Blog

A peek behind the scenes of interviews, photoshoots and tours.

Life, Royal Blood, and Fleet Foxes

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The first half of 2017 has been a rollercoaster, with all the highs and lows they bring. Sometimes it has felt like I was hanging upside down, and then the world has turned back up the right way again. Moving 3 times in less than a year isn't something I would recommend to anybody, it takes its toll both mentally and physically. But now, I live in the city of my dreams, and I finally feel like I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be. There's SO much freedom and quite a lot of relief in that feeling!

So, as a result, I haven't had time to update this blog in nearly half a year. That doesn't mean I haven't done things, but I just haven't had any spare time to get it up here. 

Earlier this summer I interviewed Fleet Foxes and Royal Blood. The Fleet Foxes interview is Norwegian only, and can be read in Norwegian newspaper Dagsavisen.

Royal Blood I've already interviewed once before, just as they were about to break through, and I always love meeting up with bands a few years later and talk about how much has changed for them and how the whole experience has been for them. The interview can be found HERE (in English), and is also available in Norwegian at Musikknyheter.no. Just be aware, it's not COMPLETELY safe for work, there's some... language. And it's hilarious. 

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I've got so many cool things coming up, so many plans, and finally I'll have time to focus on these things. So keep an eye on this place - if you want to, obviously!

Here's to the future!!

Alyssa

Two new interviews are up: Laura Jane Grace, and Dropkick Murphys

 Al Barr and Tim Brennan from Dropkick Murphys, London, January 2017. Photo: Alyssa Nilsen

Al Barr and Tim Brennan from Dropkick Murphys, London, January 2017. Photo: Alyssa Nilsen

Finally getting time to updated the website and blog again! This winter has been insanely busy, but sun has come out and days have grown longer, so I've got more energy to do this kind of stuff! This time, I've added one old and one recent interview:

 Laura Jane Grace of Against Me! in Oslo, Norway. April 2015.

The old one is an interview + photo shoot I did with Against Me!'s Laura Jane Grace back in 2015, when they visited Oslo on their last tour. It was a really good interview, I was baffled by how open she was about her life and experiences, and have so much respect for her it almost made me a bit starstruck. You can find the interview HERE.

The recent one is an interview I did with Dropkick Murphys' Al Barr and Tim Brennan in London a few months ago. Their brilliant new album is out now, and we had a nice little chat about the issues inspiring the album, their 20 years together as a band, and - of course - about Norway. The interview can be found HERE!

Enjoy!

I met Biffy Clyro!

The first time I heard Biffy Clyro was when they released Mountains back in 2008, and instantly loved the music. Two years later, I met a family who are now some of my best friends through the band, when we were all waiting in a staircase up to a TV studio where Biffy were doing an acoustic concert. Fast forward 6 years, and I've seen the band live numerous times (most of them in Norway, they just keep coming back!), both their own headline gigs, supporting other bands, and at festivals. So when Warner contacted me and asked me if I'd like to interview the guys in London, I replied YES within 2 minutes of getting the mail.

A rainy day in May I went to the Warner HQ in London, and waited around for a bit in the canteen while they finished up other interviews and lunch. I was then lead into the room, and the next half hour consisted of cheerful giggles and jokes. The guys are obviously still the best of friends, teasing each other, roaring with laughter, and seemingly just as interested in hearing about my life as I was in hearing about theirs. Those kinds of interviews are by far the best ones, where conversation flows naturally back and forth, rather than becoming stilted question/answer interviews. 

Time flew by way way too fast, I managed to ask about 4 out of 15 questions, and then it was time for a mini photoshoot before I left them to their next interview. The photoshoot was just as cheerful - as you can see from the photos - and they were very amused when I pointed out the common theme in their clothing: their sneakers. Very well coordinated guys!

I was wondering if I'd get at all starstruck upon meeting them, but they made it very easy not to be. Just three, extraordinarily nice Scottish guys, so open and welcoming, as well as professional and easy to work with. It's always scary to work with people you admire. If they're dicks, they ruin your respect for their art as well. But then there are the opposite ones, who are everything you wish them to be, and more. Biffy Clyro are definitely the latter. 

You can read the entire interview here.

Oh, and their new album? It's bloody fantastic!! You can all look forward to July 10th!

2016, the year of Crazy.

It's been a while since I updated this blog. Partly because I've been too busy. Partly because I haven't really known what to write and what to leave out. 

This spring got a bit crazy. Not only have I traveled more than my health technically allows, but when I've been home, there has been non-stop action with work and other activities. In March, I managed to make headlines in Norwegian national newspapers, having outed some rock bands/artists on sexual harassment. I wrote a post on facebook, as a comment on this Spin-article. I wrote as a support to the author, and mentioned my own experiences as a female music journalist, and the next day, one of the biggest Norwegian newspapers rang me up as I was on my way to the airport. They wanted to run a story on it. I accepted - having conferred with many female friends who backed me up - on the condition that I got to check quotes and facts before it was published. That day was spent on the phone and mail with them, with record companies who called me saying the newspaper had called them, and it all got a bit nuts. That was before the article was even posted. 

Screenshot of the article.

Then, the next day when the article DID go online, things really got crazy. I refused to visit any comment fields or read anything other than actual articles - for the sake of my own self esteem and sanity - knowing all too well that the trolls living in the depths of internet's dark ponds have absolutely nothing to do with me, my story, my experiences or anything even slightly related to it. And thus, have nothing to contribute with. I still know that I'm easily hurt, and chose to stay away. Which, according to friends, was a wise move. They, however, did stick up for me. The number of supporting mails, texts, comments on my facebook profile, on the article when people shared it and people commenting on their shared articles, were overwhelming and comforting. A few days later, the newspaper followed up with another article on the subject, having interviewed several more women in different parts of the industry, who confirmed my experiences, shared theirs, and cheered me on. It's such a common thing, and this is the first people have heard, read, and talked about it in a long long time. Maybe ever. And the stories just kept coming. Another story followed a week later, and eventually it all died down. Nothing's changed, probably. It will still happen, definitely. But now, people might be a little bit more prepared and aware. And if that's the case, then it was all worth it.

by:Larm 2016 - a selection of pictures

ARY playing Rockefeller during by:Larm 2016.

Last weekend, the massive music and media festival by:Larm (think a Nordic SXSW) happened in Oslo, Norway, and I worked there as a photographer and concert reviewer. Many amazing gigs were seen, some less good were endured, and I thought I'd share some of the shots here with you. The picture at the top of the page is Norwegian artist ARY, one of the most impressive gigs I saw at the entire festival. Watch out for this girl! 

Check out the gallery below, and as always, click on the thumbnails beneath for full size.