In the winter of 2021, after almost a year of covid lockdowns, masks and fear of the plague, we Motorpsychos realized that most of our usual work routines were no longer applicable: no one could travel, people were stuck in their homes, cultural activities wound down everywhere, and options were increasingly limited for a working rock band: inertia and entropy loomed.
As the months went by, the question arose: would we even survive this as a band?
What better to do then, than rearrange the rehersal room into a makeshfit studio, and record music that wouldn’t require fancy recording facilities, hi fidelity sound, or indeed much input from people outside the band to work? There wasn’t much else to do, so we burrowed down and went to work.
For almost two months, we recorded as many of the shorter, less opulently arranged, less improvisational, less progressive, and decidedly less epic song ideas we had accumulated over the previous few years as we could: acoustic guitars prevailed. So did hand percussion and congas, and we all sang mulitple harmonies to the best of our abilities, untill we – in March/April somewhere – realized we were going blind and deaf and couldn’t really tell if what we were doing was any good anymore.
So we put it all aside for a few weeks, then revised the material, and lo and behold – had a revelation: all of a sudden we heard the music we’d done, and saw the potential album hidden within the mass of musical information and loose ideas we’d put down.
Destilled, this was actually pretty good stuff: it coalesced and had a vibe – there was a throughline implied, and a cohesion in the best tunes that really worked. Not within the ususal modern Motorpsychodelic parameters perhaps, but still!
We’d accidentally actually made something that was good:
‘a morning album’ we thought, or a ‘spring album’ – an album’s worth of tunes so different in mood to our usual concoctions that it actually needed to become an album of its own, if nothing else for that very reason.
Full of insecurity and trepidation, we knew we needed help to figure this out, and decided to ask our very best friend in music, Mr Reine Fiske (Landberk, Dungen, the Amazing, Träd, Gräs och Stenar, Melody’s Echo Chamber, etc) if he agreed, and if so, if he wanted to produce and mix it.
Well, long story short, he did.
Given absolute carte blanche to do with the material as he wished, he jumped at it, recruiting his Amazing/Dungen colleague Fredrik Swahn to engineer and assist, and together they went to work. Adding, subtracting, editing and polishing: the work – of and on – took the better part of 18 months, but what emerged is pretty damn special.
The ‘Stockholm sound’ is a thing in modern psych, and these guys are two of the major players and architects thereof. In the overdub- and mix process they enriched and expanded our home recorded efforts and shaped the resulting songs into a wonderful little psych album, as full of their textures and aestethics as of ours: intimate, friendly and inviting, but trippy and psychedelic at the same time.
Our music was given a sweet Swedish psychedelic sheen, and it really suits it!
What emerged from this long and convoluted process, is a fairly gentle creature, but still a full on Motorpsycho album. It is an album that accesses the light and ‘heavenly’
Yang side of Motorpsychodelia more than any record has done in years, and is probably going to be one of those albums that make you go either ‘WTF?!?’ or ‘Finally!!’, depending on what tangent you prefer in the band’s musical universe. We are mentally prepeared for a few
s too (sarcastic smartasses when rubbed the wrong way these psychonauts, aren’t you?), but in our minds we already know that this is destined to be perceived as a little gem in our canon. Also, while unmistakingly Motorpsychodelic, it is an album that we are certain many people, even outside the core of diehard Psychonauts, will appreciate. This is not always the case, but it’s a really good thing when it happens, and we are absolutly thrilled
with what – in spite of the circumstances of it’s creation – can only be called its’ quietly intense tone. No unicorns or divine chariots on this one, sorry (not!), but more than enough drama, promise!
We spent the rest of the Covid period – the long years – both releasing and making other records, and working further on our music, and some day pts 2 and perhaps 3 of this plague continuum might see the light of day too, we’ll see. They were hard and weird years, but they had a vibe. So does the music we made during that period.
So, did the band survive the long years? Yes, kind of. Tomas, who plays drums and percussion and sings a little on this record, decided to leave the band at the end of 2022. Seriously reevaluating his life and professional trajectory coming out of two years of Covid and six years of service onboard the mothership, he felt it was time to move on and pursue other challenges in music. We wish him luck.
Losing band members is never easy, but yeah – the band survived. We are still here, still alive, busy rehearsing various new and old band members for the next projects and tours we have lined up, and we are very proud to be able to present this document from a time and a place where it felt like the world was stopping and this whole band lark was all going to end. What a weird time that was, huh?
It’s a new morning in the Psychoverse, one with a little more sun in it.
B.S. April ’23
Presave our new single Patterns here: https://orcd.co/motorpsychopatterns
1 – Cold & Bored
2 – Sentinels
3 – Patterns
4 – Dank State
5 – W.C.A.
6 – Real Again
7 – Lock Meaninglessness & the Mull Of Dull
8 – Hotel Daedalus
9 – Scaredcrow
10 – The Rapture
Presales May 5th
Release June 16th
It’s always great to hear news of what you guys have been up to, and I’m seriously (motor)psyched to hear the new album. Farewell and good luck to Tomas, he has been an amazing part of the last several years in the psychoverse – he will be missed.
I’m looking forward to the UK shows, where I plan to catch you in Southampton and London.
Can’t wait to hear it. Always loved your more off piste efforts, including …Love Cult and …Unicorn
2021 — Kingdom of Oblivion og
2022 — Ancient Astronauts var en veldig opptur i forhold til Gullvåg-trilogien men
dette høres veldig lovende ut. Blir bra med “låter” igjen å ikke bare disse lange jam/prog partiene som egentlig gjør seg best live.
Yay! Det glædes.
Høres ut som veldig Yay! Gleder meg te nytt album❤️
I’m looking forward for this album. I’m wondering if there will be that lo-fi psychedelic side of you that I loved since the very first album. I hope for some ballads as Sungravy too for example, but apart of my expectations, I really thank you for all your music during all these years. Words are not enough….
Love you to the deep space and back!
Don’t consider myself a diehard psychonaut anymore, but this makes me very curious indeed.
I’’ve got one thing to say, one thing to say-ay.
One thing to say to you.
And that is::
If the album is as enjoyable as this email, we’re in for a treat! Glad the band survived – the music you released during lockdown is great, and it helped ME survive.
Hey, furst thing, was love cult off pist?
I followed the band in Uropa those days and it was magic… last Tor with geb i think
But to the point finger
I hear it Bent!
One of the last greats is the Kingdom of O
nettopp because IT siler igjennom
at finally the mothership again is asleep
after tons of conceptthinkin
Good times ahead… MPs sliping again into the underwiorld, bye bye surface
The worlds best band means the world to some people! Oh, wait. That is you guys! Looking forward to new album! And tour : ) Keep up the good work. Brings meaning to life!
The Mothership abides!
Jevn smått fantastisk produksjon i 30 år and counting. Husker fortsatt så mye det betydde å høre Demon box lille julaften i 93. Snart et 30-års vennskap som har ført til interesse i musikkarkeologi og ikke minst et deadhead-lignende forhold til Sæther/ Ryan. Long may you run og også smått fantastisk å være 11 år igjen før hvert nytt album. Sail on❤️
Regarding digital release – please don’t forget about your bandcamp page.
“The Light Fantastic” is still the only release available there.
Where can the album be pre-ordered from?
no possibility to order from outside norway ? why not?
@Tommy and @Olli – https://www.nfgs.no/yay-motorpsycho/
[…] darkest days of Covid (read a full and in-depth statement by the band about the making of »Yay!« HERE), this melancholy song combines Motorpsycho’s trademarked dense guitar walls with naked […]
I have been a fan of sorts since i heard plan#1 an there is no band i have seen play live more (probably up to 40 times or something) but i have to admit you lost me a little bit with all the viruoso bombast endless improv . This however gets me right in the feels. Love it and eager for more. Thanks for remaining true.
Seriously, Bent: lose the moustache. You look like a cross between Tom Selleck and Steinar Albrigtsen. ;-)
Nah, keep the moustache! Bent slowly becoming Zucchero & Snah has fully transformed into Holger Czzukay by now…..groovy italopop…..what can go wrong? :D
YAY! is going to be a great summer soundtrack, i hope.
[…] Pavement reference, the album was pretty clearly and eloquently introduced by Bent Sæther on the Motorpsycho website (read all of his posts, they are a treasure chest of beautiful insights!) as transitional in more […]
[…] darkest days of Covid (read a full and in-depth statement by the band about the making of »Yay!« HERE), the album’s melancholy combines Motorpsycho’s trademarked dense guitar walls with […]
Very good album! Really nice summer vibes, even the wife likes it, hehehe. :-)
And I knew it: Motorpsycho have for a long time had a secret dream of creating a James Bond track. Will the next James Bond movie be called Hotel Daedalus? Only time will show. ;-)
The YAY! – Album is awesome. Since Here be Monsters there hasn’t been an album that our kids wanted to fall asleep to. So “Here be Monsters” was played again and again and mostly they fell asleep on the second song, while I was allowed to listen to it until the end – Big Black Dog – (one of my favorite songs in general). Now the kids are older and don’t fall asleep so easily anymore.. but the new album has been a MUST in the children’s room every night since it was released. I find that funny and good.
I’ve been listening to and buying your albums since 1994 and I go to many concerts with my sister and my best friends (every time there’s a note or a BüntingTee from me after the concert) and I can report that this has become a particularly good album. It feels really good and reminds me of Motorpsycho Sound, which I almost missed but didn’t even know about. Thank you very much (God bless you)
acoustics – politics – burantics
[…] Daedalus” er det deilig å kjenne hvordan det får lov til å rage over landskapet rundt seg. Plata er, ikke overraskende, et covid-album, hvor et band som er vant til å turnere var stuck i øvingslokalet i Trondheim. Opptakene ble […]