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6 May 2017

The Amazing "Wait for A Light to Come" 2010 Sweden Neo Folk,Neo Psych




The Amazing  "Wait for A Light to Come" 2010  Sweden Neo Folk,Neo Psych

Limited edition 1000 copies. Lp with printed inner bag. Brand new recordings of Swedish Folk-Rock-Psych-Pop perfection. The Amazing fell far from the tree. A natural process: coming together through affection, then slowly crystallising into a folk-rock-psych-pop- collective slowly pushing, bending then playing with any preconceived notions of pop. Friends first and foremost, its this kindred spirit that imbues the bands debut with a feeling unlike that of most releases - one of natural harmony, persistent progression and with a panoramic gaze fixed on distant settings. Their 2009 debut album has received unanimous critical acclaim worldwide. This is their follow up a new mini-album with an all-encompassing sonic soundscape of groovy electric folk rock, psychedelic pop and heavy jams. The core musicians in The Amazing are Christoffer Gunrup, Reine Fiske, who doubles as the lead guitar wizard in Dungen and whos solos so furiously its as if somethings trapped inside him that must be turned into melody or hell burst into flames, Johan Holmegard (who doubles as the drummer in Dungen too) and Fredrik Swahn. With special guests including some of Swedens finest musicians; Gustav Ejstes (Dungen) and Moussa Fadera (Life on Earth!) amongst others, nothing on Wait for a light to come is introverted or overworked - everything is balanced, kept together by natural melodies, soulful vocals and just how perfect should be. The Amazing is a feeling, an organic consequence of something that effortlessly came together, the start of a quite extraordinary tale."...............

This is the second album from Sweden's The Amazing on Subliminal Sounds. Wait For A Light To Come features brand-new recordings of Swedish folk-rock-psych-pop perfection. Their 2009 debut album received unanimous critical acclaim worldwide. This follow-up is an all-encompassing sonic soundscape of groovy electric folk-rock, psychedelic pop and heavy jams. The core musicians in The Amazing are Christoffer Gunrup, Reine Fiske (who doubles as the lead guitar wizard in Dungen and who solos so furiously, it's as if something's trapped inside him that must be turned into melody or he'll burst into flames), Johan Holmegard (who doubles as the drummer in Dungen, too) and Fredrik Swahn. The intimacy permeating through this group intensifies itself steadily in the music they produce; swimming idly through the twisted melodies, yet luminously anchored by Reine's astral guitar. Elsewhere they forgo the interstellar for a more bucolic revelry, built upon acoustic laments and a male and female vocal ripple that could only have spread itself outwards from Sweden's forlorn beauty. With special guests including some of Sweden's finest musicians; Gustav Ejstes (Dungen) and Moussa Fadera (Life On Earth!) amongst others, nothing on Wait For A Light To Come is introverted or overworked -- everything is balanced, kept together by natural melodies and soulful vocals. The Amazing is a feeling, an organic consequence of something that effortlessly came together............

Starting with the airily sung and briskly performed acoustic/electric guitar plus flute rock arrangement of "Evil," Wait for a Light to Come finds the Amazing whipping together six songs for a quick but enjoyable dip into their take on 21st century indie/folk grooves. If the Swedish group's music isn't deathless, it's never less than attractively pleasant, sometimes finding something that brings in the lush overflow of shoegaze, as on "Head Beaches," without completely sounding like yet another Ride or Cocteau Twins knockoff. A song like "And It Looks Like Today" or the title track clearly sounds beamed in from a mid- to late-'60s West Coast session of folk dreaminess. In slight contrast, "Islands" allows a little polite R&B groove to slide under the warm glow of the music while keyboards and piano echo off into the distance, while "Defect" brings in some fuzz guitar for further period coloring -- as well as showing how to do grouped harmony vocals that don't sound like the Beach Boys, perhaps a rare thing these days....by Ned Raggett............

There is something ultimately disappointing about this album. The Amazing tout themselves as “Swedish folk-rock-psych-pop”, which is certainly descriptive. However, when you look at an album by a band thus described and see six tracks listed, you have certain expectations. You might think that these songs will be long explorations replete with multiple solos and strange sounds, for example, since there are only a handful of tracks. This is not an entirely unjusitifed expectation, either, if you came to this record looking for anything like the Amazing’s self-titled debut, where most of the songs stretch past the five-minute mark. But the six tracks on Wait for a Light to Come clock in collectively at less than 27 minutes. Barely one side of a record. If this was sold as a long EP or a 10” record, it might not be so deceiving.

Of course, this says nothing about the music. Getting past the stinginess of the songs on this album, one might offer the explanation that what the Amazing deliver on their second LP is a tightened-up or reined-in take on folk-rock-psych-pop, whatever that is. There is something to be said for a so-called jam band that doesn’t bore you to death with repetitive chord structures and lame solos that only sound good to the musicians sitting stoned in the room playing. Only two of the songs on the album, “Islands” and “Defect”, really let loose, and they do so in a good way. The other four are more structured, providing the pop part of the folk-rock-etc. hyphenation. In my opinion, though, this cutting back takes out some of the prime meat with the fat.

The inteteresting thing the Amazing did on their first album was mix ‘70s-inspired folk-rock with elements of shoegazing—especially in the texture of the vocals. On the fourth track of the new album, “Head Beach”, the Amazing pull this off nicely. An expansive guitar riff buffered by dreamy back-up harmonies provides a nice set of layers for the Christoffer Gunrup’s lead vocals to get lost in. The Amazing are at their best when the vocals meld into the instrumentation. Even on the first album, though, they strayed from this successful mixture into derivative folk territory. When they get too folky, Gunrup starts sounding like Nick Drake crossed with Dave Matthews, which doesn’t quite cut it. Although on the second track, “And it Looks Like Today”, they beat this problem with an “authentic”-sounding folk song that nicely combines male and female vocals in the Fairport Convention manner.

The Amazing have a good pedigree—including two members from Dungen’s live band, guitarist Reine Fiske and drummer Johan Holmegard (who is also part of another Dungen spin-off, Life on Earth!). These good friends show up on the record, like Dungen brainchild Gustav Ejstes, who mans the piano. The rippling piano leads the bongo vamp of “Islands”, a song that sounds like Nick Drake singing over “Black Magic Woman”. The most psychedelic they get, on “Defect”, where Reine Fiske lives up to his guitar-whiz moniker, also proves to be where the Amazing are the most exciting. This song has a good stuttering Neil Young-type riff paired with the patent dreamy vocal melodies. But this song is also highly reminiscent of Dungen—and it doesn’t rock quite as hard as their more famous brother band might do.

This could be good: the Amazing are the softer side of Dungen. However, as both of their albums begin with nice drum fills and guitars come in and out of the melodies with ‘60s psych leads, one can’t help but yearn for the harder side of things. Basically, the Amazing haven’t yet decided to stick with what they do best. It’s a good thing to mix up the heavy and the soft, rock and folk, but they need to maintain their own unique spin on things to make it worthwhile. And they do this, just not enough. Or perhaps not long enough. It’s no good just to be retro without adding something to the mix, even though bands often get sidetracked by how close they come to reproducing the old sounds they love. The last song, the title track “Wait For a Light to Come”, is a short acoustic guitar-based piece that merely repeats the title with reverb-drenched vocals. The repetitive, washed-out aspect is where the Amazing belong, in the region of psych vamping and drowning vocals. But this short song would work better if it was an idea that repeats sounds to sum up a more majestic album. What it really does is stop short............

Tracklist
1 Evil 3:23
2 And It Looks Like Today 3:10
3 Islands 6:10
4 Head Beaches 4:33
5 Defect 6:36
6 Wait For A Light To Come 2:38


johnkatsmc5, welcome music..