New Audio: The 4AD Records and Post-Punk Sound of Norway’s Mayflower Madame

Comprised of Trond Fagernes (vocals, guitar), Peter Gudim Marberg (bass), Håvard Haga (guitar), Bjørn Marius Kristiansen (touring drummer) and Ola J. Kyrkjeeide (studio drummer/live drummer), the Oslo, Norway-based indie rock band Mayflower Madame formed during the winter of 2010-2011. They started rehearsing in a desolate industrial building, where they shared the space with a carwash company. And amidst the lonely and gritty surroundings, the band quickly came upon an appropriately dark, post-punk sound, and then recorded a four song demo, which quickly won them national attention.  By August 2011, the Oslo-based indie rock band won the Unsigned Band of the Week on one of Norway’s biggest radio stations, which then lead to regular airplay on national radio — with the band spending 2012 building upon their growing profile with local and national touring, and writing material for their first official release.

In 2013, Mayflower Madame was selected to play a showcase featuring Scandinavia’s best, up-and-coming band at that year’s Norwegian Wood Festival, which was headlined by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and My Bloody Valentine and they continued a big year by releasing their debut EP Into the Haze, an effort that received attention across the blogosphere. In fact, adding to a growing profile, the Norwegian band opened for renowned neo-psych act Crystal Stilts — and they released an attention-grabbing video for EP title track “Into the Haze” that had been directed by Kenneth Karlstad and was inspired by Expressionist horror films.

In early 2015, the Norwegian indie rock band released “Lovesick” a single that was picked up by Custom Made Music and received Stateside radio airplay and praise from several publications including L.A. Record, who wrote that the single was “powerfully lysergic reverb rock” and The Work Magazine, who wrote that the single was a “loyal homage to the legends of the 60s and a heaping spoonful of UK drone-rock.” The members of the band spent the rest of ’15 writing and recording tracks for their full-length debut Observed in a Dream while touring and playing shows with Disappears, Moon Duo and La Femme — and along with that they toured outside of Scandinavia for the first time.

Mayflower Madame – Lovesick from Mayflower Madame on Vimeo.

The band’s full-length debut, Observed in a Dream was released last year through the band’s own label Night Cult Records throughout the European Union in April and through Custom Made Music throughout North America in June, and the album managed to caught the attention of several internationally known media outlets including Q Magazine, Drowned in SoundClash MagazineClassic Rock MagazineLouder Than WarGhettoblaster Magazine, as well as praise in their homeland. Adding to a growing profile, album singles “Lovesick” and “Weightless” received extensive airplay in the US, including several Top 20 and Top 5 rotations on college radio stations.

Mayflower Madame is currently on a North American tour, which includes a stop tonight at Philadelphia‘s Kung Fu Necktie — and you can check out the rest of the tour dates below; however, as they were about to go on tour, the band released a reverb-filled, moody, new single “Drown,” which interestingly enough will further cement their reputation for crafting 80s-inspired post-punk that sounds as though it draws from The Sisters of Mercy, My Bloody Valentine, Spacemen 3 while subtly nodding at classic shoegaze and the 4AD Records sound.

4/2 – Kung Fu Necktie – Philadelphia, PA
4/3 – Diabolical Records – Salt Lake City, UT
4/4 – The Manor – Boise, ID
4/5 – Funhouse – Seattle, WA
4/6 – The Cobalt – Vancouver, BC
4/7 – Out From The Shadows Festival @ Tonic – Portland, OR
4/8 – Somos Gallery – Salinas, CA
4/9 – Brick & Mortar Music Hall – San Francisco, CA
4/10 – Complex – Los Angeles, CA
4/11 – Soda Bar – San Diego, CA