Music is more than just sounds put together. For the Danish instrumental outfit Nordsind, it’s much more. They’ve liberated their craft from the confines of modern musical demands, shaping a soundtrack for autumn on their 2018 release, Efterår (autumn). They’ve tied their tracks together by letting go, in a sense, and letting the music take them where it wills. In that way, you might say they’ve encapsulated the experience of autumn even more fully, since we’re hardly able to evade the seasons while we’re here on this earth. They come, and they go, surging up in intensity and coming back down — and so does Nordsind’s music.
Crafting The Songs
“It was just what came naturally when we started playing,” the band’s guitarist Asger explains. “Of course we had an idea of where we wanted to go, but I think we quickly abandoned the idea of restricting ourselves too much within a certain genre and just let the music evolve as we went along. We did this because our EP Efterår is centered around our perception of autumn, and it felt like the right way to create a soundtrack for this season. We talked way more about how the music felt and what images it created, than how it sounded.”
“It’s all for the benefit of the songs,” he adds, explaining features like their wide range of utilized tempo. “There’s no big plan behind it, we just do what feels right. As with everything else in the band, we start out by trying different things and in the end we pick what suits the song best. Being an instrumental band leaves more room for exploring things like tempos, chord progressions, layering and such, and I feel like we’ve found a nice balance between experimenting and ‘playing it safe.'”
They’ve zeroed in on the feeling underneath their music with their work, refusing to let their drive get bogged down or fogged over by attention grabbing technical playing or the like. With their music, they’re looking outwards, it feels, not inwards.
“For me personally, I absolutely loathe technical guitar playing,” Asger explains. “I find no joy or passion in guitar solos or super difficult guitar parts. It’s all about a good structure and a great rhythm guitar with a nice tone for me. If a part is there only to satisfy an ego, it just shines through and ruins the overall experience for the listener. So, it’s about portraying an emotion or a state of mind for me.”
The band’s drummer Ole adds: “For me, it is a great experience to really feel the music and the beautiful vibes that Asger creates with the guitars. So yeah, it’s very emotional.”
Both band members are unified in their purpose. They’ve made music that’s less about the prowess exemplified by the sounds themselves as it is about what comes after. They aren’t sitting around aiming for listeners to be impressed with their showmanship. They hope, instead, to push the listener off into a unique experience.
“I really enjoy creating art where the listener is dragged into our surroundings and telling a story without using words,” Ole explains.
“For me personally, I would like to create music that speaks to people,” he adds. “When they hear it they can’t ignore it or the sentiments it demands. I got a text from an old friend that said she had only been listening to Efterår for the past two months. I haven’t talked to her in years, so that was really something special. My uncle has ONE CD in his car, and that is Efterår. This is not because it’s a piece of me, but because it spoke to him and he couldn’t and wouldn’t ignore it. This is why I make music.”
Asger is right there with him, adding: “I just hope people’s minds drown in images as they listen to us. I want Nordsind to spark imaginations and I want people to have fun and be drawn to the music.”
Perhaps, in the band’s presentation, something important can be gleaned about our time here on earth itself. In short — sit back and enjoy the ride, rather than getting bogged down in distractions. The aim remains easier said than done, but it’s worth consideration.
Listen to Efterår below via Spotify.