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What Listeners Are Saying:

Harmonies as rich
rhythms as various
voices as wholesome
as the breath of Gaia

A wonderful romp across Scandinavia. Thank you for sharing your talent and your dreams.

Delightful! Your enthusiasm is very engaging and the stories of the songs and explanations of the instruments were great!

You guys are wonderful - funny, and sound great! Thanks for playing today!

Fantastico! Bravo! Lovely music and a real treat!

Great music - one of the best yet

Great music to put on while you're cooking breakfast.

Review of Fager som en ros by Aryeh Frankfurter:

It was with great pleasure that I listened to the debut CD of Scandinavian trio, Nykken. The quality of the recording is excellent - pure, clean with wonderful range of sounds. While CD packaging is less and less an important part of music production in our digital age, I was really impressed with the beautiful digi-pack presentation which really invited me to pop it open and put the CD on the player. Extensive liner notes accompanied which I really enjoyed reading as I listened.

I will forego explaining all the wonderful panoply of instruments the group plays, including vocals - but there are a lot of them and many quite unusual, which in itself will be of great interest to any prospective listener. Nykken is: Barbary Grant on Celtic harp, cello, button accordion, percussion and Norwegian vocals; Verlene Schermer on harpguitar, nyckelharpa, fiddle, cittra, harp and Swedish vocals; and Enid Bennion on nyckelharpa and harmony vocals.

Even though the group hails from California, Nykken evokes a great deal of authenticity in the genre of Scandinavian folk music. I have listened to a lot of Scandinavian folk music, and had I not known that they are American, I would have thought this was a group from Sweden. Playing Scandinavian folk music in an authentic style is no easy feat as the music requires a certain "feel" and "lilt" to get right. I had been told outsiders can spend 10 years living in Sweden steeped in the music and learning from native musicians - and after all that, still be "just starting" to "get" the music. Nykken really seems to have defied that!

All the instruments are performed with deft facility and the vocals, to my ear, sound like native born speakers. The arrangements are very refined, skilled and at times quite intricate without sounding overly so - just natural, and naturally interesting. It would be difficult to pick out a stand-out track on this diverse album. I am sure the gorgeous song "Stilla Ro Och Nära" would bring a tear to many eyes. "Grevelius Polska" "Slängpolska efter Byss Kalle" and "Slängpolska efter Juringius" are familiar tunes culled from the repertoire of the internationally famous Swedish folk trio, Väsen, but Nykken brings their own sound and take on them which render them very enjoyable - like you're greeting an old friend who had an interesting change of look that makes them seem fresh and happy.

Nykken offers a wonderful opportunity for all listeners of Scandinavian folk music. They offer beautiful and accessible material to draw in new listeners. And for those who are already familiar with Scandinavian folk music, Nykken does the music justice by their skilled and authentic renderings.

Aryeh Frankfurter is a professional recording artist and multi-instrumentalist.  www.lionharp.com

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