Writing a presentation of something I have never seen, let alone heard or experienced would be quite the feat. It is (fortunate or unfortunate as it might be seen) not one I dabble in at this site.

I could of course go with the next best thing – basing everything on my repeated listenings of Skuggsjá – the previous companion-piece to Hugsjá. And I had actually started doing that, but decided it wouldn’t make much more sense than trying to review an album by instead reviewing the same band’s former release.

Ivar Bjørnson & Einar Selvik’s Skuggsjá – Skuggsjá (Official Video)

From the forthcoming album “Skuggsjá”. release date: March 11th, 2016 Credit: David Hall (director) David Hall, Lor Myers and Nekrotic (producers) Pre-order north america: http://shopusa.season-of-mist.com/cat… Pre-order rest of the world: http://shop.season-of-mist.com/predef… Follow Season of Mist : http://youtube.com/SeasonOfMistLabel http://facebook.com/seasonofmistofficial http://twitter.com/seasonofmist http://soundcloud.com/season-of-mist http://http://seasonofmist.tumblr.com/

Skuggsjá – Official video

In the end, given that I have seen neither Skuggsjá or Huggsjá, it probably makes more sense to let Walter Hoeijmakers do the explanation, with this quote from the official presentation of the performance:

Roadburn’s artistic director, Walter Hoeijmakers was at the Grieghallen to witness Hugsjá and knew it would be the perfect fit for Roadburn: “Channeling the spirit of Norse coastal history by way of pastoral (acid) folk meets Led Zeppelin III meets Wardruna was nothing short but mesmerizing. Ivar and Einar have outdone themselves – musically, artistically and spiritually. Hugsjá is such a transcendental experience – the spirit of the old sea-route and it’s pioneers will be felt throughout the entire performance. It’s Ivar and Einar’s storytelling that will hugely inspire and take Roadburn on this incredibly vivid journey. Hugsjá is not to be missed; it’s sheer impact will make you feel part of these ancient settlements that still have a lasting impact on us today.””

Einar Selvik and Ivar Bjørnson will perform Hugsjá on Saturday, April 21 at the 013 venue. The Hugsjá workshop will take place on Friday, April 20, also at the 013 venue. And I’m quite convinced both events will be mindblowing.

“It’s been very inspiring. It has put a lot of things in perspective. Especially when we started working with some academics, including an Icelandic professor who has written some fantastic books, especially one called The Black Viking about a historical figure who traveled north in the Viking age and who became a celebrity because of his dark skin. He became a famous viking. It also highlights a lot of the original Norwegian coastal culture which was quite multicultural because people would travel from all over. The ‘pure Norwegian’ thing is more medieval – it’s post black death. Our DNA research suggests we are much more of a melting pot of peoples. That’s one thing that expanded my view and proved a lot of things that I thought I had an overview on. It also makes the way that history and Norse mythology is being misused. It makes it a waste of time for right wing people trying to make a point with racial issues when it actually comes from a chaotic mix of ancient peoples. It gives me a sense of pride, not just of the local variety but in humanity and how we populated the coast of Norway. We visited these places and realized that some of these people put their favorite cow, and their children and spent countless days on the ocean and just went ashore, cultivated the land and set up a new place. People say they feel powerless but look at what people are capable of doing! It’s quite far from being powerless.”

Ivar Bjørnson interviewed by Metal Injection, Summer 2017 – on the personal impact of working on Hugsja and researching thousands of years of Norwegian history

Skuggsjá (Wardruna / Enslaved) live at Midgardsblot 2016: ‘Intro: Ull Kjem’ / ‘Skuggsjá’

19 August 2016 Original album at: https://skuggsja.bandcamp.com

Liveclip, Midgardsblot 2016

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Skuggsjá: A Piece For Mind & MirrorAlbum (2016)spotifyBandCamp