Bridges - Fakkeltog (Summer 1980)


Pål Waaktaar and Magne Furuholmen's first group was called Bridges. They released a self-financed LP on the record company VÂkenatt in Norway only called "Fakkeltog" (Torch-light procession). 1000 copies were made, but very few of them sold. The music is heavily influenced and inspired by The Doors. This record is the most sought-after record among a-ha fans and you must expect to pay an awful lot of money to get your hands on a copy of this record.
The LP has a home-made cover design (photo by Fritz Johannesen) which shows the faces of the group members. In the background there is some text (apparently Norwegian lyrics). Bridges - Fakkeltog (front cover)
The back of the cover shows a field with more lyrics printed upon it. This is not the complete lyrics for the album, only drafts and excerpts. The record in itself is quite unique as it has a stop mark on side B. This is done to divide the record into the three seperate parts called "The Oncoming Of Day", "The Oncoming" and "The Oncoming Of Night". Bridges - Fakkeltog (back cover)

One side of the LP has a black label with grey text listing the tracks for "The Oncoming Of Night". "Våkenatt Presenterer" and "Bridges..." have been printed in large grey capital letters above the track list. The other side of the LP has a white disc label. The top half features red text with "...Fakkeltog" and track list for "The Oncoming". The bottom half of the label lists the tracks for "The Oncoming Of Day" in black text which is printed upside down compared to the text in the top half. A black line divides the top and bottom sections of the label.

Fakkeltog Label - The Oncoming Of Day / The Oncoming   Fakkeltog Label - The Oncoming Of Night

Bridges - Poster

An even rarer edition of the LP contains a poster (around 1000 copies came with a poster - TBC?). There are two posters available; one has lyrics to three songs printed across the groupshot while the other comes without the lyrics.

Bridges - Poster with lyrics

The album was produced by Svein Erichsen, mixed by Svein Erichsen and Tore Aarnes. It features PÂl Waaktaar on guitar and vocals, Magne Furuholmen on synthesizers, Øystein Jevanord on drums and percussion and Viggo Bondi on bass guitar. The track "Vagrants" features ÿivind Nusle and Hans Morten Stensland on violins, Svein Ivar Fors and Elisabeth Moe on cello, Ingvil Kaalhus on obo. "September" features Gro Hanne Fors and Sissel Gr¯nlund on tumpets. The songs, arrangements and lyrics are all by PÂl except for "Vagrants" which is arranged by Erik Nygaard. The songs on this album are all sung in English. This is the only album released by Bridges, the band started another album by the name of "Poem" but it was never published. The a-ha song "This Alone Is Love" features song text from the Bridges songs "May The Last Dance Be Mine" ("It will make my last breath pass out at dawn It will make my body dissolve out in the blue") and slightly adapted lyrics from "Every Mortal Night" ("Travel by trap-doors our souls are a myrid of wars And we are losing everyone").

Tracks: The Oncoming Of Day: The Oncoming Of Day (instrumantal) (2:07) / Somebody's Going Away (3:01) / May The Last Dance Be Mine (2:33) / Divided We Fall (2:14) / Vagrants (1:56) // The Oncoming: The Stranger's Town (9:58) / Pavilion Of The Luxuriant Trees (2:35) // The Oncoming Of Night: The Oncoming Of Night (instrumental) (0:47) / The Vacant (3:30) / Guest On Earth (3:23) / Death Of The Century (2:59) / The Melancolic Chevaliers (3:00) / Scared, Bewildered, Wild (1:38) / Every Mortal Night (3:22) / September (5:19)

Bridges test pressing - handmade cover and lyric sheet

An extremely rare item is a test pressing of "Fakkeltog" which includes an alternative cover handmade by Pål Waaktaar. There is an LP sized paper sheet which Pål has coloured in and stuck cuttings on. Also included is a paper sheet with hand written lyrics and corner credit "Fakkeltog" Pål Waaktaar. This test pressing does not come with the regular "released version" of the cover. The Polygram labels on the disc state that it is a testpressing and the details have been hand written below. The date give is 22.8.1980.

Bridges test pressing - disc labels

In 2012. there was an unofficial release of the "Fakkeltog" album by Luna Nera Records (limited to 330 copies).

Bridges unofficial re-release

LP

LP Norway   Fakkeltog Våkenatt VN01
LP Norway test press Fakkeltog Våkenatt VN01
LP Norway unofficial Fakkeltog Luna Nera Records Luna Nera 001

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