Not a boy, not quite a man
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Bonafide pop, but a maverick in the mainstream. Ever since his 2012 debut album Sunken Ships, Asbjørn has been a poster boy of the unconventional. His self-exposing lyrics offer radio-length sex education wrapped in adventurous yet highly infectious pop productions, gaining him praise from his heroine Lykke Li and creating waves of critical acclaim beyond the shores of his native Denmark.
In 2014, after releasing his sophomore visual album Pseudo Visions, Asbjørn uprooted to Berlin to write the follow-up. Unrequited love kickstarted an entangled rite of passage in the busy metropolis, ultimately leaving him heartbroken and questioning his resilience. The forthcoming, long-awaited LP BOYOLOGY is “a study of the relationship between vulnerability and masculinity”, Asbjørn reflects. “I always thought of myself as a natural-born gender bender, but suddenly I saw myself reacting to heartache by oppressing it in this super stereotypical way. The album confronts that within myself as well as outside; I want to discuss those invisible expectations, in society and pop culture, of what a man should or should not be”.
His body moves with soft sensuality with the force and energy of a lightweight boxer, but his words might even throw a harder punch. “I don’t wanna be a man if man means power, to not empower others”, he sings on the album with his longing signature falsetto, only to burst into a powerful belt. And anyone who’s witnessed Asbjørn on a festival stage in Europe or on headliner tours from Denmark to China knows he bears it all. But after the extensive touring that followed his second album, Asbjørn needed to figure out his next move. “I want to hit this nerve where vulnerability sounds pop”, Asbjørn explains. “And to find that space I needed to reflect, as well as practice my craft in writing and producing.” BOYOLOGY is the fruit of that labour.
Asbjørn’s stunning visuals for Pseudo Visions accumulated millions of views on YouTube and solidified his status as one of Scandinavia’s most visionary upcoming artists. BOYOLOGY too is accompanied by a series of interconnected videos which, in Asbjørn’s own words, “feels like a queer coming-of-age short film”, and its videos are released by Embassy of Music and his own label Body of Work.