Monolith Cocktail - Nive press pic 2


Recently reviewed, in her own inimitable lyrical style, by Ayfer Simms for the Monolith Cocktail, the actress/musician Nive Nielsen’s latest LP, Feet First, made a lingering and powerfully beguiling impression on us all. Growing up in the Inuit Eskimo community of Greenland, Nive’s beautifully woven tales of the north are quite unique. Made along with her collaborative ensemble The Deer Children, her melodically lilting storybook of dreamy ice-y landscapes and atmospheric echoed folk like poetry draws on the both the traditions and present conditions of her native homeland. Hailed in some parts of the media as a cultural ambassador for Greenland and the North Pole regions, Nive’s music is also strongly imbued with her many travels abroad, from Tucson, Arizona to England. Recorded throughout these destinations, the Feet First album is a rich source of polygenesis influences and travails.

In an interview with Ayfer Simms, Nive mentions those well-travailed roads and inspirations.

There’s something wild about your music, are you wild at heart?

Possibly. In some ways I am very adventurous, and probably adventurous at heart as well. But I don’t see myself as wild. I’m mostly curious, and excited to jump into the deep end of the pool.


Who are the Deer Children?

The Deer Children are my band. It’s like a family, an ever evolving and rotating bunch of amazing pals that can make up the band at any given moment and participate in either recording or concerts, all kinda depending on the mood and the occasion. Sometimes we are 4 on stage, sometimes 14. We are around 40 odd Deer Children by now, and growing still.

Our current live constellation is me, Jan De Vroede, Charlie Shapiro, & Joe Novelli Andrew Collberg, Jeppe Skovbakke, Salik Parbst Frederiksen and Nicolaj Brandt.


We can easily imagine a long stretch of road going to infinity and beyond. What is your favorite road you travelled on? Did one of them inspire any of the tracks? 

I like roads. Some of the coolest ones I’ve been on would be the ice roads in the North West Territories of Canada, and the volcanic sceneries on the roads in Iceland. Also the Alaska highway in the Yukon, and I would say Greenland but there aren’t any roads between towns in Greenland so it’s more like flights between towns in propeller planes and helicopters. “Happy” is a song inspired by our pretty crazy adventures in far and remote places.


There’s a tint of the Orient in your music, does it come from a specific experience?

We listen to all kinds of music from all over the world and from different eras. And we might listen to them on the tour bus or at home and it makes sense when you are recording stuff that maybe some of it makes their way into the studio 🙂


Did you ever suffer from insomnia; are you a morning or an evening person?

Hehe, I can actually sleep almost anywhere – and I do. And I am most certainly an evening person. It’s then that everything makes most sense.


How do you react to being compared to a wild wolf? 

I howl in disbelief. But they ARE kinda cool…


You take you inspiration being on the move, which places have you been so far, and which were the ones that you felt as an outsider, if any?

We have travelled through the US and Canada and most of Europe; we also went to South Korea and Japan. I think it was most different for me to experience Asia but I was very excited to see it. And it’s super exciting to experience those differences and feel a little lost!


If you wrote music for a movie, what would the subject be?

I think it would be about change and encounters in life that happen in serendipitous coincidences.


Are you a romantic, or a cynic?


Words: Ayfer Simms, with thanks to Nive Nielsen. 

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