Blizzards, sleet and rain – the notoriously unpredictable Arctic weather didn’t affect delegates or festival goers at last week’s by:Larm music industry event in Tromsų, Norway. The Arctic city’s unique ambiance created a fitting frame for a fast growing event that is frequently labelled as Europe’s coolest music industry convention.
Strong Serena Maneesh gig
60 bands played more than 170 concerts from Thursday to Saturday, displaying a plethora of talent and skill. The number of bands has now been reduced to 60 (as compared to 100 a few years ago), to ensure that the level of quality is high. Each band played two shows during by:Larm, enabling delegates and audience to see more acts.
Concert highlights includes gigs by Serena Maneesh, The Fernets, Mira Craig, Wibutee, Adjagas, Animal Alpha, Heroes & Zeroes, Grand Island, Blind Archery Club and The White Birch who all played stunning shows in Tromsų.
Animal Alpha wins by:Larm award
Animal Alpha capped of a successful weekend by winning this year's by:Larm scholarship, an award that is given to what is considered the domestic music industry's most promising act. The scholarship amounts to a value NOK 550 000 ($ 81 525/ € 68 107) and includes ad space and exposure in Norwegian daily Dagbladet and at the Kanal24 radio channel as well as NOK 100 000 in hard cash.
Animal Alpha debuted last year with their critically acclaimed 'Pheromones' (Racing Junior).
Says head of the by:Larm scholarship committee Mona Varpe: - The band delivers a solid live-show with an artistic integrity that has few equals on the Norwegian scene. We hop that this scholarship can help the band to develop its repertoire and boost their career that, hopefully, will bring the band out to a wider international audience.
The other nominees to the 2006 by:Larm scholarship were Brut Boogaloo, Serena Maneesh, The Jessica Fletchers, Elvira Nikolaisen, Superfamily, Washington, Monomen, Animal Town, Grand Island, Animal Alpha, The Goo Men, The Cheaters, The Low Frequency in Stereo, Rockettothesky and Enslaved.
Early January saw the Oslo outfit playing very successful showcases at the Eurosonic festival in Groningen, Holland. The band was cited as one of the festival’s breakthrough acts, and AA are now set to play a number of key European festivals as a direct result of the Dutch event.
Listen to Animal Alpha tracks and download their debut album here.
Djuice award to young Northern Norwegian singer/songwriter
The Djuice-award 2006 went to Magnus Eliassen, a 24-year-old singer/songwriter from Bodų with roots in a classic pop tradition. Eliassen released his critically acclaimed debut album ‘Second Grace’ on his own label last year. The award is given to the nominee that receives the highest number of SMS votes, and Eliassen took home the victory with a 90% margin to the runner-up. Check out Eliassen’s tunes at MySpace.
One successful new invention at this year’s by:Larm was a new meeting/networking concept that was intended to create better contact between Norwegian and international delegates. A series of 10-minute meetings modelled on the speed-dating concept allowed selected Norwegian and international delegates to swap business cards and hold a short and focussed meeting. The feedback from domestic as well as foreign delegates was that this was a brilliant and well executed plan. Reportedly, several international delegates expressed that they were to ‘copy’ the idea and introduce the same model to their own music industry events.
The other new initiative of by:Larm 2006 was a daily newspaper with gig reviews, interviews, news stories and anecdotes – all in English. MIC Norway was a key contributor to this project, having prepared a number of articles in advance and also contributing with daily articles on seminars, artists and news stories. The new English daily newspaper was also welcomed by international and Norwegian delegates alike.
Trondheim in 2007
Next year’s by:Larm is set to be staged in Trondheim. Book your flights and make hotel reservations early, because if by:Larm continues to grow, Trondheim is going to be a crowded place in early February next year. sd
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Music Industry, Trade Fairs