After 35 years, The Halloween Project are finally ready to release their debut album, “Masters Of It All”!
In the early 1980s, a group of young boys from Løten in rural Norway, decided to start a band. After a few months of rehearsing in a borrowed garage, the evolving line-up settled on a three-piece consisting of Odd Gunnar Nergård on guitar, his brother Rune Nergård on drums, and Leif Knashaug on bass and vocal.
Deep Purple, Black Sabbath and Motörhead were early influences, but as the songwriting process evolved, it became clear that the metal scene of the early 1980s was equally influential. With one foot in the hard of the 1970s and the other in 1980s metal, they found their sound.
While the band did keep performing for a few years, building a decent local following, none of the original music was ever recorded in any meaningful way.
Then, in 1984, the German band Helloween emerged, with a pumpkin logo, similar to the one used by Halloween, and with a pun in their band name. Well played, Helloween!
The band soldiered on for a couple of years before the singer Leif decided to leave the band. He moved to Oslo and joined a new band, Neon Night. Halloween, however, changed into Loud ‘n’ Proud, adding another Nergård brother, Frode, to the mix on bass, as well as Arnstein Ødegård on vocals.
Fast forward to the early 2000s and resurrecting Halloween is a thought that’s on almost nobody’s mind. Frode and Leif would occasionally perform together as part of the cover band, I Live. It was during Christmas in 2014, when they were due to perform at a party in Løten, with Rune and Odd Gunnar expected to attend, that things started to happen.
The original trio with Frode added on bass, decided to perform a few Halloween songs at the party. After one successful rehearsal, they performed at the party and had a great time. So they decided to keep doing it once in a while.
And that’s what happened, they kept rehearsing, performing and had a great time in doing so. Then, a year or so back, the idea of recording those old songs, started getting floated around. How would that work? There’s only one way to find out, so they gathered at Ronni Le Tekrøs Nyhagen Studio.
35 years is a fair chunk of time. Only a few of the songs were recorded, but there were tapes of old gigs and rehearsals. These form the foundation of what the band recorded, in addition to a few new tracks based on ideas that were kicking around way back when.
Some of the songs needed some first aid as the lyrics would often be both of questionable artistic quality as well as an insult to the English language, but some of the songs are essentially as they were in 1985.
Now, the debut album from The Halloween Project is here. It only took 35 years and the album is titled “Master Of It All”. It was produced by Kjartan Hesthagen.