Airbag Disconnected on 2LP
Without a doubt Norwegian prog rockers Airbag have mastered the art of creating a strong narrative listening experience by closely tying together lyrical themes and music, and fourth full-length Disconnected ventures even deeper into blending musical styles and sounds, which create the unique listening experience that is this band. The album itself is a reflection on the theme of alienation between the individual and society, what society expects from us as individuals, and our resultant failure to live up to those expectations. Each of the six compositions depicts the state of feeling on ‘the outside? and out of touch with oneself and those around us.
Guitarist Bjørn Riis gives some insight into the thought processes and musical ideas that went into the making of Disconnected, "The early demos for "Disconnected" were written during a couple of months in late 2014. The idea and inspiration for most of the lyrics, and the title track in particular, came from me realising that I had to make some changes in my life. I was tired of the daily routine, working 9 to 5 in an office doing basically nothing and never having enough time for my family and music. I took a year off and started writing for the album.
He adds, "We discussed the theme for the songs and gave them a single title, reflecting different persons or ways of being disconnected to society and what?s expected of us and how we fail to live up to those expectations. As for the music, we have done three albums prior to this and those songs will always be a part of what we do, but you also want to look forward and explore new sounds and musical ground. We talked a lot about wanting to use more electronic elements and giving more room for the drums, allowing them to be more percussive and basically avoid the usual rock formula on all songs. We also wanted to do a more stripped down production and create a more spacious and dynamic sound."
Disconnected, sees Airbag once again team up with long-time collaborator and engineer Vegard Sleipnes. The album was produced by Asle Tostrup and Riis, and, as always, the artwork was designed by vocalist Asle Tostrup. Formed in 2004 Airbag's lineup consists of Riis (guitars, keyboards, backing vocals, bass, co-producer), Tostrup (vocals, keyboards, programming, producer, graphic design), Henrik Fossum (drums), Jørgen Hagen (programming, keyboards) and Anders Hovdan (bass).