HIGHASAKITE Recién Empieza

¿Qué banda con diez años de trayectoria puede decir que aún no ha hecho su mejor álbum? HIGHASAKITE, la reconocida agrupación noruega, parece no tener miedo a seguir reinventándose. Ingrid Helene Håvik, compositora y vocalista, y Trond Bersu, en batería y producción, conforman una de las propuestas más icónicas de Noruega de la última década. Esta extensa carrera, acompañada de giras por todo el mundo, captura este aprendizaje y  lo traslada a cualquier formato en donde se encuentren.

Hablamos con Trond acerca de qué se ha mantenido constante en desde el principio, cómo es el proceso de composición y si su música responde a la energía encapsulada en estadios.

¿#AQuéSuena Highasakite?

That’s a big question. We have been going now for over 10 years. We started off meeting, me and Ingrid, at this jazz university. We were studying jazz music. That was probably 15 years ago when we met. We started off working with just the drums, which I play and Ingrid’s voice. She also played some harp instruments. We were just a duo in the beginning. That’s how we made the first album.

I remember that Ingrid was always very fascinated by strange instruments from other parts of the world. Instruments like steel pans and Indian harmonium. Maybe that is something that has been stuck with us when also producing a lot of other kinds of music. We have been making both electronic and more 80s. I think we are always exploring those world instrument sounds somehow. 

Can you pinpoint what has remained the same since your first release? Is there something that hasn’t changed through the years?

Me and Ingrid (laughs) There have been some people in and out of the band, but we’ve stuck together. We’ve been the main force. 

You’ve toured a lot. This must have influenced, somehow, the way you think about songs and the response you might expect. It feels like the band makes stadium music. Tell me more about your approach when it comes to writing. I know Ingrid writes and puts down the melodies and you translate that into a different idea. 

I’m not sure if I’m going to answer this the way you meant. Ingrid writes. She has maybe one year where she just writes a lot of ideas, sometimes the full idea for the song. She records, it’s quite simple, just with her voice and maybe a piano or some instrument. We sit together and listen to it and try to pinpoint which songs can be good for a record. From that point, we just start and record. We just have to see if can be good enough in the end. 

You don’t condition yourselves when making music, you don’t talk music in pop terms. I do feel the music that you are making somehow translates really well on stadiums. There’s an energy to it, also big choruses, hard drums too.

Yeah, that’s correct (laughs). I kind of agree, I don’t know why that is. I think we really like when the chorus hits. You have to feel it. A lot of music, nowadays, it’s really hip-hop and R&B influenced. The chorus often tends to get even smaller than the verse sometimes. If the verse has a lot of stuff happening and then they just cut out everything but the bass and drums.  

Trond Bersu, baterista y co-fundador de la banda. Créditos: Jørgen Nordby.

That’s the hip-hop, R&B chorus way of doing it. Maybe. I think we aim to make something that can last for a little bit longer in time, not just what’s popular now. I really appreciate that you said that it feels like that.

The Bare Romantic’ was a bit downtempo, on both parts. Some might say it’s folk. What is it about that sound that gets your attention? 

I guess Ingrid was listening to a lot of old-school Americana, country music. She was a bit inspired by that sound. That’s probably why it ended up like that. 

Were you the sole producer?

It was me and a guy who is playing now in the band as well. 

Tell her yourself’ it’s the antithesis. It’s quite energetic, grandiose It has a big chorus as well. Tell me more about the thought process. It feels like a big change even though they are just a few months away from those releases.

It’s a bit different, yeah. This time around, we felt that we have done the same thing for so long, but maybe we haven’t. Perhaps it felt like that. We wanted to make something a bit more… I don’t know the word for it. More scary? Unpleasant, somehow. I don’t know if it’s that unpleasant, but it has a very dark vibe. At least that song.

For the whole album, we wanted to use some elements from dark electronic music and try to fit it into a pop setting. That was the main goal. I don’t know if you heard the other single as well,  it is a bit more warm and cozy. That song is the exception for the album. The other ones are a bit more up-tempo. Maybe more stadium-ish (laughs). 

You’ve been putting out so much music lately and have an album coming out early 2022. What needs to be told? 

I guess Ingrid is the best one to answer why she wants those lyrics out there. This is what we live for and what we’re doing with our lives. For me, at least, it wouldn’t make any sense if you couldn’t share it with anyone. Playing concerts and getting people to know the songs… 

2019. Al finalizar un show en Oslo Spektrum Arena. Créditos: Jørgen Nordby.
Is this idea of putting out music constantly that blows my mind. You’ve been playing for 10 years and have toured every album. It feels like there’s a need to share some more. Melodies and ideas just pour out right.

I’m really happy that it’s like that, still. I think a lot of artists and bands, when they have released two or three albums, have reached their peak level. Maybe they don’t have anything left and it just gets boring. Maybe that’s the case with us as well, but I don’t think so. We still have a lot of stuff. We don’t think we have made our best album yet. We’re still in the search for the best music we can make.  

If you are in front of a door and you ring the bell, who opens it?

Some person that I really love, maybe.

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Martha Elisa Estrada Cortez

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