Musikkfest Oslo is certainly one of the most unique musical experiences out there. Featuring a host of Norwegian artists, musicians and DJs, many of which have found an audience on the world stage, it’s an enriching experience and almost seems crazy that it doesn’t cost a cent. Jæger ritually plays its part each year, bringing an electronic, and club dimension to the festival and this year the booking department has turned much of its focus on the stage with a host of live acts dominating our schedule. We took it upon ourselves to unpack them for you here, and introduce a fair few rising and established talents here…
Finnebassen swaps the DJ booth for the stage in an exclusive live show for Musikkfest. Not quite unfamiliar territory for the Norwegian producer/DJ, it is a fairly new way to experience a Finnebassen performance. We’ve know his idiosyncratic productions and his incredibly enigmatic sets, but the stage show is one only reserved for unique occasions, a most recent set during the launch of our new pizza concept in April, where Finnebassen was joined by Kai Gundelach on stage. We’re told he’ll be bringing Martin Heff on this occasion, a musician that has worked closely with Finnebassen in the past, and who joined Finnebassen last year for a special Sunkissed: Live performance. Finnebassen’s DJ sets usually bring large crowds to our basement, and his live show is sure to be no different as we get a glimpse at a more intimate side to his work. Where melodic refrains exist amongst driving percussive patterns, who’ll find Finnebassen’s music, but in the context of a live show, we’ve seen it practised at more reserved tempos, bounding with a tactile emotion, but with a later timeslot the platform is wide open to take it very close to boundaries of a Finnebassen DJ set. Read an interview with Finn here and give his latest track, Soul a listen as an apt thermometer.
Charlotte Bendiks is no stranger to Jæger’s stage and has opened up for Anna Schneider most recently in our basement with her live show. With releases on Mental Overdrive’s Love OD label and Cómeme she’s received international recognition for her percussive productions that tap into something primal in the dancer. In an interview with this blog from last year, she unpacks the ideas behind her music and her sets through the term body music, as “playing with sensual physicality”. Charlotte: ”Music has always been an audiovisual physical experience for me, I want the frequencies to hit my body and the rhythms to move me, and I want to move everybody on the floor.” Music that bounds in texture through contrapuntal rhythms playing off and against each other creates a very energetic pretense while languid melodies and a palpable sensuality to her sound.
Pieces of Juno
Pieces of Juno makes her debut at Jæger for Musikkfest, rounding out a very pop-centric stage this year. Her music has beguiled and entranced audiences since 2015 with a few select EPs and singles that have found their way out into the world, most notably through the popular tv series Skam. With cinematic flair, Pieces of Juno creates provocative pop songs from electronically orchestrated sorrows and burlesque narratives that is most accurately captured through the title of her latest EP Kalopsia. Behind her expressive and delicate voice, Pieces of Juno comforts something sinister in her music that only breaks to the surface in the airy, droning dissonances that swim in and out of an ambient fog.
A familiar face at Jæger, who can most often be spotted amongst the Mandagsklubben crew, WNDR’s star has been on the rise for some time, and his efforts have not gone unnoticed. Freshly signed to Sony music, his latest single “Human” has seen those streaming play counts tick over like a clock on Doc Brown’s Delorean. His music incorporates elements of House, Pop & R&B, exploring trends from the most obscure corners of the musical globe and channeling them into effervescent dance floor and radio creations for a varied audience. The futuristic artist brings his newly inaugurated live show to Musikkfest this year and we’re sure “Human” will make an appearance during his set.
Baya is currently immersed in a tour for his double EP, Oslo-Harlem, a release that dealt with concepts of masks and his relationship with his father’s visual art work. An enigmatic pop star from stage to record, Baya’s music is a fluid dialogue between accessible melodies and pop arrangements and music for the dance floor. There’s a conscious engagement with the music through subliminal concepts that we’ve unravelled before in an interview with the artist, while at the same time finding a way to engage at an attainable level with an audience. He’s developed Oslo – Harlem into an incredible live show, travelling with an impressive stage installation, where his father’s artworks combine with pop art to create a spectacular visual experience adding yet more dimensions to the extensive ideas behind the striking image of the mask.
The larger than life Sex Judas is a character that germinated in the fantastical world that is Tore “OST” Jazztobakk’s mind. Tore lets his imagination run free with Sex Judas whose tawdry sexual urges and fantasies are brought to song through elements of House and Disco. With releases on Marketing- and Optimo Music, Sex Judas has found a large audience, to whom he likes to indulge in his most debauched fantasies on the dance floor. With a release slated on Optimo later this year, including a remix from Øyvind Morken and still enjoying a small discography, the stage is Sex Judas’ and his live shows are as entertaining as they are invigorating and lustful. Never before has a fat black man from the south been so convincingly channeled by a skinny white guy from Norway.
Mutual Intentions are back again this year to do their hybrid live, beats and DJ set, taking up the largest chunk of our early programming, with their extended artist/DJ/producer collective. Last year they came off the back of a Jazz cats album and invited Eikrem along for a show that lit up your courtyard in the late afternoon. Featuring Ivan Ave, Fredfades, Yogisoul, Ol’ Burger Beats, Mest Seff, Jawn Rice and SRAW on the roster, with a newly released album from Fredfades and an upcoming release by Ivan Ave, the Mutual Intentions crew have some new material to get out there. It’s been a busy year for them with releases by Yogisoul, Fredfades and Ol Burger beats; a Boiler Room episode; and some really memorable visual moments like that stricking Ivan Ave video for “Every I” courtesy of Hans Jørgen Wærner, Moe Chakiri and Erik Treimann. The scene that Mutual Intentions have built up around themselves certainly feels at its most liveliest yet, and we certainly can’t get enough of it here at the blog and have really enjoyed interviews with Fredafades and Ivan Ave as well as releases from the Fredfades and Yogisoul. We’ll let Fred play us out…