Essinauks is the professional name of singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist producer Eirik Backlund Andersson. He is a Norwegian musician who has worked on multiple projects over the last two decades under a series of different monikers. In 2021 he took his first step into the spotlight with his debut solo EP “The Crow & The Pitcher.” That record introduced a unique experimental sound mixing elements of Electronic, Ambient and Alternative.
“Heimweh/Milestone” is the new double single from Essinauks, released worldwide to all major streaming services on February 22, 2022. The artist’s name is a derivative of the Norwegian word for “wood goblin.” It is a fitting title for such a mysterious sound that conjures shadowy images of dark Scandinavian nights.
“Heimweh ” floats on on ambient minor-key synths and low droning bass notes as Andersson enters the mix with an emotional narrative. With a whispered Soul he delivers cryptic and unsettling lines like, “That terrifying ghost that wears your skeleton.” From there the track alternates between wildly experimental Electronic music and downtempo Indie Rock.
“Milestone” opens on a percussive, subdued Industrial groove reminiscent of Trent Reznor’s mellower work. A wall of synths and electronic tones join the ensemble to shift the tune into a Dark Pop feel. Backward vocals and pulsing/droning electronic tones introduce some cool psychedelic vibes. As the track progresses we slide into a hypnotic percussive groove before landing a Lo-fi Ambient meditation.
Check out both tracks below, or listen on your favorite streaming service. You can also hear “Heimweh” on the Deep Indie Dive playlist and “Milestone” on the Deep Indie Chill. We had the chance to chat with Eirik about the new record. Check out his answers to our 8 questions below. And follow the links at the end of this article to connect with Essinauks. Get on his socials and get in the loop on all of the music to come from this talented and innovative artist.
8 Questions with Eirik Backlund Andersson (Essinauks)
Where are you from?
Norway. In one of the cities down in the south-east part of Norway – Sarpsborg. I’ve been moving around a lot in my life so far – but am now settling down.
How long have you been making music?
Since 2001 to be precise. Got into production of music and recorded my stuff from my very own bedroom. Wasn’t secure about my music, so I played under various pseudonyms and didn’t have the courage to post anything online. Now, finally I’m finding my place and name. Essinauks is ‘Skaunisse’ backwards, which means wood goblin in English.
Who are the musicians involved in your project?
Collaborated a bunch with friends. ESSINAUKS are mainly a solo-project. But my long time friend, Jon Ivar Stegarud (Grapevine Springs, Killmotor Hill) and Accidentally Graceful (that runs a ASMR channel on YouTube) joined me on my previous single, SOLSNU. Rune Jacobsen (bandmate from my main band, KOBAYASHI) lent me some guitars on my first release “The Crow and the Pitcher.” Now I’m finally releasing “Heimweh/Milestone” all by myself. It was recorded and mixed by me as well.
Who are your biggest musical influences?
Nine Inch Nails, Mogwai, Wolf Eyes and various types of experimental music I grew up with.
What is your greatest non-musical influence?
My grandad. He had the passion and love for music. And nature. Since my hometown is Rjukan and it’s at the base of Norway’s biggest national parks.
What inspired you to create this project?
After joining my band KOBAYASHI, it kickstarted my renewed love for music making. And then I got the freedom I wanted to make whatever I wanted under Hellview Records. Which is an independent label by Rune Jacobsen. He’s the best!
Other than that, these two songs are about the lack of feeling homesick from adolescence to now. They are about the sense of never having a concrete “place to come home to.” Now I have my girls (girlfriend and daughter). They gave me a lot of support and inspiration. So I’ve now passed a significant big milestone. I’ve made peace with the past and now belong with my girls – which is my home now.
What are your plans for the future (musically)?
Create more. And after this release, I’m gonna team up with Polyphonic Exophilia on three more tracks, since I also do collaborating with others as well. Last time Polyphonic Exophilia created a song called Knights becomes a Ritter, which I sang on.
Also worth mentioning that, I have some plans with my good friends Rune Jacobsen and Jon Ivar Stegarud for some projects down the line as well. After that, we’ll see what I make on my own.
Is there anything else you would like to say?
I would like to thank my nearest family. My two daughters and my girlfriend. My best friends (specially Jon Ivar Stegarud and bandmates Rune Jacobsen, Even Jacobsen and Bjørn Helge Nerdal and the members of Polyphonic Exophilia. Also, as an introvert, I still love my own company. In the bedroom creating music.