Liverpool has a way of attracting and welcoming in those artists who just fit with the landscape; so it is with I SEE RIVERS, a trio originally from Norway who have begun to put down some roots since they moved here two years ago. Consisting of Lill Scheie (Vocals, Guitar, Drums, Percussion), Eline Brun (Vocals, Keys, Percussion) and Gøril Nilsen (Vocal, Guitar, Percussion, Bass), I See Rivers sound like you already know them, and like they’re speaking from somewhere deep inside you that makes total sense. When a band has a knack for weaving an organic thread into their musical landscape that’s as delicious as this, it’s simply too difficult to ignore.
“We like to live in a place between floaty folk and dancey pop,” they say, and the obvious comparisons to Fleet Foxes and Bon Iver would bear this out. The trademark I See Rivers stamp falls loosely into a folk pop bracket, but framed by the trio’s clever – and outstanding – vocal arrangements. It’s a natural cohesion that they make seem effortless, despite the complexity at its heart. “We write and produce all our songs together, and since it’s just the three of us on stage as well, we usually end up playing one instrument with both our hands and feet at the same time.”
There’s something about the way their musical Nordic voices curl around the words that just screams of nature: the underlying landscape to any I See Rivers piece is this beautiful juxtaposition of autumnal hues and warm, flickering campfires. Comparisons with The Staves are obvious, but delve a little further and you’ll find the group have more in common with the giggling playfulness of Sea Of Bees, and the swooning, tender moments of Daughter.
After releasing their single Loved Ones in 2015, they went on tour around the rural parts of Norway – including Gøril’s hometown in the remote North – before going on tour with Newton Faulkner as support for his UK shows. And they’re not finished there either, as they’re set to release their debut EP Standing Barefoot on in April. The EP was recorded in StudiOwz in Pembrokeshire, Wales, with engineer Owain Jenkins and co-producer Toby Couling, a process that found the three-piece tapping books, boots and jars to add extra textural layers for even more depth. “The EP was written, arranged and produced by us – from our oldest song Evening Light to the song Slow Down, which was written on the day of recording – each track of the EP represents different eras of our time in England.”
“We come from quite different musical backgrounds, but we quickly bonded over our love for artists such as Feist, Fleet Foxes and Sufjan Stevens when we first started out,” they continue. “We do this thing where – when the chance is given – we try to reach out to Sufjan in hope that he might possibly take us with him on his travels, so we’re going to take this opportunity as well: we love you, man!”
Standing Barefoot is out on 21st April. You can listen to an exclusive downloadable track by I See Rivers through our Bido Lito! Membership digital bundle – learn more here.