in 2017, a typically Scandinavian retro-prog album with reminiscences of Anglagard and Sinkadus. Their next release was this album "Nattfiolen" released in 2019.

"Nattfiolen" sounds more cohesive and focused compared to its predecessor "Jord" and where there are truly some captivating moments to be discovered. On the top of that, the warm and organic vibe that resonated throughout "Jord" is also very much present on "Nattfiolen", but the latter boasts more refined and memorable compositions. With "Nattfiolen" the Norwegians basically continue exactly there, in "Jord", with the difference they may have withdrawn a little further into the forest. It comes to my mind the amazing album of Jethro Tull "Songs From The Wood", but darker, more atmospheric and clearly very Scandinavian. The rockier passages of "Jord" have been reduced a bit, so that "Nattfiolen" can claim an even more organic character that its predecessor. For Jordsjo, nature exemplifies their stage set. On "Nattfiolen", the association between nature and music is first and foremost apocalyptic and mystical, which to some extent applies to its predecessor. On "Nattfiolen" there's a perfect balance between folk and symphonic music.

The opening "Ouverture" fulfill adequately its role. It's a very short track, an extremely delicate beginning that greets the listener with gentle flute sounds that are carried along on piano swabs. These temptingly invite us to follow them into the forest. "Stifinner" waits for the listener to a warmly welcome with a pompous introduction to go on a journey of discovery. The song then undertakes a real wandering through some different moods and covers not only classic, atmospheric folk but also sometimes mystical, sometimes ominous soundscapes. "Solens Sirkulaere Sang" is a dark ominous piece reminiscent of the early King Crimson's works in its moody almost medieval atmosphere with its fluid woodwinds and a bit jazzy style, a reminiscent at the time of "Larks' Tongues In Aspic", where the native vocals sound very pleasant. "Septemberbal" is a nice successful interlude based on the acoustic guitar with a brief but rewarding classical guitar solo. This kind of interlude is followed by "Mine Templer II" that begins with some mysterious chords where the rhythm section takes care of the progressive momentum with its great fretless bass line. It features a gradual, piano driven buildup to a fluid, emotional guitar solo. This is a straightforward and playful track at the same time. "Til Varen" is the magnum opus of the album. It's a nine minute mini-epic that starts with its strange atmospheric melody played on piano and flute. After an organ driven jam section, we can hear an acoustic verse. It then shifts into a warm, gradually building instrumental section. Gradually, it closes with a chaotic, flute led jam, an impressive final, indeed. "Ulvenatt" is a slower piece, almost a ballad, with eerie, hovering organs and smooth infectious guitar melodies. It's subdued and minimalist in the means, free and dignified, using the same thread for five minutes. This is a wonderful goodbye, pretty different from the other six tracks, in order to calm emotions and prepare us for the inevitable goodbye.

Conclusion: Scandinavian countries have climbed several positions on my list of the best prog releases, consistently. In all of them I noticed excellent compositions, neat instrumentation and analogue sound. Here's the formula for any work that wants to please me. And Jordsjo isn't an exception. Their album "Nattfiolen" caught the attention of the entire progressive community in the world. The climate immediately takes us to the icy landscapes of northern Europe and has a lot of local folk with its mysterious air. It has a wonderful blend of folk and symphonic rock, with an omnipresent Mellotron sound and obvious hints from Anglagard, worth to discover. However, the basis of folk is brought out in a dynamic arranging mechanism and rich variations. It's a work to be tasted and its beauty is fully appreciated, really.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Nattfiolen by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.12 | 274 ratings

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Nattfiolen
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by ElChanclas

4 stars I've been a music lover since I remember and I can really appreciate various genres and sub genres, regardless their origin. But what really grabs me about music are songs, and when I specify songs I'm trying to separate music with lyrics from instrumental music' I like lyrics, I indulge from the effort musicians put on their compositions when they combine beautiful music with beautiful lyrics, happy or sad, angry or corky, romantic or not, empty or storytelling, I just love them all. My native language is Spanish, I'm from Venezuela, my second language is English, I live in the USA, and then I understand a little of Italian and some written French, but Norweian'.that's a different beast for me'that's why writing this review wasn't an easy task because not understanding what the band is transmitting lyrically somehow lowered my overall appreciation, however Jordsj''s music is so incredible that it just grabs your brain and takes you on a enchanted and unforgettable fairytale trip, a truly overwhelming experience. After the melodic short and flute-based Overture a powerful Stifinner steps in, acoustic guitar, flutes, mid tempo rhythmic section and those enchanting atoned Norweian vocal melodies, I'm easily sold. There's a Howe-like guitar tone here that accompanies the glorious flute before getting immersed in some dark and beautiful instrumental interlude to the symphonic passage, catchy and obscure as hell. Solens Sirkul're Sang prolongs the magic for another 7mins, tasty guitar licks and exceptional percussion with that same flute playfully adding layers of beauty and opening the path to the 70's inspired synths'it's inevitable to feel some Songs From The Woods inspiration around this song, around this album. The double bass sounds extraordinary and leads the rhythm before the slow repeating guitar-based creepiness takes over for the last minute or so, truth be said, this minute or so was the one that made me go over and listen the album again and again. Septemberb'l is a refreshing instrumental piece, basically acoustic (and medieval inspired) guitars to welcome the dramatic and exquisite Mine Templer II. Oftung's flute plying its really outstanding and is definitely a highlight for me. Vocal harmonies return with a piano driven melody, the guitars go backstage for a while and stay there, hauntingly making their way to challenge the flute, jazzy symphonic prog at its best! Til V'ren blends in after a short synth interruption, and the piano pleasantly introduces the new Nordic forest feast, allowing guitars, bass, flute and drumming to interact in a perfectly crafted symphonic ritual (bonfire included!)'I really wished I could understand what the duo is singing about, but my rough guess is that it must be about life, at least that's what it sounds like. Hammond galore, with the guitars and flute adding question marks to the symphony and Fr'land's drumming is so exquisite it deserves a place in the prog drumming emporium, alongside Bruford, Harrison, Peart, Collins and so on. Dramatic but beautiful music, complex but at the same time so easy to digest even with the language barrier. Definitely a top discovery for me! Ulvenatt brings closure to the ride, with repeating sober and beautiful guitar licks, very Camel-like but with its own qualities and technique, with a feeling of joy after the symphonic storm that preceded it, a well deserved rest for the extraordinary musicianship just witnessed. Chapeau and kudos to the band, looking forward to carefully listening and digesting the rest of their catalog! THE END!
 Pastoralia by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2021
3.91 | 96 ratings

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Pastoralia
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Complex, nuanced, many-faceted symphonic prog coming from Håkon Oftung and Kristian Frøland's folk/anachronistic predilections. This is the band/project's sixth full-length studio release since 2014.

1. "Prolog" (2:16) solo jazz guitar joined by organ-led jazz combo before turning proggy around 0:45. Interesting for introducing the essence of the album that is to follow: a ball of confusion! (4.25/5)

2. "Skumring i Karesuando" (7:37) so many changes, styles and themes! From Keith Emerson/Änglagård to Ian Anderson to monastic chant to FOCUS, WOBBLER, and CAMEL--every 20 seconds a new and drastically different motif and style is presented and or returned to. Astonishing! And this one works! (My favorite song from Jordsjø. Ever.) (14/15)

3. "Mellom Mjødurt, Marisko og Søstermarihånd" (6:30) gently finger-picked acoustic guitar is soon joined by Mellotron strings, synth and simply effected lead guitar before shifting to strums and flute with organ background. Drums and vocals join in as organ becomes the more dominant foundational instrument. Flute solos with the vocal melodies as does choral vocalise before next verse. In the third minute, jazz guitar takes the lead before an eerie GOBLIN-like passaged of percussion and bass clarinet and other background instruments/sounds. The band then gathers up together to play out a very WOBBLER-like passage until breaking down for solo acoustic guitar work in the fifth minute. Though the lyrics are sung in Norwegian, I very much like them--they feel sacred--like something that one might have seen performed in a monastery in the 17th or 18th Century. An instrumental JETHRO TULL-like passage then begins at 5:45 and plays out till the end. With repeated listens I hear more and more similarities to the musics being published by Greek Folk Prog band, CICCADA. Another top three song. (9.25/10)

4. "Pastoralia" (6:05) sounds like a simple song composed by Christoffer Gunrup's THE AMAZING but performed by (or with) GRYPHON or acoustic GENTLE GIANT--though the melodies are more akin to those used by modern Greek prog folk band CICCADA. (8.5/10)

5. "Fuglehviskeren" (2:32) a wonderful little jazzed-up folk piece--instrumental. This one could have had the support/contribution of Markus Pajakkala's UTOPIANISTI squad. My final top three song. (4.75/5)

6. "Beitemark" (6:01) another ancient-feeling song structure performed by a wild diversity of old (1960s) and older (Renaissance troubadour) instruments and vocal styles. A bit of old WOBBLER, GHOSTS OF JUPITER, and the most recent NEEDLEPOINT in this one. (8.75/10) 7. "Vettedans" (2:02) pure GRYPHON with this one (minus vocals) with anachronistic stringed, horn, and keyboard instruments. Nice. (4.5/5)

8. "Jord III" (10:34) solo piano, as if stuck trying to figure out his melody lines, turns into a full-band song at 1:25, using one of the piano's melody lines repeatedly until a solo jazz guitar takes over early in the third minute playing a coda into a new, more fully developed full-band. The song plays out as if the composer and principal instrumentalists were trying to work out some mental mathematical issues in counterpoint and melodic inversion and manipulation; the recording of a long étude. In the eight and ninth minutes, there is a SKE-like "conversation" of a particular melody--in parts--within a group of six or seven individual musicians (using their instruments). The final minute uses an organ to finalize with a continuous chord building of swirling notes. Interesting--especially intellectually--but hardly drawing me back for more "enjoyment." (17.25/20)

Total Time 43:37

These guys just keep getting better and better--their music and production maturing with each album release. The only thing maybe getting in their way now is their own penchant for cleverness.

B+/4.5 stars; a near-masterpiece of eclectic anachronistic progressive folk rock music worthy of inclusion in any prog lover's music collection.

 Pastoralia by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2021
3.91 | 96 ratings

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Pastoralia
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by Progfan97402
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Jordsjø doesn't seem to suffer Wobbler syndrome in making us wait six years for a new release and wondered if they fell off the face of the earth (like what happened to Wobbler between Rites at Dawn and From Silence to Somewhere, which made the three year wait between that one and Dwellers of the Deep a big shock). Jordsjø once again only made us wait two years for a new release, and the Elds Mark project didn't seem to get in the way (Elds Mark was essentially Jordsjø in disguise recording all instrumental prog folk). COVID didn't seem to stop them, although I'm sure it affected how they performed live. Pastoralia is the followup to Nattfiolen, a truly wonderful album that, in 2021 still holding up very well. Pastoralia has provided me a new challenge, as it was an album that didn't grab me as fast as previous ones. But as I give it more listens, I find it to be a great album, but perhaps the music is a bit less melodic and less accessible which is the reason this album could get dismissed in some circles. There are songs on this album that cover familiar Jordsjø ground, like "Skumring i Karisuando" and "Mellom Mjørdurt, Marisko og Søstermarohånd". Here Håkon Oftuns provides his usual assortment of guitar, flute, keyboards, and vocals with Kristian Frøland on drums. The Mellotron is the M4000D which is a virtual Mellotron keyboard unlike the M4000 (no "D") was tape driven. Still he uses the M4000D in a very convincing fashion. Speaking of which, the band goes into Gryphon territory on "Vettedans" which helps that what sounds like a bassoon is being used, when in reality it's tron bassoon. "Fuglehviskeren" sounds like a rehash of "Septemberbål" off Nattfiolen until you discover they are doing a more jazzy approach this time rather than doing a Nordic version of "Mood for a Day" (Steve Howe). "Prolog" is a great way to start the album because it's a full piece (they tended to intros that are brief, like some brief flute stuff or electronic bits) and they go a jazzy route on this piece. "Beitemark" has some nice dreamy use of electric piano having a bit of that Canterbury feel with that Jordsjø sound. The title track is different in that clarinet and violin are present so giving it some new ground never heard on a Jordsjø album. Violin is provided by Åsa Ree, who appeared on many other Norwegian albums, including Wobber's Dwellers of the Deep and Tusmørke's epic Nordisk Krim. The album closes with the 10 minute "Jord III". Is Jordsjø following in the footsteps of Focus where Focus recorded a bunch of "Focus" pieces on many of their albums, Jordsjø recording "Jord" pieces. Anyways "Jord III" is showing the band doing more complex music than before. Usually they revisit themes and melodies, here they don't. The band gets more experimental here, even some odd spoken dialog. The piece ends with some unsettling dissonant organ. So what it seems is there are some cuts on here they are covering familiar ground covered on Nattfiolen, but I really enjoy how they covered new ground. But they also took a less accessible path, so it took me quite a few more listens for the album to grab me. The reason for the four star rating instead of the five their other albums deserved is for that reason.
 Pastoralia by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2021
3.91 | 96 ratings

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Pastoralia
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by dougmcauliffe

2 stars While this really pains me to write, I felt this would be a good chance to write a not so positive review. I say this because most the time, if I'm writing a review on this website, it's either 4 stars or 5 stars. That's because I don't typically like to go out of my way to trash or tear down an album, and I'm gonna try not to tear this album to shreds while still being completely honest. The truth is, Jordsjo has really disappointed me on this new release. I've been a big supporter of the band ever since I blind purchased their album "Jord." To this day that record still grabs me and gets me so excited from start to finish, to the point where I've always considered them my second in command with modern Norwegian prog beneath the great Wobbler. Their last record, "Nattfiolen," was possibly their most popular and well received to date. I thought it was good, but not quite on the level of "Jord." However, there were some tracks on there that I really enjoy and still revisit. With that said, I did take some issue with some aspects of the record that unfortunately are really amplified on this release. On Pastorlia, I think there's just way too many ideas constantly clashing with one another. I feel like almost every single melody lacks a proper resolution. They've often been compared to Mirage-era Camel, which I can certainly see, Camel is my favorite band as my profile picture may suggest. However, though Camel would break into these twisting jazzy melodies and solos, they would always come together in the end for a pleasant melodic payoff. Here, every time I can feel it about to break out into just that, it sounds like the guitarist accidently played a fret below or above where he was supposed to. In turn, I just can't grab onto much here, the melodies are just not pleasing to the ear. This concept extends further into the actual song structures, which very often come off as touch-and-go. A lot of times as they'll jump from one passage to the next very sharply, lacking a good organic flow that this breed of mellower and lowkey prog really needs. Every now and then, it'll finally break out into a section of music I like, just to quickily simmer right back down into slow, mellow, background music. The vocals have never been the frontrunner or main driving force behind Jordsjos music, but here I think they fall particularly flat. For one, they also lack melody and seem to just be there for the purpose of being there. But mainly, a lot of times the instrumentation backing them up does very little to set the stage for the vocals or stand on its own with any sort of interesting playing. My favorite track is the 2 minute opener "Prolog," after that, the songs become very indistinguishable. As weird as it is to say, they sound very Jordsjo-by-numbers. Which isn't a distinct enough sound for me to be able to shrug off and jive with. The title track is one of the better songs, but it still suffers from having too much fat to trim leading to some real momentum issues. The closing track "Jord III" is probably all around the worst offender of everything I've criticized in this review, and it stings extra hard because the 1st two parts are both songs that I love dearly. I can sum it up in one sentence: they just don't develop their ideas on this album.

This record really makes me appreciate Wobbler for how well their songs flow and manage to keep you engaged with a strong grasp on the concept of melody. Now with all this said, DO NOT let me discourage you from checking out and potentially enjoying this album. This review is coming from the perspective of a fan, I really like this band and I've been trying to spread the word of their music for a couple years now. I will continue to listen to and support the band with their endeavors of future and past. I've only been a deep music fan for around 4-5 years now, and I can safely say this is one of the first times I've felt truly let down by a record from an artist that I love. However, I congratulate Jordsjo on pumping out another record and on finishing this much music with clearly a ton of work put into the writing, arranging and recording is a huge accomplishment and I'm grateful for this release. It just didn't do it for me, but it seems some other folks are enjoying it, so check it out!

2 Stars

 Pastoralia by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2021
3.91 | 96 ratings

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Pastoralia
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by friso
Prog Reviewer

4 stars I picked up on Jordsjo with their Nattfiolen LP, which became one of my favorite records of 2019. On that album they cemented their own style of retro prog in the vein of early Camel (think of a track like Mirage's Nimrodel / The Procession / White Rider). In 2020 the band released an instrumental album filled with mystical jazzy folk prog under the 'Elds Mark' banner. A fine record as well. Jordsjo's 2021 offering is actually a good mixture between these two records. The band has a sort of 'acoustic' roomy sound, though playing electric instrument most of the time. The band has a great flute player and the the fuzzy lead guitar suits the natural sound.

The compositions still have traces of symphonic prog, but this album often sounds more like prog folk in the vein of Gryphon. The band has an introverted way of playing and combined with the introverted Norwegian vocals it all sound quite mystical. Somehow this album sound very linked with nature, as if it is an ode to the woods and forest of Norway. The compositions are filled with interesting retro textures and sounds, all very sophisticated in a subtle way. Compared to Nattfiolen this album is even less filled with actual songs and perhaps a bit more abstract (a bit like technical fusion music sometimes). On the other hand the style of Jordsjo has become even more distinguished from other prog groups in the retro-prog field. The recording quality is fine and the vinyl comes with a lot of great artwork - to the point of almost justifying a purchase because of the sheer beauty of the physical album.

With 'Pastoralia' Jordsjo again shows itself to be one of the better and more interesting progressive rock groups of the day. On every album the band manages to refine its craft and become more distinguished, seemingly without giving a care about pleasing today's prog crowd too much. For my own personal taste this album lacks some moments that really grasp me on an emotional level. Instead I feel more like witnessing something very magical, but also a bit distant. Still a good contender for best album of the year so far and must-have for listeners of symphonic prog, retro prog and prog folk.

 Nattfiolen by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.12 | 274 ratings

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Nattfiolen
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by Muskrat

5 stars Those who adore Scandinavian symphonic folk prog, and who have always been put off by the dark and adventurous side of the music of Anglagard and the early Wobblers, will be delighted to discover this album.

With "Nattfiolen" the Norwegian duo Jordsjø seems to have found their way and finally offers a matured and less eclectic style than on their previous albums. This duo is moreover more of a solo project where the leader sings and plays various instruments accompanied by a drummer / percussionist. Håkon Oftung is an accomplished musician, equal in talent on keyboards, guitars and flute. Hence a perfect balance in the instrumentation of the pieces. The compositions are pastoral, imbued with Scandinavian folk, often close to Anglagard (like at 3:30 on the track "Stifinner") or the first Wobblers, without, I repeat, the complicated and adventurous side of these. The melodies all in finesse, the delicate arpeggios and the pure sound of the electric guitar à la Latimer, bring to mind the Camel of "Snow Goose", or the German band Rousseau (listen to "Le Grand Rêveur", or "Entrée" on Flower in Asphalt). Finally, singing in Norwegian reinforces the romantic and sensitive atmosphere of the music.

A masterpiece of the kind that deserves its five stars without hesitation. Keep it up guys, everything is perfect !

 Nattfiolen by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.12 | 274 ratings

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Nattfiolen
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by friso
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Take the most mystical moments of Camel's 'Mirage' album, add some of that artistic/authentic PFM songwriting, a bit of Robert Fripp's clean jazz-guitar tone, some haunting flutes in the minor-6 vibe, and finally some moody nordic folk singing and you'll know what to expact from this release of the Norwegian group Jordsjo. To my knowlegde this is the most imaginative and honest sounding retro-prog effort ever made. It captures that moments of seventies prog where the atmospheric power and instrumental story telling was at its most potent. The amount of musical ideas offered on this fourty minute record is quite high, yet the band keeps their medium long compositions meaningful and descriptive of distinct atmospheres. The very skilled musicians of Jordsjo have an amazing interplay - the way vocals, flutes, jazz-guitar (love that tone!) and organ/mellotron change lead feels almost like a dance. Moreover, the band has an amazing timing for when to introduce an new theme. A final compliment for the mix on this record. 'Nattfiolen' has THAT sound. That warm, mysterious, lively and almost unhumanly perfect sound. The gatefold sleeve of the vinyl edition is beatifully designed and adds to the listening experience.

In my opinion this album should not only be consideres a top 3 record of 2019 (with 'Resistance' and 'Amazonia'), but also among the best retro-prog efforts of the 21th century. Much more lively and grasping than - for instance - Anglagard or Wobbler.

 Nattfiolen by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.12 | 274 ratings

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Nattfiolen
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by Windhawk
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Norwegian band JORDSJO was established sometime around 2014, and following a couple of self-released albums the band was picked up by Norwegian label Karisma Records who released their official debut album "Jord" in 2017. Later on their label compiled the band's earlier material into the compilation album "Jordsjo", and now in 2019 Jordsjo the band have returned with their second album "Nattfiolen". Staying put with Karisma Records as their label of choice.

For those who know and love their vintage era symphonic progressive rock, Jordsjo is a band they need to note down on their list of bands to explore. With references like Bo Hansson, early Eloy, possibly Camel and probably quite a few more candidates, their Earthen, mystical symphonic progressive rock is a delightful trip into the lesser explored sounds of the early 1970's, and one I imagine will be found desirable by just about anyone that finds such a description to be interesting.

 Nattfiolen by JORDSJØ album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.12 | 274 ratings

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Nattfiolen
Jordsjø Symphonic Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars Jordsjø are based around Håkon Oftung (vocals, guitar, flute, Hammond M100, Mellotron, Clavinet D6, ARP Pro) and Kristian Frøland (drums, triangle, percussion) with some additional guests, and this is their fifth album in just four years so they are incredibly prolific for this style of music. This is an album out of time, as the guys refuse to sit within one particular genre of progressive rock and instead move throughout the scene, bringing it together in something which feels quite lightweight at times and massively complex at others. Just by looking at how plays what on the album, I expect from will discount Frøland as "just" the drummer and that this is based all around Oftung, but while that is obviously true in some respects, here is a musician who I would expect to be as happy playing jazz as he is prog, as he is way more over the kit than many would expect.

But given that virtually everything else is performed by Oftung (although a special mention should be made of Christian Meaas Svendsen ? he may only play his double bass on the one song, "Mine Templer II", but it has quite an impact), it is his vision which carries it through. It is hard for the listener to pick his main instrument, as at times it appears to be piano, at others keyboards, while his guitar and bass playing is superb and his flute sublime. It is unusual to find a musician who appears so content on woodwind, stringed instruments and keyboards, and don't forget he also provides vocals. Vocals are in Norwegian, which I am really happy about as it adds an additional element to a non-native speaker such as myself.

It isn't unusual for there to be sections where there is very little bottom end to the arrangements, no bass and very little foundation, which moves the music in a quite different direction. Even though none of the songs are particularly lengthy (just one more than nine minutes in length, and the album itself is less than forty), there is always room for the music to shift and change considerably throughout. Jordsjø are a new name for me, even though they have been around for a while, and here is yet another I will be adding to my watchlist as this is a very strong album indeed which is highly recommended to any old school progheads.

Thanks to ivan_melgar_m for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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