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The Windmill: The Story so far...

The progressive rock band The Windmill was started in autumn 2001, as an occasional prog project for fun, as a side project alongside various other bands the band members then played in. The background for both the band and the name is a "revelation" Keyboardplayer Jean Robert Viita received somewhere in Germany in the early 90s. Above a hilltop, a windmill farm appeared, and Jeanni discovered that the rotors in the windmills seemed to rotate synchronously with Camel's "Moonmadness" playing on the car stereo. There and then the seed of The Windmill was sown!

The first years were characterized by sporadic rehearsals, where both own songs and classic prog songs were played. Just for fun, and the idea of ??a permanently established band with live performances and recordings was relatively distant at that time.

But ambitions tend to develop, and in autumn 2005 it was decided to start recording what was to become the debut album "To Be Continued ....". They began with recordings and rehearsals in (then) guitarist Bent Jensen's studio in Fredrikstad, where a complete digital studio was available. The band began to take shape as a proper band and not just a side project, and regular rehearsals were introduced, parallel to the studio work.

Most of the members began to lean towards the opinion that this was more attractive than the other bands they were involved with, and decided to commit themselves fully to The Windmill. A new drummer, Sven H. "Bulle" Borgen, was brought in as a replacement for Vidar Kleivane, who chose to retire.

After much trial and error in 2005 and 2006, the first live concert was held at Maiden in Oslo in April 2007 as a support act for another Norwegian prog band, Panzerpappa. This concert proved to be a success, and was a spur to further efforts both in the rehearsal room and in the studio.

After this, the recordings continued and several concerts followed. A small setback came in 2008, when drummer "Bulle" chose to withdraw from the band. However, he managed to finish the recording (drums) of "To be Continued...".

2009 started with a new drummer, Sam Arne Nøland, as well as a new rehearsal room in Åros. With Nøland's entry, a new glow came into the band, and more concerts followed.

At the beginning of 2010, guitarist Bent Jensen chose to retire due to a lot of work with Pulse of Floyd. The mixing of the debut album continued, however, and in mid-March it was sent for mastering at Sterling Sound in New York, and "To Be Continued..." was released in May 2010, to fantastic reviews worldwide. The release gig was held on 7 May 2010 in Slemmestad. First concert without lead guitarist Bent, and that created a little extra excitement. However, no need to panic: Morten and Erik tuned the guitars perfectly to fill in the gaps left by Bent. A fantastic concert, with a fantastic audience!

The next live performance was on 31 July of the same year, "Up On The Farm BBQ", a festival based on food and music. Here, the new lead guitarist, Stig André Clason, was presented for the first time. His brilliant performance exceeded all expectations and he subsequently became a permanent member of the band.

In 2011, The Windmill got the chance to bring their music out to a larger audience, when a gratifying number of gigs appeared after the CD release: Nordkappfestivalen, Honningsvåg, warm-up for Fish in Drammen, and for The Watch at John Dee, Oslo , Norway and the Art Rock Festival in Lidköping, Sweden should be mentioned.

In the autumn of 2011, they returned to the studio to start recording the follow-up album "The Continuation".

During 2012, a number of great concerts were held in Norway, and a lot of hard work was done in the studio. At the end of December, the last chord was recorded, and "The Continuation" was sent for mixing and mastering in mid-January 2013. Again, it was Lydspesialisten in Fredrikstad who was responsible for mixing - and mastering was again done by Sterling Sound in New York . This time it was also decided to press up a limited edition of vinyl LPs.

"The Continuation" was ready for release on 13.3.13.

The years 2010-2016 offered several pleasant tours and concerts at home and abroad. In particular, it was incredibly nice to play on the main stage at the Cambridge Rock Festival in 2014 and 2016, Haugaland Progrock Festival in Haugesund, with e.g. Junipher Greene, in 2015 and the concert with Adventure and Fish in Kimen cultural center in Stjørdal, also in 2015. Mentioned should also the concert at the We låve rock festival in Hurum in 2018, together with e.g. Arena and the Franck Carducci Band. In autumn 2016/spring 2017, the band acted as a backing band for Caamora Norway, which staged Clive Nolan's musical "Alchemy" at Sætre, Kolbotn and Høytorp fort at Mysen.

The recording of "Tribus" began in autumn 2016. The album consists of songs that had been in the live repertoire for a while, as well as completely new songs that have never been played live before. As usual, The Windmill has an epic when it comes to a new album, and this year's contribution is called "The tree", and clocks in at close to 24 minutes.

 The album was partly recorded at Morten Clason’s summer house in Sweden, at Stig André Clason’s home studio in Oslo and in the band's combined rehearsal room and studio in Hurum. The album was mixed and mastered by Karl Groom (Threshold, Shadowland, Strangers On A Train) at Thin Ice studios in England.

In the spring of 2018, the band received the unspeakably sad news that drummer Sammi Nøland had contracted cancer. He just managed to record the drums on the entire album before his strength ran out in late April. In August, the news came that the disease had worsened significantly, and that unfortunately it was rapidly  declining. On the night of September 5, Sammi died, leaving a huge void in the band that has yet to be filled. RIP, Sammi! A wonderful person and sparkling drummer has left us.

"Tribus" was officially released on 15 November 2018 in connection with the release gig at Belleville in Oslo. Once again, the reviews were fantastic, both in Norway and abroad. In the wake of "Tribus" there was an extensive concert activity in 2019, and the highlights worth mentioning are "Night of the prog" festival in Loreley, Germany in July, and the "Summers End" festival in Wales in October. Mentioned should also the "Close to the rain" festival in Bergen in June and "Prog at Sea" at the end of August.

 At the beginning of 2020, work started on new songs for the 4th album, but the Corona outbreak in March 2020 placed the band on the sidelines for a while. Playing at the Klokkarstua Festival in Hurum in 2021 and 2022 is pretty much the only activity after the Corona. In August 2022, work on album number 4 started again.

In October 2022, the band played two warm-up concerts for the English prog band Arena, respectively at Cosmopolite in Oslo on Saturday 15 October, and at Musikens Hus in Gothenburg on Sunday 16 October.

2023 offered several ups and downs. The Windmill played at the Midsummer Festival in Valkenburg in the Netherlands, and Prog en Beauce in Pierres in France. Work on album No. 4 continues.

In October, drummer since 2018, Kristoffer Utby, chose to retire from the band, to use more time on his own project Infringement. New drummer from January 2024 is Nils Harsem from Slemmestad. He debuted live with the band at a memorial concert for sound engineer Morten Skancke on 15 January 2024.

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