For a long time, they were merely two neighbours, each with an incurable guitar addiction. They had both played in bands all their lives, for almost 80 years altogether. Tellef mostly in jazz, rock and improvisational groups, while Magnus more solidly belonged in rock music. When they met for the occasional dinner with friends in the neighbourhood, the talk went mostly about music, guitars, amplifiers and effects. Maybe the occasional “do you prefer 0.10 or 0.09 gauge strings” question. In the end, there was no way around the unavoidable, and they went down into Tellef’s basement with no more of a commitment than to jam for a while. After months of intense experimenting and songwriting, it became clear that the two guitar players had more in common musically than they had thought. Several café concerts in Norway and Sweden and then half a year of intense work with the duo’s debut album made the two electric guitarists into a closely interacted, poetic, melodic rock-jazz duo with a setlist of instrumental compositions. Even if it sometimes can get loud, it is not an aim in itself. The Leifs ambition is to leave their listeners with the notion that an evening with the duo’s self-styled “Americana (Nordicana?) jazz music” or “wind-warped, instrumental rock-jazz” (both authentic stamps left by listeners) was worth leaving the couch for. In Mai 2018 Simlas produksjoner released the duo’s album digitally, on vinyl and CD. September 2020 saw the follow-up album But you move on distributed digitally. About the name Magnus’s middle name is Leif. Tellef is an old combination of the names Tor and Leif. Hence the band name. Except also that the word Leif sounds almost like the English word for the period between birth and death of an organism. Somewhat.
The Leif was established in Oslo in 2015 by the two guitarists Magnus Tenge and Tellef Øgrim. The duo became a trio when drummer Per Oddvar Johansen joined in 2020. Their instrumental music is original, melodic and fermented in jazz and rock.
Magnus Tenge and Tellef Øgrim's fertile tune-writing increased after they joined forces in The Leif. As their repertoire grew, the duo developed a natural inclination towards melody, rooted in a jammy jazz sprinkled with a pastoral feel. Some of their tunes even evoke post-1970s nostalgia. While their first album was strictly a duo affair. With the EP But you move on Per Oddvar Johansen, a renowned drummer known for his keen sense of sound and highly personalized musicianship made the band a trio. Although the band has no set rules for selecting tunes, listeners can expect to be treated to a unique blend of musical influences and a sound that showcases their exceptional chemistry as a group.
The band's second release, an EP/short album titled But you move on, containing exclusively original material, was released digitally on September 25 2020, on all platforms, featuring the fabulous Per Oddvar Johansen on the drums.
Production: The Leif, Anne Danielsen (editing), Audun Borrmann (mixing), Sverre Erik Henriksen (mastering)
– You hold the levers and when a screw loosens and a nut disappears into the air then another holds on and gets everything on rails again before a new nut loosens and you spin around but you move on before a new screw loosens .... etc (Fan 24. after listening to our upcoming music)
Visit the live stream from the release party at Oslo's Kafé Hærverk 19 October HERE
Our second full-length album, recorded in March 2021, deemed lost forever after a hard disk died, then resurrected by way of a magician called André Bakkehaug, was RELEASED April 14 2023, comprising music we loved to write and love to play, and would like you to listen to.
Then There, album April 2023
The Leif's third release, titled There Then, with eight original composition for an intstrumental trio of two gitars and drum set was released digitally on all platforms by the Norwegian label Fajo Music on April 14.
Daniel, a tune from our first release, was featured in the beautiful surf-documentary Icebox
Our second release, an EP called But You Move On, was released September 2020 at Kafé Hærverk
We played new material online during the Corona pandemic. Watch the concert HERE
Our final verdict on the album "The Leif", which appears next week at Simlas produksjoner, can be summed up briefly: Perfectly successful! – Global Music News
...but the "wind-warped instrumental rock jazz," as the two call their music, is by no means just a noise, but a typical case for adventurers and, to a certain extent, a phonophone sarcasm, when tenderness and effervescence have to be changed from a creative point of view - Musikreviews.de
... a very gentle interaction between two electric guitars in a thoughtful relaxing way - Unfretted.com
Arne Raanaas' photos from the release party
But you move on (EP 2020)
The Leif (Debut album 2018)