The Men They Couldn't Shave
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The Men They Couldn't Shave

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Reviews for "Stories from Cactus Motel" – RR012, 2007:
- The production is delicious and this almost smells like a soundtrack, as if Tarantino is lurking in the shadows. If it were up to us, Stories from Cactus Motel ought to be in every household.
(5 out 6 points - Trond Svendsen, Hamar Arbeiderblad)
- The Men They Couldn't Shave are just splendid on this record, and I got the feeling that they are quite an experience playing live. (Arild Rønsen,
- It's easy to assosiate this with Gram Parsons and the legendary "Sweethearts of the rodeo". The creativity is big, and there's fine arrangements and a wonderful mystic and deserted mood that makes this album a very good one to listen to. (4 out 6 points - Jan Rudolf Pettersen, Romerikes Blad)
Reviews for "42nd street electric fox" – RR011, 2006:
- The group impresses me with good arrangements and a nostalgic sound.
(5 out 6 points - Jan Rudolf Pettersen, Romerikes Blad)
- The band is becoming one of the best bands in the area. (Reidar Venberget, Glåmdalen)

Reviews for "Ragin’ Butterflies" – RR007, 2003:
- Ragin butterflies is an explosion of joy, great playing and solid songs. All I can tell you is that this is a great record – I hereby recommend it. (Rockeweb – 8 of 10 points).
- We should consider this band to the title “Bruce Springsteen of Norway”. I’m looking forward to the next album. (Panorama – 5 out of 6 points)
- It’s a rare experience to listen to a band providing such enthusiasm in their playing – and where the producer has kept so much of the band’s unshaven charm on the record. (Glaamdalen – 5 out 6 points).



The Men They Couldn’t Shave saw the day of light autumn 2000, when Mr. Mo Larsen met the transcendent Mr. Roy Botten at Roy’s legendary studio Hard Rain. Roy decided to record some of Mo Larsen’s songs – tunes he’d made in the desert of New Mexico during his time in the loneliness and the wilderness outside Albuquerque.

You need a band to record songs, and this is really the point where the band The Men They Couldn’t Shave was born. Mo Larsen a asked Jan Henri Peeters if he could join in and arrange the songs about to be recorded. Jan said yes, sharpened his guitars and got auditioned a bass-player and a drummer for the weekend of recording. Two days of rehearsals and the band entered the legendary studio Hard Rain, where Mr. Botten was ready and eager behind the desk with thousands of buttons. Three nights and three days ended up in the demo-EP “Ray Ban’s for the Nightingales”, six songs by Mo Larsen, but arranged by the entire band. The transcendent Mr. Botten saw something the band had not yet discovered - at least that’s what the story tells – because he joined in on harmonica and has been a creative and critical force in the band from this day on. Musicians and music-lovers labelled the demo “a great start with a snappy coctail of songs”. The few reviews the EP got were optimistic – they were yet to be even more optimistic. The Men didn’t do much talkin’ anyway the first six months of 2001. Mo Larsen did his things and wrote lyrics and tunes for the next project – soon to be named “Passports Won’t Dance” – another EP with six songs.

Mr. Botten and Mo Larsen recorded five of these songs in the middle of Christmas 2001 at Mr. Bottens new studio in the middle of nowhere. Just the two of them, an acoustic guitar and a harmonica. The session even got a name to itself – “Acoustic Absinthe”. Why, only the two of them know – and they won’t tell…. The two warriors who respond to the name Peeters gathered their companions on bass and drums. Four days of rehearsals and the band once again entered the gates of the upcoming legendary Botten Studios. All in all it took the band seven days to finish the six songs on “Passports Won’t Dance” – a demo showing that the band is on its way to its own sound and attitude and groove. This demo is significant to the band’s course for several reasons: Something is crystallizing in the sound and attitude in the music, and Jan’s melody on the song “Beneath the Ashes” is a firecracker and a sign that he’s the one to write the melodies in the future. And the last but very important sign: The band show that they hear similar sounds and are able to spot the same oasis in the horizon for the band. The Men They Couldn’t Shave are about to give birth to their own sound – the sound of the desert and the sound of honesty. And that’s the crossroads the band is standing at.

“Ragin’ Butterflies” became the proud statement we all hoped it would be. Raving reviews all over the place, and the tribe from the desert got confirmed that what they heard in their heads were sounds other people longed to hear. The Men They Couldn’t Shave helped them out as the record sold well since its release June 6th 2003.

A hell of a release party at Jessheim made the floors move and the few gigs the band managed to fit into a busy schedule, proves that the more they play together, the better they sound – and appear.

In between rehearsals and gigs, Jan and Mo Larsen worked on new songs. The chemistry between the two is still developing and they are bound to give birth to a great musical flower on the next one. The entire band is contributing on the arrangements – of course.

The album “42nd Street Electric Fox” was shipped to the rock capitol of Norway, Halden. And Mr. Kai Andersen mixed the songs before Mr. Audun Strype mastered the horsethieves’ songs. The record was off to the print shop.

Well, hunting down the electric fox on 42nd street didn't take too long. The unshaved posse looked at the horizon and decided to chase another prey, some other place. And Mr. J. H. Peeters and his compadre Mr. Mo Larsen discussed the next move with their gang. All agreed, and The Men They Couldn't Shave left the big city with its hotels and neon lights and hardship and broken dreams - another dream was about to be scared shitless as the trancendent Bad Boy Botten locked himself inside his vintage studio and decided to disappear for a couple of months.

And as the warm strokes and kisses of springtime hummed in the pines and chased chill from the bones of the entire unshaved commune, Mr. Bad Boy Botten unlocked the door and stepped out of his solitude.

And the birth of the country album "Stories From Cactus Motel" was slipped out of one of Mr. Botten's cowboy boots. A country album that got a lot of praise from the reviewers out there - it even sold internationally (Italy, Spain, Belgium, Denmark and the U.S of A). Lucky Strike?

Two sold out gigs was a hell of a release of the albu