By Ross Jones
A notable part of Scandinavian modern history, Thor Heyerdahl was a Norwegian explorer – one who specialised in the study of ancient cultural communication and development. His interest in foregone existence and in particular the ability to know and interact with one another was revered and to this day is celebrated – per example in his namesake, a Norwegian group who are distilling such wonder and exploration into their music with their wonderful new effort ‘A Su Can Panther’.
Heyerdahl craft stimulating pop that evokes continuity and animation, displaying a deft quality for impressionistic imagination – using their sound as much as their verse for moving impact. ‘Desert Boy’s’ scattered synth and collaboration of trumpets finds elation in instability, a collective stance pushing against anxious fragility – all through the considered craft of instrumentation. Closer ‘Skjærgården’ is powerful in its subtle minimalism, a brace of light melodies and moody atmospherics brought together so cohesively they assemble something so much more human than expected. Each synth that fades in carries added emotional weight, the dark vibes that introduce ‘Colossus’ build with fitting intensity yet sure to not overwhelm Kenneth Ishak’s compassionate environment that’s arranged simply with his vocal performance.
The record instills its thematic through creative narrative – resolute in its focus of routine stagnancy and the escape of such confinement, as they look upon characters of emotional depth and how they live their lives. It’s balanced practice in pragmatism and imagination still conjures an acute idiosyncrasy that doesn’t dwell in unreachable parables – Ishak delving, in depth, into the affecting value of family, loneliness and finding new life after tragedy. It builds upon a record that thrives within its richness, a synergetic energy thats unquestionably approachable.
Heyerdahl are an intelligent group – one that blurs the boundaries between eclectic exploration and the satisfaction in hearing something undeniably resonant. ‘A Su Can Panther’ is profoundly engaging.