The Nocturnes is a mini album of never-before-commercially-released material though four of the movements have been heard on Erik Wøllo’s Myspace page, each gaining over 50,000 listens. All six parts are remixed, edited and extended, available for the first time as digital downloads.
This music is inspired by the moods of the nordic nights in Norway where Erik lives: tranquil, expressive and lyrical. Even sometimes gloomy. The album contains a wide variety of moods from quiet slow ambient drones to more light and lively parts. Erik Wøllo’s typical signature melodies hover over contrasting sections of arpeggiated, eerie, blurred cluster-chords and dark floating backgrounds drones.
These 6 short pieces form a unique suite of unity, all with beautiful arrangements and a wide spectrum of colors in harmony.
The image for the cover is of a special plant that grows in Norway called “Nøkkerose.” It is the flower of the water spirit and grows in deep and silent lakes. The instruments are all played by Erik Wøllo and are arranged with layers of electric guitars, piano, synths and percussion elements. Recorded at Wintergarden Studio 2005, remixed and edited 2012. Composed, Performed and Produced Erik Wøllo. Photo by Elisabeth Østensvik
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Reviews Editor –
From Sonic Curiosity
This release from 2012 features 22 minutes of soothing ambient music. While the guitar is Wollo’s instrument of choice, he also employs an array of electronics in his music. Delicate texturals waft with languid intention, supporting a series of more substantial keyboard riffs. These fluid expressions pursue gentle melodies of an airy character, pleasantly floating on currents of fragile buoyancy.
Although the majority of his guitarwork tends to manifest as ethereal tonalities, there are a few occasions in which the guitar retains a guitarlike definition, delivering precise plucking of a crystalline nature. One piece features soft percussion in tandem with a strong piano presence.
While most of his compositions are crafted to sedate the listener, these tunes possess a subtle strength beyond conventional ambient music. Their melodic definition sparkles as it entices its way into your heart. The songs are brief and do not stream into a longer structure; this bestows them with a particular charm, compressing their pacific vivacity into a delightful focus.
But the music’s winning appeal comes in the actual melodies Wollo creates with these tenuous threads, producing tuneage that exhibits a touch more substance than most ambient music while retaining a favorable tenderness. -Matt Howarth