Review: Nanna Barslev ‘Lysbærer’

I’ve had an interest in Norse Pagan mythology for quite some time, even adopting it as part of my own belief system for five years or so. During that time, I found that there are many musical acts that incorporate the ancient ways into their music and keep the Norse Gods’ lessons alive all these years after Ragnar Lodbrok, and all the other famous Vikings, have died.

Nanna Barslev 'Lysbærer'

I still listen to music from Wardruna, Heilung, Danheim, and the less Norse based but still incredible, Anilah. The music these groups create is able to hit that deep, primal center in me, and I can immediately feel my entire body come alive. That feeling drives me to look for similar artists, and the newest one to come across my radar is Nanna Barslev, whose debut album, Lysbærer, comes out March 18th through By Norse.

Lysbærer translates to ‘carrier of light’, and is a ‘reference to the Sun and the Moon, lighting up the dark and changing seasons.’ This is one of the aspects of the dark, Nordic Folk genre that I truly enjoy, the connection with nature, and the idea that with each album by the bands that I’ve mentioned, there is a learning experience and a bridge to our ancient past. That bridge is important, whether people know it or not, our past is what has made us, and we should celebrate it at every chance.

Nanna has an astounding voice…

Nanna has an astounding voice, and I liken it to what Anilah does with her vocal talents. These two women are able to use their voices in such a way as to hit the vibrations that awaken our very souls. Add that incredible talent to some equally amazing instrumentation, and you have the makings of a beautiful, inspiring musical experience.

The music on this album is also rooted in the past. I wish I knew the names of these instruments, but really, the names are inconsequential, as the feelings they evoke are the truly important thing. For me, I feel them deep in my soul, and a kinship with them is created by hearing the tones they make. If you have paid attention to the music of the show Vikings, then you have a good idea on what the instrumentation sounds and feels like on this extremely fine album.

If any of what I’ve said interests you, then I suggest you check out what Nanna Barslev has created on Lysbærer. The music is incredibly good, and her voice is phenomenal, plus, it all has that ancient influence that is truly timeless. Enjoy!!!

Label: By Norse Music
Band Links: Facebook | Bandcamp | Instagram

Scribed by: Tom Hanno