Norwegian act The Last Hurrah (!!) have today issued a second single from their forthcoming new album, ‘Modern Nostalgia’. The highly topical ‘Internet Troll’ is based on an argument that band founder, leader and producer HP Gundersen had on Facebook, of which he says: “I allowed myself to get into an unfriendly exchange with a wild stranger and activated a side of myself that I’m not proud of. I am of the opinion that the most important thing about critical thinking is the ability to self-criticise, and that experience inspired me to write a song where the alter ego in the song is a notorious, malicious internet troll; a person who tries to come to terms with himself but lands on self-pitying self-righteousness.”
The song features the award-winning US (but Norway based) ‘Gothic Blues’ musician Ledfoot aka Tim Scott McConnell on vocals, with HP adding: “it is an indescribable honour that Tim wanted to interpret my words and give them a few more layers of depth and madness that I could not have imagined in advance.”
‘Modern Nostalgia’ is the fifth album by The Last Hurrah (!!) and a perfect title for the group’s ongoing evolution, showcasing the musical roots and inspiration of HP and his current chosen cohorts. Their first two albums were widely acclaimed drone-tuned, meditative journeys, with the next two taken in a more traditional song-based direction incorporating cosmic Americana, country and jazz. ‘Modern Nostalgia’ can be seen in part as a subtle combination of both approaches.
1 Civilized Wilderness
2 Bonnie Michelle
3 Time Heals Wounds
5 Do Believe
6 Modern Nostalgia
8 Dusty Road
9 Internet Troll
‘Modern Nostalgia’ takes listeners on a loving yet original Transatlantic journey, with European echoes of Serge Gainsbourg, John Barry and Marianne Faithfull rubbing shoulders with the heart of Laurel Canyon and the equally inspirational likes of Gram Parsons, Gene Clark and The Byrds.
The album’s first single, ‘Bonnie Michelle’, was released in August and is reminiscent of the tonal language of Erik Satie’s ‘Gymnopédies’. Coloured with an unusual multicultural soundscape dominated by the guzheng (Chinese string instrument) playing of Nora Yuyue Zheng in combination with a Pedal steel guitar contribution by the legendary Marty Rifkin (Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty, Elton John, Glen Campbell), it is beautifully sung by Maria Due. The song can be heard HERE.
With a career that stretches back to 1973, The Last Hurrah (!!) has been HP’s main activity since 2020, when the start of the pandemic saw him leave the city of Bergen and move to a former fishing village in west Norway with his pianist wife Cecilie Leganger. Setting up a studio in their basement, a new era began when, despite the cessation of normal social activity, a close circle of musician friends who suddenly had a lot of free time on their hands visited frequently to jam and write songs.
Energised by their idyllic new location and the unique situation they found themselves in, HP and Leganger, plus Yuyue Zheng and other guests such as Stein Inge Brækhus (drums), Andreas Nausdal (bass) and Mari Persen (violin) created new music primarily influenced by a shared nostalgia for 1960s French pop, film music, baroque pop and psychedelic folk. HP’s handpicked choice of singers include compatriot Due on several tracks, plus Americans Tim Scott McConnell (aka Ledfoot), Foster Timms and Shane Alexander.
included on the album