Rave UK reviews for Adjagas

One of the foremost exponents of the new wave of Sami acts, Adjagas are finally releasing their debut album internationally this January. The first UK reviews are now in and make for some very positive reading.

Listen to excerpts from Adjagas debut album here.
Listen to and download Adjagas releases here

Adjagas 2007 (photo: Knut Aaserud)

Adjagas has garnered rave reviews in the domestic press for their self-titled debut album released in Norway last year through Trust Me Records. Now the release has been licensed to !K7 subsidiary Ever Records which launches the album on the European market in January 2007.

The first reviews from the UK music press are now in and it’s safe to say that they are indeed positive. Both Time Out and The Wire magazine praise the album’s many qualities:

Time Out’s Chris Parkin writes:

Such is the intensity on this record you wouldn’t believe Adjagas has only two members. Norwegian from Sámi families – the indigenous people of northern Scandinavia – they feed their folk tradition into a mesmeric mix that sounds like Sigur Rós reared on alt-americana. Part of this tradition is yoik singing – making sounds rather than words - and this debut is an enchanting snapshot of another world that will keep you going back for more. (5/6)

Writes The Wire’s Louise Gray:

With the exception of Mari Boine’s jazz inflected folk songs, the joik – as a song format - hasn’t travelled much outside the northern reaches of Scandinavia and its home within the Sámi cultures. With luck, this is about to change. Sara Mariella Gaup and Lawra Somby – the two young Norwegian Sámis behind Adjagas have delivered a debut album of free- moving songs and quiet atmospherics. The duo have been aided by Andreas Mjřs, the producer responsible for the clean-cut lines of Susanna And The Magical Orchestra’s open-plan design. However, Adjagas’s debut is very much its own thing, its nine songs varying between a discrete electronic soundscape triangulated by Geiger-ish beats and purposeful harmonies augmented by (at one point) banjos and percussion.
It’s an intimate affair either way and one suited to the concept of joiks, where music functions as an expression, rather than any given format. Traditionally improvised, joiks are, like most folk songs, malleable, For Adjagas, such elasticity provides a pleasurable tension between ancient and modern: tracks like “Lihkulas”, basking in a clipped bounce of a beat, benefit wildly.
It takes work to make something so deceptively simple. The songs have lyrics in any number of Sami dialects, and there’s extra help on guitar and drums from Juhani Silvola, Paal Fagerheim and Timo Silvola respectively. The disc’s subtle flickering moods repay constant revisiting.

Adjagas is yoik group based in Sapmi (Lapland), located in the desolate areas of Northern Norway. The group consists of Sara Marielle Gaup and Lawra Somby, who both are traditional yoikers, Juhani Silvola and Paal Fagerheim on guitars and Timo Silvola on drums. Their debut album “Adjagas”, produced by Andreas Mjřs (Jaga Jazzist, Susanna and the magical orchestra) saw its domestic release in November 2005 to great critical acclaim. Adjágas is a state between sleeping and waking. It is where you get in touch with issues and messages that are important to you. It is also said that the Sami learned yoiking from the ulda people that live in another world parallell to our own. Adjágas is a celebration of the ancient art of yoiking and a search for what the future will bring. Last year saw the outfit playing key showcases at the Popkomm and Womex music industry events, concerts that are expected to lead to further European touring.

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