Lumsk - Fremmede Toner

Lumsk – Fremmede Toner

Anyone who knows me, or if you read my reviews, will know that I am often drawn to the music that comes out of Norway. I saw this album and was interested. Now this band, Lumsk, was new to me, and I naturally thought that this might be their first album, so imagine my surprise to find out that they were formed in Trondheim during 1999. It appears that they have been on hiatus for the last fifteen years, between the release of their third album and this, their fourth.

The songs contained here have been inspired by the works of poet André Bjerke, as well as translations of works from other poets. They are based on Norwegian translations, alongside English and German versions. Now here is where it gets interesting: the song lyrics can repeat in all the different languages, but they are always set to different music. There are some links between the music for the different languages which helps to connect them in a way, but mostly it is different, with maybe the music reflecting the difference in the languages used. So I guess you could say the twelve tracks on the album are six pairs of tracks, the first being in Norwegian and the next in its original form of either English or German.

Lumsk’s music is a blending of Nordic folk influences with prog and metal, and they have continued this on the new album. The music tends to have a harsher tone at times, but is often softened by the lovely vocals from Mari Klingen. She has a wonderful vocal range which fits in well with the gentler moments as well as the more forceful, heavier ones. The playing of all the instruments throughout is clear and precise, and it’s all excellently paced. The addition of the violin on a number of tracks gives another dimension to their sound.

The opening track Det Døde Barn, for example, begins with a gentle piano accompanying Mari’s voice, the tempo gradually increasing throughout the song as other instruments join in. At around three-and-a-half minutes, the band unleash themselves to deliver a heavier yet still melodic ending. This theme is an indicator of the feel of the album, a good mix of gentler melody and atmosphere coupled with power and energy as required, before the violin adds interesting textures and sounds.

Most of the tracks have Mari taking the lead vocal, but there is an exception on A Match, which begins with a gentle, clear guitar and the vocals from Epson Warankov Godø before the drums join in along with Mari’s vocals to form a duet. Again, the song gradually builds towards a heavier tinged ending in another well paced song.

This is not a straight heavy album, it is full of beautiful musical moments, but utilises a more powerful edge when required, with a fine demonstration of excellent song structuring and pacing. It appears that the band’s long lay off between albums has paid great dividends and they have returned with an album full of quality which creates an interesting and wonderful listen.

01. Det Døde Barn (4:50)
02. En Harmoni (5:11)
03. Avskjed (2:32)
04. Under Linden (4:30)
05. Fiolen (2:20)
06. Dagen Er Endt (8:30)
07. Das Tote Knd (6:13)
08. A Match (4:30)
09. Abschied (4:13_
10. Under Der Linden (4:10)
11. Das Veilchen (3:44)
12. The Day is Done (8:24)

Total Time – 59:18

Espen Warankov Godø – Keyboards, Piano, Hammond Organ, Church Organ, Vocals
Epstein Garberg – Guitars
Siv Lena Waterloo Laugtug – Violin
Espen Hammer – Bass
Vider Berg – Drums
Roar Grindheim – Guitars
Mari Klingen – Vocals

Record Label: Dark Essence Records
Country of Origin: Norway
Date of Release: 5th May 2023

Lumsk – Facebook | Bandcamp