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Chorus Grant

FEATURE: Opening Night at Stairway

in Blog/Live Reviews by
dør nr. 13 live at stairway

Nearly six months after its originally scheduled launch, the new venue Stairway finally had its opening night. The space, located around the corner from the Metro in Vanløse, opened its doors with an afternoon-long reception on their roof deck (protected from the rain by a tarp) and with a free concert from Chorus Grant and Dør Nr. 13.

“I would say that those two bands, we booked them because they, in way, determined the direction that we are going to do the program at Stairway,” said Stairway booker Jeppe Greve when we spoke to him in June. “More established bands but still not mainstream-mainstream. It’s going to be different genres from hip-hop to rock music to hardcore, punk, electronic music.”

The long-anticipated restart of live music has required ingenuity from venues around the city and the country. In the case of Stairway, the space, which would normally hold 350 people, kicked off their program with 100 social-distanced seats. That does leave us imaging what the full potential of the room will be — when there won’t be a forced clearing between the sound desk and the bar — but it’s hard to complain about a civilized night out when everyone has enough elbow room.

chorus grant live at stairway copenhagen

Chorus Grant are indeed a good way to open the show, a mellow first performer on the stage. A band that could very easily be at home playing in theatres, their warm harmonies are a gentle way to ease us into the evening.

Dør Nr. 13 are seemingly endless in their energy, with their singer, [name] moving across the stage, limbs flailing. And this is where COVID precautions really feel like they’re keeping a cap on things. People are bopping around in their chairs, using the space available to clap with arms extended, but everyone dutifully stays seated. 

Two bands with such different sounds are a good introduction to a new space, and a good test of a new venue’s sound system. That Chorus Grant’s pattering snares are just as clear as Dør Nr. 13’s squelchy guitars does make for an exciting prospect of what Stairway will hopefully be home to.

“We’ve got a lot of the right ingredients to make a great venue and we don’t have neighbors around the corner to complain,” said Greve. “The way that we are doing stuff, it’s just down to earth, really cool, and we’re meeting people in the same level. Everyone is welcome. And hopefully there will be an atmosphere that just serves that — that everybody is welcome and very included, and that it’s a very inclusive place, both with the program and the space in general.”

Not to mention, at a time when venues are under threat and the way forward isn’t entirely clear, there is a chjoy in seeing a new space open. 

LIVE REVIEW: Connan Mockasin, Bremen Teater, 15.02.2014

in Live Reviews by

When Chorus Grant takes the stage at Bremen Teater, there is no indication of how weirdly wonderful the night is going to be. Kristian Finne Kristensen & co, with their downtempo, ‘70s inflected rock, are very reassuring. They’re not just pleasant, they’re comfortable to listen to. It’s a really nice, really unassuming way to ease into the evening.

So when Connan Mockasin takes the stage, looking for all the world — with his bleach blond hair and black poncho — like a cult leader, things take a radically different turn. His psychedelic rock is really the perfect soundtrack to lying on your living room floor and tripping your face off, but it’s his personality and stage presence that make him worth coming out to see in person.

Connan Mockasin (Photo by Ivan Boll)

Before even picking up his guitar, he comes to the front of the stage to tell the audience that he is delighted to be in Denmark. It’s his first show here, ever, and when he tells the audience that he’s wanted to come here since he was a child, he sounds genuine. That’s a big part of why his show works. When he casts cheeky grins at the audience in the middle of pre-song improvisations, it feels spontaneous. When he plays his guitar from a seat in the front row for much of “Why Are You Crying?” it feels impulsive and not like something he’s been planning to do since this afternoon’s load-in.

Mockasin’s band is similarly easygoing, which works well as much of the set has a slow-motion quality to it. They frequently hit wind chimes to add to the dream sequence sensation of the music. More than halfway through the show, Mockasin walks up to the soundboard in the middle of the theater to introduce their soundman and get an audience perspective. When he returns to the stage, the crowd are on their feet.

Connan Mockasin (Photo by Ivan Boll)

But if the evening has only been unpredictable up to this point, it’s with the encore when things get truly odd. The band help to carry out a large duvet surrounding a petite Japanese woman in a kimono. She leads the crowd in a chant of Mockasin’s name before he emerges from under the duvet, now dressed in beige pajamas, bare chested and doing little to sway me from my early assessment of him looking like a cult leader. He finishes his set singing through a pitch-shifted mic that’s dropped his vocals more than an octave. It might be going a bit beyond accessible artistic expression, but it’s definitely memorable.


VIDEO: Chorus Grant – “O Everyone”

in Blog/New Music by

Copenhagener Chorus Grant aka Kristian Finne Kristensen has shared a video for his debut single “O Everyone” and has revealed plans for his debut album Space to be released February 24th on Tambourhinoceros.

View the video for “O Everyone” below:

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