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coverpic flag Norway - Luna Kafé - Full Moon 2 - 12/24/96

Famlende Forsøk
Return Of Monster Attack
Crawling Chaos

One of Norway's strangest bands, mixing experiments and humour, is back. The name means something like "Staggering Attempt". The trio started out as the dark side of A-ha (the Norwegian teenage pop heroes) in the early 80s and won a reputation in the latter half of the decade for their experiments with acoustic instruments in combination with electronic and industrial sounds including lots of metal percussives from run down industrial sites. They released about three complete and two sides of two split cassettes on their own SHiT Tapes label in the middle of the 80s, some compilations abroad, numerous contributions to compilation tapes and the LP Ars Transmutatoria in 1990. Famlende Forsøk's sounds are centered around the lyrics of Brt which he mostly recites, with several musical expressions and impressions far from the conventional. One hour in their company could easily have been much too much. But there are substantial amounts of humour in their words and music that make the listening attractive and worth while. They have hardly played any concerts in the 90s and until recently we hadn't seen any new releases since the LP. One of the tree members, multi-instrumentalist Lumpy Davy, has spent most of his efforts with the neo-psychedelic band The Smell Of Incense lately. But suddenly... Return Of Monster Attack is the second FF-cassette in a mere year!

The release was intended to gather older tracks which they had contributed to compilation tapes, but the end result is seven not earlier released recordings and four remixes from other releases. This is not a concept album, the press information says, but they found out it included enough slimy tentacles and fiendish artifacts to justify the title. Or what about a gathering of HP Lovecraft's Chtulhu, Belzebub, Freud's slippers and Bob from Twin Peaks (only six years too late!)? Belzebub II is a laid-back version of Belzebub I Amerika on their LP which for this occasion is spiced with absurdities from other lyrics. A long Chtulhu Lives! is a re-worked visit from FF's very first cassette released in 1984 but the sound quality has been improved substantially. Brt's words are usually written and spoken in Norwegian, which no doubt makes FF sound exotic to some people who doesn't understand Norwegian. Here he even uses quite a few English lyrics, spoken in a glorious Norwegian accent. Also some sounds off Twin Peaks and the Norwegian jazz-singer Karin Krog are shamefully exploited. Very entertaining! All in all the sound is very good and the soundscapes (bleak electronics, twisted guitars etc.) belongs to FF's prettiest and ugliest so far. The most surprising track is Spider & The Octopus, a homage to Syd Barrett and Kevin Ayers, which more likely might have been an unexpected step from The Smell Of Incense with guests from FF, rather than the opposite. The concluding track of the cassette, Til Sist ("At Last"), is almost a lullabye into Elfland to avoid any monster nightmares. Return Of Monster Attack is an excellent introduction to the world of Famlende Forsøk, or something to keep you going until their long announced work based on the authorship of HP Lovecraft arrives. If they keep their pace of the last five years, it may see the light of day some time well into the next millennium.

The tape will cost you 50 Norwegian kroner/9 USD/6 British pounds from:
The Crawling Chaos, Boks 5, N-4810 Eydehavn, Norway.

Copyright © 1996 JP e-mail address

You may also want to check out our Famlende Forsøk articles/reviews: Døve Munker Ut Av Norsk Industri, Lost In Laos, Vol. 1, One Night I Had A Frightful Dream, A Tribute To H.P. Lovecraft (1890-1937), Still trying - An interview with Famlende Forsøk, The Tao Tapes, Vol. II, Washing China.

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