RCD 2031CD RCD 2031CD

Jono el Grande: (guitar, harp, synthesizer, programming); Erik Løkra: (saxophone); Håkon Stene: (xylophone, vibraphone, glockenspiel, percussion); Tomas Gantelius: (piano, synthesizer); Karl Strømme: (trumpet); Kjell Tore Innervik: (xylophone); Kjell-Asbjørn Bunæs: (flute); Rolf-Erik Nystrøm: (saxophone); Håkon Thelin: (doublebass); Terje Engen: (drums). "Jono el Grande, born Jon Andreas Håtun (29), surfaced in 1999 with the LP Utopiske Danser ('Utopian Dances'), a kind of concept album where Jono delivered his interpretations of 'utopian folk music' -- a musical genre that only exists in the dreams of human beings (!). The album was both odd and quite reckless, but at the same time it was a promising collection of mildly absurd instrumentals recorded under the artists bed (!?) using primarily a workstation synthesizer. A lot of water has passed under the bridge since then and on Fevergreens Jono appears as a more complete artist with an uncommonly strong and personal vision. Jono el Grande has no formal musical training and is a selfmade composer, musician and conductor. Authoritarian musical education institutions have never been his cup of tea. It is no exaggeration to say that Jono is a true outsider in the Norwegian music community, were most music outside the mainstream is made by pale young men with worried furrows on their foreheads. The concerts of the Jono el Grande Orchestra is quite a lively and entertaining musical rollercoaster ride. As a conductor Jono combines comic talent with Wagnerian patos and the ensemble has been a big live hit both in clubs and concert halls. In many ways Jono el Grande's music has its origin in the early seventies, with references to Canterbury, Henry Cow, Frank Zappa as well as Burt Bacharach, Easy Listening and TV series music. It's both smooth and simple but also complex and cleverly arranged, a kind of light art music with hooks. Songs that in best pop manner crawl in through your ears and stick to your brain -- in spite of the intricate melodies and arrangements."