It is almost time for the highlight of the Norwegian summer, the Øya festival is right around the corner and the Tøyen park is going through is annual transformation into one of the country’s most eminent festivals.
The line up showcase a glittering variety from the big stars to bands on the rise alongside some of the best acts Norwegian music has to offer right now.
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The masters of simplistic pop, The xx released their most complex album yet this spring. 'I See You' takes a leap forward, transforming The xx into a star quality headliner with the depth and variations needed to excel beyond the task. Their compelling honesty and abilities to let each sparse element of their tunes play out to its full extent makes even the largest of festival ground feel like an intimate experience.
Bringing on more dance elements, The xx seem to have gained a savvy confidence in intertwining their signature solitary guitar melancholia with more elaborate, bouncier arrangements, making them a more astonishing live act that ever before.
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With her incredible live charm and explosive tunes, Sigrid is a name you can’t miss. Stirring up the press with her break-through ‘Don’t Kill My Vibe’, the twenty year old showcase heaps of raw potential.
Mastering the duality of innocent vulnerability and hard-hitting empowerment, Sigrid captures an immense energy in the most blooming and colourful way. Her debut EP, 'Don’t Kill My Vibe', received critical acclaim, and yet the unreleased tracks of her live set are just as exciting. Unleashing true pop quality, Sigrid grasp the tension between hook and profoundness without becoming cliché.
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Car Seat Headrest
Will Toledo, better known as Car Seat Headrest may not be your ordinary musician. Looking at his extensive catalogue, it’s easy to think quantity over quality. Yet his official debut - following some 11 Bandcamp releases - 'Teens Of Style' left little doubt that Toledo had heaps of potential.
Hitting the nerve of teen angst with his latest, 'Teens Of Denial', Car Seat Headrest is one of palpable coming of age transformation modern indie has seen. He may not be one for excruciating perfection, but with and encompassing honest lyricism, tangible sense of style and a unique take on guitar indie, Car Seat Headrest is an act worth catching.
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The south London outfit resurfaced this year with their most luscious tune to date. ‘California Light’ marks a shift as Childhood emerge into more soulful, funk dazzled waters. Their sophomore 'Universal High' reinforced this, keeping the best elements of their shoegazing indie whilst boldly exploring a richer terrain of sounds.
The measurable growth broods on a sweet sentiment that makes Childhood a live act out of the ordinary. Musically embodying the feelings of hot summer daze, and with a new-found 70’s tint, there’s really no better place to catch them than in the Tøyen park in Oslo.
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The artsy pop collective, Pom Poko impressed during The Great Escape this spring and their set at Øya is set to be another festive milestone. Building up an extensive live reputation, the group impress with their seeping guitars, frantic beats and oddball combination of sounds and lyrics. Listening to singles such as ‘Jazz Baby’ and ‘It’s a Trap’, there is little doubt that Pom Poko is a band with serious scope. Sporting an equally ballsy and insightful attitude, Pom Poko is rising from potential to glory at the speed of their own drum work.
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The shy-natured Cashmere Cat is bringing his alternate universe home to Oslo. His unique ability to combine lustrous synthesizers with outlandish elements of cracks, and crashes have gained him an A-list clientele such as Ariana Grande, Kanye West and The Weekend.
His debut, '9', finally came out this year, infusing a kaleidoscopic sense into the softer EDM soundscape of Cashmere Cat. His dreamy aesthetic caters as much for the dazed introvert as for the regulars of the EDM crowd with gracious energy counterpointed with a grasp of solitude and outlandish tweaks.
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Oya Festival runs between August 8th - 12th.
Words: Aurora Henni Krogh