Chicagojazzen is the musical project of Erik Karlsson which he started back in 2007 (?) when he was 15 years. Since that he has released 13 other releases. He lives super north in the country (Umeå), so there might be chances of some COLD STUFF. While it is supposed to be his solo project, this album was made with 13 other musicians, so I will be expecting some real experimental shit. Enough with the chit chat, let’s get some grub going.
One of the first thoughts that I got when I listened to this record was that the fact that this is a progg record. Not a progressive rock record, no no no. When I say Progg, then I mean progg. If you didn’t know, progg was a pretty big music genre back in the 70s here in Sweden. They played avant-folk with jazzy influences. Just listen to Samla Mammas Manna or this record for a clear demonstration of the progg sound.
Something that I really enjoyed in this record was that it felt like everyone knew just what they were doing. Think of it like Captain Beefheart’s Trout Mask Replica, where everyone played their own compositions for their assigned instrument. This record has (in some tracks) this sound too, where it might sound chaotic, but it’s not. To say it, a cooperation between the musicians.
I have to admit that I didn’t realize that there were supposed to be 13 musicians, since it wasn’t that clear in all the tracks. It is obvious that in a song like Tills Galaxerna Imploderar (one of the best songs in the record, that’s for sure). The instruments were really good and very technically played, one just knew that the musicians themselves are skilled at their instruments.
One thing that I appreciate, but didn’t quite like, was the fast changes of mood/atmosphere between songs. Let’s take for example the dreamy Semester which is followed by Jag Hatar Wave (och Dig), a song that begins all dark and cold. I am not saying that these tracks are bad, absolutely. I just felt kind of discontent with so fast changes.
Despise that fault, it was a nice progg album, but nothing extremely special. Don’t get me wrong, it is an amazing record with a lot of work put behind (it took two years to record), but it hasn’t clicked 100% for me. But I wouldn’t ask for someone to change record if they just popped this in, to put it like that.
Maiden på Mallorca – great opener to a great record
Semester – (dreamy and easy listening)
Någon har frusit ihjäl en P-flicka utanför Ånäset – reminded me of Zappa for some reason
Kvarg boogie – Outtake from African Screaming Contest????!!!!
Tills Galaxerna Imploderar – strong closer, very epic
TOTAL SCORE: 7,5
LISTEN TO IT HERE!!