Hello From Oslo

The world keeps getting smaller. Not just in that run-into-people-you-know-everywhere sense (by that logic, NYC is now subatomic — although it is a trip running into familiar faces in Norway!). But people dress the same here. They have the same conversations. The hipster bars in Oslo play the same stuff you hear at Hi-Fi. Klosterman would probably blame this creeping cultural conformity on the Real World; I think it’s just the pervasive pulse of good music — it crosses cultures and knows no bounds. And it is what’s drawn Stereogum to Oslo.

The good people at the Øya Fest have put everyone involved (artists, writers and booking agents alike) in the same hotel, lending to a pretty rad hotel bar scene. Ran into !!! guitarist (and LCD Soundsystem bassist) Tyler Pope down there; all eight of the Chk Chk Chkers are here for their set, and both of his acts have albums coming out in January. Keep an ear out.

The festival organizers told us over a Vietnamese dinner (nothing says Norway like East Asian cuisine) that Band of Horses were the American act taking firmest hold here. (Okay, his first answer was Tool.) And who do we run into at Møllers, the hipster bar down the block, just a few minutes later?

Ben and the rest of BoH were up to their “aww, shucks!” shenanigans, loving their first trip through Europe, looking forward to their shared bus through Sweden with the Pipettes, and apologizing to all of those who had to deal with those fucking Rolling Stone interns at their NYC shows. “My fault,” Ben lamented. “I had no idea it’d be like that.” The band couldn’t have been cooler to chill with, and I can’t wait to see ‘em tomorrow.

More from Møllers: A few of you suggested we check out Spank Rock, the Philly-based electronica/hip-hop act signed to London-based Big Dada.

Well, they came to us first!

Hearing great things about their live thing, so expect more on them soon. Naeem had great thoughts on the state of the neo-soul scene in Philly, and how it’s saturation lead to the construction of the Spank Rock sound. And I think he wrote this one for the ladies.

Spank Rock – “Put That Pussy On Me” (MP3)

As for Spank Rock’s most anticipated act of the weekend?

Yes, !!! swung by for a nightcap. Couldn’t stay to talk though. I had the attention span of a gnat, possibly due to jetlag, festival fatigue and a nutritious, week-long diet of granola lunches and granola dinners (thanks, Lollapalooza!).

But before I left, I heard the kids from Canada raving about Montreal’s Malajube, saying the city is in fits over this fully-French speaking outfit. They call themselves a “Progressive Emo Jam Band.” I took a listen to their MySpace, and it sounds pretty fucking awesome. Let us know what ya think.

And remember, you can still go here for the full festival lineup and to post yer suggestions for coverage. We won’t let you down.

Scott changed the time on this post to reflect EST. It’s already tomorrow here. Nuts, right?