The Scandinavian Paradise. Norway is a lesson in how to run a country. It is voted the best country to live in the world, first on the world happiness report and has one of the lowest crime rates on the planet.
With this wealth, you would think it’s not a place where hip-hop can rise due to the culture’s connection with poverty. However, as Black Metal is the biggest Nordic cultural export rippling its influences throughout the world with themes of violence and suicide, it shows controversial music can still thrive from the fjord to the mountains.
Norwegian rap during the 80s & 90s (the peak days of hip-hop) was mostly in English and offered very little originality from the east and west coast of America. It wasn’t until mid-noughties, that their own language and culture started to influence the production of the genre but still was limited in terms of few minority artists coming through and were predominately from the cultural capital, Oslo.
Today, Norsk Rap has taken a lot of influence from the British scene with the harshness and flow of Norsk giving them a new spin on grime.
Known as the godfather of Norwegian hip-hop, Tommy was the first enforcer of the hip-hop scene in Oslo as he started their first hip-hop magazine Fat Cap in 1989, hosted a weekly national rap radio program and owns the leading hip hop label in the country, Tee Productions.
The rap duo from Oslo are also legends in the Norwegian rap game as they were one of the first coloured artists in a country dominated by white voices, presenting the core reason hip-hop originated. They are the most prolific group winning the ‘Arets Spellemann’ award through their sarcastic and political lyrics.
DARLIG VANE and HESTER V75
On the other side of Norway, Bergen presents a new wave of upcoming hip-hop artists in the form of these two groups. Darlig Vane are a trap and grime infused trio that steals the show with their go wild vibes while Hester V75 offer experimental and alternative sounds providing fresh air in the scene