Norwegian Music Noir

Can you name a Norwegian band, except A-ha? Probably not. Norway is not what you can call a prolific maker of Billboard hits. Compared with our neighbour Sweden, our escapades in the world of music is bleak at best. I will not try to explain why this is, the numbers speak their own language. Norway has had 1 song at number 1 on the Billboard list, while Sweden can boast an allmighty 7 top songs! Norwegian songs on the list? 23! Sweden? 111!!! AND they have ABBA, Max Martin, Roxette, Ace of Base and Bjorn Borg (ok, not music but you get the point).

A-ha number 1 on Billboard with “Take On Me” 19th October 1985! Foto: Knut Snare / Aftenposten

I will not wallow in a minority complex here, after all Norwegians invented Black Metal and the paper clip!

The Shining playing Trolltunga!

Contrary to all the failings on the Billboard list, Norwegian music is alive and well. We have a plethora of quality artists, and a sort of common thread is that they all have a melancholy about them. Perfect autumn music. Just like the Scandinavian crime noirs slightly damaged and neurotic detectives, we use the darkness to conjure light. Norwegian music is influenced by nature and the blackness of winter. So, please enjoy this playlist, and see of you can find some new favourites among the diverse artists on the list. I have a special soft spot for Madrugada, Susanne Sundfør and Jonas Alaska. Enjoy!

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  1. This is very cool thanks Orjan I will enjoy going through your list immensely 💚

    Liked by 1 person

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