As reported earlier by mic.no, interactive entertainment software giant EA and national Norwegian radio station NRK P3 join forces to secure international exposure for the winner of NRK’s ‘Urørt’ finals. The collaboration represents a new initiative in which computer and console games are to be used as a platform for a new and unsigned act discovered and promoted through P3’s successful talent-finding programme ‘Urørt’ (Untouched). The ‘Urørt’-project utilises NRK’s web-site, enabling unsigned acts to upload songs, publish info and promote themselves. Audience voting selects winners that are subsequently promoted by the radio station.
The 2005 winner will be presented with a unique opportunity to reach out to a wider audience through EA’s upcoming ‘Burnout 4’ car-game. EA’s most recent game in this category, ‘The Need For Speed Underground 2” has reached international sales in excess of 8,5 million.
The lucky winner was hard-hitting, Oslo-based collective Animal Alpha who are now set to reach out to a large international audience through ‘Burnout 4’ with their smashing Bundy track that has already seen extensive airplay in Norway. Says Animal Alpha vocalist Agnete Kjølsrud to Norwegian daily Dagbladet: “This is fantastic! I’ve never played a car game in my life – maybe I should do it now. The track has tons of speed, that’s for sure!” Bassist Lars Imre Bidtnes joins in: “The gaming industry has become huge and this represents a good opportunity for exposure for us. I’ve heard that many hear tunes on the soundtracks of their games and subsequently check out the music.”
Coinciding with their EA deal comes the news that the band has signed to Norwegian indie Racing Junior. The label, best known for acts St. Thomas, Bonk and Salvatore has chosen to team the band up with well-known US producer Sylvia Massey, recognised for her work with such major acts as Johnny Cash, Tool, Red Hot Chili Peppers, REM, Smashing Pumpkins and System of a Down. Animal Alpha will begin the recording sessions for their debut album at Massey’s Radio Star Studios north of San Francisco in mid-March. An EP has been scheduled for release in May, while the full-length album will be out in August.
Reportedly, Massey has a bag of tricks up her sleeve for her upcoming studio sessions with Animal Alpha. One planned stunt involves a collection of old and worn out pianos stashed into a tunnel and then subsequently smashed by a train while Massey records the chaos. She also has plans to record a drumset placed in the trunk of a van while it speeds down steep alleys (preferably in San Francisco). That should produce some new and challenging sound effects on the upcoming Animal Alpha album.
Animal Alpha are also set to play key Norwegian festivals Quart and Øya this summer.