XENO MANÍA – THE JOY FOR THE UNKNOWN
To be released on QUALITY RECORDINGS, the newly launched record label by MTA Production
Musicians on the album are: Ale Möller various instruments, Jonas Knutsson sax, clarinette, Felisia Westberg; bass, Lili Zavala percussion, Robin Cochrane: percussion, Per Texas Johansson clarinet saxophone, Johan Graden piano, Felisia Westberg bass, Erik Rydvall: nyckelharpa & Kerstin Ripa: horn.
This year Ale Möller – “The godfather of Nordic folk” – celebrates 50 years as a performing artist! To coincide with this anniversary he will release a grand piece of music that gives praise to his Joy for the unknown.
With more than 1000 songs registered with the Swedish Collecting Society for composers (STIM) and a whole plethora of prestigious collaborations under his belt, Ale Möller has established himself as a definite protagonist within the Scandinavian scene for folk- and world music.
Apart from being a multi-instrumentalist of a very high standard, he is also a storyteller and philosopher who successfully unites his musical brilliance with much warmth and humor. Ale Möller’s audience has grown bigger and bigger over the years which has given him a large platform, despite the fact that his music is very far from the commercial middle-of-the-road.
As the only Scandinavian artist so far he has been granted the prestigious “Folk Alliance Lifetime Achievement Award” for his many ground-breaking projects, which is a distinction he shares with Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Harry Belafonte and Joan Baez. Just to name a few.
– Half a century on stage… It has made me think about what empowered me over all those years, Ale Möller says. Above all I have always felt the most stimulated and excited when there is something I don’t understand – when I come across something that is unfamiliar. I am a xenomaniac! Other people react in their own way, some get uncomfortable. One shouldn’t moralize too much about that.
However we should react when the powers-that-be start to exploit our xenophobia and turn it into politics. – Before I started working on this album I had always attained the most excitement from physical meetings with my musician friends across the world, Ale says. But with XENO MANÍA I discovered that such get-togethers could take place inside of my head instead.
Many of my essential inspirers have passed away, but they still feel tremendously present. It’s a bit like jamming with musicians who are not even alive anymore! With a unique blend of double percussion, a horn section and the traditional Swedish “nyckelharpa”, all mixed with the odd instrumentation of Ale himself, the album displays a soundscape that is undeniably Ale Möller’s very own.
This 9-piece band was carefully hand picked, where each member is a strong name with their own careers to boot. Perhaps the most apparent in these recordings is also what’s most luminous in Ale Möller’s craft as a whole: He eagerly and successfully combines the traditional with the new and the current, while never for a second glancing towards the mainstream.