Kvelertak are the kitchen sink of metal music. The Norwegian based newcomers shamelessly draw inspiration from every corner of anything that fits into their idea of hard-hitting, catchy, extreme rock ‘n’ roll regardless of genre, always truthful to the basic idea of the band: good songs performed with the tongue-in-cheek attitude of their punk-rock pioneers. Unlike the majority of heavier bands, they sing in their native language, adding yet more character to their already unique sound.
Metalholic ranked their debut album at #9 on our Top 50 Metal Albums for 2010 list, saying of the album:
Another sonically dynamic new band from Norway. Kvelertak is metal for people with A.D.D. Their sound and style is all over the place and changes from moment to moment throughout their eponymous album. They are the proverbial “kitchen sink” of metal bands, weaving elements of classic rock, with punk, sludge, hardcore, black and progressive metal all into one aural kick in the gut. And that hardly covers all the flavors you’ll discover as you listen repeatedly to this epic debut. This record is simply a debaucherous party on a disc, and a name I can’t fucking pronounce.
This month sees the band hitting U.S. shores for a short tour with Weedeaterand Zoroaster, though the beginning of that tour has since been delayed for the band when their passports went missing last night (Mar. 4th) at a Burger King in Oslo. Yes they have them in Norway. This occurred only hours before the band was scheduled to depart for America. Costing the band a small fortune.
Vocalist Erlend Hjelvik told Norway daily, Dagbladet; “We have paid 70,000 for the flights, but do not know if these are now being reversed, refunded or if we have lost money…”
The band was nommed for two Grammy (Spelleman) awards in their home country, the event for which takes place tonight, but despite being grounded temporarily from their America trip, a lack of funds prevents them from even showing up to accept their awards should they win. Laments Hjelvik: “We have basically no tickets to get in, since we were going to the USA. But it would be cool to [attend], for now we have the opportunity to take the award if we should be so lucky to win something.”
Update: They went on to win the “Best Newcomer” and “Best Rock” categories at the 39th annual Spellemann awards.
The band hopes to make the states in time for their scheduled appearance at this year’s South By Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas.
Regardless of when the band physically arrives in America, the U.S. release date for their album will arrive on March 15th via The End Records. For the North American edition of the self-titled debut, Kvelertak have included six bonus tracks: live recordings of the songs “Fossegrim,” “Sjøhyenar (Havets Herrer),” “Blodtørst,” and “Mjød” from the BBC Sessions last year, as well as demo versions of “Ordsmedar av Rang” and “Utrydd Dei Svake.” For pre-order info visit The Omega Order.
The birth of Kvelertak is a classic story: A bunch of good friends decide to create a band. It turns out to be a very good band, and from the start of 2007 things have been on fast forward for these young lads from the west coast of Norway. National radio airplay and stunning live performances have taken them to some of the biggest festivals in the country including the infamous Roskilde festival in 2009, where they performed in front of 80,000 crazy fans. Astonishing for a (then) unsigned act with a few demos.
Their self-titled debut album was released June 21, 2010 via Indie Recordings and continues to receive rave reviews from mainstream media and metal websites alike for its unique Turbonegro/black metal/punk/classic rock/blues elements. Produced by Kurt Ballou and mixed by Alan Douches with artwork by John Baizley and guest appearances by Hoest (Taake), Andreas Tylden (JR Ewing and Altaar), Ivar Nikolaisen (Silver), and Ryan McKenney (Trap Them), Kvelertak has been dubbed “the best Norwegian debut album of all time,” and the band “the new Mastodon.” Simon Young of Kerrang! Magazine named Kvelertak “the best Norwegian band since A-Ha.” They’ve also been reviewed in virtually every European magazine with near perfect rating including: 9/10 Metal Hammer, 8.5/10 Terrorizer, 88/100 Rock Tribune, 85/100 Aardschok, 4/5 Kerrang! and 4/5 Big Cheese. Decibel Magazine picked up that something great was going on in Europe and gave the record a 9/10. Metalsucks.net followed with a 4/5. Three singles from the album were playlisted on Norway’s main broadcaster NRK P3. “Mjød” was “Single Of The Week” two weeks in a row on BBC radio (UK). In addition, the band filmed a video for the same track (view below) which was nominated for best Scandinavian video by the Bergen International Film festival.
Kvelertak was nominated for two Spellemann awards, (The Norwegian equivalent the The Grammys), in the categories of “Best Newcomer” and “Best Rock Album.” The awards ceremony will be held on Saturday March 5. In February, Kvelertak won the Statoil grant and 1,000,000 NOK. The Statoil grant is a prize which helps promising Norwegian bands on the verge of international breakthrough to succeed internationally.
[Source: EarsplitPR and Dagbladet]