Stian Westerhus and Eivind Aarset were two of the main guitarists that led me to found Guitar Moderne. With their obvious technical skills, command of analog and digital effects, and rock star charisma, they made it easy to get excited about new forms of guitar playing. Stian has just released a recording of a live set from DOKK-huset in Trondheim Norway, available on Bandcamp. Even though half the performance is Westerhus processing his vocals, there is plenty of astounding guitar. If you purchase the audio recording, you get access to a beautifully shot video of the live performance. We talked about the record and many, many other things.
Stay in a nice air-conditioned space during this heat wave and enjoy a festival of modern guitar superstars and young upstarts.
Stian Westerhus, with Helge Sten on Buchla-synth, Frode Haltli on accordion, Ståle Storløkken on keys, and, Erland Dahlen on drums
It’s that time of year again: Trees being decorated, candles being lit, balls being dropped, and, of course, year-end top ten lists. You love ’em, you hate ’em but no publication worthy of the name is without them. So here is mine. There were many great records of modern guitar released this year (read about them in the various Record picks posts) but these are the ones that found their way most often to my virtual turntable.
When I checked out the videos Matteo Liberatore sent me in his contact email, I was blown away by his take on creating abstract music in a similar way to early Stian Westerhus; that is, conjuring up highly electronic sounds without using a laptop or iPad, solely through the imaginative employment of effects pedals. Matteo was kind enough to consent to a Reader’s Rig, where explains his process in detail.