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Alamaailman Vasarat - Valta CD (album) cover


Alamaailman Vasarat



3.93 | 62 ratings

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4 stars Everything a grown man needs + tuba

Saxophones, clarinets, tuba, trombone, brass, pump organ, grand piano, cello, theremin, drums and assorted percussion devices. Now with an instrumental line up like that, you'd probably expect Alamaailman Vasarat to sound like a full on chamber rock group with the obvious nods to Univers Zero and early Art Zoyd. That is not the case however. Not even slightly!

Zravkapt(Darryl) already did a brilliant job reviewing this thing, and if you find my ramblings too zorro- jellybean-blackbag-sweaters, then I urge you to click on the red cover art on your right and read his take on the album.

This album moves from genre to genre and from country to country. I get some wonderfully mad desperado dashes emanating from the reed sections - mimicking a furious bull-run from the ancient streets of Pamplona. Sometimes the Spanish Inquisition slows down and literally transforms before your ears - now infinitely more passionate and sensuous - taking on the shape of a delirious and sweaty tango. Then you have the folk elements of the group, although on this release, Valta simply meaning power, they are squeezed in way down in the back, only colouring certain phrasings within the songs with a jolly and carefree expression. More than anything, I am reminded of Samla Mammas Manna - and that is just about the biggest compliment coming from this Dane. I adore the jumpy, almost symphonic piano Lucky Luke dressings some of these tracks take on. That sounds rather preposterous, but if you've ever heard an album like Måltid - you'll probably know what I'm on about; marvellous stints of sound that grow proportionally in size with umph and grandeur - preferably on top of a circus themed rocker.

........aaaaaaaand we're nowhere near the end of influences and different layers of this album. A most prominent feature of Valta, is the early Police-Sting-white boy-reggae-ska flavour - the thing that makes your head bob and your feet stomp in odd metered rhythms - until you finally look completely bizarre walking like a real life Goofy in the same spot without getting anywhere. There's no guitar though, which makes all of this all the more confusing. The cellos and reeds go through some kind of alterations and wind up sounding like a robust circus version of The Wailers. Speaking of circus, some of these tracks take me directly into the round hay covered arena - with galloping horses in their finest outfits elegantly swooping round and around in endless neighing circles. It's the same sort of feel I get from the reeds - that almost burial cortege feel, albeit in a fun and uplifting manner.

Lastly we find a strong metal element - taking me back to my teen years with Metallica and Maiden. Big gritty hard hitting riffs launching the music into altogether new territories, where the funky ska beats suddenly get interchanged for a wild head-banging affair. Complimenting the already eclectic behaviour of the group, the music now feels more potent and raw - adding to the overall picture that ever so fleeting ingredient of dynamics.

This is not a difficult album to get into by any stretch of the imagination, and if you're new to the avant world, Valta could very well serve as your first taste of music that presumes the worst about it's listeners: that we're mad and strangely put together - without a chance in hell of spotting a melody, even if it came attached to the peacock flavoured lollipops of our daily breakfast. Get in there people - I promise you something completely different than what you think you're going to get...

Guldbamsen | 4/5 |


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