Atomic Café, Munich 2008
Morten Harket at Atomic Cafe, Munich Germany, 10.06.2008
Amazon raffled 300 exclusive admissions via guest list at Morten Harket's gig for his solo CD "Letter from Egypt".
There are many ways to die
With you - with me
Kind of christmas card
The one you are
Lay me down tonight
Some photos can be found in our gallery.
The world's smallest concert 11.06.2008
Bad Vilbel (Germany), Radio station FFH Excellent location, excellent mood, excellent weather and an excellent Morten on the world's smallest concert.
At the beginning, he had some problems with his ear-monitors and one of his guitar strings broke. During this pause, Morten asked the audience whether they had a question, but we had none.
After this short showcase, all fans were provided with autographs and given the opportunity for taking photos. We were asked whether we are all fine with it, so he could leave relieved. Thanks... everything is fine Morten!
In disguise 15.05.1996
At nights on May 15, 1996 the audience of Oslo Club “Sentrum Scene” witnessed a strange sight: A black and brown discoloured Morten in shorts and T-shirt entered the stage.
However, nobody wanted to believe him really, as Morten had claimed some weeks ago in an interview: „I am fed up with everybody mentions me being handsome!”
Within 50 minutes Morten performed the songs: „Spanish Steps“, „Wild Seed“, „Lord“, „Los Angeles“, „Half in Love“, „Ape Angel“, „Heaven`s not for saints“, „A kind of Christmascard“ and „Ready to go home“ .
Min stemme er på vekk 11.02.1997
„Min stemme er på vei vekk“ („My voice is on its way away“) Morten calls and explains: “I have a kind of catarrh; that means that from time to time my voice abruptly jumps up and down”. What follows is a music- and voice-wise brilliant and strong version of “Heaven’s Not For Saints”.Place of action is the Oslo Club “Rockefeller”, date is February 11, 1997, and occasion is Morten’s concert as part of his Norway tour. A concert which got started most horrible for every musician but most perfect for getting a relaxed and friendly contact with the audience. After the first chords of the opener “End Of The Western World” – a relatively new song – one of Morten’s guitar strings breaks and the whole band stops playing. Another guitar has to be brought in and tuned, while Morten uses this embarrassing incident to start talking to the audience – and breaking the ice. That is why the concert turns out to be a “chat’n’play” between a handful energetic musicians, a slightly catarrhy – but nevertheless fantastic singer and several hundred Mort-o-Maniacs, 10% of whom have come from abroad to witness the “statesauthorized popstar” (Aftenposten) sing and smile, rather than a pure concert.“The End Of The Western World” is a rocky political track that has easily found its way into the group of my favourite songs by Morten. As one of the persons who do not belong to the main likers of “Vogts Villa” I have to admit, though, that the songs appear livelier on stage than on CD. And this fact has – to a large extent – to do with Morten’s new band. Young motivated and passionate musicians to whom playing is obviously a kind of food and to whom music is closely connected with improvisation and experimenting. Geir – who seems like a young and strong bird learning to fly through his guitar playing (nice image, PA!) and Co. wrap Morten’s songs into new clothes and attribute groovy, moving and pushing facettes to the sometimes very (too) poppy tracks. In this category “Stay” (good new rhythmical version), “Half In Love” (weird but welcome unexpected quietness) and “Wild Seed” (extraordinary dissonances and beats) might be named.
Most of the concert was in English and included some of Morten’s most known tracks like “Lord” (very contemplative and reflective) and “A Kind Of Christmascard”) (due to the powerful playing the lyrics came across very strongly in contrast to earlier performances, when the song seemed a little too slack which also put some dullness over the words).
From the 5 Norwegian songs Morten played “Himmelske danser” (Heavenly dancer) is the most expressive and musically interesting. Containing a text about the tragical illusions the new drug “Ecstasy” does to the human body and mind, the music has an ironical effect on the listener: One gets put into a kind of trance through the painfully screamed words and the disturbing chords that the only solution of being able to bear this song seems to be in wild and archaic dancing, literally achieving some kind of “ecstatic” condition. The song about “ecstasy” serves as the drug “ecstasy”. Great track. The other songs taken from “Vogts Villa” (“Herre I Drømmen”, “Tilbake Til Livet”, “Jeg Kjenner Ingen Fremtid” and “Søndag Morgen”) mainly convince because of Morten’s strong, clear and expressive voice.
It is quiet songs that emphasize their traits of being melodious and need to be sung carefully – which Morten does that evening in Oslo and which makes them welcome in the sweaty and smoky concert hall, although they are certainly not the most exciting songs to listen to at home.
Morten ends his set with the noisy “Ape Angel”, a song about the animal in us, about our biological selves. And that is what the concert and Morten’s melodies and lyrics seem to have shown us the whole evening: We are not machines, we are not technical constructions, but we are human beings to whom their DNA is more determining than some silly computers, drugs or religious systems. We are animals that are alive because we have instincts, feelings, the wish to love and be loved and need to survive and are a part of “Mother Earth”.
And it also told me that a good voice and expressive music can make one happy.
This was a concert report by Larissa
Showcase in London 22.01.1996
London, Hanover Grand
He’s back again! This means Morten Harket. As the first single “A Kind Of Christmascard” from the “Wild Seed” album more or less was a flop and got just position 53 of the English bill board charts – despite extensive radio promotion – WEA London invited important people from record companies and media to convince them of Morten’s qualities, especially as a live performing artist and to push the second single “Spanish Steps” by that.
Venue is in-club “Hanover Grand” in London’s West End. About 200 invited guests and some fans appeared from 6.30 p.m. for free drinks and canapés. Of course, Terry Slater (a-ha’s manager), Mel Bush (a-ha’s tour manager) and Jerry Judge (former bodyguard) who didn’t want to miss this performance shouldn’t be absent.
Busy small talks here and there before Morten enters the rather small stage of the club at around 7.30 p.m. together with his band. Morten’s outfit is sort of a bold venture tonight: a long, black wrap-around skirt (his comment: “It’s not easy wearing a skirt…”) and a black leather vest on tanned body. Like in Norway, his band is Stene Osmundsen on drums, Øyvind Madsen on bass, Kari Iveland as backing vocalist and Kjetil Bjerkestrand on keyboards. Only on the guitar there has been a changing.
The tonight’s opener is a musically perfectly presented version of “A Kind Of Christmascard”. Already this song makes it clear how those 5 have learned to play together harmoniously. If one had the feeling in earlier concerts that there were some difficulties in musical communication between them, now there has grown a real band.
And if some journalists expected to hear only soft-soap pop songs, they have to learn otherwise by listening to a rocky version of “Wild Seed” and a far more mind-blowing “Ape Angel” that follows. Both songs gain by being presented live a much more tougher character. Strong drums and rocky guitar parts give them the appropriate touch. And, indeed, the clapping and nodding of the audience shows that the spirit overlaps. Also the acoustic version of “Half In Love” is taken on enthusiastically.
“Spanish Steps” mustn’t be missed, of course, since it is all about the promotion of the “Wild Seed” album and the second single tonight. An atmospherically, musically good structured version of that song echoes through the “Hanover Grand” and cast its spell over the listeners.
After this set lasting 35 minutes, the ballade “Lay Me Down Tonight” should have been the final song, actually – sung by Morten only accompanied by Kjetil Bjerkestrand. But the thrilled audience demands at least one encore, which is served with pleasure by Morten and his band.
But what happens then gives a rather negative touch to that so far very successful evening. Two attending fans cannot leave it undone to jump up to the stage, hug Morten and even have their pictures taken with him! This is not only interfering the course of the showcase. The attending journalists are probably reminded of teeny-star Morten Harket of a-ha, although there has been introduced a complete different, adult Morten Harket to them minutes before. This reaction comes several years too late!
Not unexpected is “Ready To Go Home” to be the last song of this evening. The more astonishing is the rocky, guitar stressed way, Morten and Band are presenting this song tonight. It sounds much more demanding than the album version and therefore transforms into a first-class rock song.
Morten says good-bye to the enthusiastic audience and some of the pressmen get a quick interview before the performance ends at 8.30 p.m. officially.
This is a concert report by Judith