Hestehoven by Tusmørke

Release date: August 18, 2023
Label: Karisma Records

Whenever something from the Karisma label unleashes something out of the blue, I know right there I would jump into the ocean to seek new treasures that comes our way. And for fellow comrades Tusmørke, they take a big dive with mind-blowing results on their latest album, Hestehoven.

While the cover bears a striking resemblance to Stackridge’s 1972 release Friendliness, Hestehoven is not for the faint of heart. Yes, its wacky, yes its insane, yes they’re pushing the envelope, but what can you expect from Tusmørke? They can do whatever the hell they want.

‘Cycle of the Gylfaginning’ starts the album off with a psych-folky attitude with resemblance to Jethro Tull, Premiata Forneria Marconi, and Pink Floyd’s ‘Embryo’. You feel as if you’re inside a dream, watching the band revealing their master plan to its listeners with unexpected changes, flute improv, mid-fast acoustic beats, and ghostly female vocals.

The title-track continues the early Floyd motif, but adding that spacey drop below to the morse code response in underwatery tones. And once the shrieking synths channel John Coltrane’s take of ‘My Favorite Things’ in the midsection, all bets are off.

‘Den behronede guden’ walks into a joyous celebration as organs, classical instruments, and fiddles set up the return home for a job well done by partying until the crack of dawn while ‘Åndemaneren’ steps into a fast-driven ‘60s garage rock territory that speaks of the Electric Prunes’ Mass in F Minor and their pre-punk classic ‘I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night)’.

‘Jeg Klumser Deg’ sees Tusmørke going into a Trip-Hop momentum with a jig. It’s quite out of the blue to see them going into this area, but it shows a bit of humour they have in their flesh and blood as if they’re paying homage to The Grand Wazoo and Serge Gainsbourg with surreal arrangements done by Serge’s right-hand man, Jean-Claude Vannier.

‘Kyprianos’ adds in the clues and mysteries to its context. We see the band become a tango-like response as Mundy detectives by bringing in the mellotron for interrogation before closing up the medieval shop on ‘Wicked Ways of Witches and Wizards’.

Now we ain’t talkin’ about Dungeons & Dragons, nor the Lord of the Rings series, but revealing their mystic powers with some heavy fuzzy bass, and doomy folky flutes about witchcraft. I felt some tugs to both Arthur Brown’s Kingdom Come and Van der Graaf Generator’s The Least We Can Do is Wave to Each Other with early Sabbath, handling the production realms.

This album as I call it, a ‘Holy Shit-in-a-handbag’ momentum. This is Tusmørke bringing in their listeners to the campfires once more. Yes, it may take a while to get into, but they got the job done, top to bottom.

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