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coverpic flag Norway - Full Moon 224 - 12/06/14

Closing Eyes
Melodies For the Contemporary EP
Brilliance/ Fuzz Club

Closing Eyes is Eirik Asker Pettersen (EAP). When I saw (quite coincidentally) him/Closing Eyes perform live (backed by his brother on guitar) a month ago, as a free mini gig at Oslo's glowing and glorious Tilt, I was taken by surprise by this introvert synth'n'sample based act (plus some discreet guitar - maybe too discreet, as the guitarist struggled to be heard). Anyway, I did get to hear the catchy and charming melodies of Closing Eyes, and I liked what I heard. His/their (EAP and his players) sound lab, or melodic 'manifest' goes like this: '...demonstrate our way of sound. Of quarter sounds and lesser sounds, haunting melodies for the contemporary mind. Diverse instruments of any kind.' Furthermore, they/he continue with this 'manifest': 'Obsessive compulsive loops oscillating in and out of time. Small sounds as well as deep, diverse trembles and warbles which we repeat and repeat. Strange and artificial echoes reflecting the voice many, many times. Some shrill and some deep. Tune in. Fade out. Repeat.' Drop in!

There is something Joy Division-esque (or rather maybe New Order) over Closing Eyes' music, but EAP is drawn against the spaced-out sound of music of Jason Pierce and his Spiritualized crew (in addition, the older Spacemen 3), as he has mentioned Spiritualized's debut album, Lazer Guided Melodies (1992) being his favourite album. Interesting pick, for sure, this anthem of spacy, introvert and drugged-up 'deep rock' album of music up the experimental back alley of The Velvet Underground. However, the four songs popping out of Melodies For the Contemporary isn't that close to Pierce's space-lab. On the other hand, maybe... is this closer than I realise? It might be so. Well, the opening "Anesthetized" has got this slow sway, bearing this discreet, quiet guitar I mentioned from the mini-gig. "Sundazed" is a more potent song, and it stands out more like a 'rock song'. Almost. It is also released as a stand-alone single (digitally). "Sesamee" is as good, or even cooler, or better. Nodding even more towards the space-land of Jason Pierce, at least somehow. I guess this one ends up as my favourite track from this EP. The instrumental closer, "Void" is also a cool little track, but more towards the oddity lane of an EP. To be honest, it is a strong debut EP, which deserves to be played and listened to by as many as could get.

The label, or labels are Brilliance Records and FuzzClub Records. Brilliance (along with the singles club Diamond Club - singles as in records, that is...) have been launching numerous singles over the last couple of years. New, up and coming, and promising Norwegian acts and artists, such as: Kid Astray, The Lionheads, Kaja Gunnufsen, Ine Hoem, and more. FuzzClub's charta (or trademark) is to focus on '...focus on raw, experimental rock n roll, influenced by psychedelia, shoegaze, noise, garage, blues, folk and experimentation...'. On Closing Eyes, they describe them to be (or to hold): 'Details: Haunting drones, hypnotic melodies and deep basses. Free form exploration in sound and harmonixxx...'. EAP has been in a band called Lovecult, and he has been the 'electronic sidekick' in Maribel (who has released two albums so far, since their 2009 debut, inspired by the Creation-era of British shoegaze). FuzzClub say that '...Closing Eyes as a live band, will feature an extended family of characters, melodic dreamers, drone and noise fiends.' I'm looking forward to check out the band live again. Closing Eyes was the opening band when Laetitia Sadier (the queen of Stereolab) played Oslo's very cool Revolver venue this autumn. Sounded like a nice treat.

On Melodies For the Contemporary, EAP is credited for: vocals, synthesizers, samplers, guitars, programming, percussion and effects. Producer Ådne Meisfjord (formerly of The Beautiful People and of 120 Days) has added samples and a Juno-60 synth to a couple of the tracks. Steven Sellick (of The Sellick Maneuver, and several other projects. One has been along with Mercury Rev's Grasshopper, he also recorded a cover song of St. Thomas, for the tribute box-set.) Eirik Asker Pettersen has been working with Meisfjord and Emil Nikolaisen (formerly of The Loch Ness Mouse, Silver, and Serena-Maneesh) under different monikers.

Melodies For the Contemporary is served chilled, preferably, on transparent purple vinyl. Dig in!

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