Kornmo - Fimbulvinter,
This is the first time I have come across Norwegian prog act Kornmo, a trio who comprise Odd-Roar Bakken (keyboards, guitar), Nils Larsen (bass) and Anton J. R. Larsen (drums & percussion), but this is their third album. Mind you, if you had told me this had been released 50 years ago as opposed to 2021, I would have believed you as there is nothing here which ties it to the present day apart from the quality of the recording. Odd-Roar and Nils first met many years earlier, and later founded Adventure in 1990, then later forming Morild, before moving onto their latest venture where they have utilised the talents of Nils’ son Anton.
The sounds being utilised by Odd-Roar are classic Mellotrons, Moogs and Hammond, often providing lengthy held chords while the bass and drums take the lead. It is quite Wagnerian at times, powerful and dramatic with no rush whatsoever. One can imagine songs such as “Dovre Faller” being performed on a pipe organ in a cathedral with the sounds reaching up to the vaulted ceilings as there is a real majesty which is almost like a religious experience. While some may imagine they might be like ELP, they are actually far removed, as they are looking more towards traditional folk and classical music, and this is part of the joy as they are not attempting to be like any of the other bands around. They say they are influenced by Camel, but in reality, they have little musically in common apart from them playing only instrumentals. The songs vary between 3 and 13 minutes in length, and when played on headphones this is a style of music which transports the listener as when this is playing nothing else exists. Symphonic yet delicate, powering yet gentle, this is a great album which fans of classic prog would do well to discover.