Norway - Full Moon 48 - 09/13/00
Happy To Get Her
Racing Junior / Tuba
Ai Phoenix made their debut last year with an album called Film (Dbut Records). Now,
just before their second album, they release a vinyl only (10") mini album with recordings from
the last couple of years. The motion pictures continue. In slow-mo.
Ai Phoenix hail from Bergen, and (including Monopot and Sister Sonny) it seems
like there's a new wave on the western coast of Norway. A wave of dim-lighted slow-rock; quiet
of nature, but with a strength in heart. Music-wise Mazzy Star has been one of the names dropped
as a slight reference, because of the vocals of Mona Mørk. Others have said Labradford, Cowboy
Junkies, and Leonard Cohen. Another reference could be Swedish band Ingy.
opens the record and is spinning on with a certain staccato-ness topped with Miss Mørk's
dark (mørk translates dark in English, believe me!), mostly whispering-talking voice.
Sur toi Marie, with its French lyrics, is more like a cabaret song. On The Shore
Sometime Before they're pairing Mona's voice with Robert's (the rest of the band are:
Patrick and Espen on guitars, Bosse on drums) in double-vocals, which they do on
several songs. And it fits the music really good. On The Carpet Said Hello it's like
they go more into lo-fi-countyr-ish territory, slightly á la Smog or Palace a.k.a. Bonnie
'Prince' Billy. Casio Clay is a funny title for a song, and ends this little 6-song-taster
(there's more to come) quite delicately. That said my definite favorite song on Happy To Get
Her is the stunningly beautiful Sitting On My Latest Dream. Ai Phoenix will get the
chance to present their music in England this September. Their introvert, but highly suggestive
semi-gloomy pop can make it. I hope so, because they've proven to deserve it.
Second album, The Driver is Dead, is already out and will be reviewed next month. Till then:
Get happy together with Happy To Get Her!
Distribution in Norway: Tuba!
Copyright © 2000 Håvard Oppøyen