Anniken Jess Iversen, or Anana in short, is one of the finest new female voices in the Norwegian scene. But she could be as well one the Scandinavian country’s most talented young composers.
Having grown up in the arcadian island of Nøtterøy, where she started playing classical piano as a kid and wrote her first own tunes in mid-teens, Anana later moved to Oslo where she’s beeh gradually developing her own style. Quite appropriately, she calls it “dypvannspop”, or underwater pop.
Her new double single, “Swimmer’s Body Illusion” / “Hurdling” (out via KOSO), is spacious, heavily reverbed, and incredibly beautiful. While she mentions artists like M.I.A., Erykah Badu, Radiohead, Mars Volta, Elton John and the acclaimed Norwegian group Jaga Jazzist among her main inspirations, she obviously writes music they would rather admire than deliver themselves.
Just like her previous efforts, boths songs included on the new release also make it clear that Anana comes from a place where darkness is not something to avoid but part of your daily life. Her haunting vocals and slowed-down, piano-meets-laptop arrangements still tend to have an uplifting effect.
However, it’s the moment when electronic beat joins Anana’s heavily reverbed voice towards the end of “Swimmer’s Body Illusion” that you’ll want to experience again and again. At least unless she takes another dive.