More than two million hits for MIC’s web-sites
MIC’s Norwegian-language web-services,, is solidly established as perhaps the web’s most important debate forum, news service and channel of information for the Norwegian music scene. Since the start in September 2000, Ballade’s approach has been to include all segments of musical life in Norway as a contrast to other media, where small genres have often been given priority over the bigger and more commercial acts. February saw the shattering of Ballade’s 2002 record of 800 000 pages downloaded. The new all-time high record is 1 044 593 pages shown during the last month!

MIC’s two additional sites, and are also catching up fast. Following the re-launch of and the premiere of in mid-October, the statisticts for these two sites are showing a strong positive development. On February’s busiest day, the domain generated 56 117 hits and more than 10 000 pages downloaded. This positive trend is continuing and generates increased international feedback and interest. and combined now produce more than two million hits a month. Few, if any, web-contributors with focus on Norwegian music can rival these figures.

Small genres – big coverage
Says editor of Ballade, Arvid Skancke-Knutsen, on the positive development: This is very rewarding. We owe our web-success to lots of hard work, good staff and highly qualified freelancers with intimate knowledge of the plethora of genres on the Norwegian music scene. I think one contributing factor to our success is the fact that we have chosen to emphasise smaller genres that haven’t the same outlet for expression in other media. There’s a wealth of activity in Norway at the moment and so there’s much exciting stuff is going on - it makes for a strong journalistic challenge to give all of this activity the due coverage. Even though Norway is a small country there’s always lots of activity to cover, especially in the smaller genres such as metal, jazz and contemporary avant-garde music.

Says Skancke-Knutsen on Ballade’s strategy for the coming months: We’ll continue much in the same vein as today, focussing on an open debate forum and informative news and background articles. In the months to come Ballade will also feature more in-depth articles on composers and performers with longer interviews on a monthly basis.

Ballade playlist
What’s spinning on the Ballade stereo these days? The Ballade desk should be highly qualified to recommend some new Norwegian sounds. We asked editor Skancke-Knutsen and Ballade journalist Knut Steen to reveal their current personal Norwegian favourites. Here’s their list of artists you should check out:

Arvid Skancke-Knutsen:
Maja Ratkje: Voice (Rune Grammofon)
Supersilent: 6 (Rune Grammofon)
Gothminister: Devil
Red Harvest
Elias Akselsen: Hjemlandsklokker (Via Music)
13:49 Rykkin (Jester)

Knut Steen:
The Carburetors
Nils Petter Molvær: NP3 (Universal)
Martin Horntvedt: Skull EP (Smalltown Supersound)sd
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Music Industry, Internet, Media, Press