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Karokh is the name of new Norwegian experimental rock band featuring unique vocalist Ina Sagstuen from the anarchistic outfit Skadedyr, guitarist Christian Winther, bassist Magnus Skavhaug Nergaard and drummer Jan Martin Gismervik. All three form trio experimental-improvising Monkey Plot. (Winther and Nergaard also play together in Ich Bin N!ntendo, trumpeter Thomas Husmo Litleskare, who leads his own quartet, along with two synthesizer players.
Karokh's debut album was recorded after extensive touring since the bands inception in 2010 and after the band established its highly personal and bold sonic envelope. This album begins and ends with two moving songs. "Flowers Every Day" is built on a catchy, repetitive rhythmic attack of the guitar, bass and drums and the excited delivery of Sagstuen, who does not attempt to adapt her Anglo- American accent to her reciting of the English words. The rhythmic theme is thickened with the sounds of the trumpet and vintage synthesizers, till it climaxes in a distorted guitar solo and Sagstuen wails. "Into The Wild" is an emotional ballad, delivered beautifully by Sagstuen, flying over atmospheric soundscapes.
Other songs focus on the eccentric and eclectic sides of Karokh, suggesting uncommon structures, sounds, and rhythms. "Gossip From The Air" climaxes in a noisy electric storm while "Tsjuder" and "Song From A Coast" emphasizes the charismatic, dramatic delivery of Sagstuen through a minimalist sonic narrative and effective trumpet solos. "Once More No Bear" and the title song feature the vocals of Sagstuen as another instrument that aims to explore new sonic characteristics.
Highly impressive debut from a band with a remarkable vocalist.
Track Listing: Flowers Every Day; Gossip From The Air; Tsjuder; Song From A Coast;
Surf Decadence (Ooh Ooh); Once More No Bear; Karokh; Into The Wild.
Personnel: Ina Sagstuen: vocals; Thomas Husmo Litleskare: trumpet; Christian Skaar
Winther: guitar; Jonas Cambien: synthesizers; Jan K. Hovland -
synthesizers; Magnus Skavhaug Nergaard: bass; Jan Martin Gismervik:
I love jazz because anything is possible; it has few rules and the best jazz breaks those ones. I prefer free improv because it doesn't really have any rules at all.
I was first exposed to jazz in my teens (in the late sixties).
The first jazz record I bought was Filles de Kilimanjaro by Miles Davis, shortly followed by Extrapolation by John McLaughlin.
My advice to new listeners is to listen as widely as possible and not to make snap judgments--stick with it.