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Atlas - Blå Vardag CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.20 | 186 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars An album I discovered by complete accident, and a complete surprise! Featuring dueling keyboardists Björn Ekborn (misspelled "Ekbom" above) and Erik Björn Nielsen, this wholly instrumental album mixes a big, classic-prog symphonic style with a breezy, fusion jazz feel for something quite unique and refreshing. Most of the time the two duke it out on pianos (acoustic and Fender electric) and organ (Hammond) with piercing Moog lines cropping up frequently. Mellotron is, as it should be, used sparingly to stunning effect on the more dramatic moments. Their foil is guitarist Janne Persson, whose subtle, jazz-inflected playing suits the music to a T.

Highlight of the disc is quite obviously the fourteen-minute, two-part "På Gata", which finds all the band members in fine form. There's simply no letup in the piece, it's sheer prog-rock delight. Though Swedes have achieved a reputation for being "gothic" and "dark", this album is the antithesis of all that. Sprightly and sunny throughout, this is total "feel-good" prog.

The APM CD does the impossible, digging up three bonus tracks that are every bit as good as the original LP material (including one track, "Sebastian", which was recorded by a reformation of the original group specially for the CD!) All right, perhaps "Björnstorp" (originally from the MOSAIK anthology album, the track featuring four-fifths of Atlas) is a tad longwinded with its overlong percussion break, but there's not an out and out bad moment anywhere on this album. Don't hesitate to buy!

Progbear | 5/5 |


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