Says the a-ha keyboardist and songwriter Magne Furuholmen (41) to Norwegian daily VG: ”It all started out as an ordinary songwriting process in the wake of the last a-ha album, but all the way I’ve had this feeling that it was turning into a solo project.” When he realised that his composing was moving into a solo project, the ensuing acknowledgement hit hard: “It was like an explosion in the back of my head. The tunes took on a whole new character, and when I began to sing them, the compositions appeared to me much cleared for me than before. All of it defined itself as a solo project with an entirely new persona.”

Furuholmen is assisted by a competent crew on his upcoming solo outing. The album is co-produced by Martin Terefe whose resume includes work with Ron Sexsmith. Bass and drum work is done by Guy Berryman and Will Champion, perhaps better known as Coldplay’s comp. A numerous gigs, Coldplay have revealed their fascination for a-ha and their timeless 80s classics performing renditions of such central a-ha hits as “Hunting High and Low”. Furuholmen and the Coldplay members met at the Quart festival two years ago and apparently hit off well.

In addition to a new solo-record, Furuholmen also launches his own brand new label, Passionfruit Records. The label’s releases are to be distributed by a-ha’s parent label Universal. Furuholmen’s solo outing still has no official release date, but is expected in the shops by late autumn.

In addition to manning the keyboards and co-vocals in one of the biggest successes in Norwegian music, a-ha, Furuholmen also enjoys a career as a respected artist who has held a number of well-received exhibitions. He has also scored the soundtracks for several Norwegian full-length films.

Furuholmen is apparently very proud of his debut solo album: “It feels a bit stupid to say so, but I recorded this album feeling that it is this decade’s most important record. At least, it is the best material that I’ve ever made.” sd
 
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