Kaipa - Vittjar

(CD 2012, 68:55, Inside Out Music 0IO00991)

The tracks:
  1- First Distraction(3:00)
  2- Lightblue And Green(11:59)
  3- Our Silent Ballroom Band(22:08)
  4- Vittjar(3:47)
  5- Treasure-House(7:32)
  6- A Universe Of Tinyness(7:22)
  7- The Crowned Hillsides(10:31)
  8- Second Distraction(2:20)

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These Swedish progressive rock pioneers are back again with a brand new album. For people who aren't familiar with this great prog band: Kaipa were founded in 1973 by multi-instrumentalist Hans Lundin. After their fifth studio album Nattdjurstid (1982) they took a very long break of twenty years until they recorded Notes From The Past (2002). In the meantime Roine Stolt had established the well-known band The Flower Kings around 1993, while Jonas Reingold - a member of Kaipa since 2002 - founded Karmakanic. Subsequently, the line-up has been complemented with well-known musicians from bands like Scar Symmetry (Per Nilsson, guitars), Mats & Morgan (Morgan Ågren, drums) and Ritual (Patrik Lundström, vocals). They are completed by Jonas Reingold (bass), Aleena Gibson (vocals) and of course Hans Lundin (keyboards, guitar). Special guests on Vittjar are Ritual member Fredrik Lindqvist (recorders, whistles) and Elin Rubinsztein (violin). So far, Kaipa recorded eleven studio albums.

Vittjar consists of eight tracks. The album opens with First Distraction starting with a flute and followed by a groovy change of drums and bass guitar evolving in a beautiful melody that lasts through the remainder of this piece . The second piece, the twelve-minute Lightblue And Green,  is a great song containing outstanding symphonic prog. Our Silent Ballroom Band is the epic piece of the album which starts beautifully with Aleena Gibson's voice. This piece includes all the elements of Kaipa's music, but the most essential folk elements in particular. All these elements are blended in a musical melting pot resulting in a modern symphonic progressive rock style. It's an excellent track featuring the ultimate musicianship.

The title track Vittjar, meaning 'emptying the net after fishing', is sung in the Swedish language and is strongly influenced by Swedish folk music. Treasure-House is a reggae flavoured track, while A Universe Of Tinyness is about how small we are and everything around us in relation to the vast universe. Kaipa's doing a good job here in reflecting that subject both musically and lyrically. Once again, Aleena Gibson's vocals stole my heart. Next is The Crowned Hillsides with its amazing and speedy bass lines accompanied by the keyboards, guitars and magnificent vocal lines! Second Distraction is the final track of the album which is a reprise of the opening track, but with the flute melody in a groovier mood.

I would like to recommend this album to people who like The Flower Kings, Karmakanic, IZZ and IQ.

**** Zafer Yüksel (edited by Peter Willemsen)

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