MIC’s never-ending Listen to Norway profile series continues with another strong album: the Fri Flyt collective’s Flyr fritt album.
This unique Norwegian, Greek, Saami, Danish, Bergen combo has mixed up a concoction based on a truly eclectic recipe. Through various constellations and names, Fri Flyt has been around more or less since the beginning of the 90s. Under the leadership of energetic Bergen drummer, percussionist and composer Ole Hamre, this hyper-active collective fuses Balkan influences with Saami chanting, gypsy melodies, traditional Norwegian folk-music and a multitude of other genres. More than anything, this record symbolises music’s ability to bridge the gap between cultures and people and to fuse varied genres and styles together into a new expression. Due to Fri Flyt’s long existence and tireless work, the collective has managed to achieve a unified and mature identity that is solid foundation for the band members wild creativity. Unique.
The release has also picked up some impressive reviews abroad. Rootsworld Magazine’s Don Weeda is taken by the collective’s creative energy: “ Fri Flyt hails from Norway, but take their inspiration from Norway and lots of other locales in Europe. They're funny and wild and can play in and with folk music, including those asymmetrical rhythms from the Balkans and Turkey. Earthy and folky, this Fri Flyt makes its approach with warmth and solid musicality, combining different musical traditions in unlikely ways, but the results seem as homey as if there really wasn't any combinatorics going on. Fusion experiments often suffer from birthing pains, but not here. Here we have a CD that seems not to come from an idea or an attempt to attract attention by being different - it seems to represent a group of musicians with different backgrounds and experiences who are having fun and simply making music together within and through all of the different styles that they enjoy. I would have wished for more of the great dance tunes, but they pass my litmus test with flying colors: To the question "When the CD is over, do you wish there was much, much more?" the answer for me is an emphatic yes.”
Read the full Rootsworld review here.
Fri flyt: Flyr fritt (Etnisk Musikklubb EM7)