MOSTER!-WHEN YOU CUT INTO THE PRESENT.

MOSTER!-WHEN YOU CUT INTO THE PRESENT.

Ever since they made their debut at the Kongsberg Jazz Festival in 2010, Norwegian supergroup Møster!’s star has been in the ascendancy. So much so, that Møster! are now regarded as one of the biggest bands in the Nordic music scene. That’s quite a feat.

Especially since Norway has one of the most vibrant music scenes in Europe. However, Møster! can hold their own against Norway’s top bands. No wonder. Møster! are a supergroup, featuring four of Norway’s top musicians. They were founded back in 2010.

That’s when Bushman’s Revenge saxophonist and bandleader Kjetil Møster founded Møster!. He wasn’t looking to form a supergroup. It just worked out that way.

Kjetil Møster brought onboard three of Norway’s most talented musicians. This included Motorpsycho and Grand Central drummer, Kenneth Kapstad. The other two members of  Møster! were also members of Elephant9. This includes keyboardist Ståle Storløkken and bassist Nikolai Hængsle Eilertsen, whose also a member of Big Bang. With Møster’s lineup complete, the made their debut at one Norway’s most prestigious festivals, the Kongsberg Jazz Festival in 2010.

Not many bands get the opportunity to start launch their career at such a prestigious event.  Møster! did. Having taken the Kongsberg Jazz Festival by storm, Møster! received a standing ovation. Since then, Møster! have released two albums, and are just about to release their much anticipated third album When You Cut Into The Present. It’ll be released on 27th November 2015 by Hubro Music. When You Cut Into The Present is the followup to Møster!’s critically acclaimed sophomore album Inner Earth, which was released in October 2014. This was four years after Møster! made their first tentative steps.

Having formed Møster!, and stolen the show at the Kongsberg Jazz Festival in 2010, many critics thought that it would only be a matter of time before Kjetil Møster’s new band would release their debut album. They were wrong.

Three long years passed, before Møster! released their long awaited debut album Edvard Lygre Møster, on Hubro Music in 2013. Looking back, this isn’t surprising. The four members of Møster! have other musical commitments, so finding time to record Møster!’s debut album wasn’t easy. However Edvard Lygre Møster was worth the wait.

Critical acclaim accompanied Edvard Lygre Møster. Møster!’s much-anticipated debut album was hailed as one of the finest Norwegian albums of 2013. However, Møster!’s music was finding an audience much further afield.

By the end of 2013, Edvard Lygre Møster had found its way into New York City Jazz Records’ top ten jazz albums. Then when Prog Magazine published its list of the best albums of 2013, Edvard Lygre Møster was at number six. This was just the start of the Møster story.  

Eagerly, critics, cultural commentators and music lovers awaited Møster’s next move. The next hurdle they had to overcome was their sophomore album, or what’s often referred to by critics as “the difficult second album.” 

When Møster began work on their sophomore album is Inner Earth, their was a new face in the studio. This was Motorpsycho guitarist Hans Magnus “Snah” Ryan. He joined saxophonist and bandleader Kjetil Møster and the rhythm section of drummer Kenneth Kapstad and bassist Nikolai Hængsle Eilertsen. This was the lineup of Møster that wrote and recorded Inner Earth. 

The first recording session for Inner Earth took place at Super Duper Studio between January 11th and 12th 2014. A month later, Møster! reconvened at Super Duper Studio on February 24th and recorded right through to the 27th February 2014. That marked the end of the recording of Inner Earth. It was then mastered at Grotten on 30th May 2014, Jørgen Træen.  Five months later, and Inner Earth was released by Hubro Music.

Just like their debut album, Edvard Lygre Møster! was released to widespread critical acclaim. The music was an ambitious and innovative fusion of moods, textures and musical genres. It veered between dreamy, futuristic, lysergic and otherworldly to cinematic and melodic on this musical journey to Inner Earth. Norwegian supergroup Møster! had just released one of the best albums of 2014. Since then, Møster! have been busy.

Møster! embarked upon a gruelling touring schedule. This included touring with Norwegian-American band Young Mothers. On that tour, Møster! worked hard, honing and tightening their sound even further. Kjetil Møster! and Co. seem to be perfectionists. This paid off.

When You Cut Into The Present.

By March 20th 2015, Møster! had a few days off from the tour. They didn’t head for rest and recuperation. No Møster! headed to Øra Studio in Trondheim, where they hooked up with technician Jo Ranheim. Over the next three days, Møster! When You Cut Into the Present recorded their third album, When You Cut Into The Present.

The same lineup of Møster! that featured on Inner Earth began work on When You Cut Into The Present. Lead by saxophonist Kjetil Møster!, Møster! began recording the five songs that  became When You Cut Into The Present. Providing the heartbeat, was the rhythm section of drummer Kenneth Kapstad and bassist Nikolai Hængsle Eilertsen. Motorpsycho guitarist Hans Magnus “Snah” Ryan, returned for his second album with Møster! He like the rest of Møster! he adds percussion on When You Cut Into The Present, which was finished on 23rd March 2015.

After this, Møster! headed back on tour. Then on 6th April 2015, Christian Engfelt, Kjetil Møster and Nikolai Hængsle Eilertsen began mixing When You Cut Into The Present at Engfelt and Forsgren Studio, in Oslo. By the 9th April 2015, the mixing was complete. Jørgen Træen then mixed When You Cut Into The Present at Grotten, in the Bergen Kjøtt building. Only then, was When You Cut Into The Present ready for release.

Just like Møster!’s two previous albums, When You Cut Into The Present will be released by Hubro Music. It’s one of the most eagerly awaited albums of recent months. That’s because onlookers to the recording sessions say that Møster! have never sounded better. 

Apparently, there was an intensity and energy in the studio as Møster! recorded When You Cut Into The Present. Møster! combined progressive rock, psychedelia, free jazz, Krautrock, classic rock and the Norwegian jazz of the sixties and seventies. It’s best describes as a fusion of Can, Alice Coltrane, King Crimson’s Red period, John Coltrane and the Nordic jazz pioneers Jan Garbarek, Terje Rypdal, Arild Andersen and Jan Christensen. All these influences are referenced on Møster!’s forthcoming album When You Cut Into The Present, which I’ll tell you about.

Nebula and Red Giant opens When You Cut Into The Present. Dramatic describes the introduction. Møster! unite, and a wailing, free jazz horn soars and screeches. Meanwhile, drums rolls, all the time threatening to explode, a bass buzzes and a guitar cuts through the arrangement, carrying an air of menace. The arrangement builds, only to dissipate at 2.33. By 2.39, Møster! are ready to kick loose. Soon, they kick out the jams. Møster!’s thundering rhythm section drive the arrangement along, reminiscent of Guru Guru or Birth Control. Guitarist Hans Magnus “Snah” Ryan and saxophonist Kjetil Møster go toe-to-toe, feeding off each other. The braying choppy, gulping saxophone and searing, buzz saw guitar lines trying to outdo each other. Then a myriad of galloping percussion and a powerhouse of a drum solo take centre-stage. From there, an explosive saxophone solo is off and running, leaving the rest of Møster! playing a supporting role. Breathtaking and blistering describes this performance. It seems to spur the rest of Møster! on. They became an unstoppable force, like a rolling stone, gathering pace with every turn. By the end of the track, Møster! are spent, and reach for the musical equivalent of the post coital cigarette. It’s richly deserved.

On The Future Leaks Out, Møster! set about making the music of tomorrow today. To do this, thunderous drums are pounded at breakneck speed, and are omnipresent. Other instruments flit in and out the mix, as elements of avant garde, experimental, free jazz, industrial, psychedelia and rock can be heard. Sometimes, the arrangement is full of slight of hand. Nothing is what it seems. Effects are added to instruments, disguising their sound. It’ like Halloween for Moster! as they combine  a bubbling bass, guitar, percussion and even briefly, a shivering violin. Later, the arrangement becomes a bubbling, experimental brew. Sci-fi sounds join machine gun drums and see-saw guitars. Then a bounding, bouncing bass joins a shrill, shrieking free jazz saxophone and a Hendrix-esque guitar. Inspiration also seems to come from Judas Priest and John Coltrane. This might seem a strange brew, but it’s a potent heady one. Especially with Møster! at their most ambitious, adventurous and innovative, creating a dramatic, cinematic soundscape.

As a guitar reverberates, a sultry saxophone soars above the arrangement to Journey. It features just occasional rolls of drums. Mostly, it’s just the saxophone, with the effects laden guitar proving a perfect foil. Meanwhile, the bass is rumbles, creating a hypnotic backdrop and drummer Kenneth Kapstad adds an eighties Krautrock influence. Hans is responsible for wall of siren like guitars. They seem to sound a warning, as if Møster! are providing a  mesmeric, hypnotic, cinematic soundtrack to a film that deserves to be made.

Soundhouse Rumble is the track that closes Møster!’s third album When You Cut Into The Present. Møster! seem ready to rumble, and from the opening bars are off and running. The rhythm section are responsible for a rocky heartbeat. Hans’ hypnotic guitar veers between rock and jazz. Kjetil meanwhile, is unleashing a blistering jazzy solo. He hardly draws breath, and seems to have saved his best until last. When his solo drops out, briefly, the rhythm section head in the direction of progressive rock. There’s even a very brief funky interlude. Having given Kjetil time to recover, Møster! unite, and charge towards the finishing line. As they do, they pay homage to the Gods of rock. Hans unleashes a scorching guitar solo. It wouldn’t sound out of place on an Iron Maiden album. Then Møster! reach a crescendo, and it’s time for them to take their leave…until the next time.

Once When You Cut Into The Present draws to a close, listeners will reach for the equivalent of a post coital cigarette. They’ll also toast Moster, who’ve on 27th November 2015, will release what’s a career defining album, When You Cut Into The Present. It features Møster! in full flight. That’s a joy to behold, and is something all record buyers should experience. No wonder. 

Møster! are, without doubt, one of the most talented and innovative Norwegian bands. That takes some doing. Just now, the Norwegian music scene is one of most vibrant in Europe. At the top table of Norwegian music sits Møster!. 

It’s taken five years for Møster! to become one of leading lights of the Norwegian music scene. However, this talented and innovative band are making their presence felt much further afield. From Britain, Europe and America, Møster! have won friends and are sure to influence the next generation of bands with their hard rocking, but genre-melting sound.

When You Cut Into The Present shows that Møster! are much more than a rock band. They combine avant garde, classic rock, experimental, free jazz, funk, jazz, Krautrock, progressive rock and psychedelia, with the classic Norwegian jazz sound of the sixties and seventies. It’s best describes as a fusion of Can, Alice Coltrane, King Crimson’s Red period, John Coltrane and the Nordic jazz pioneers Jan Garbarek, Terje Rypdal, Arild Andersen and Jan Christensen. Sometimes, it sounds as if Møster! have been influenced by German musical pioneers, Birth Control, Guru Guru and Neu! It sounds like the four members of Møster! have eclectic taste in music.

That’s definitely the case with guitar wizard Hans Magnus “Snah” Ryan. The virtuoso seems to have been influenced by Jimi Hendrix. Sometimes, it sounds like Hans is channeling the spirit of Hendrix in the studio. Other times, Hans’ licks sound as if they belong on an Iron Maiden or Judas Priest album. Just like the rest of Møster!, Hans is a versatile and talented member of this supergroup.

They’ve made huge strides on When You Cut Into the Present. The Trondheim groove-meisters have created a career defining album of hard rocking music. They kick loose from the opening bars of Nebula and Red Giant, and never let go until the closing notes of Soundhouse Rumble. In between you’re treated a glorious assault on the sensory system which unleashes endorphins aplenty. These comes courtesy of those genre-melting innovators Møster!, and their critically acclaimed, career-defining third album When You Cut Into the Present.

MOSTER!-WHEN YOU CUT INTO THE PRESENT.

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