Home Read Now Hear This: Motorpsycho | The All is One

Now Hear This: Motorpsycho | The All is One

I'm still getting caught up on all the good albums I missed last week. Like this one.

THE PRESS RELEASE:The All Is One is the final chapter in the loosely-connected and informally titled Gullvåg Trilogy kicked off by 2017’s The Tower and connected by 2019’s The Crucible. A sprawling, ambitious work that is immediately accessible and yet challenging, Motorpsycho’s newest record draws on elements from their entire career while charting new territory at the same time. If The Crucible — both visually and musically — started where The Tower ended, one can argue that The All Is One starts where The Crucible ended. That said, The All Is One is so much more than a sequel, and very much a standalone album in its own right. While The Crucible took the band a step further out than The Tower, the new one explores new frontiers, especially with the dark, brooding landscape of the 42-minute epic centerpiece that is N.O.X., possibly the most ambitious piece of music they have recorded. Eight shorter tracks, clocking in between two and 10 minutes, make up the rest of the album and bring some balance to the proceedings. Lyrically, The All Is One takes up the threads from the previous albums. While there is no thematic red line as such — and not being overtly political — it is difficult for a socially conscious writer like Bent Sæther not to observe and reflect on what goes on in an increasingly unstable world. They have also found strong inspiration and common ground in the paintings of Håkon Gullvåg, the artist responsible for the cover art. The album was recorded in two major sessions, the first took place in Studio Black Box in France with long time collaborator and guitarist Reine Fiske. Here they mainly focused on material with more or less traditional song structures. The second session was at Ocean Sound Recording in Norway and basically dealt with the long N.O.X. suite, developed from the commissioned music they wrote for, and performed at, the St. Olav Festival in Trondheim last summer with two of their favourite Norwegian musicians, Lars Horntveth (Jaga Jazzist) and Ola Kvernberg (Steamdome). The whole album was mixed by Andrew Scheps at his Punkerpad studio in the U.K. Artistically searching as ever, and in their own way joyously stretching the rock format as out of whack as they can, Motorpsycho neither can nor will align themselves fully to any scene or genre. Travelling their own path in their own tempo, it might take longer to get anywhere, but that is just fine when the journey itself is the whole point. And what a journey it has been; this band is still peaking after more than 30 years in the business. Amazing!”