Album Review: Torgeir Waldemar – No Offending Borders

Torgeir Waldemar has spent the vast majority of his life as a guitar player for a variety of rock bands up until a couple of years ago when he took the Norweigian music scene by storm with his debut solo album concentrating purely on his acoustic talents. Since then he has been working hard to further his solo career and enhance his ever expanding pool of talent. This has resulted in his second album, the country rock masterpiece No Offending Borders which errs far more towards hi rock roots than his previous album.

Having settled himself comfortably back into the realm of country rock, Waldemar uses No Offending Borders to stretch out his skills a bit further, surrounding himself with heavy guitar tunes and dancing banjos. He tries his hand in every corner, producing a series of songs that showcase his immeasurable talents. Overseeing each and every song is Waldemar’s mild, affable vocals. His voice is rich and warming, a perfect contrast to the Baltic weather in his native home. There is a soft Norwegian lilt behind his words that give them a unique and elegant edge. There is something in his earnest and passionate voice that makes it so versatile and adaptive within his work. One moment he carries a strong country drawl and the next he has the soaring voice of a rock god.

Taking a step back from his previous acoustic offering, No Offending Borders sees Waldemar envelop himself once again in the familiar world of rock, blending it with a touching scent of country music to boot. Songs such as Sylvia (Southern People) are a nod to the likes of rock you simply no longer hear today. Traces of Black Sabbath can be heard echoing in his chords as he plays the kind of music that inspired him as a youth. As the album flits between the heavier rock elements like this and the softer, more relaxed country traits it makes for a twisting album that will always leave you wondering what’s coming next.

A few years ago Waldemar took Norway by storm and the years he has spent away from the spotlight since have far from been in vain. No Offending Borders is a musical masterpiece, deeply tied to his own personal love of music and desire to see his dreams come to life. This makes the album seem deeply personal and initiates an almost intimate element between the artist and the listener.

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Review by Joe Knipe

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