January 27, 2023

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Concert Review: Stig Brenner, Oslo Spektrum: Moderate Fire Hazard - VG

Concert Review: Stig Brenner, Oslo Spektrum: Moderate Fire Hazard – VG

SPEKTRUM: The VG reviewer rolls the fourth dice at Stig Brenner’s concert.

Norway’s most polyphonic r&b songs get a lot from a little on Spektrum.

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VG dice show 4 points

Was there an oversell of Oslo Spektrum? The question may certainly seem unreasonable – it’s not possible to argue about ticket sales, popularity and everyone’s mentality, right?

But take last month’s Ballinciaga Gala. It was indisputably poor in every way, including the crowd, which is only emphasized by the fact that only two out of ten possible entrances were open.

The last time I saw Stig Brenner live, he called himself Unge Ferrari and played in an overcrowded and sometimes chaotic tent at Tøyenparken.

The experience was surprisingly exhilarating for being so simple, and at the time it was easy to see why drummer and friend Arif had filled in for Spektrum a year and a half earlier—and put on a great show, according to those who were there.

However, Stig Brenner’s momentum is far from as intense now as it was in 2017. The 32-year-old became known to a wider target audience with “Hver gang vi møtes,” but last year’s successful second album “Hvite duer, kind of magi” is already starting to fade into memory.

The question is whether Brenner can afford an evening of art in this building on his shoulders – if so, as one of the few Norwegian artists of the moment.

The audience — which, for the record, is a complete experience — is heated up by an appropriately confident dose of unmanned surroundings. At beat nine, the lights dim, raindrops fall on all three screens and the bass begins to tickle menacingly deep in the ear canals.

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The main character enters the stage on her own, dressed in white, with “Atlanteren” and “black magic” between the opening numbers. It looks cute, but it looks a little naked.

He remembers when he saw Ne-Yo as an 18-year-old at the same venue, and the bittersweet electro-pop on “VVK” marks an early and welcome break with the monotony approaches — also because the musicians hiding on the side of the stage are finally showing themselves. The disco sequence with “Young and Stupid” and “Familyeh” also tickles where it works so well.

However, he sometimes becomes somewhat still and lifeless throughout the session, despite successful interventions from Siyabång, Bernhoft and Arif, the evening’s most visible guest.

Highlights include “BBB” with the latter and Ylva duet “Stay Here”, while “Nostalgi 3 Millioner” and “Når alt ink er nok” suffer a bit from the absence of Tomine Harket and Molly Sandén.

It boils well under old golds like Ashanti, Leaner and Balkung. “We Can Be Friends” turns out to be the evening’s most misleading title, while a grateful, singing crowd delights Brenner when he claims his voice is on shaky ground.

It’s not heard at all, and the singer is doing most things right this evening. But the display itself becomes a very small, flat polyhedron in these surrounding regions. That Stig Brenner could almost haul it all ashore is a small feat in itself.

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