Norwegian website Nettavisen:
- Finnmark Fantasia has become a great, beautiful and strong testimony featuring Hansen's warm guitar-tone.
- A beautiful tribute to the people and the extraordinary nature of the north.
- A wonderful musical excursion.
Belgian website Jazzmania:
- Only two listens to this album were enough to make me fall in love with this fantastic guitarist-composer.
- A crystalline, chiseled, jazz guitar, which links melodies with finesse and lightness.
- A truly remarkable album.
- This refined, sensitive album of immense beauty.
The band consist of the trio, John-Kåre Hansen (guitar), Martin Vinje (synthesizers and electronics), Jonas Karlsen (drums, percussion and electronics). Together with their regular sound technician, the trio often travels together with the professional string trio, Ensemble Noor. Collaborations with local string ensembles and orchestras are also done.
Arctic chamber jazz
From the high north of Arctic Norway comes Finnmark Fantasia. The band is led by composer and guitarist, John-Kåre Hansen, an artist of the indigenous Sami people. Together with his ensemble Hansen brings the warm guitar-sounds together with an Arctic string ensemble mixed with percussion, synthesizers and electronic beats.
Finnmark Fantasia is John-Kåre Hansen's tribute to the area of Finnmark, the northernmost part of Norway. Next stop is the North Pole. The music is a tribute to the people living in the harsh Arctic climate with extreme nature all year round. The north is the land of contrasts with pitch dark winters holding -40 degrees Celsius and no sunlight for months, and summers with the sun shining 24/7. This effects how you live. This effects how you play.
The music is inspired by nature, the freezing cold, the light, darkness and the natural phenomenon that makes the Arctic into what it is. John-Kåre Hansen tells his stories through the sounds of a warm jazz guitar together with the deep bass and synthesizers of Martin Vinje, Arctic strings and a mix of crisp, cold electronic beats together with the creative and dynamic drumming by Jonas Karlsen.