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Phantom Stimulance

RCD 2106CD RCD 2106CD

This is the third full-length release by Jon Andreas Håtun aka Jono El Grande, a self-taught composer, musician, conductor and prankster who remains an outsider on the far margin of the Norwegian experimental music scene. He released his debut mini-album Utopian Dances in 1999, a collection of absurdist instrumentals recorded at home using not much more than a workstation synth. 2003 saw the release of Fevergreens (RCD 2031CD), an album that drew upon classic progressive rock, film music, easy listening and a variety of pop idioms and featured a 9-piece orchestra. 2009's Neo Dada (RCD 2084CD/RLP 3084LP) was a masterstroke; brimming with creative ideas, odd turns, weird combinations of sounds and instruments, complex time signatures and a healthy dose of pure musical joy, all mysteriously sugared with melodic hooks that would stick to your brain like any annoying pop tune. As far as musical form and content goes, this can be said to continue with Phantom Stimulance. It's put together to celebrate Jono's 15 years as a composer and performer and 10 years as a band leader, but it's not a mere compilation. Recorded in Athletic Studio, home to great analog recordings by Supersilent, Motorpsycho, Scorch Trio and countless others, it's a collection of new versions of stage favorites and previously-unreleased songs as well as a brand-new song. Jono lists movements like Rock In Opposition and the Canterbury Scene and artists and composers like Frank Zappa, Stravinsky, Magma, Henry Cow and Gentle Giant as inspirational sources but has established his own signature with his latest releases and stage shows. Instrumentations and arrangements have become more adventurous, he has picked up the electric guitar again and successfully added a rougher edge to the ensemble sound.