While Norwegian electronic producer and multi-instrumentalist Hans-Peter Lindstrøm’s preceding 2017 album ‘It’s Alright Between Us As It Is’ saw him operating firmly in the chilled space-disco arena that established his reputation, two years on, this sixth album ‘On A Clear Day I Can See You Forever’ offers up a considerably different proposition.
Based on piece commissioned by Norway’s premier art centre Henie Onstad Kunstsenter in 2018, the four characteristically expansive tracks assembled here see Lindstrom operating completely without software for the first time, and instead using more than thirty different synthesisers and drum machines to craft his arrangements. Rather than disco / house-styled tracks, the results here frequently sit closer to the proggy synth arrangements of Vangelis and Tangerine Dream, with an occasional brush with modern classical.
Title track ‘On A Clear Day I Can See You Forever’ opens this album with its most sprawling offering, spending its ten and a half minutes slowly emerging from atmospheric analogue synth sweeps and noodling, proggy keyboard solos, before gradually fading away amidst broad major chords, and the occasional flash of jazzy organs.
‘Really Deep Snow’ meanwhile calls to mind ‘Phaedra’-era Tangerine Dream more than anything else as arpeggiated synth sequences and clicking drum machine rhythms glide beneath elegant piano arrangements and synthesised woodwinds, the background synths gradually building into a powerful wall of gathering bass as jagged distorted electronic tones begin to arc out in haphazard directions.
If the aforementioned track easily represents this album’s most rhythm-fuelled moment, elsewhere ‘Swing Low Sweet LFO’ eschews the beats entirely as spiralling synth arpeggios stretch out against delicate keys and what sound like growling modular synth tones, offering a deep wander out into cinematic territory.
Finally, ‘As If No One Is Here’ closes things out with an ominous wander out into yawning bass synths and slow clicking rhythms that eventually enters far more bucolic terrain, as blurred-out soul keys trail things to a close. While at just four tracks spread over 38 minutes this album feels slightly short, there’s a lot of good stuff on offer here.