Just when you thought it was safe to start making those year-end favorite album lists, El Paraiso Records keeps dropping musical nuggets of grandiosity. Last week the label announced two new records that will be hitting our earholes before the year is up. Jakob Skott’s Instrumentality(I talk about his single “The Dura Plane” here) and the debut record from Norwegian power trio Kanaan. The album is called Windborne and the band dropped their first single in the form of “A. Hausenbecken” and it’s one hell of a banger.
There’s more than black metal in Norway, folks. That’s apparent on “A. Hausenbecken”, a swinging, grooving mix of 70s black light jams and more headier Electric Miles vibes. For a three-piece, Kanaan know how to sound like a full-on fusion behemoth. The mix of jazz-inflected drums, melancholy guitar, and acidic Fender Rhodes gives you this psych rock-meets-jazz fusion vibe. The guitars go from minor key melodies to an almost Jon McLaughlin-meets-Robin Trower progressive fusion blues(think Bridge Of Sighs reworked with some Big Fun headiness.) At over 7 minutes, “A. Hausenbecken” is one hell of a way to open Windborne. It’s also a beautifully noisy coming together of modern rock and the more experimental, free-wheeling days of 1970s “anything goes” progressive tendencies.
Kanaan consists of Ask Vatn Strøm(guitars), Ingvald André Vassbø(drums), and Eskild Myrvoll(bass). Rhodes on “A. Hausenbecken” courtesy of Vegard Lien Bjerkan. They’re a young band and the fire in their playing is addictive. As El Paraiso Records stated, “While the band is rooted in the same spirit that gave birth to Mahavishnu Orchestra and The Eleventh House in the 1970s, there’s a distinctive modern flavour to Kanaan’s sonic endeavors. Their Scandinavian genealogy is apparent as well – their intricate song structures seems to be branching off the same stem as Motorpsycho, Papir and Jaga Jazzist.”
That’s a whole lot to live up to, but these Norwegian cats do it, and then some. Kanaan pull inspiration from some of the greats, but seem to be working in some of their own special magic. “A. Hausenbecken” is a stunning introduction to what will be a stunning debut album.
El Paraiso Records knows how to pick ’em. Kanaan fall into the footsteps of fellow El Paraiso bands Papir and Mythic Sunship. They’re a young guitar-heavy band that like to make heady noise and set controls for the heart of the sun. Kanaan fit right in with the El Paraiso crew, and they’re sure to end up on some year-end lists.
Mine, for one.
Check out “A. Hausenbecken” below, and preorder Windborne here. It ships on December 7th.