Leker for Barn, Ritualer for Voksne

Anmeldt av Jens Nepper
(Karisma Records, 2019)

Karakter: 4/6

Tusmørke Leker for Barn, Ritualer for Voksne album cover.jpgNorwegian prog rockers Tusmørke are a bunch of fantastic musicians who keep throwing us musical curve balls, and we should all be fucking grateful for that. True to the band members' unquenchable thirst to widen their musical horizons, their latest endeavor is nothing less than a record comprised of music from two musicals for children, which is to say that it contains Tusmørke's very own and highly original take on traditional Norwegian children's songs and rhymes as well as a few compositions of their own. The idea was to penetrate and go beyond the layers and veils that cloud the true meaning and esoteric subject matter of some of the words and melodies that are to be found within these songs and then relate those to ancient cultures and religions, folklore and old legends, and what would appear to be fantasy. Intriguing, right?

“Leker for Barn, Ritualer for Voksne” is essentially a collection of immersive songs with layers of enigmatic charm to them. It is also a creative journey far removed from any genre conventions or notions of what prog music really is. The offering possesses a wonderful aesthetic and the depth of imagination on display here is impressive. It is most definitely a weird and eccentric piece of work, but that certainly does not mean that it is bereft of artistic ambition. In short, “Leker for Barn, Ritualer for Voksne” is rich, detailed, and meant to be listened to in full, but it has to be said that its latter half is more diverse and shows a greater array of color, nuance, and substance. I particularly dig the groovy “Sjubidubidu Sju”, the eerie “Velkommen til Hades”, the ridiculously catchy “Kharons Vise”, and the trippy “Dn Tolvte Baal”. All of those (and many of the other songs on the record) have a subtle tone and hint of something unsettling and sinister coursing through them.

Due to the nature of the compositions and the lyrics being in Norwegian, I reckon that the disc will primarily appeal to Scandinavian lovers of psychedelic prog rock. As much as I cherish the album, I must admit that this is one of those records that I probably will not listen to that often as it requires and demands quite a lot from the listener in terms of being in the right frame of mind in order to fully appreciate the material. It would be easy to merely listen to two or three cuts and then dismiss the whole thing as childish bullshit, but that would be to miss the point of “Leker for Barn, Ritualer for Voksne” completely. This one comes highly recommended, but approach it with an open mind (and I do mean OPEN), okay?


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