Norway’s Åge Riisnes has forged another Mini-Ep or Double-sided single, however you’d like to call it, with his band Harlequins Enigma. The band created in 2008 by Åge is mostly a one-man-band, but Elin Berge, Katie Leung, and Sara Jensen have served as co-members with several album appearances over the years.
Åge began experimenting with synth-based music in the early 1990’s. Throughout the years, collaborations with Tangerine Dream, Jean Michel Jarre, Klaus Schulze, Vangelis, Kitaro, Kate Bush, Dave Weckl, Chick Corea, Jan Gabarek, and others have spawned rich, creative, and mature developmental compositional achievements. The origin of the name Harlequins Enigma, revolves around a “hope for something better, as an eternal flame.”
Harlequins Enigma has released twelve full-length albums since 2011. The first three albums released in 2011 include The Journey of Harlequins Enigma 1, 2, and 3. The electronic series was followed by Octagon Vol. 2 – Night Pulse & The Silhouette of Dr. Voodoo, and Octagon Vol. 3 – Battle Without Dishonour. Two singles were also released: “Time Dance” (Liberty Mix) and “Battle Without Dishonor”. In 2012, Harlequins Enigma released Ophidians: Caricature Personalities, Neighbour Tribe, The Long Road, and Octagon Vol. 4: Loom. The latest few albums released in 2013, include Ophidians – Big Chiefs, TD Sound 1 (feat. Klaus Schulze and Tangerine Dream) and Discord (feat. Jean Michel Jarre).
Åge who in his spare time enjoys gaming, poetry, as well as music and video production, this time brings to the table the tracks, “Cowards and Heroes” and “Appetite For Oxygen”.
If you’re not well-acquainted with Harlequins Enigma, then here’s what you need to realize before purchasing this album. The main magic and essence of this project, is that it belongs in a category of its own in a more-or-less impossible to describe, genre of music.
Åge is a master of his craft, and he weaves an intoxicating tapestry of sound and music, while not for once overlooking the powerful rhythms and beats that drive his soundscapes. “Cowards and Heroes” plays a phenomenal testimony to this affirmation. You will be touched by the beautiful sound, perfect arrangement, powerful drumbeats, edgy synths and intoxicating voices.
Harlequins Enigma is a band whose album you would buy after listening to only one track! Their music is highly energetic, creative, with absolutely fascinating pieces, and it just keeps on getting better. “Appetite For Oxygen” for example, moves in a completely different direction to the previous track. It is claustrophobic, disturbing, purposely offbeat, and urgent to the limit of distress; displaying all of Åge’s emotive-creating genius.
If you are interested in listening to music that will captivate your mind and soul – Harlequins Enigma will deliver what you need. Their music is like potter’s clay, in that it can be fashioned into the infinite possibilities the imagination has the capacity to conceive. Brilliant!