Briskeby formed in 1996 under the name of Cosmic Debris, but they gained no notable attention before 1999. Early that year they hired the then-unknown 20-year-old Lise Karlsnes as their new singer and played a legendary gig at the important by:Larm music industry convention. After impressing music pundits and audience alike, they immediately became the most sought-after new group in Norway. At the time they had everything a pop group could wish for: the incredibly catchy but smart tunes, the cold and suave pop sound, and the attitude to go. (Think a slightly rockier Cardigans.) Perhaps most importantly, Briskeby had a singer with a peculiarly tacky elegance and an unsuspected amount of sex appeal in Lise Karlsnes, who instantly became a class-A celebrity in her native country.
After something of a bidding war, they were finally signed by Universal Music and recorded their 2000 debut album, Jeans for Onassis. Although expectations were high, no one believed the debutantes would sell 120,000 records (in a country of four million, mind you), have several massive radio hits, and win four Norwegian Grammys. Their live shows were also immensely popular at the time, and they toured Europe with a-ha, earning foreign record contracts. But they did not manage to break through outside of Norway, despite their debut album being of high international quality. After having toured extensively and owning the airwaves for over a year, Briskeby disappeared from the spotlight until the summer of 2003, when comeback single "Hey Baby" was released, followed by their second album, Tonight, Captain, later that autumn. While the single was classic Briskeby and a big radio hit, the album flopped both sales-wise and artistically. They were now increasingly seen as has-beens, and speculations were that they did not have any future as a band.
But they returned again in the summer of 2005 with a massively successful single, "Miss You Like Crazy." The third album appeared in October 2005, and saw them collaborating with Ken Stringfellow of Posies fame on a second single, "Joe D'Allesandro." The biggest Norwegian pop group of the 2000s was finally back in form. ~ Anders Kaasen