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SALANDER

Crossover Prog • United Kingdom


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Salander picture
Salander biography
Influences.

Everything is influenced by something else and that creates something different.

When two people come together with two widely opposing styles something unique is bound to happen. Before SALANDER got together, Dave CURNOW was more into the Rock and Blues school of thought whereas Dave SMITH was more of the trench coated, album under the arm seventies prog rock brigade. SALANDER is melding of the two minds which gives the music its eclectic flavour.

SALANDER was born at the start of 2013.The two Dave's have been work colleagues and friends for years. Dave CURNOW was looking for music for his vast collection of poetry and stories. They started to share ideas and record them in Dave SMITH's home studio. Dave SMITH created a musical landscape for the words and soon a collection of songs were recorded, some of which made it on to the 'DON'T WORRY I'M NOT GONNA HURT YOU' album. However, there was a theme running through some of the songs and developed into the concept for 'CRASH COURSE FOR DESSERT'. Feeling rather pleased with their work (after all, it was originally done for their own amusement) they decided to release the album on Bandcamp for free just to see what would happen.

CRASH COURSE started to attract some attention and positive reviews followed from recognised progressive rock webites such as progarchy.com, backgroundmagazine.nl and DPRP. The highlight for the guys was a review in Classic Rock Magazine and a fantastic review appeared in Powerplay Magazine where the album got nine out of ten.

''An obvious labour of love, this album is a truly exceptional piece of art; utterly enchanting, captivating, bewitching...so spectacularly effortless that it suggests Salander's next project will blow everything out of the water.''
PHIL KANE POWERPLAY

''It's an engrossing mix of Devin TOWNSEND quirkiness and Peter GABRIEL story telling.''
GEOFF BARTON CLASSIC ROCK MAGAZINE

'' 'CRASH COURSE FOR DESSERT' is an outstanding album that deserves to be widely heard and distributed. A real joy. It will almost certainly make into my top 10 for 2014 and probably my top 5. Holy schnikees this is amazing stuff.''
BRAD BIRZER PROGARCHY.COM

Encouraged and inspired by the positive support they set to work writing new material. The result is SALANDER's third album, 'STENDEC'. Amongst the seven tracks are three epics over eleven minutes. It is a diverse album that has been well received by the fan base...
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Salander official website

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SALANDER discography


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SALANDER top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.59 | 17 ratings
Crash Course For Dessert
2014
2.59 | 10 ratings
Don't Worry I'm Not Going To Hurt You
2014
3.81 | 27 ratings
STENDEC
2014
3.77 | 17 ratings
The Fragility of Innocence
2015

SALANDER Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

SALANDER Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

SALANDER Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

SALANDER Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

4.33 | 3 ratings
Zeitgeist
2014
3.96 | 6 ratings
For Bailey
2014

SALANDER Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Fragility of Innocence by SALANDER album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.77 | 17 ratings

BUY
The Fragility of Innocence
Salander Crossover Prog

Review by The Jester

4 stars The following review was writen by my wife Nihal Eleftheriou, who is the co-host in the radio show Prog & Roll, and she's singing in 2 songs in the album. (I'm puting this review under my name, because I have an account here).

Opening to the wise words of Jacob Bronowski, the latest concept album of Salander 'The Fragility of Innocence', is an experience to me on a personal level. Inspired by the heartbreaking story by Dave Curnow himself, 'The Fragility of Innocence' sets a fictitious stage on what you first think to be Auschwitz before you realize that the album in fact has got nothing to do with WWII but is about brutal, involuntary medical experimentation and corporate greed. As a matter of fact the story takes place in modern times, in a remote part of Iceland, where a helpless mother and daughter are ripped from their homes under false pretenses, to be brought and placed in a ghetto of experimental nightmares, satisfying men's almost carnal desire for immortality. In a way, both the album and the story is a bitter reminder of how close we are to the evil that is humankind. No German SS soldiers, concentration camps, guns and trenches are needed to be reminded that, mankind, regardless of nation, religion, intelligence and statue, is capable of sinking the lowest levels of beastliness in order to achieve their ambitious goals where remorse, much too our distress, comes too late if it comes at all. And such is the story of Fragility of Innocence. Dave Curnow and Dave Smith, who were kind enough to let me participate in a few songs on vocals, worked musical wonders on the tragic story. The lyrics and the weeping guitar by Dave Curnow vividly portray the pain, struggle and desperation of the family while the mellotron, synths and bass by Dave Smith create a chilling Segway between our age and the recent history that we know only too well. The first of the nine tracks, Aldri Sakleysi Er Farinn (Age of Innocence is gone) calls to us listeners from the depth of modern history, while the music slowly works its way into universality and modern ages. Aldri as a song is the first glimpse into the main idea that is hidden within the core of this album. The second track, Cold Icelandic Winter has got ironically paradoxical warm melody in order to display how nature's cold is in fact warmer than the coldness of an evil heart. The tunes are innocent at first much like the child of the story, with a hint of impending doom or an unspoken fear that is to come. The third and the fourth tracks 'Tomorrow is a New Day' and 'Leroy's Tale', are about false hopes and deception. The music is full of hope excitement and happiness, to display how innocent and pure hearts are the easiest of preys by default because they deem others just like themselves. The fifth song Internal Doors is our first step into the reality that comes uninvited. When one door opens, the other closes eternally much like death itself. The song beautifully portrays the threshold and the transition from innocent dreams to harsh reality. The next song, And So to Sleep, is by far my favorite of the entire album. I find it impossible not to cry at. The helplessness, the desolation, sorrow, loss, it is all there all too nakedly. The downfall has reached its peak at this song, there is no future or hope left as is felt throughout the tragic, almost ethereal tunes. Malansky and Evil Doctor which are the seventh and eight tracks are two sides of one coin. Two doctors of the same corporate project, one embracing most humanly emotion which is remorse, the other consumed by greed and ambition, incapable of ever becoming human again' The last track of the album Race Against the Machine in fact feels like a race against both the literal machine and the machine that is the humankind. The race is lost but something is gained before it all ends in the same innocent melody of Cold Icelandic Winter. In remorse somebody rediscovers the innocence of the heart at the very end. All in all I have to say that the concept album The Fragility of Innocence speaks to the humanity and its emotions through the most universal language above all: The Music! All the songs are in perfect sync with what they convey as an idea and Salander's vision of this story is beautifully mirrored in what they created: An excellent Album. As for my rating, I would give a solid 4 stars Nihal Eleftheriou (Radio producer in the radio show Prog & Roll)

 For Bailey by SALANDER album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2014
3.96 | 6 ratings

BUY
For Bailey
Salander Crossover Prog

Review by The Jester

4 stars Hello everybody! I'm sad and glad at the same time to be able to say that this piece of music was recorded for our dog Bailey, a wonderful 4-year-old Golden Retreiver who died so young from cancer. The story goes like that: Me and my wife (who you can hear on the song) are hosting the internet radio show 'Prog&Roll' which both members of Salander are listening to on a frequent basis since September and on. (They even recorded a special song for our show's 2nd birthday). Anyway... When Bailey passed away, we were really sad as you can understand, and we wanted to do something for his memory. At that point came to my mind Big Big Train's song 'Hedgerow' in the middle of which there is someone whistling to his dog saying 'come here boy'. So I wrote them an e-mail, asking if they could record a small piece of music 1-2 minutes top, in order to make a small video for our dog. They result was this 7.5 minute long piece, because let's face it, if you are a progger it's impossible to write something under 5 minutes long. :) The woman's voice you hear belongs to my wife, and the child's voice in the end is our son's. In case you don't understand what he is talking about, is because he speaks in Greek, saying something like 'mommy will feed him now'. We don't have words to express our gratitude to Dave & Dave of Salander for the song they agreed to compose. If you like to "meet" them join our radio show 'Prog & Roll' which is online every Sunday night at 20.00 (UK time). Since September they never missed not even one show, so it's very likely you will get to chat with them through the chatbox, while listening to some nice music. (the radio station is here: www.justincaseradio.com) As for the stars I will go with PlanetRodentia2. Thank you for reading
 For Bailey by SALANDER album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2014
3.96 | 6 ratings

BUY
For Bailey
Salander Crossover Prog

Review by PlanetRodentia2

4 stars I enjoyed Salander's Stendec album quite a bit, and I was glad to hear something new by them. This tribute piece commemorate's the life of a beloved dog, Bailey, and was commissioned by the grieving family. It begins with a woman calling, "Bailey! Bailey! Come on boy. Come here! Come here!" Bailey responds, and the music begins. The next seven minutes takes us on a cinematic journey of bittersweet remembrances of canine explorations, familial memories, and loss. While Dave Smith's keyboards initially focus on the fondly remembered romps through the countryside, Dave Curnow's emotive guitar reveals the grief this family is experiencing. The piece ends almost abruptly with a child's voice saying the dog's name, and we're reminded that, for this family, life will go on.

I've lost beloved pets, and I found the music completely in keeping with its purpose: to provide solace and to stimulate the release of grief. It's a nice piece.

If you aren't grieving, "For Bailey" warrants 3 stars for being largely a very melodic mood piece. If you are, then this will be of some comfort: 4 stars. I'm assigning 4 stars for this piece's target audience.

 STENDEC by SALANDER album cover Studio Album, 2014
3.81 | 27 ratings

BUY
STENDEC
Salander Crossover Prog

Review by PlanetRodentia

4 stars I like this! It deserves a review, so here goes:

I was inspired by the idea of two 50+-year-old guys writing three albums in about one year, so, after listening to samples on their website, I bought this album. Of all of the albums I'm listening to this month (e.g. Biosphere's "Cirque," IQ's "Subterranea," Anathema's "A Natural Disaster," Farpoint's "Paint the Dark," and SBB's eponymous album), Salander's Stendec is the one I keep coming back to. I highly recommend it.

Stylistically, the music is a nice cross of symphonic prog and pop music with an emphasis on melody and emotion. I especially like the emotive guitar work: crying, despairing, bubbling with hope, and occasional pouts of angst. The moody, sometimes ambient, sometimes grand and orchestral, keyboards are also very good. The drum programming works surprisingly well, although there are at least two moments where it seems dangerously out of sync with everything else - and this is especially cool in Zeitgeist, where I feel like my heart is skipping a beat in anticipation of disaster that never comes; it sure got my attention and gave the song added depth. The vocals are honest and sometimes raw with feeling. It all works, and I like it.

Tracks 1, 3, and 7 are love songs, of relationships gained and lost. "Ever After" is especially poignant to me, as mortality looms ever larger and the specter of loneliness becomes more tangible. At times, they remind me of songs by Everon.

Track 2 explores religious subjugation and liberation. It feels like an epic, and I enjoy many parts of it. It's not a favorite, though.

Track 4 is an instrumental, a nice little experiment.

Track 5 is a good track but doesn't stand out in my mind at the moment. Nevertheless, by the end of the track, I'm quite satisfied. The album initially feels like it should end here. However, the longest track follows.

Track 6 opens with a nice instrumental and then transitions into something reminiscent of The Proclaimers! The last two sections are instrumentals of very different moods and good ones. It's a quirky track, but I've grown to enjoy it.

Track 7 is a very good ending, picking up the threads of lost relationships and bringing us full circle.

For the work of two men who haven't been making albums for long, this is a remarkable and inspiring achievement. Its themes of growing old and being alone resonate with me quite a bit, and I'm tempted to call it a masterpiece. However, I'd prefer an actual drummer to the drum programming, and the songs could sometimes use a bit more lyrical depth or complexity; however, I'm afraid such upgrades could rob this music of its emotional honesty. Growing old isn't for the faint of heart, and it certainly makes you feel like you're getting rough around the edges - quite in keeping with this. I'm not totally sold on tracks 2, 5, and 6 yet, but they will grow on me, I'm sure. I conclude this deserves at least an excellent rating, maybe 4.3-4.6. I'll play it safe and give 4 stars. Excellent!

 Don't Worry I'm Not Going To Hurt You by SALANDER album cover Studio Album, 2014
2.59 | 10 ratings

BUY
Don't Worry I'm Not Going To Hurt You
Salander Crossover Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

2 stars It seems that the two middle-aged men from Durham were producing music like passionate teenagers throughout 2013.And that's because during the recordings of ''Crash course for dessert'' plenty of tracks were left out, not fitting with the concept.These leftovers were made available by the duo in April 2014.Needless to say this was anoter free downloadable bandcamp release by Salander.

This collection of tracks carrying the title ''Don't worry I'm not going to hurt you'' can be split in two particular styles.The one is close to the likes of Steve Hogarth-era MARILLION or COSMOGRAF, featuring synthetic soundscapes, downtempo electric textures and expressive voices, often delivered via slight distortions, definitely following a modern Neo Prog style, where accesible songwriting has found some space among the emotional guitar solos, the deep lyricism and the heavy, pounding grooves ala PORCUPINE TREE.The most obvious influence from the 70's appears to be PINK FLOYD, the combination of layered keyboards, melancholic atmospheres and sensitive, electric moves is the best proof for this.Not much of a personal music guide, but these pieces contain some pleasant moments.A few tracks though, and here comes the other side of Salander, follows a Pop Rock style, which I personally dislike.Tracks like ''Dropping rhe catch'' or ''Connections'', based on acoustic textures, irritating vocals and featuring some discreet rural climates are characterized by questionable songwriting and a rather pale, poppy sound with not much to offer to a Prog listener.On the other hand the guys seem to have established a semi-original musical background, when they propose their soft electric touches with some cool Electronic ambiences.

So, this review shoudn't be taken seriously, as this is a bunch of leftovers, which Salander brought to light for free.What should be taken seriously is the band's general style, which bursts some modern Neo Prog mixed with old FLOYD-ian echoes.A band to keep an eye on...2.5 stars.

Thanks to kev rowland for the artist addition.

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