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Kebnekajse - Kebnekaise III CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

3.87 | 49 ratings

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4 stars This album is a definite improvement of everything else that so far has been conceived by Kebnekajse! It's clear that the band had evolved enormously since their self-titled sophomore album and the direction of the music feels much clearer than previously.

The music on Kebnekaise III is much less guitar driven and instead the melodies are greatly complemented by the use of harmonica, violin, mandolin and congas that are a lot more prominent in the mix. The sound production and mixing have been greatly improved by 1975 which means that the sound is much clearer, meaning that every instrumental contribution now actually adds to the music instead of just polluting the recording with even more muddy sound. Still it's the composition quality that has improved the most this time around. The first three numbers titled Leksands Brudmarsch, Polska Från Härjedalen and Eklundapolskan feel like an interconnected concept piece where each of the following tracks picks up on the themes from the previous one. This is also where Kebnekajse shows the most development in their craft of fusing great folk melodies with rock music arrangements.

Skänklåt Till Spelman is a pretty traditional sounding performance that I would have probably enjoyed even more without the vocals that make it sound dated in comparison to the rest of the music on the album. While the 13 minute Balladen Om Björnbär Och Nätmelon is one of the band's completely original compositions that has become a huge fan favorite over the years. The track starts off with a long buildup that halfway through the performances transforms into a upbeat section most notable for Kenny Håkansson's guitar work and the congas drum sound from Bah Hassan. The performance is then followed up by unexpected Spanish-flavored Mariamá that serves as a completely unexpected, but highly welcomed, surprise conclusion to the album.

Kebnekaise III is easily my favorite album of this classic Swedish band that have recently reunited for a few live performances around the country that have even resulted in a new studio album. As for this 1975 release I highly recommend it to fans of traditional folk music with rock arrangements. For everyone else this is definitely an excellent addition to the prog rock music collection.

***** star songs: Leksands Brudmarsch (4:29) Polska Från Härjedalen (3:09)

**** star songs: Eklundapolskan (4:19) S:t John (3:51) Skänklåt Till Spelman (3:07) Polska Från Bingsjö (3:19) Balladen Om Björnbär Och Nätmelon (13:01) Mariamá (3:14)

Rune2000 | 4/5 |


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