The Norwegian invasion of the UK&I continues this week with the arrival in England tomorrow, of songbird Tina Refsnes. Purveyor of Americana folk with a Nordic twist, Refsnes came to the UK’s attention late last year when she released her album, ‘No One Knows That You’re Lost’, which we reviewed here!
Post-album release, Refsnes has recently dropped another single, ‘Alaska‘, from the album, together with the coolest video I’ve seen so far this year! A full length ‘toon complete with heart melting polar bear, a fauna filled orchestra, and heart warming hazes of rainbow coloured Northern Lights, the visual was the brainchild of her close friend Marianne Engedal, who works under the moniker, Skinkeape. Speaking exclusively to DervSwerve about how Skinkeape came to be involved with the video Tina explained:-
“Skinkeape is a friend of mine who is a brilliant artist and illustrator. We’ve worked well together in the past, but on smaller projects, so I was very excited to finally have her work on a full video. She has a very intriguing mind, so I basically let her just do her thing with very little instruction.” Going on to talk a bit about the background to the song Tina told us, “The song is about wanting to escape … to make a run for it when things are a bit crap. But I think that at the same time it’s message is hopeful, since there’s this idea of how great Alaska would be … although I’ve actually never actually been!”
‘Alaska’ is an abolutely delightful ballad, comprising poignant slide and delicately plucked acoustic guitars, with spacious jazz-brush percussion sweeping away softly in the background. Refsnes vocal is hopeful and warm, as she tells her wondrous tale of this distant snow laden utopia filled with mountains, trees, rocks, wildlife and little else. Tina Refsnes presents us with an idyllic landscape in which she can lose herself, while at the same time taking comfort in the familiarity which a place that bears such marked similarities to her native Norway can give. In ‘Alaska’ the singer has cleverly juxtaposed the comfort of the known with the unexplored and vast possibilities of the unknown.
Tina Refsnes has evolved as a singer/songwriter to the point where the poignant, reflective quality of her sound is a perfect fit for her insightful and thought-provoking lyrics: lyrics which focus on the real world, real lives and real emotions. Tina has learned how to use her voice – warm, inviting and as honest as it is clear – as the perfect instrument through which she can convey the myriad emotions she invests in her songs conversational lyrics. For that is what they are, intimate conversations, short personal vignettes, during which Refsnes openly takes us into her confidence, thereby allowing us to briefly see into and share her world.
Hitting the ground running on April 14th at The Old Stables, Wiltshire, a gig which is now Sold Out, Refsnes will bring her quirky charm and uplifting songs to audiences from Bristol through Manchester to London. Full details here.