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Tomas Bodin - I AM CD (album) cover


Tomas Bodin


Symphonic Prog

3.75 | 129 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars 3.8 Stars

Wow, what an opus! Tomas Bodin shows everyone that Roine Stolt is not the only great composer playing in the Flower Kings. After hearing this album, I realized that Tomas Bodin should have more than 1 minute long interludes as it often happens. Here, he composes something I could call "Rock Opera". This is like a mixture of The Wall and The Flower Kings. A Personal concept album. I AM is divided into three pieces, one for each letter of the title. The Flower Kings sound is present as Jonas Reingold plays the bass in a similar way as he does with the band while quoting some bass lines from Unfold the Future and Bodin who's keyboard playing. I have some trouble liking the singer in the first and third movements.

I - After a long atmospheric intro focused in theatrical vocals, The overture blows you away with an organ workout featuring some blazing synth riffs. A church organ introduces the singer and the song begins. It is overall very dynamic, has some great heavy passages, and the main synth riff is played a few times. The last five minutes are a bit boring though: just vocals under repetitive and uninteresting piano lines. Overall, I find this piece the most enjoyable when it is heavy. 8/10

A - My favourite composition of the three. Beginning with piano like the ending of the last track, it fools you as the song won't be that soft. A distorted guitar plays a mesmerizing and absolutely rocking riff, and the singer sings much better than before, complementing the guitar riffing perfectly. Then, the next part involves jazzy drumming, simple piano playing, and the bass upfront making variations of a bass line from "Silent Inferno". When the singer talks to God, it is another highlight of the album. It starts tranquil with classical piano, but then it gets much more biting. The soft- heavy transformation is really well done! When the classical piano dominates again, it leads to another short highlight: a reference to "The Truth Will Set You Free" with the same riff and bass line, yet improved. The bass line is only 4 different notes in a loop, each note played twice rapidly before going to the next one. The next few minutes take you to the sound of the Flower Kings. The pice continues coherently into a heavier finale. 9/10

M - My least favourite piece, yet a solid epic. After a lot of time given to the singer, th song gets much heavier. I love the bass lines used and the hevy guitar riffs. A guitar solo ends this great moment. A soft piano/vocal section follows and it develops and progresses nicely. Another good guitar solo marks the end of it, and the climax ends the disc. I believe the climax is not very strong and does not capture all the emotion heard in all the three tracks. 6/10

Regardless of my negativity towards M, you should get this album if you like The Flower Kings. This is a beautiful opus that should not be ignored, as well as Roine's solo projects.

My Rating : B-

Zitro | 4/5 |


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