The Great Escape festival which runs from 10th to 12th of May has become known as one of the most important showcasing arenas for the international music scene, working as a collection ground for key representatives of the music industry. The 2012 version of the festival looks set to be a strong one for Norway, with six Norwegian acts taking the stage. 22, Young Dreams, Philco Fiction, Razika, Like Spinning and Jarle Bernhoft are confirmed to play showcases at the key music industry convention, as is Norway-based Swede Karin Park and the partly Norwegian band All We Are.

The Great Escape has established itself as the leading event in Europe for showcasing new talent from around the world, aimed at 'export ready' bands and industry professionals. TGE lasts for three days and nights with a total attendance of over 15,000 people at 34 different venues. There will also be a variety of industry talks, panel debates and targeted networking sessions, and as many as ten companies from the Norwegian music industry will participate.

Norwegian acts at The Great Escape 2012:


22 are from Trondheim and describe themselves as a ‘"Instructional Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment, Harmonic Individuality and Universal Transcendence". Having already signed with Best Before Records and completed tours of Japan and Europe since the release of the debut EP ‘Plastik’, the band evidently has a steely determination behind their unhinged talent, as well as a clear vision for their strange and unique brand of music.

Young Dreams

After uploading three tracks on their Facebook page exactly a year ago Young Dreams quickly received an overwhelming response from both national and international music press and blogs. This included attention from The Guardian, XL Recording, Rough Trade, The fader and national music radio shows.

Fusing Tropicália, psychedelic rock, classical, symphonic arrangements and traditional pop recalling the classic sounds of Brian Wilson and Phil Spector, Young Dreams both adheres to and upends the conventional definitions of pop music, creating a sound that’s at once refreshingly familiar and daringly unique. Newly signed to Modular Recording, the debut album will be out early next autumn.

Karin Park

Born in Djura (population 400) in the dark woods of Dalarna, Sweden, in a deeply religious family, Park was first a pop star in Norway with her 2004 debut 'Superworldunknown', before she started collaborating with Datarock's Fredrik Saroea on the previous album 'Ashes To Gold', a route she's now continued with UK based producer Barry Barnett. Co-produced and mixed by Christoffer Berg (The Knife/Fever Ray/Little Dragon) into an even darker soundscape. Karin's new album combines electronica, industrial, dubstep and synth pop with her unmistakeable, truly unique voice

Philco Fiction

Oslo trio Philco Fiction sounds like a mashup of Björk and Edith Piaf. The heart of their sound is a gentle mix of acoustic and electronic sounds. Imagine the sound of instruments yet to be invented emerging from an old gramophone and you could start to conjuere up the sounds, or could you.

“A twisted pop sensation that lives up to the hype” – The Guardian

“Have to hear in 2012!” – NME

“Single of the Week” – Drowned in Sound

“We feel this is simply some of the most exciting music to come out of Norway in recent years.” – Record of the Day

“Some of the nicest sounds to come out of Norway this year!” – Richard Thane, The Line Of Best Fit


Formed in 2005, Marie Amdam, Maria Råkil, Marie Moe and Embla Karidotter Dahleng have been childhood friends since the age of 6, discovering their parents’ rock records before delving into punk as early teenagers. “We loved Green Day, The Ramones and Sex Pistols; that phase when you’re 14 and start discovering punk,” said drummer Dahleng. “When we started, we were playing basically straight punk songs.” Adds lead singer Amdam, “As we got older, we started listening to a lot of reggae music and figuring out how to play it. We were growing and when you grow, the music also changes. You’re more open-minded.”

The band consumed equal parts Jamaican music, sugary pop and underground Norwegian rock records – the album title a nod to both the year of the members’ birth and 1980s Norwegian New Wave group Program 81.

Jarle Bernhoft

The one man-band Bernhoft plays with jazz, pop, hip-hop, soul and funk creating a musical experience that has earned him world-wide recognition. He has been present on the music scene for a number of years and has known both national and international success as part of the rock band Span and as a solo artist. In 2011 his album ‘Solidarity Breaks’ was released to great reviews and standing ovations. His video ‘C’mon talk’ has gained almost 3 million views on youtube, he has appeared on the Ellen DeGeneres show in the US, won the Norwegian Grammy for Best Male Artist and was granted the Statoil grant of 1 million Norwegian kroner (approximately £100 000).

All We Are

All We Are is a partly Norwegian band formed in the summer of 2011 in Liverpool, immediately going on tour with Stealing Sheep and releasing their debut EP, which got great praise from BBC 6 Music DJs Tom Robinson and Marc Riley. They deliver melodic folk-inspired pop inspired by artists like Bon Iver and Joni Mitchell, as well as Brazilian classical music. Having released their second EP ‘We Hunt’ this April, All We Are is embarking on another extensive tour, including two unofficial gigs at the Great Escape festival, and slots at Liverpool Sound City and Fusion Festival in Germany. They are also set to release a mini-debut album in late September.

Like Spinning

Like Spinning is based in London, and consisting of members from both Norway and UK. They've been played on BBC Introducing with Tom Robinson on Radio 6, they've played the Communion night in Bristol, and lately they've played at venues like Slaughtered Lamb and Old Queens Head, the latter as support for Emily & The Woods. Over the next couple of months they're playing at The Great Escape and Liverpool Sound City, and they've been booked to Hop Farm Festival this summer. Like Spinning released their debut, self titled EP in 2011, and the double single Forces / My Window January 2012. Both releases can be heard on their website After summer they're going back in the studio to record for a new release, to be released early
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