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3 stars Their classic first album!Symphonic Rock at the highest echolon.Swedisch vocals.The Kaipa albums are a must for each ear and generally each track is a winner.Slightly influenced by Yes,but actually they possess their own originality.
Report this review (#4078)
Posted Monday, February 2, 2004 | Review Permalink
5 stars KAIPA's three first albums stand as the high-point of Swedish symphonic prog in the 1970's. Their debut album is a magical album full of deep professionalism and a band hungry to share their clever song writing and symphonic sound. The first KAIPA album in many ways is their best as it introduces the world to a young, ambitious band exploring the boundaries and overlap-areas of rock, classical, jazz and folk. On this album keyboardist Hans Lundin dominates the sound with piano, organ, string-synth and both melodic and occasionally more grating synthesizer solos. When coupled with Roine STOLT's guitars, Bergmans' drumming and Erikkson's standout bass work, we get a definite allusion to the sound and feel of CAMEL. On this album KAIPA perform some wonderful symphonic music with great character and originality.
Report this review (#4079)
Posted Sunday, March 21, 2004 | Review Permalink
4 stars Among all the albums by KAIPA, perhaps this is the most balanced one, very close to some of the solo works by Roine Stolte, without particular excesses and with a good taste as well. Instead after this experience Roine began to explore new music fields, also within the jazz progressive style, but with controversial results. It's difficult to indicate such a particular song inside, however this stuff resumes the best music ideas, then taken again by "The LOWER KINGS", in a remarkable way, (even though sometimes - in other circumstances - you will find some less inspiring compositions), as referred rightly to the early material by Roine. "The FLOWER KINGS" indeed performed such good and less good albums, so that for this reason alone, I should prefer listening to a good part of the early albums by KAIPA, than those ones by F.K. (with a few exceptions only). Make your choice!!
Report this review (#4080)
Posted Saturday, April 3, 2004 | Review Permalink
3 stars This is amazingly good considering the age this guys had back then. Some stuff sounds maybe too 70ish for today, but you come to like it. the songs are well balanced. Each one has a classical theme/happy-swedish folk theme, the calm lyrics part, and a rapid progrock theme. All sounds light as YES, and in the happy mood. It has two tracks written by stolt, which are very good. This is an exellent addition to any prog collection who has records of the Flower kings in it.
Report this review (#4081)
Posted Sunday, May 16, 2004 | Review Permalink
5 stars As I read the review on Kaipas "Inget Nytt Under Solen", I most reply. Thou I think, "Kaipa" is the absolutly best Kaipa album ever. I dont mean that "Inget Nytt Under Solen" or "Solo" is bad... Those are excellent albums to. But their self titled album "Kaipa" is a great, outstanding, excellent, MASTERPIECE!!! It contains various type of melodies, that makes your heart and soul melt. So if you never heard Kaipa, this is the first album you should lay your hands on. The only thing that is negative for "non-scandinavian" listeners, are that they sing in Swedish only on this record. However, the music is outstanding. Every singel track on this album is just great! ---I COMMAND YOU TO GIVE IT A CHANCE!!!---

Greatings from Sweden, PROG FOR LIFE

Report this review (#35203)
Posted Friday, December 3, 2004 | Review Permalink
Easy Livin
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars Floating freely above temples in the jungle

For most of the world, Kaipa was a band to discover retrospectively. In fact, it is doubtful whether they would ever have become widely known outwith their native Sweden, had Roine Stolt not gone on to find fame with the Flower Kings. The band started life as a trio named URA KAIPA, shortening their name when they recruited a young guitarist, the aforementioned Stolt, and started work on their first album.

While Stolt has gone on to become a legendary figure in modern prog, it was Hans Lundin who was initially the dominant force in Kaipa, both in terms of song-writing and performance. He was not however the leader as such, the band being very much a democratic gathering of equals.

This, their debut album, was originally only released in Scandinavia in 1975. For their albums not to have eventually reached foreign shores would however have been a crime, as what we have here is excellent symphonic prog.

Kaipa can be seen as a link between the early classic prog bands such as Yes and ELP, and the neo-prog of Spock's Beard, Arena, and of course the Flower Kings. The music includes traditional Swedish folk influences which are seamlessly blended with complex progressive rock themes.

The opening track, "Musiken är ljuset (Music is light)" is a bold, seven minute, statement of intent by the band. There are shades of Camel in the keyboards and guitar work, complemented by some fine vocals. These vocals are of the higher pitched variety, although not in the realms of Jon Anderson. The lyrics are in Swedish, which I find to be slightly distracting, as my ignorance of foreign languages renders them meaningless to me. I found at times the Eurovision song contest came to mind during vocal passages, but such a comparison is admittedly grossly unfair!

"Ankaret (The anchor)" has one of those frustratingly familiar melodies, possibly from a piece of classical music, before developing the theme and moving into a Focus like instrumental.

"Skogspromenad" is interesting, as the majority of the band were against its inclusion on the album. The track has an almost Celtic feel, opening with a loudening bagpipes type sound, before adopting a bolero like repetitive theme. The track makes for a pleasant deviation from the rest of the album, and good sense clearly prevailed by including it.

The album is completed by a striking sleeve bearing a painting by Stolt. which "depicts an astral traveller floating freely above temples in the jungle".

2005 promises to be a good year for Kaipa. According to the bands official website, a box set is being prepared for release which will include the band's first three albums, plus 2 CDs of unreleased and live recordings. The band themselves have recently reformed, including Stolt, and a new album is imminent.

Report this review (#4084)
Posted Saturday, May 21, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars This is my first review! The Swedish band Kaipa is among my top favourite bands in symphonic prog. They are mainly inspired by Genesis and Yes. Their fisrt album "Kaipa" is full of charm and posetive naivism, typical of the seventies:) The texts is simply wonderful, but are in swedish, meaning just a few of you can understand them of course, but they are translated into english on the cd-versions. The music flows in a romantic kind of style, painting lots of different moods with wide colours. The very young guitarist Roine Stolt had just joined the band which leader were (and still is) the keyboard-player Hans Lundin. He had a band called "Ura-Kaipa" prior to this and when Roine joined, they canged their name into "Kaipa". In some ways this debut (very succesful in Sweden at the time) reminds me of Genesis "Trespass", in it's naivisism and skillfull "amateur/professional" muscisienship, if you know what I mean:). Higlly recommended to romantics and others:)
Report this review (#4085)
Posted Wednesday, June 1, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars Very good taste progressive music, in fact, some passages are similar to yes, and the vocals are quite similar to Jon Anderson, but in my opinion these are the few influences I realize here, nothing of Camel or Genesis. Three first songs are very beautiful symphonic prog, its more heavenly than aggressive, with astonishing melodies and time changes, all of them have vocals, in this case, in Swedish, some times sounding nice but hard listening and hard fitting. Next two instrumental songs are clearly traditional folk songs transformed in rock, the result is only ok. Se Var Morgon Gre as you may know, is an excellent song. Folorad in Stambul is another instrumental strange funny song and the last song is the best of the record in terms of progressive, its more complex and psychedelic. A very good taste album, very very beautiful and atmospheric, with touches of classic music, and demands a time to get used to.
Report this review (#36528)
Posted Tuesday, June 14, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars KAIPA with this first recording gave us a very fresh, almost naive, symphonic rock. This feeling is generated by the melodies very simple but really great. Hans Ludin was at that time the leader of the band and been influenced by sweedish traditionnal folk to compose. Roine Stolt, just 19 years old, was already a wonderful guitarist and added a lot of his sensibility to this first album. Great musicianship, great arrangements and great songs : recomended to people who appreciate melodic and classic prog as Camel, Focus or Genesis.
Report this review (#41611)
Posted Thursday, August 4, 2005 | Review Permalink
5 stars This debut could become my favourite non-English language prog album! Funnily I enjoy Swedish for the sake of change (funnily because I hated svenska i skolan). But the voice itself - and harmony vocals - is very nice too. It reminds me of Spring and Tabula Rasa, and it's a perfect pair to the symphonic and slightly folkish sound. Emphasis on soaring keyboard and guitar melodies, it is clearly a 'Scandinavian' sound, not very far from CAMEL. Drums and bass are very enjoyable too.

Compositions are mainly by Hans Lundin (kb,voc), only two by Roine Stolt (who has also painted the cover picture). Since this is vintage stuff from the 70's, it may not be correct to compare it to Stolt's newer band The Flower Kings, but for me this beats FK by many miles. There is nothing useless in songs, they are rich and progressive enough without extremely complex structures. The emotion is there, and that's what matters most. 'Musiken är ljuset', music is light, and it really feels that way. It is music that cleans your mind.

Report this review (#55891)
Posted Friday, November 11, 2005 | Review Permalink
5 stars Oh, there were the times when Roine was young and The Flower Kings, Transatlantics and other Roine-related projects hadn't appear yet. Roine was young,he played guitar in awesome Swedish band KAIPA, which debut work I adore.

Proto-SINKADUS and pre-ANGLAGARD!!! Wonderful melodies, stuninnig musicianship and horrorful Svedishshsh language!!! :-) Sorry folks I prefer English. But vocal is great anyway. Dramatic themes as "Ankaret" and "Saker har tva sidor" create contrast with mild "Skogspromenad" which is simply classical music and opening "Musiken ar Ljuset" which I adore (kinda Scandinavian CAMEL!).

Well,this album is prominent one in Scandinavian Prog - just like "Per un Amico" by PFM in Italian Prog or "In the Court of the Crimson King" by King Crimson in English Prog. Evergreen classic and a must-have for every prog-fan. Highly recommended!!!

Report this review (#71221)
Posted Monday, March 6, 2006 | Review Permalink
3 stars A pleasant surprise. I'm not, shall we say, particularly enamoured of Roine Stolt's last decade or so of work, so I didn't expect much. A Yes copy, I thought. But this album does have its own character. I can't find any touchstones that are too obvious- sure, there may be a little Yessishness, or Genesishness here or there, but not enough to be imitation. The compostions are sweeping, epic in mood and grand. Very melodic, too. The Swedish vocals are excellent, and the singer has a classy, expressive voice. The are lots of different kinds of keys used, mostly of the textural variety, which is fine by me- I hate long Hammond solos. This is very good second-tier sympho, and has a nifty cover painting to boot. A safe buy for symphonic aficionados.
Report this review (#85589)
Posted Thursday, August 3, 2006 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars KAIPA are still the leading force of the Swedish symhonic progressive rock scene.They were formed in 1973 by long time friends Hans Lundin (keyboards) and Tomas Erikkson.In 1974 original drummer Thomas Sjoberg was replaced by Ingermar Bergman due to a serious disease.Not long after only 17-years old guitarist Roine Stolt was going to be also part of KAIPA.This was exactly the quartet that released their first eponymous album in 1975.In ''Kaipa'' the fantastic mix of classical/symphonic-oriented rock with some Swedish folk influences is leading the way.The album is mainly keyboard-driven,based on Lundlin excellent keyboard themes,not lacking sometimes in intensity through Stolt's inspired guitars.The atmosphere is quite symphonic and mellow and every single composition is tasteful,well-arranged and rich,filled with emotional tunes.KAIPA's debut is the best answer to the growing-UK progressive rock scene and I recommended it more than highly,especially for fans of folk-tinged/symphonic music!
Report this review (#147491)
Posted Saturday, October 27, 2007 | Review Permalink
3 stars This little known band at the time of recording their first album (at least outside Sweden) featured a very young Roine Stolt on the lead guitar (only nineteen then). He is of course not the leader of the band, but for sure that this symphonic sounds are going to draw him much later to form the better known "Flower Kings".

I discovered "Kaipa" some four years ago (thanks to PA) and I was very curious to listen to their early work. The music played here is quite different. Combining folk passages with beautiful and pure symphonic prog.

I guess that we can say that the early "Kaipa" is really one of the precursor of the Swedish prog scene and that its influence is obvious. The music from their debut album is original, full of tact, melodic and inspired. Almost instrumental, it features some Swedish vocals.

My fave song is the sweet and wonderful "Ankaret". But, at times, the band also displays stronger passages: jazzy and rocking "Allting Har Sin Bjan" for instance.

But it is definitely in their symphonic repertoire that I can find most of the emotions. In this respect, just have a listen to "Se Var Morgon Gry". Extremely emotional and peaceful, it is so harmonious, so beautiful that it almost sounds as if it was coming out of the Italian symph repertoire. My highlight. A fantastic song, really.

The final part of this album is less brilliant and therefore I rate it with three stars only. But "Kaipa" will release better albums later.

Report this review (#179464)
Posted Tuesday, August 12, 2008 | Review Permalink
Errors & Omissions Team
4 stars 01. Musiken Är Ljuset The keyboards and announce initial complain, the guys drank in the best sources, progressive classic, top of the guitars are a mixture of Genesis and Camel. The second is a riff broken broken concept to the topic. Keyboards sensational and very well placed. The vocals are a case apart, as it is not where we can hear bands singing in Swedish, and I tell you, was wonderful as the voice of Hans Lundin is very beautiful. The guitars Roine Stolt orchestrated by the influence of Steve Hackett (Genesis) are superb. The climates are all of a song without moorings and into the heart, the keyboards do that.

02. Saker Har Två Sidor Classical piano at the beginning and a voice that I still not sure who it is, but it was very good. A row of low Tomas Eriksson also very good, the vocalizations were fantastic. A battery of Ingemar Bergman is also the other case because they are very well built and played. O solo de teclado por aqui é bem Keith Emerson inicialmente, mas logo ele já dá lugar ao solo de guitarra que diga-se de passagem é muito diferente de qualquer outra banda progressiva já vista, normalmente as guitarras servem de pano de fundo mesmo em solos (with exceptions of course), here not mount Stolt knew everything very well. The vocalizations can not leave my head, were very nice.

03. Ankaret Almost a lullaby! I would say this is not a progressive band (laughs), but has all the progressive bands musical influences of the world I do not doubt that the idea had left then right. And once again the guitars of Roine are fantastic. And of course a save low to the ground as well. Beautiful land!

04. Skogspromenad Here are the keys for a guitar company, has a face full folk, because the melody requires that. More a song if I am not mistaken the region of the guys.

05. Allting Har Sin Början Riff initial cool the battery in my opinion mix a little bit ahead too, but nothing to panic. One song led by guitar, with a work of very competent bass and drums and keyboards with very soft in the first part. The second part became a jazz fusion with crazy land of keyboards furiosíssimos.

06. If Var Morgon Gry This time who does the role of melodist are the keyboards, the guitar hardly appears in this first part. But then the guitar is who emerges as the main character of history. The theme returns, return the guitars. The voice once more killers, as are few enjoy very well. After a couple of vocal solos of keyboard invoked the hellish depths of the soul (laughs). Until a few bandolins has lost.

07. I Förlorad Istanbul Latinidade in vein. Until seem a band exit the tropics of Latin America here. Mexico's most anything else. Very good!

08. Oceane Föder Liv A low and instigating this track and a synthesizer and present. It has a samba here! Or almost! It is the most you can get the gringos (laughter), do not know if it was the intention, but with the whole man is to be. An instrumental and worked very well with a guitar base near disc, but sensational. And of course face many of battery, and the melodic guitar solos. Voice, voice, I love, instrumental are fantastic but I need words and ideas. Water running, songs and a tecladinho smart, a perfect alchemy, a state of heady sense without leaving the place. Some discussions of foreign soil and drums, bass, guitar and keyboard in a jazz-fusion crazy.

Man, how good bands discover 'new' when I discovered that Roine Stolt of the Flower Kings (band that I love a lot) was the guitarist kaip and I was curious when a friend sent me the disc I came across a progressive very well.

Report this review (#196896)
Posted Friday, January 2, 2009 | Review Permalink
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
4 stars I was very late to discover this band. Not that you should blame me. Even in multicultural Cambridge, Massachusetts, foreign speaking prog was a rare find. A little PFM (usually the English language albums) was about all I ever found. After hearing Roine Stolt in The Flower Kings in the past decade, I went and found his earlier recordings.

And what a find. This is high caliber symphonic prog. I would place the sound somewhere between Yes and Camel. My favorite pieces are Musiken är ljuset and Oceaner föder liv, both epic pieces, quickly putting this group at a par with the British prog bands of the same era (most of those British bands were beginning to decline, just as Kaipa was rising). Another high point is Förlorad I Istanbul, a short jazzy song.

If I had found this band earlier, the nineteen eighties might not have been such a dismal time.

Report this review (#279514)
Posted Monday, April 26, 2010 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars After the appalling Wake Of Evolution experience, I though I should give at least one more try at Kaipa music before ultimately writing off this band and all of its related projects. And while I can hear some acceptable music, the tacky emo-pop vocals alone are dreadful enough to forget about this band and its entire offspring for now and eternity.

Musiken Ar Ljuset opens good enough with a lush symphonic sound reminding of Yes and Camel. Vocals come in over a Close to The Edge derived organ part and they confirm that I'll never be a fan of this. It gets worse as the song advances, and the vocal lines go down the shameless crooner pop lane in the second half. It really make me wonder why anyone would call this progressive. It's lame, cheesy and stale. Ok, some tracks have extended instrumental parts that, while entirely un-original, are still enjoyable, but the vocal lines remain dreadfully sentimental throughout. Sounds like Julio Iglesias' Swedish nephew did the vocals on this album.

This is just another 1975 album pointing at the creative decline of progressive rock. Even back then, dressed-up Schlager-pop like this could pass as Prog and nobody complained. No wonder we don't have a clue anymore what Prog means 25 years later. Is it music cloned from real Prog bands with tacky pop vocals replacing the greatness of Hammill and Gabriel? No thanks. Besides, regardless of genre issues, this is a really poor album.

Report this review (#303587)
Posted Tuesday, October 12, 2010 | Review Permalink
Prog-Folk Team
4 stars Though it's been a few years since I first heard this prehistoric disk, I am only just getting around to my assessment because this is the best Christmas album never made, and I generally associate it with this time of year. KAIPA's debut splays its crystalline and undoubtedly folk based melodies across the frozen Scandinavian tundra like a progressive Nordic Jingle Bells. The tinny production oddly comforts, and brings optimistic daylight to hearts and minds so deprived at this time of year in higher latitudes.

I am not presently familiar with the expansive canon of these Swedish legends whose career was bolstered by the success of their guitar prodigy ROINE STOLT. Similarities to the giants of their era abound - CAMEL and YES particularly, and somewhere between the two in complexity, and FOCUS here and there. The organs scintillate and the guitars and enthusiastic voices pine. I even hear some BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST in young Stolt's guitar work on the ambitious "SevarMorgon Gry". "Ankaret" is probably the highlight among many, as it intersperses the above with slightly more threatening bass lines. "Skogspromenade" is a short instrumental with another succinct tune that you won't easily forget.

While KAIPA's music might not appeal to fans of "sophisticated" and complex prog, and the Swedish lyrics are ostensibly beyond mundane, their debut is a winner, a uniformly well played and enthusiastic epitome of symphonic prog circa 1975. Highly recommended.

Report this review (#348511)
Posted Thursday, December 9, 2010 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
4 stars I must admit i've been fascinated with this album of late.The fact Roine Stolt is an original member and still a teenager when this was released (1975) is remarkable. I'm also very intrigued with their sound. Only because later on in 2002 when the band reformed their music sounded a lot like a cross between THE FLOWER KINGS and YES while this debut album has GENESIS written all over it. Anyone who knows me will appreciate that while I like YES alot, it's GENESIS and that more melancholic vibe that i'm drawn to over the "Light" that comes from THE FLOWER KINGS and YES. Well I loved this album from the first time I heard it as these young Swedes offer up a Symphonic delight with a variety of keyboards, chunky bass lines and great guitar leads.The vocals are in Swedish which is also a big plus. I'm going to use the English song titles where I can.

Check out the keyboard intro on "Music Is Light".These guys used something called a "Logan Stringmachine" to great effect, sounding like a combination of strings and mellotron. Guitar follows sounding a lot like Hackett. Amazing sound here.Vocals after 1 1/2 minutes in a spacey atmosphere. Banks-like synths before 4 minutes. Nice.Then the vocals return with floating organ. Huge bass lines 5 1/2 minutes in. Great track ! "Things Have Two Sides" opens with piano as the vocals join in. It's building. I like the vocal melodies too.The organ / bass / drum section is killer then the guitar joins in making it even better.Vocals are back late. "The Anchor" has a light keyboard led intro.The bass becomes prominant then the guitar and synths join in. Guitar comes to the fore after 2 minutes.Vocals 3 minutes in until they stop after 5 minutes and the guitar leads. It's GENESIS-like 6 1/2 minutes in then we get a calm with bass. It does kick back in before it becomes GENESIS-like again 8 minutes in as it settles. Incredible tune !

"Skogspromenad" opens with organ followed by bass and the stringmachine as drums joins in. "Alcting Har Sin Borjan" has a beat with fat bass lines to start.The guitar joins in and it sounds amazing. "See The Dawn" opens with those strings before light keys and a beat take over. A spacey calm before 3 minutes then it kicks in with the guitar leading.Vocals follow and they sound excellent. Nice bass too. "Forlorad I Istanbul" is uptempo with these fast paced intricate sounds. "Oceans Give Birth To Life" is fairly light but with prominant bass as synth sounds join in.The tempo picks up and we get a great sound 2 minutes in.Vocals after 3 1/2 minutes. Water sounds 5 1/2 minutes in with vocal melodies. Strange vocal expressions a minute later then it picks up with the organ settles back before 8 1/2 minutes.

This is probably closer to 4.5 stars and a must for GENESIS fans out there.

Report this review (#382695)
Posted Tuesday, January 18, 2011 | Review Permalink
4 stars A beautiful album of relaxing melodic prog, Kaipa's debut album shows (to my ears) the influences of Renaissance, early Yes, and a little bit of Camel, all brought together in a compelling blend which engages my interest in a way which the group's reunion albums (which I thought pandered rather to the retro-prog movement) failed to. It's particularly impressive to note that Roine Stolt was only 19 when this album was made, though the primary songwriter this time around is keyboardist and singer Hans Lundin. Lundin and Stolt's performances elevate this album from enjoyable second-tier prog to a genuine landmark of the Swedish prog scene. The seeds sown here can be heard sprouting in Anglagard, Sinkadus, and early Flower Kings, so you could say without too much hyperbole that the groundwork for the 1990s prog revival started here.
Report this review (#544757)
Posted Friday, October 7, 2011 | Review Permalink
4 stars "the jungle is full of silver, gold and s****" - Saker har två sidor

This is the debut album from Kaipa. A Swedish band I feel is pretty undervalued both here in PA and in the prog world in general. But those of us who knows this band really appreciate them.

This album is a classic Swedish symphonic prog album in the vein of The Flower Kings. The Swedish vocals sets this album a part though. This album also has some great fusion melody lines. It is also equally rooted in the rich Swedish folk songs tradition which dominated the Swedish airwaves and music scene at that time. But this album also nods towards Van Der Graaf Generator, Yes and Genesis too.

There are some great vocals, guitar solos, Hammond organs and bass here in addition to the drums. The sound is excellent.

The songs are really great and I can listen to this album far more than needed to make a review. It goes straight into my heavy rotation list, in fact. From the opener Musiken är ljuset to the closing song Oceaner föder liv, this album is a riotous party. My only gripe is the lack of a killer tune. But it is still a great album.

4 stars

Report this review (#547480)
Posted Monday, October 10, 2011 | Review Permalink
3 stars 6/10

The debut album of the Kaipa represents only the beginning of one of the most legendary symphonic progressive rock bands from Sweden, and perhaps the primary. However from what I can give him is not even as good as the stuff that the band is producing today, which is really something amazing. What we see here is a decent work, with great influences of Yes (and a pinch of Camel evidenced in the last track) and that above all prints a loud sound and also original, but is not something that can make me awestruck - it's just median. Another thing that hinders is the Ludin´s vocals who are in their native language (this was also the problem of Anglagard in Hybris), and I personally am much more in favor of the vocals of Patrik Lundström new phase in the band.

3 stars.

Report this review (#595381)
Posted Saturday, December 24, 2011 | Review Permalink
Symphonic Team
4 stars Melancholy soundscapes.

Kaipa create a beautiful melancholy sound and were blessed with incredibly talented musicians on their debut self titled album. Ingemar Bergman on percussion, and Tomas Eriksson on bass, provide an excellent rhythm. Lead vocalist Hans Lundin is an instrumental genius on Hammond organ, Fender Rhodes electric piano, Grand piano, Yamaha SY1 Synthesizer, Harpsichord, Logan String-machine, and Glockenspiel. To cap this off is the main drawcard for many who come to this album and for good reason. The incomparable Roine Stolt is here on Electric and acoustic guitars. This is years ahead of his famous input with The Flower Kings, and Transatlantic. He became a prog legend in these bands and it is fascinating to hear his early work with Kaipa at the tender age of 19. He also painted the album cover illustration depicting an astral traveller floating over a dreamy landscape.

The album is very relaxing and refreshing, nothing abrasive or heavy unless you can call those Hammond passages heavy such as on 'Saker har två sidor (Things have two sides)'. The vocals are in Swedish and sound quite lovely overall. A great deal of the album is instrumental, sounding like ELP or Camel, Renaissance. Focus and Yes.

'Ankaret (The Anchor)' has a majestic opening and Stolt's guitars are heavenly. The music is very peaceful and even slightly medieval. The presence of the Hammond is strong and one cannot help but be reminded of Emerson's style. There are many time changes but the mood is always uplifting and enchanting. At times the tempo quickens to allow Stolt to take off on lead, but the cadence soon softens with mellow synths and basslines.

This album sounds neo-classical at times, with familiar melodies and sweeping majesty. Overall the music tends to wash over the listener and it is an enjoyable journey, a chill out album to relax with, one of Sweden's finest symphonic albums without a doubt.

Report this review (#623170)
Posted Monday, January 30, 2012 | Review Permalink
3 stars The eponymous deput from the band Kaipa represents one of Sweden's earlier ventures into prog rock, and is a probable answer to the Genesis and Yes of Britain. It also marks the first appearance of guitarist Roine Stolt, who has made his presence well known with bands like The Flower Kings and Transatlantic .

I noticed a few things initially about the album which make it rather unique. Firstly, in addition to the overall symphonic sound, there seems to be heavy use of classical influenced technique and sound throughout, such as the main theme of 'Ankaret,' and the Harpsichord use in 'Allting Har En B'rjan,' which is no doubt due to Stolt and company's admiration of music from that era.

Much of the album is instrumental, though vocals in the native language of Swedish do appear throughout most songs. I don't dislike the vocals for this reason; rather that they don't really add anything of interest, and seem mixed too loudly in parts.

Besides this, the music is pretty similar to existent prog of Britain and North America, often relying heavily on keyboards, highly mixed and wandering bass, and diverse song structures. The real treat here, however, is the myriad of pleasant melodies throughout. Albeit there isn't much in the way of complexity, but there is a non-stop flood of catchy riffs.

Overall, I believe this to be a very fine debut. As mentioned, it's filled with fun melodies and great musicianship throughout. However, I do not find it to be terribly adventurous. Therefore I would conclude by saying this is simply a pleasant, inoffensive album.


Report this review (#963132)
Posted Monday, May 20, 2013 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "Kaipa" is the self-titled debut full-length studio album by Swedish progressive rock act Kaipa. The album was released through Decca Records in 1975. Kaipa were active from 1973 - 1982 and released 5 studio albums in that time. They reunited in 2000 and have released several studio albums since their reformation. The only constant member of the lineup has been Hans Lundin (keyboards/synths, vocals). Although not an active part of the band through their full history guitarist/vocalist Roine Stolt is probably the most prolific member of the band courtesy of his involvement in acts like The Flower Kings and Transatlantic. Stolt joined Kaipa in 1974, only 17 years old.

The music on the album is symphonic progressive rock influences by the likes of Genesis, Camel and occasionally Emerson, Lake & Palmer (there are quite a few classical leanings in the music). The lyrics on this album are in the Swedish language, which on occasion provides the music with an ethnic folky touch. The band are well playing, delivering a living organic performance. Lead vocalist Hans Lundin has a strong voice and is often backed up by harmony vocals and choirs. The combination works like a charm. The playing of the rythm section is solid and organic and the guitar playing by Roine Stolt surprisingly well played and intriguing considering his young age. It´s the keyboard playing by Hans Lundin that takes the prize here though. His choice of vintage keyboards like organ and harpsichord provide the music with a beautiful warm sound.

The material are well written and even better arranged. What may initially appear to be simple melodies, often possess a rare level of thematic sophistication. As a consequence this is not easy listening music, but the melodies are still accessible enough to be almost instantly recognisable and memorable. The music is generally in the more "soft" end of the symphonic progressive rock spectrum and works perfectly for both deeper listening experiences and for relaxation. The warm and organic sound production only further enhances the pleasant listening experience. "Kaipa" is overall a great symphonic rock album for fans of the more bright and uplifting side of the style. A 3.5 - 4 star (75%) rating is deserved.

Report this review (#1058507)
Posted Friday, October 11, 2013 | Review Permalink
4 stars At this stage, with the debut album, Kaipa shows promising musicianship but haven't developed their own signature sound yet, you can hear many influences from other premiere prog-rock bands. Kaipa can however already boast about fluid guitar playing that has a lot of emotions as well as vocal sung in Swedish. Keyboards sound quite undistinguished and focus is on more traditional playing on organs, Hammond and mellotron, less on synths. Playing is not that equilibristic yet and prefers colours to speed. Some of the exceptions is synth soloing in "Allting har sin början" We can hear folk influence in the instrumental "Skogspromenad". Classical music also has its place on the record, mainly as chord sequence and some Hammond arrangements. Two other highlights are the long pieces "Se var morgon gry" with plenty of symphonic instrumental interplay keyboard/guitar and "Oceaner föder liv" with dynamic guitar and Hammond runs.

A highly recommended delicate piece of Swedish prog.

Report this review (#2481567)
Posted Tuesday, December 1, 2020 | Review Permalink

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