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20 Jul 2016

San Michael’s “Nattåg” recorded 1972 first release 2009 second album Swedish Heavy Prog




San Michael’s “Nattåg” recorded 1972 first release 2009 second album Swedish Heavy Prog

full album

http://www.dailymotion.com/playlist/x4lxys_John_Dug_s..

Pre-Kaipa Swedish Psych/Progsters from Uppsala, featuring keyboardist Hans Lundin S:t Michael Sect.They released three singles of covers and original music between 1964-70, before dropping their unusual name for the much simpler San Michael’s.Lundin was surrounded at the time by Thomas Eriksson (bass, flute, vocals), Gunnar Westbergh (drums, percussion) and Nane Kvillsäter (bass), releasing their eponymous debut on the California label in 1971.Not much of prog interest, but the recordings of a second album the following year -which was never released- showed shades of a proggier attitude.The tapes were collected by Transubstans Records and released as “Nattåg” in 2009.The tracks remain song-based with some poppy influences and a certain Psych Pop flavor, but the overall approach shows a band in progress, the instrumental parts are much more dense, Lundin’s Classical training comes often in evidence through the omnipresent organ waves and the guitar work sometimes sounds very quirky.Lots of changing tempos and sweet melodic themes combine with well-worked polyphonic arrangements for a certain Art Rock keystone.The music is as memorable as hell, it only lacks the full transformation into a Prog band.San Michael’s history came to an end in 1973, when Westbergh left the band.The three remaining members continued to work together as Ur Kaipa, before dropping it for the legendary Kaipa name, giving birth to one of finest Swedish Prog groups of the 70’s………..

Too bad this wasn’t released in 1972 when it was recorded, as it might have led to similar efforts from other Swedish bands. They remind me a lot of early Yes, and to a lesser extent Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Except they sing in Swedish…..

Honestly I wasn’t too impressed with the sole LP from San Michael’s. But this archival recording of their second album from 1972 shows considerable improvement. Here the arrangements are more sophisticated, the instruments (especially the Hammond organ, electric guitar, bass, flute, and horn section) are allowed more latitude, and the album is definitely geared towards the burgeoning progressive rock movement, rather than the bubblegum orientation of their California label album. Of course, it should come as no surprise to us, since San Michael’s is the root system for none other than Kaipa - who themselves later spawned The Flower Kings (which begat Kaipa’s own reunion, and is still active as I write this in 2012). And while San Michael’s clearly hadn’t shed its pop orientation, most of these short tracks are still quite complex in their own right.

The reason the album wasn’t released in its day was due to the bankruptcy of the California label, and the unwillingness of any other label (major or minor) to sign them. They were about 2 years ahead of their time for Swedish audiences, but no doubt a band as majestic as Trettioariga Kriget would have lent an ear to this group while touring throughout the land……..

The story of San Michaels started way back in the summer of 1964 when a schoolmate, who played drums in a pop group, asked Hans Lundin if he was interested in playing organ and singing in his band. This band, The Shakemen, was the beginning of Hans musical career. After a few months the name was changed to S:t Michael Sect. Like most bands of the time they played mostly covers. The band was successful, rated in Oslo as the best Nordic pop group of 1965. The band recorded three singles, of covers and original compositions penned by guitar player Thomas Frisk. Over the years they changed members and styles. In 1968 Tomas Eriksson became the bands bassist.

In 1970 the name was shortened to San Michaels. At this time they had started to write songs with Swedish lyrics. Later this year two of the members left the band and the remaining musicians continued playing as a trio forming their own style built around Hammond organ, bass and drums. They continued to write new songs in Swedish but they also played covers in their own characteristic arrangements in combination with longer jam-sessions.

In 1971 the band recorded an eponymous LP with original material only.

During the summer of 1971 the band toured with Emile Ford. For this tour they needed a temporary guitar player and they asked Nane Kvillsäter to join them. During the spring of 1972 Nane was invited to be a permanent member of the band.

A second album was recorded in 1972, but never released. These two albums were recorded at ULAB Studio in Uppsala with just two two-track tape recorders and it was their first meeting with sound engineer Leif Mases. The band continued touring in Sweden and Norway but in January 1973 the group was finally split. One reason was that Gunnar Westbergh was invited to play with Swedish organ player Merit Hemmingsson. Hans continued to work with Tomas Eriksson and Nane Kvillsäter backing “Harpo” on his first tour with the band Harpos Helicopter. Later this year Hans and Tomas formed the band URA-KAIPA. At this time a record company wanted to release two songs from the second San Michaels album as a single and they decided to use the new name URA-KAIPA. The single För sent / Bay-e bay-o was relesed in 1974. Later the same year the bands name was shortened to KAIPA……

Hans Lundin: Hammond organ, Hohner Clavinett,piano, accordion, toy organ, percussion & vocal
Thomas Eriksson: Electric bass, kazoo, percussion & vocal
Nane Kvillsäter: Electric and acoustic guitars, percussion & vocal
Gunnar Westbergh: Drums, percussion & vocal


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San Michael’s “San Michael’s” 1971 Sweden Prog Rock first album



johnkatsmc5, welcome music..

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