With “Variola Vera”, their second full-length studio release, Psychedelic Rockers HIMMELLEGEME have come up with an album that uses heavy riffs, chilling melodies, and melancholy-laden lyrics to create a timeless sound that is dark and otherworldly. Highly appropriate for an album whose underlying theme is the impact that humans have had on this planet of ours.
As a final taste of what “Variola Vera” has to offer fans ahead of its October 1 release, Karisma Records have today released a fourth and final single from the album. Titled “Agafia”, the track can be streamed or downloaded from various services at this location.
It is a single about which the band, whose influence, drawn from both Blues and Atmospheric Prog Rock, is undeniable, had this to say:
“Agafia” is a track where the name and lyrical content are based on Agafia Lykova, the Russian woman who has been living alone in the inhospitable Russian wilderness since the late 80s. She was a part of a family who had been forced to flee government persecution because they had not wanted to be a part of their new ideologies. It’s about how she is forced to live more like modern humans, being torn between a more modern life and her fear of God and the society that left her.
Musically the song started its life as a loop Hein made with some delays, and then it just kept building up to what it is today. We wanted to make it sound epic, like a scene from a movie. This feeling is best described in the outro of the track.
Recorded from late spring through to the late fall of 2020 at Bergen’s Broen Studio, “Variola Vera” was produced by Anders Bjelland (ELECTRIC EYE / HYPERTEXT) who also handled the mixing and the mastering for HIMMELLEGEME’ s lineup of Aleksander Vormestrand (vocals, guitar), Hein Alexander Olson (lead guitar, slide, drums), Lauritz Isaksen (keys), Erik Alfredsen (bass, backing vocals, misc. instruments) and Leiv Martin Green (drums, backing vocals).
HIMMELLEGEME are quite adamant that although “Variola Vera” does indeed have a very definite theme running through it, it is not quite in the realms of a concept album, as the band explained:
The overall themes of the album are the impact we humans have on planet earth, and the destruction we leave in our wake wherever we go. Not only in regards to the planet itself, but also to the people inhabiting it. It’s not a concept album per se – the lyrics are fictional with roots in reality, but based on newer and older events seen from different viewpoints.
“Variola Vera” will be available in CD, Digital, and Limited Edition LP Formats, and it is now available to pre-order from:
With cover art by Samantha Muljat, track listing on “Variola Vera” is as follows:
- Shaping Mirrors Like Smoke
- Heart Listening
- Blowing Raspberries
- Let the Mother Burn
- Variola Vera
HIMMELLEGEME are set to play a release concert for the album on the 2nd October at Det Akademiske Kvarter in Bergen, Norway. More details at www.facebook.com/events/432581201470635/
The official video for the track “Blowing Raspberries” from HIMMELLEGEME’s “Variola Vera” album can be seen at https://youtu.be/A1f6ihTE2II