This Is Now America

South Africa might be falling apart at the seams and the UK might be collapsing under the pressures of Brexit, but at least America is leading the way in… what?… oh cock.

The situation over there is why even the usually apolitical Magne Furuholmen has chosen to release a song, sharing his thoughts on the US right now. This are it:

He popped it on his personal Instagram to begin with, but it was more popular than he thought:

wowaweewah…thank you for an overwhelmingly kind response, people!
i woke up yesterday to a record-label in a panic over my insta(nt)-release.
they’re now scrambling to get the track out on other platforms, so stand by for more info as and when i get it – in the meantime, enjoy the exclusivity!

That’s why it’s out all over the place now. It’s upset a few people – mainly all of them Americans – but that is the nature of free speech and incisive political comment.

And I know it’s about the current state of America, but:

“No bridge across divides; a drunken joyride,
With a monkey at the wheel…”

…really does seem to sum up a lot of the planet at the moment.

Happy days.

And maybe this?

There was this

…but then a sudden thought: why shouldn’t there be this as well?

I mean, it’s just up the road, right?

Another last, last chance?

Hmm. Watch this space.

Morten and me

We go back a fair distance…

10th December 1986: City Hall, Sheffield, UK

11th December 1987: City Hall, Sheffield, UK

26th April 1991: City Hall, Sheffield, UK

25th June 2002: Royal Albert Hall, London, UK

12th October 2002: Wembley Arena, London, UK

2nd December 2010: Spektrum, Oslo, Norway – MISSION FAILED (link)

7th May 2016: Festning, Bergen, Norway – (togs)

And now:

14th February 2020: Green Point A Track, Cape Town, South Africa.

Cannot. Wait.

We’ve been here before…

After a lot of teasing, they finally shared the tour poster yesterday:

And the idea sounds pretty awesome:

Magne Furuholmen, Morten Harket and Pål Waaktaar-Savoy will be performing in An Evening With format, with an interval. For the first half of the concert, they will play new and old, familiar and less-familiar songs. Then, after returning to the stage, they will play the ten songs of their 1985 debut album Hunting High And Low in the running order of the original release.

Which, as I recall from my cassette tape days is this:

Take On Me
Train of Thought
Hunting High and Low
The Blue Sky
Living a Boy’s Adventure Tale
The Sun Always Shines on T.V.
And You Tell Me
Love Is Reason
I Dream Myself Alive
Here I Stand and Face the Rain

I thought that I’d missed their last ever concert. And then I thought I’d seen it.
It turns out that I was wrong on both of those.

But it’s always been a privilege for me to see a-ha in concert, and I’m happy that they’re still around and – hopefully – producing even more new material. While this all sounds very special, the surprising omission of a South African leg on the tour, together with the frankly terrifying state of the South African Rand means that we won’t be going along this time.

Still, if they’re going to do all their albums this way, there’s always the 2020 Scoundrel Days tour to consider. And then another 8 to follow that…

I’ll start saving now.

Belated Take On Me News

Not sure how this one passed me by. But it has passed me by no more.

We’re off to Geelong, Victoria, Australia, and in particular to the Corio neighbourhood in which Alex Boros lives… well, lived…

Alex Boros might not live there anymore because he was jailed at the end of last year. “For what?” I hear you ask.

[waits expectantly…]

Thank you.

For this:

No adverbs necessary.

Hero.

Obviously, this is erroneous reportage: you can’t play the a-ha hit Take On Me too loudly. There is no upper limit to the volume for that particular track. Windows must rattle.

Filthy language aside, I think it’s pretty impressive that Mr Boros is on first name terms with the council official whose unfortunate task it is to come and ask him to turn it down a bit.

He’s wearing those sunglasses “because the bright light would trigger his migraines”, which is very much in the same vein as his insistence that he was playing his music so loudly simply “to block out his crippling back pain”.

Unsurprisingly, this cut no ice with the court:

Ouch.

Still, I bet his neighbours are glad that he’ll be gone, for a day or two.