Erik Wøllo

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Erik Wøllo
Schallwelle 2012 Img07 - Erik Wollo 01.jpg
Wøllo at Schallwelle 2012.
Background information
Born (1961-01-06) 6 January 1961 (age 55)
Hemsedal, Norway
Genres Ambient music, electronic music, minimalist music, space music, drone music
Occupation(s) Composer, Musician, Producer
Instruments Guitar, Keyboards
Years active 1980–present
Labels Projekt

Erik Wøllo (born 1961) is a Norwegian composer and musician, guitarist and synthesist. He has a background in various genres in music. As a solo recording artist, he is most known for his electronic and ambient musical soundscapes. Music that can be classified in the genres of space, drone, new age, and electronic music. Through his many albums he has gained recognition for his unique sound and style. Using guitar as the primary instrument in a highly imaginary and emotional music, building a bridge between grand symphonic realms and gentle, minimalistic and serene atmospheres.

History and Overview[edit]

Born and raised in Norway (Hemsedal). In the era where he grew up in Norway, the local folk music is very much dominated by the Hardanger fiddle. By his grandfather he was once offered a fiddle as a birthday present, - if he wanted to start playing. But he went for the guitar, and started to play at age 11.

His first influences were all the evolving heavy/progressive rock music in the seventies. Although he has once said that his first guitar hero was John Fogerty! He soon discovered the more complicated and intricate styles of rock, like Pink Floyd, Yes and Emerson Lake and Palmer.

He started his professional career in 1980, playing and touring around Norway in various jazz/rock and fusion bands. But in 1984, he decided to concentrate full-time on his own solo career. Building his own studio Wintergarden, where he started to explore and create his new soundworld.

His third album "Traces" (1985), was a turning point for his creative musical approach, and pointed out his unique style in instrumental music. This album represented an important and seminal time for Wøllo's artistic development.

Erik says in a private interview: “I quit all the bands I played in, I wanted to work on my own using the modern electronic studio as an instrument. Like a painter with his oil canvasses. I wanted to make a music that had expansive synthesizer textures and sequencer patterns, layered together with expressive melodic electric guitars. Working with depth, time and space. In those years in the early eighties the studio technology was new and revolutionary, and I wanted to explore all the new possibilities. To be able to control the infinite variations of electronic sound, using an endless palette for creative expression. Musically this technology opened up a new possible world for me, and I have continued to further develop and refine these musical ideas on later recordings. Also for the last decade, I have been able to bring this my musical concept to the stage, performing live. I have been doing several tours, as well as releasing a double CD set live album "Silent Currents" (Projekt, CD-2011). As well as one download live album "Silent Currents 3" (Projekt, digital-2013).

Erik has also written music for diverse acoustic ensembles. Such as string quartets, wind quintets and sinfoniettas. As one of very few Norwegian composers, these scores were all written in the classical minimalistic tradition.

He has released 19 full length solo albums and several smaller format EP's, all distributed globally and he has gained a large audience for his music.


Erik Wøllo has also collaborated and released album works together with some of the most respected artists in the ambient music world: with Steve Roach ("Stream of Thought", CD-2009 & "The Road Eternal", CD-2011), Ian Boddy ("Frontiers", CD-2012), Bernhard Wöstheinrich ("Arcadia Borealis", CD-2009), and several others.

One of the areas Wøllo has been deeply exploring for many decades, is the connections between the various art forms. Focusing on finding mutual and parallel aspects, he has been making music for use together with other media, like film, modern ballet and theater. Also together with diverse experimental visual art forms for gallery exhibitions. (photography, fine art, literature and video art.)


Erik Wøllo currently lives on Hvaler, an island south in Norway. Married, one son.


Wøllo with Fender Stratocaster at Schallwelle 2012.

Selection of Works/Discography[edit]

Solo albums:

  • "BLUE RADIANCE" (Projekt, CD-2015)
  • "TIMELINES" (Projekt, CD-2014)
  • "SILENT CURRENTS 3" (Projekt, Digital-2013)
  • "AIRBORNE" (Projekt, CD-2012)
  • "SILENT CURRENTS" (Projekt, Double CD-2011)
  • "GATEWAY" (Projekt, CD-2010)
  • "ELEVATIONS" (Spotted Peccary Music, CD-2007)
  • "BLUE SKY, RED GUITARS" (Spotted Peccary Music, CD-2004)
  • "THE POLAR DRONES" (GROOVE Unlimited, CD-2003)
  • "EMOTIONAL LANDSCAPES" (Spotted Peccary Music, CD-2003)
  • "WIND JOURNEY" (Monumental Records, CD-2001)
  • "GUITAR NOVA" (Monumental Records, CD-1998)
  • "TRANSIT" (Monumental Records, CD-1996)
  • "SOLSTICE" (Origo Sound, CD-1992. Re-released on Spotted Peccary Music, CD-2012)
  • "IMAGES OF LIGHT" (Origo Sound, CD-1990. Re-released on Spotted Peccary Music, CD-2012)
  • "SILVER BEACH" (Originally released 1986. Re-release Projekt 2013) Digital Download
  • "TRACES" (Cicada Rec/Badland, LP-1985/CD-1988. Re-released on Spotted Peccary Music, CD-2012)
  • "DREAMS OF PYRAMIDS" (Hot Club Rec, LP-1984)
  • "WHERE IT ALL BEGINS" (Hot Club Rec, LP-1983/Monumental, CD-1999)

EP / Mini albums:

  • "ECHOTIDES" (Projekt, Digital-2015)
  • "TUNDRA" (Projekt, Digital-2014)
  • "CELESTIA" (Projekt, Digital-2013)
  • "CRYSTAL BELLS" (Projekt, Digital-2012)
  • "THE NOCTURNES" (Projekt, Digital-2012)
  • "ITUNES EXCLUSIVES" (Spotted Peccary Music, Digital-2004)

Together with other Artists/Projects:

  • Erik Wøllo/Bernhard Wöstheinrich - "Weltenuhr" (DiN46, CD-2014)
  • Ian Boddy/Erik Wøllo - "EC-12" (DiN, Digital-2014)
  • Ian Boddy/Erik Wøllo - "Frontiers" (DiN, CD-2012)
  • Steve Roach/Erik Wøllo - "The Road Eternal" (Projekt, CD-2011)
  • Kouame Sereba with Erik Wøllo - "Bako" (Etnisk Musikklubb, CD-2010)
  • Erik Wøllo/Bernhard Wöstheinrich - "Arcadia Borealis" (DiN34, CD-2009)
  • Deborah Martin/Erik Wøllo - "Between Worlds" (Spotted Peccary Music, CD-2009)
  • Frank Van Bogaert with Erik Wøllo - "Air Machine" (Ace Studio Editions, CD-2009)
  • Steve Roach/Erik Wøllo - "Stream of Thought" (Projekt, CD-2009)
  • Celeste - "Design by Music" (Col, LP-1984)
  • Wiese/Wøllo/Waring - "Trio" (Maza Rec, LP-1984/Curling Legs, CD-2008)
  • New Music Composers Group - "In Real Time" (Albedo, CD-1992)
  • Bry/Springgard/Wøllo - "Fossegrimen" (Cappelen, Book/CD-1995)
  • Pacemaker - "Pacemaker EP" (Beatservice, EP-1996)
  • EXILE - "Dimension D" (Origo Sound, CD-1997)
  • Erik Wøllo/Hyperlinkto - "Musikk til en Meny" (Monumental/Hyperlinkto, CD-2001)

Several selected compositions licensed for Collection Albums:

  • "Northern Nights" - (Six Degrees Records/Climate, CD-1999)
  • "Music from the Edge" - (Margen Magazine, CD-2000)
  • "The Echoes Living Room Concerts, vol. 7" - (Echoes, CD-2001)
  • "Lights Out VIII" - (KINK fm102, CD- 2002)
  • "The Echoes Living Room Concerts, vol. 9" - (Echoes, CD-2003)
  • "Michael Garrison Tribute Collection" - (Groove Unlimited, CD-2004)
  • "Lights Out IX" - (KINK fm102, CD- 2005)
  • "Lights Out X" - (KINK fm102, CD- 2006)
  • "Stars End 30th Anniversary Anthology CD" (CD-2007)
  • "The Projekt Sampler 2009" - (Projekt, CD-2009)
  • "Afar" - (Projekt, CD-2010)
  • "E-Day 2011" - (GROOVE Unlimited, CD-2011)
  • "The Rope 25" - (Projekt, CD-2011)
  • "The Echoes Living Room Concerts, Vol. 17" (Echoes, CD-2011)
  • "PAWS, no - kill animal shelter benefit" CD Compilation (Industryeight CD-2011)
  • "DiN40 - Various - iNDEX04" - DiN Records Sampler - (DiN, CD-2012)
  • "Possibilities of Circumstance" - Various Artists (Projekt, CD-2013)
  • "Winter 2014" - Various Artists (Projekt, CD-2014)
  • "VISIONS" - A Collection of Music by Erik Wøllo (Projekt, CD-2016)

Other works for different ensembles:

  • "Formations" (String Quartet - 1982)
  • "En Brottsjø" (Saxophone Quartet - 1986)
  • "Solar" (Tape/Woodwinds - 1986)
  • "Windows" (Sinfonietta - 1988)
  • "Pre Sense" (2 pno/Cl/Tr/Tape - 1990)
  • "Vidder" (Organ/E.horn - 1992)
  • "Accordance" (String Quartet - 1992)
  • "Lost in Legoland" (Fl/Git/Voc - 1994)
  • "Magnushymnen" (Voc/Fl/Git/Brass - 1997)
  • "Ceramics" (Fl/Perc/Tape - 1998)
  • "Imaginations" (String Quartet - 1998)
  • "Millennium 2000" (Sinfonietta/Soprano/Choir/Organ - 1999)
  • "Transitions" (Sinfonietta/Soprano - 2000)
  • "Unity" (String Quartet - 2002)
  • "Snowflakes" (Girl Choir/Small Orchestra - 2011)
  • "Elementa Ultra" (Large Wind Orchestra/Guitar/Electronics - 2013)
  • "Fragmenter fra en Aftenstemning" (Large Wind Orchestra - 2015)

Music for Ballet:

  • "Breathing Space" (Kjersti Engebrigtsen - 2007)
  • "Fragile" (Kjersti Engebrigtsen - 2004)
  • "Distant Buddha" (Teet Kask - 2004)
  • "Cascade" (Jane Hveding - 2002)
  • "Shadowgraph" (Teet Kask - 2001)
  • "Ursula X" (Teet Kask - 1999)
  • "Gips"(Spig Wibrodux)- (Wøllo/Bry/Kask - 1999)
  • "Jeg Drømte" (Kjersti Engebrigtsen - 1992)
  • "Pyramider" (Trine Thorbjørnsen - 1986)

Music for Theatre/Multi-media:

  • "Heimen Vår" (Bry/Springgard/Wøllo - 2007)
  • "Livskraften" (Thor Rummelhoff - 2005)
  • "Fossegrimen" (Bry/Springgard/Wøllo - 1992/95/96)
  • "Abiriels Løve" (Kittelsen/Thorbjørnsen - 1996)
  • "Aldri Verden" (Vik/Schjøll - 1992)
  • "Motspillerne" (Kittelsen/Thorbjørnsen - 1988/91)


  • "Transit" -music video to the album (X-Ray/Monumental-1996).
  • "Rift" (Continental Drift) -Video from Iceland (Patrick Huse/Aschehoug 1998).
  • "Lille Øistein" -computer game (Netron/Mediaparken 2007)
  • "Antebellum America" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 1997)
  • "Lay Out" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 1998)
  • "Street Lights" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 1999)
  • "Fun House" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 1999)
  • "Crash Course" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 2000)
  • "Sprawlville" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 2002)
  • "Consuming Pleasures" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 2003)
  • "Falling Down" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 2003)
  • "Balling Games" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 2005)
  • "Playing Games Paying Games" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 2006)
  • "Running High" -Video/Installation (Sven Påhlsson 2012)
  • "Ice Works", music to Ice sculpture (Helge Røed 2000)
  • "Kulturstreif Hallingdal", -Internet project 2000 (
  • "En Transformert Reise", video (Kirkhorn/Urstad 2000)
  • "Chat Chat Chat", Animations/Internet interactive (Alvin/Hyperlinkto 2001)
  • "Under Overflaten", video (Kurt Hermansen 2003)
  • "Beacons", Light/Sound installation at Asker Railway station (Påhlsson/Wøllo 2005)
  • "Elevator", Photo and Sound Installation (Christine Istad 2005)
  • "Year", Dramatic Feature Film (Mike Carroll 2005)
  • "Eventyrsøppel" - Installation with Music (Martens/Frantzen 2006)
  • "Spectra Emotions", Video and Sound Installation (Christine Istad 2011)


  • Films / TV - documentaries: NRK/TV2 and others (Norway). Also diverse Film/Documentaries for TV and Radio in Europe, Japan and USA.
  • Several Multimedia / Exhibitions
  • "Off The Wall" - World music concert project for schools, produced by Rikskonsertene 2005. (Kouame Sereba/Erik Wøllo/Uriel Seri)

External links[edit]