Kaipa- Vittjar Review

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Kaipa- Vittjar Review

Postby FKYES » Mon Aug 27, 2012 12:34 am

Kaipa- Vittjar

A review by Don Cassidy of Delicious Agony Progressive Rock Radio


Very few bands in progressive rock have had a history as interesting as Sweden’s Kaipa. In the 70’s, Kaipa earned a formidable reputation as a top flight Scandinavian progressive rock band combining progressive elements with Swedish folk influences. Like many modern progressive rock fans in other parts of the world, I discovered Kaipa due to the inclusion of a 17 year old Roine Stolt (The Flower Kings, Transatlantic, and Agents of Mercy) as the guitarist for several of the albums. Often an instrumental band, vocals were in their native language, which further appealed to their Scandinavian audience.

When founding keyboardist/vocalist Hans Lundin and Stolt announced in 2002 that a new version of Kaipa was being launched, the progressive rock community rejoiced. Despite the departure of Stolt after the Mindrevolutions album in 2005, Kaipa has continued to release quality modern progressive rock albums. The latest release, Vittjar, is no exception.

On the sixth “modern” Kaipa release, Lundin continues to push the band forward into adventurous musical directions. As the songwriter and producer for Kaipa, it is Lundin’s musical vision that drives Kaipa. Along with the musicians that Lundin has employed to create the Kaipa sound since 2002, Fredrik Lindquist and Elin Rubinsztein have returned to add recorder and whistles and violin to Vittar. Making their first appearance on the 2010 release, In The Wake of Evolution, it is their presence that provides the music with a Swedish folk influence that was not as prevalent in their earlier modern albums. Lundin continues to surround himself with the dynamic rhythm section of Jonas Reingold (The Flower Kings, Karmakanic, Agents of Mercy) and Morgan Agren (Mats/Morgan Band, Karmakanic). Per Nilson again tackles the guitar duties, formerly handled by Stolt, and his interplay with Lundin’s keyboards have become a core element of the band. Along with Lundin, Patrik Lundstrom (Ritual) and Alena Gibson have returned to add vocals.

As for the individual songs, the 22 minute ‘Our Silent Ballroom Band’, ranks up with any of the classic Kaipa epics. Other songs like the Swedish sung ‘Vittjar’ and the album opener ‘First Distraction” highlights the Scandinavian folk influence while ‘Lightblue and Green’ and ‘The Crowned Hillsides’ features the amazing talent of all the band members. As with all the Kaipa albums since 2002, the music was recorded in several different studios in Sweden. Despite this fact, Lundin is able to develop an organic feel that is rarely present with other bands that use modern technology in this fashion. Although some band members have never been in the same room together until this year, the music never feels that way.

Vittjar, the eleventh studio album since the beginning of the band, is a worthy addition to their impressive discography. The only disappointment for this long time Kaipa admirer is this music has never been played live by the band. Perhaps someday, the Kaipa fans will be rewarded with a live performance that will feature the works of Kaipa. There is no question that Vittar will be appearing on my best of list for 2012.
Don Cassidy
President, Interviewer, DJ, Artist Promo contact
Delicious Agony Progressive Rock Radio
www.deliciousagony.com
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FKYES
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