Track By Track: Henrik Lindstrand - Nordhem 2
The Blue Van - press photo

Track By Track: Henrik Lindstrand – Nordhem

Henrik Lindstrand, just released his new album Nordhem on One Little Independent (previously One Little Indian). Nordhem represents the finale in a trilogy of poetic, deeply personal melodically woven soundscapes comprising of the two critically acclaimed albums ‘Leken’ (2017) and ‘Nattresan’ (2019). Lindstrand communicates emotions through a soothing and intimate universe that blends genres into his own ecosystem of sounds from the piano.

Lindstrand’s career is littered with accolades that make up an impressive and eclectic resume. Henrik has worked with seminal profiles such as Tony Visconti, Andy Wallace, David Bowie and Lou Reed, whilst building a career alongside as a composer for television and cinema. Recent accomplishments include the score for the ITV Nordic-noir series Greyzone, the soundtrack for the hugely successful and award winning Lego game, Builder´s Journey and a film score to Undtagelsen (The Exception) to be released this summer. Recent noteable solo performances include sold out concerts in Copenhagen, The Heartland Festival (DK) Silent Green in Berlin, Soho House London, Union Chapel London and Pianeo Festival Munster (D).
Today he talks us through the album track by track:


This piece was initially a commissioned composition for the health and meditation app AIO. I wanted to write a minimalistic piece with lots of space and time for reflection and focus. The inspiration came from a small grove (Dungen means grove in Swedish) nearby my house as a child where I could hang out on my own when I needed to find some peace. I recently played this piece during my first live concert since the lockdown. It was an outdoor concert in the middle of a forest in the bottom of a huge tower. It felt very special to perform the piece in its “right environment”.


The title is the name of a character in Astrid Lindgren´s fantasy novel Mio, My Son (Mio, Min Mio) from 1954. I remember my mother reading it to me as a child and it was one of my favourite stories. It’s written in an epic poetry and is very dark and sad but there is also a lot of hope in it. I’ve also recently read it for my son and the idea to the piece was inspired by the main character Bosse enters and his friendship with Jum-Jum. Basically the book and the piece is about friendship and I chose to dedicate it to an old friend of mine.


One of the first pieces to come together when I started working on this album. The felt grand piano sound was something new that I experimented a lot with in the beginning of the process and this sound sparked a lot of creativity and resulted in hour long improvisations. Nordhem is the result of one of those improvisations. The title is a dedication to my Scandinavian roots.

Blå Berget

Inspired by the novel Mina drömmars stad (City of My Dreams) by Swedish writer Per Anders Fogelström. It describes Stockholm by the end of the 19th century and the transformation into a new era with industrial progress and a growing city with a lot of poverty but also those who gain from the building of a new society which was the foundation to the society we have today. The piece consists of several arpeggiated patterns woven together with a sparse melody on top.


Hallonlandet (eng. Raspberry Garden) is basically a composition where I played around with the idea of subtractive techniques. The initial theme was much more elaborated and complex. I started omitting notes and wanted to see how much it could be stripped down while still making sense. I ended up being very happy with this minimalistic melody and I think it gives room for the listeners own imagination to fill in the gaps. The title refers to childhood memories of my dad picking raspberries in our garden.

Gamla skolor

This piece came about after working for a couple of days with different loops and patterns. I found a sense of calm and soothing feel when using the repetitive pattern as a foundation for the sparse chord progression. I tried to stay away from the conventional idea of how a song is supposed to be built and just go with a feeling. Title means “old schools”.


In Sweden the tradition of lightning bonfires on April 30th on Valborg (Walpurgis night) is very strong. This composition had many versions before finding its final state. It had lots of chords which I ended up taking out and settle with the melody and bassline and give place for the ornamented ambient layers.


This multi-layered piece started out with the fascination of these repetitive patterns and small variations in between them. The piece was eleven minutes long initially but was severely cut down later. Since the patterns are very light I wanted the theme to be dark and rich and so the idea came with the octaved bassline. The brushed backbeat that enters towards the end is me breathing into the grand piano while holding the sustain pedal. Syrsor means crickets.

Stora Huset

My mother grew up in a big mansion in the countryside. My grandfather lived there when I was a child and we used to go there every summer. Stora Huset (The Big House) was the main building. When entering the hall you saw moose antlers on the walls and it was like entering another era. This piece is a reflection of that place. My grandfather had a grand piano that he used to play old evergreens on. We often played four-handed together and this influenced me a lot as a kid.

Stjärnvägar I, II

I read a fascinating book by Swedish astronomer and novelist Peter Nilsson and was inspired by his poetic way of describing cosmos and time. Title means “star paths”. The core of this composition was written for my previous album Nattresan but it never got finished. When working on the new album I found an old demo of it and finished it.


A homage to the music of Gabriel Fauré, Eric Satie and Maurice Ravel. This was one of the first pieces to come together for the album and was one of those compositions that almost wrote itself. The title is strangely enough indescribable – I had a dream where I saw a sign on a wall with the title. I decided to go with it.


Loranga was the name of my favourite soft drink as a kid. Or to be honest, it was a Swedish version of Fanta and not quite as good but as good as it got at that point in the 80´s in a midsize Swedish town. The theme is circulating around the repetition of small intervals with a pedal point bassline.


This last piece was part of a longer composition that ended up not making it for the album. When going back listening to all material that was left out, I got hooked on this part becoming the outro for the whole album. It serves as a soft postlude and also works as a nice transition to Dungen if you´re listening to the album on repeat.

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