Before Frøkedal, or Anne Lise Frøkedal which is her full name, started her solo career, she was well known and admired on Norway’s indie rock scene. As frontwoman, songwriter and guitarist for indie outfits Dharma, then Harrys Gym and I Was A King, Frøkedal has been honing her craft for the best part of a decade. So far, Frøkedal’s solo project, marked by her heartfelt, folk-spiked pop, has garnered her comparisons with the likes Joni Mitchell and Fleetwood Mac.
Even though she’s now releasing music as a solo artist, Frøkedal’s new music still follows in the minimalistic line of her earlier work. In fact, title track Hold On Dreamer is the only song on the album recorded with drums. “I tried the arrangement on several different settings, until Olaf (Olsen) and I pieced together a record of it with him on the drums and me banging it out on an acoustic guitar at his house. And that’s what you can still hear at the heart of the track” Frøkedal says.
However, not all of Frøkedals songs fall under the strict rule of minimalism. Sometimes there can be something wildly satisfying about clanging, banging, and buoyant brass. At least that is the case with lead single The Sign, which is inspired by categorical religious groups, with its joyous façade contrasted by a surprisingly sinister undertone and multi-tracked vocals so symbolise mob mindset.
“I guess I temporarily had to loosen up on the minimalism”, Frøkedal explains. “After all, we were trying to capture the slightly odd vibe of a spiritual awakening. There is nothing moderate about that”, she continues.
The Sign, which is the latest single released from the coming album, was named Track of the Day by Q Magazine, and you can check it out for yourself at the end of this article.
The album Hold On Dreamer is to be released on 26 February, and serves as a worthy successor to Frøkedal’s debut EP of last year, I See You, which was promptly praised by the likes of BBC Radio 6music, The Line of Best Fit and Notion Magazine. The album includes both brand new songs as well as earlier projects that until now have been waiting to be released. Collaborating on the album is earlier band colleague Erlend Ringseth and folk musician Olav Christer Rossebø, as well as musicians Thea Glenton Raknes, Ingeleiv Berstad and Olaf Olsen.
In addition to her London concert, Frøkedal also plays at The Basement in York on 26 February, The Castle in Manchester on 28 February and at Crofters Rights in Bristol on 29 February.