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Renaissance of Fools biography
The story of this Swedish began when guitar player Daniel MAGDIC (PAIN OF SALVATION) met drummer Magnus KARLSSON (LEECH/MADINA). They were joined by bass player Björn TAUMAN (CHAINWRECK) and Mathias HENRYSSON. They formed the band CUDFISH. But when Björn went to study music in Los Angeles, the band was done. When we came back Renaissance of Fools was born. The band found the singer Kjell BERGENDAHL. In 2011, they released their first album "Hope,Fear and Frustration" with guest musician Per WIBERG of OPETH. For the second album "Spring" (2015), the band made some changes with singer David ENGSTRÖM (SILENT NATION) and Linus CAARLSSON. This album also contains some guest appearance by Kristofer GILDENlÖW (PAIN OF SALVATION). The music is complex Heavy Prog with various guitar tones, various textures and various influences from PAIN OF SALVATION, to KING X and ALICE AND CHAINS.

Bio by rdtprog

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3.00 | 3 ratings
Hpe, Fear and Frustration
3.08 | 6 ratings

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Showing last 10 reviews only
 Hpe, Fear and Frustration by RENAISSANCE OF FOOLS album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.00 | 3 ratings

Hpe, Fear and Frustration
Renaissance of Fools Heavy Prog

Review by memowakeman
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Review originally posted at

Renaissance of Fools is the result of four talented Swedish musicians who gathered together to start a new project, with some progressive rock hints but with a clear metal tendency. One of those musicians is Daniel Magdic, known for his previous work with Pain of Salvation.

The name of their first son is "Fear, Hope and Frustration" released through Metalville. This is an album that comprises ten compositions that make a total time of 52 minutes approximately.

The album opens with "Precious Life" whose first seconds show that the guitar will be a crucial element on their music. The vocals are good, honestly not my favorite but surely tasty for a lot of people. I like the scales and the repetitive sound which is combined with some changes and little softer passages. "Misguided Mind" starts much calmer, with simple bass notes and a soft voice, but after forty seconds it changes and adds a heavier sound, which will last again for some seconds until it slows down again. And the song goes like that.

"Ordinary Mans Diary" is longer and complex, with substantial inner changes, interesting communion between drums and strings, and a great rhythm overall. The song claims to be listened and enjoyed, and I believe it completely succeeded at least with me. This is one of the highlights of the album. "Polarized Round" is a two- nail weapon, because it is not a song I actually love, but when I was listening to the album with my friends, one of them made me repeat it, because he did love it. So once again it is all matter of subjectivity; the song itself is nice, well composed and elaborated.

"Leave it all Behind" has an introductory minute before it explodes and turns into an emotional and sorrowful song. It is a well-crafted composition, with some changes that allow the listener to understand better its meaning. "Claws of Norms" has a faster, more dynamic and attractive sound at least for the first seconds, but it vanishes and slows down, in order to create a new structure. Here I like the backing vocals, the guitars and those different passages and changes in rhythm and mood.

"Sleep" is another cool track, with a hard rock feeling and a structure easy to listen and enjoy, the guitars as usual are great, and the vocals suggest you to join and sing. "The Child That Used To Play" is a fabulous song with a pretty intense and emotive sound. Its power and the compositional elements formed a song that I really enjoyed. There is also a cool guitar riff, great vocal work and overall an intelligent and interesting track.

After that strong song, the band makes a contrast and slows down with "The Chains of Thought" which is more like an alternative rock track, with a catchy sound and a chorus to sing; not a bad song at all, and though its cool guitar solo at the end, this is not a track I would proudly remember. The album finishes with its longest track, which is actually one song divided in two parts. "Intervention Parts I&II" has a darker and tense feeling since the very first second; the bass sound creates that nervousness and the other instruments, along with the voice complement and makes an interesting beginning. It continues with a hard and constant sound that catches your attention and gets your time until minute five when it fades out. Then, the second part begins with a wonderful repetitive (better said addictive) rhythm, and an extraordinary synth sound. The guitar work is also excellent during this track. This second part is purely instrumental, and the closest one to progressive rock.

It is a cool debut from Renaissance of Fools, with some highs and lows, but with a promising sound that surely will stay for a long time in people´s preference.

Enjoy it!

 Spring by RENAISSANCE OF FOOLS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.08 | 6 ratings

Renaissance of Fools Heavy Prog

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Being no Heavy/Metal listener it feels a bit funny to be the first reviewer for this Swedish Heavy Prog band. I received the CD to review it in a prog magazine. Even though it's not exactly within my comfort zone, I find it sort of resonates with my [darker] emotions. I really should avoid being prejudiced by a Heavy tag, and albums like this one can help me in that goal. "This album is dedicated to those who stand up against oppression - whether it's against terrorizing states or harrasment at work or in school. You are all heroes!" These words help me to understand the depressive overtones and the essence of the album altogether. I think appreciating this album is a logical next step to the fact that I enjoy PORCUPINE TREE - which has offered similar moods but in a more ambient and Floydian musical style.

Okay, let's face it: this isn't very heavy, in fact the PT association is quite accurate for the music style too. Probably this band is notably less Heavy or Metallic, or *aggressive*, than the bands (unfamiliar to me) in which the members have formerly played - PAIN OF SALVATION etc., see the band info here. Mastered by Ty Tabor - another artist name of Prog Metal, right? I think to me the real red flag about Heavy/Metal music is the in-your-face aggressiveness, and that feature is not present here. Also the use of vocals is a crucial question. I can't stand growls and such, and both David Engström (vocals) and Daniel Magdic (guitars and vocals) are decent singers that would be as credible within more regular rock/pop music too. The vocal harmonies are good, and the appearance of the acoustic guitar here and there.

The 49-minute album consists of three individual tracks and five (technically separate) parts to the title suite. Of the three, 'Scars' has the heaviest guitars while the other two have slighter Heavy elements in their vocal harmony -seasoned Modern Prog sound which is familiar from many, mainly American and Swedish bands of today's prog scene.

Spring part i., 'Prelude' (1:28), is a semi-melancholic and acoustic instrumental, followed by heavy sounding 'On Your Knees' that includes also some brief atmospheric moments and cool keyboard decorations. Part iii. 'State of Oppression' (8:16) mixes the Heavy and Prog elements skillfully. Not the most original music under the Prog sun, but at least "the Scared children choir" sounds like a less heard ingredient. The two last parts are also longish (7-8 minutes) and include several moods. The closing part 'A New Dawn' is my favourite track, full of more positive emotion and some YES-like symphonic, uplifting spirit.

Worth recommending to listeners of modern prog with Heavy elements and vocal harmonies, even though there are dozens of more or less similar bands around, and often with more Symphonic hooks. 3½ stars.

Thanks to rdtprog for the artist addition.

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