- David Bentley
Misty Coast – 'In a Million Years' (single from forthcoming album)
NMR readers may well be familiar with Anne Lise Frøkedal, Norway’s answer to Joni Mitchell as she is known, and one of that country’s most played artists on 6Music here. She’s been featured many times in NMR and right now is touring Norway.
This is her sister Linn’s band, based in Bergen, which comprises her, Richard Myklebust, and for recording purposes drummer Kim Åge Furuhaug from Orions Belte. And yes they are also performing in Norway now, in fact in Oslo on Saturday night. If only…
I was fortunate enough to see both the Frøkedals performing at the Øya Festival last year; Anne Lise in I was a King and then Misty Coast the following day, a performance in which Anne Lise also turned up the part way through the set with her trademark gold Telecaster. Once the trio became a quartet it was as if they’d been plugged into the National Grid as the power and volume was ramped up and I recall observing that I wished she was a full time member.
Not as if the trio alone was inadequate, in fact they were one of the highlights of the festival for me, a revelation. Misty Coast is regarded as being ‘dream pop/shoe gaze’ but live they are one hell of a rock band too. On one song, ‘Galaxy’, it could have been The Ramones up there.
Misty Coast have recently released a new track,’ In a Million Years’, in advance of their forthcomingalbum ‘When I Fall From the Sky’, and one which, Linn says “represents a recurring theme on the album, as it lingers in thoughts about whether we should choose to ignore the reality outside of what we experience as our world – or if we should dare to seek a larger, perhaps unpleasant truth.”
Well that once in a 100 years (if not a million) moment is with us so the song is apposite in that respect.
For me, this song epitomises what this group is all about. It rocks its socks off for the opening 15 seconds by way of a pulsating rhythm section and guitars so fuzzed and reverbed that you can barely make out the notes. It’s pure 1980s glam rock; think in terms of, say, Adam & the Ants’ ‘Stand and Deliver’. Then, just as you’re settling in for a head banging session a synth appears and it settles into, well I was going to call it shoe gaze but it would better be compared with middle-of the-road pop from the same era in America.
I mention The Go-Go’s often in these columns, in fact I did only the other day but that’s who the remainder of this song reminds me of – the melody, beat, the general ambience, and more than anything Linn’s voice, which has more shades of Belinda Carlisle than E.L. James does of grey. And then she manages to channel Clare Grogan and Altered Images on ‘Don’t talk to me about love’ in the middle. Magical.
I’ve read of Misty Coast being ‘psychy’. Well perhaps on some tracks but they’re as psychy here as Derek Acorah was. This is pure pop at its best. Lets’ hope for more of the same on the album.
‘In A Million Years’ is available to stream now.