Scandi-pop superstar and songwriter Jens has seen a meteoric rise off the back off his charismatic, off-kilter pop anthems, beginning with his hugely successful 2018 release, Mixtape. After forming numerous bands with friends and performing across Norway, Jens took a new direction as a solo artist writing upbeat pop hooks. Having refined his sound, the Nordic talent is set to make his return in 2020 with a brand-new EP due for release this autumn.
Speaking to EUPHORIA., the singer delves into his latest single– the irresistible funk-style pop offering “Nocturnal” taken from the upcoming EP– the message he’d like listeners to take away from his music, memorable moments of his career so far and more.
What was the inspiration behind “Nocturnal”? We had been working on some other idea for a day or two but felt that it wasn’t going to pan out. Being a bit exhausted I was entertaining the idea of calling it a day when Askjell started messing around with these «stabbing» synth chords. He then added a bass groove to it and the track started sounding like it was asking for a fun and a bit sexy topline. It being two years since that day it is hard to say exactly what set of the idea, but I think we based it partly on both Askjells, Bjarnes, and my own experiences with the dating scene.
From being part of several bands to now working solo, what are the biggest lessons you’ve learned in your musical journey? I feel like what’s most important is really individual and that what is right for me might not be the right thing for someone else. That being said I personally think that learning to surround myself with and work with people that are good for me as well as learning to be comfortable with asking tough questions and stating my own opinion has been an important lesson.
Who inspires or influences you? I always find it hard to answer that question, because I really don’t know who or what inspires me to make music. Yet, I feel like I’ve always had this urge to create and I think that if I wasn’t making music I might have been creating something else.
If listeners could take away one message from your music what would you want it to be? I try to write songs that resonate with me and makes me feel something. I hope that my music in some way can evoke some feelings in those listening to it as well. I can’t say that my music is meant to be a tool for getting a certain message across, because that has never been my intent. I just hope that my music can make people feel, just like other artists have made me feel my whole life.
How do you see your music evolving in the future? That is such a hard question. I have always tried not to hold myself back when writing songs or lock myself in a genre-box of sorts. To me, the most fun part about making music and, maybe particularly, pop music is being able to experiment with and incorporate different genres and sounds. I feel like the only thing important to me is that the music is fulfilling its purpose; if the song is meant to be catchy, then try to make it catchy. If it’s meant to be sad, then do your best to make it sad.
What’s the best part of making new music? What frustrates you about the process? The best part is when I’m writing and just feel like things are coming together, everything is falling in place and that I’m in the zone. The most frustrating part of the process can sometimes be the periods where you just feel creatively drained. When you feel like you have nothing left to say or that you’re just sick and tired of music altogether. Thankfully those periods don’t seem to last too long in my case.
What’s been the most memorable moment of your career so far? What’s next? Supporting Dagny on tour last year was a really fun and memorable experience. I also feel that being able to write a song for the remake of Moomin Valley, a TV-show I adored as a kid, was pretty cool.
Next, I’m really excited about releasing my debut EP later this year. Up until now, I’ve only released singles and I must admit that I’m really nervous about how my EP will be received. I like it a bunch myself and I hope that a lot of people will do the same.