Molosser’s ‘Ellesmere Island’ is a guitar riff lovers’ dream

Molosser weave riffs together beautifully using down-tuned acoustic guitars on latest single, Ellesmere Island.

Molosser is a Swedish duo with quite the origin story. Tess (acoustic, vocals, drums) and Jahn (acoustic) down-tuned their acoustics to work on tracks for an electric project, but the pair fell in love with the possibilities of the acoustic pairing. Together, the guitars could be played like pianos, covering the duties of bass, rhythm and melody.

The two immediately abandoned the electric idea and got to work writing Appear, Molosser’s nine-track debut album. The record’s final track is Ellesmere Island, and its soundscape proves truly immersive.


Ellesmere Island slowly introduces their listeners to the lonely island with delicately crafted riffs. Both acoustics bounce off each other with light and shade, making for a deeply intimate experience. The guitars were recorded with the mics nice and close, contributing to this setting.

What’s really impressive about this minimally instrumental piece is how full it sounds.

The chord changes are idiosyncratic and complex, like an early Radiohead cut, making the key emotion of the track difficult to pinpoint. On the surface, the song sounds simple, but if you listen carefully, you’ll quickly discover the intricate interplay of the acoustics is anything but. Tess’s yearning vocals ebb and flow with the guitars, creating a hypnotic effect that feels unique to Molosser.

The music video for Ellesmere Island was shot at the bands’ farmhouse, visually mimicking the open soundscape.

Molosser’s music managed to transport my mind to a similar place, using only two guitars, drums, and vocals – it really goes to show that less can be more.

As Molosser continue working on their next album, be sure to give Appear a proper listen. This is a truly unique project for acoustic guitar fans that will inspire you to give some alternate tunings a shot.

Listen to Appear by Molosser below: