Based out of the Norwegian mountain community Auma, comes the grungy alt-pop duo Ask Carol. Ask Carol is a high energy power-duo with a big sound. Multitasking is their middle name. Two guitars, drums, a synth, a drum machine and an unique splitting system for Carol’s guitar, makes this two-piece sound like a full band. Their sound can be fierce and mean, then suddenly turn soft and comforting.
1. If could introduce yourselves for us, who are you? How did you all meet? How long have you been playing?
This project started when we, Ask and Carol, the two members of Ask Carol, became friends right after high school. We where studying music in southern Norway. We were always talking about starting a band, but it would take about 7 years before we finally went through with the idea. The summer of 2015 we stayed at a cabin in the Norwegian mountains, with no electricity and no water, far away from people and civilization, only a few sheep outside the windows. That’s where our first songs were made, and where the seed to what would become Ask Carol started. One more year went by before we started for real, and Ask Carol was officially born, in 2016. Our first concert ever was at a small blues club in Seoul, South Korea, called Strange Fruit. At that point, Carol was already a somewhat known guitarist-for-hire in the Oslo music scene, and had never ever sung in front of people before, or at all for that matter. That’s why we wanted to try out our music and hold our first concerts far away from our hometown.
After thinking hard and long about the band name, with many pretty good suggestions, we ended up with the simple band name Ask Carol, the first names of our two members, Ask and Carol, put together. Ask is a real Norwegian name, coming from Norse Mythology, the Viking religion; Ask was the first human being, created by the God Odin, out of a piece of Ash-wood. You can read all about that story here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ask_and_Embla
2. What three words would you use to describe the music you play?
Dynamic, guitar-based, rock.
3. What are your musical influences?
We are both inspired by so many different things. A few of our biggest common inspirations are Jimi Hendrix and Pink Floyd, which I think you can really hear in our music. In addition to that, Ask is very influenced by The Clash, and Carol draws inspiration from amongst others, Nirvana.
A place that has inspired us a lot in the past has been Carol’s cabin, high in the Norwegian mountains. There is no electricity and no water, so it’s a very old school way of life. And no internet. That means less distraction, and room for inspiration. The inspiration might always be there, but with all the constant impressions and distractions from the internet there is just no room for it. That is where we wrote our first songs as Ask Carol, in that cabin.
4. What’s the weirdest thing you’ve seen during a show?
There’s a lot crazy stuff that has happened on the tours and travels that is not fit for mentioning here, but a few highlights:
Valentines day in Open Air Auditorium, Rizal Park, thought we were playing for 100 people, but there was 1500 people there.
Strange Fruit, Seoul. Our first concert as Ask Carol ever.
Opening for The Brian Jonestown Massacre. Awesome band, and still some of our coolest concerts. EuroTV. TV appearance on a Filipino TV channel. Host invited us home for drinks before the show. LA Times Book Festival. Ended up speaking on one of the stages, which was so much fun.
5. Being away from the stages since last year, where is the one place you’d visit when the restrictions are lifted?
Everywhere and anywhere. There’s not a single place, we wanna go on tour in the US, in South America, Philippines and other countries in Asia again, and of course closer to where we live, Europe.
6. What’s the one record you own but wouldn’t ever admit to owning?
None of us own anything we wouldn’t admit to. Of course, there’s lots of weird stuff from when we were kids in our collections, but, we were kids, so nothing to be embarrassed about.
7. What have you been listening in the last few weeks?
Ask: I’ve been listening mostly to a playlist I’ve made with where I put all the songs I think sounds cool when I stumble on them around the internet or other ways. It’s a lot of different music, mostly good, but some songs I really don’t remember why I thought I would want to listen to that again, haha.
Carol: Don’t know why, but for some reason I’ve been listening to a lot of old blues the last couple of weeks. Artists like Big Mama Thornton, Son House, Leadbelly and more. They are awesome 😀 8. Are there any releases you have planned in the near future?
Yes, there will be more releases coming up. First a few singles, before our debut album later this year. We are busy recording that album at the moment, and the first single will be out in late Spring 😀
Check out ‘Run With You’ below.
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