Slagr – Dirr (2018)

Slagr - Dirr (2018)
Artist: Slagr
Album: Dirr
Genre: Contemporary Jazz
Origin: Norway
Released: 2018
Quality: mp3, 320 kbps
Aur (00:02:46)
Strimesong (00:04:42)
Flimmer (00:06:07)
Hel (00:07:01)
Varle (00:04:45)
Eir (00:03:07)
September (00:04:14)
Øyr (00:02:39)


To enter the world of Slagr is to leave our fast-paced, frantic and intense world behind and be enfolded in a gentle, almost hypnotic atmosphere.

‘Dirr’ is astounding. The music is minimal, even reductorist, but totally absorbing and intriguing.

The sound created is ambient and cinematic and totally absorbing. Opening with ‘Aur’ you would be forgiven for thinking that you were listening to frost forming or the wind whispering through a forest as such is the atmosphere generated. Sveen’s tuned glass fragility retunes your ear to this new sense of transparency as the sound waves shimmer and glow with quiet intensity. The Hardanger fiddle usually associated with Norwegian traditional music has a feeling of nostalgia in the harmonic tones created and easily adapts into this modern minimal sound. Anne Hytte coaxes heartfelt sensations and emotions intertwining with Katrine Schiott’s powerful cello interpretations. ‘Strimesong’ and ‘Flimmer’ highlight the instrument’s flexibility. ‘Flimmer’ echoes Philip Glass and Steve Reich with a gentle repetitive drone that swells and fades like a spring tide always keeping you involved in the atmospheric magnetism.

To listen to ‘Dirr’ is to somehow step out of time inviting the listener to spend some time in another place. The instruments interweave unhurriedly creating a gateway into a world of nature and spirit. The cello on ‘Hel’ is dark and poetic, bringing a sense of mystery and adventure to the proceedings.

Slagr (translated means “tune” or “melody”) have created an album of transcendent drama, rich in imagery and imagination. ‘September’ is a gentle, folk-tinged, melodic soundscape, emotional and transfixing with the Hardanger to the fore. A composition that seems to take you by the hand on a journey through a quiet and atmospheric landscape.

The album closes all too quickly with the inventive and illusive strange drone ‘Oyr’ finishing a song cycle that is truly engaging and rich in atmosphere and creativity. Yes, it is slow, meditative and spacious but in our crazy world ‘Dirr’ is a welcome diversion.
By Keith How