Kvelertak have been demolishing genre- boundaries for over a decade, pushing their mix of bloodthirsty metal and blackened punk’n’roll into wilder territories with every release. However, Beachheads, the new band from Kvelertak guitarist Vidar Landa and bassist Marvin Nygaard, might be the most unexpected thing to come out of the Norwegians’ camp so far.
“We had ideas that didn’t fit in Kvelertak,” says Vidar. “We’d been listening to bands like Big Star, The Replacements, some power-pop… and I’ve always liked old Weezer stuff. We wanted to try this out for ages but it didn’t start to take form until around 2013.”
After recording a few demos, Vidar and Marvin called their ex-Kvelertak merch-slinger, Børild Haughom, to lay down vocals, and Beachheads were born. Taking its cues from bands you wouldn’t usually see in Hammer – Teenage Fanclub at their most jangly, early R.E.M, and The Replacements, with a dash of 90s Britpop – Beachhead’s self-titled debut is a shimmering indie-pop gem. The lyrics are in English and the singles so far – Una, Give Me Some Love and Moment Of Truth – are all slices of sunny rock with fuzzy melodies and big choruses. Listen carefully and you’ll hear the same anthemic sensibilities that tear through Kvelertak’s material.
“Kvelertak’s always been about catchy hooks, riffs and layers of guitars and harmonies,” explains Vider. “With Beachheads it’s more about vocal melodies. We were a bit nervous about letting all this new music out there, but a lot of our fans are pretty open-minded.”
They’re not giving up the day job, though. “No, no,” Vider reassures us. “Playing with Kvelertak is as much fun as you can have. This is just something different.”
BEACHHEADS IS OUT NOW VIA FISKISK FORMAT