Erlend Oye is a man of many masks, but of only one beautifully pristine voice. Originally from Bergen in Norway, he first came to light as one half of The Kings of Convenience (although he had been a member of a couple of other Skandi bands previously) and their whimsical whisper-folk. From here he travelled extensively and took an interest in electronica, releasing his own album and lending his vocals to various other acts, before forming current band The Whitest Boy Alive, who are undoubtedly firm favourites at Salmon Towers. Now two albums deep, they were originally formed as an electronic band, but evolved to contain no programmed sounds, effectively becoming a live band who play music with dancefloor sensibilities. They create lovely simple melodies that follow the clean-cut scandipop rules, held together by clever percussion and satisfying squiggly noises; kind of like if Fleetwood Mac were produced by Kraftwerk whilst ram-raiding Ikea.
Underpinning all of these ventures is Erlend’s crystalline sine-wave voice that gives everything he does a certain fragility that is soothing, yet tormenting at the same time.
As you may have already deduced, there is a particular sound that twiddles my knobs and presses the right buttons. Yes, the common synth. So here’s three songs to get you started. Listen to those lovely rainbow noises.
Firstly, here’s a balls to the wall remix of the Ting Tings’ latest offering that uses most of the sound spectrum and manages to nudge the timing of the original song along a tad. A tactic that I normally hate in remixes, but works a treat here.