So, first thing first...
Who and what is Kaizers Orchestra?
Well, they are...
Jan Ove "The Jackal" Kaizer (Vocal)
Geir "Hellraiser" Kaizer (2nd guitar)
Terje "Killmaster" Kaizer (1st guitar)
Rune "Mink" Kaizer (drums)
Helge "Omen" Kaizer (Pump-organ)
Øyvind "Thunder" Kaizer (bass)
And that's just about it!
Adressing the what-issue, Kaizers Orchestra is probably the most famous Norwegian band since... ever? At least they've done what many thought impossible: Make a Norwegian band, singing in Norwegian, that is not a heavy metal-group, famous abroad. Now fans all over the world actually learn Norwegian just to sing Kaizers-songs!
Formally, Kaizers Orchestra is an alternative rock-group, but they don't let themselves be pinned down to just one genre. With "instruments" like a pump-organ, ash-trays, trash-bin-lids, hubcaps and their ever-so-famous oil barrows they are truly unike and never boring. Some describe their style as messy, noisy and just a mashup of screeching sounds. I used to be one of those... But increesingly many people all over Europe and beyond love their style and theatricality, and they are said to be Norway's best live-band.
Just to clear some things up, the band formed in 2000 and have published eight albums since then, so they are in no way in the "new-and-upcoming-category". And secondly, I'm not at all fitted to be a spokesperson for them or their music, as I only a couple of months ago suddenly discovered that I actually liked them.
What is The Kaizervirus?
You see, they are from Jæren in Norway, which is basically where I'm from. (It's about 20 minutes from Stavanger.) And they even sing in my dialect, which would probably be called Stavangersk or Jærsk. It's actually got a very special, odd and distinct sound to it. In Norway people either love it but can't imitate it, or they hate it and think it's broad and ugly. Either way there are even a lot of Norwegians that can't understand it very well... My point is: All of Kaizers' lyrics are written and preformed in this dialect, which is a very bold and un-common choice.
Anyway, to complete their album trilogy named "Violeta, Violeta", they have developed an android-app named The Kaizervirus. Basically you just install it on your phone, go for a walk, and suddenly your phone tells you that you have been infected by one of the viruses. Which means that you walked by another person who'd already been infected. Then you open the app and you get to listen to one of the bright new songs from the not-yet-released album "Violeta, Violeta: Volume 3". After a while, the band will release another song, and it will start to spread just like the others. After all the songs have been spread the album will be released... It's never been done before, it's awesome and it actually works!
The music video for the first single, Aldri Vodka, Violeta, has been released today and can be watched HERE.
The second song, Siste Dans, and its intro has been leaked unto Youtube...
Why haven't you been a fan of these for years already?
I know. Stupid me. My problem is this: I always refuse to pay any interest to what "everyone else" is into at the moment. I don't listen to the Billboard Hot 100, or read the bestselling books, or buy some kind of clothes that everyone wears... You get the point. It's not because I want to be cooler or better than anyone else, it's simply because it's boring. It doesn't tell anything about who you are.
This sort of thinking sometimes makes me very "late" in discovering popular things that were actually great! I discovered The Lord Of The Rings seven years ago, the Harry Potter-series five years ago, the Twilight-saga three years ago, MUSE two years ago, and so on... Since Kaizers was basically from Stavanger, where I grew up, they were very popular and "everybody" loved them. As you have already guessed, I did not. Perhaps mostly because my little sister became so into them? I figured she could have a passion I didn't "interrupt".
Sadly that ment that I only recently discovered how great Kaizers Orchestra really were. But, better late than never...
Now I'm trying to make up for lost time, as I'm actually going to see them live in the new Stavanger Concert Hall together with my sister in February! She told me I could not embarras her by not knowing any of their songs. I guess I'll just start in one end or the other?
So, twelve years later, I hope I'm still welcome into the line of Kaizers-fans...