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Karmakanic - In A Perfect World CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.63 | 178 ratings

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3 stars Swedish symphonic delicacy!

The name of The Flower Kings will spring to our minds while listening to Karmakanic, it is obvious, because this is the project of gifted bass player Jonas Reingold, member of TFK. Karmakanic saw the light in the early 00s, and so far have released four studio albums. This one is entitled "In A Perfect World" and actually is about to be released in a few days, but fortunately and thanks to Freeman Promotions we could listen to it before.

While listening to the album, we will find evident Flower Kings reminiscences, but also the Yes influence is noticeable in several parts, mostly for the vocals and bass sound. So with that combination, as you can imagine here you will have a feast of pure symphonic progressive rock. Be prepared to this seven-track album and enjoy almost one hour of this first-class Swedish music.

It starts with "1969", which is an ambitious introduction, a long epic that reaches the fourteen minutes and serves as the explanation of the album line. Here I like a lot the rhythm, it is always constant, producing exquisite sounds and creating wonderful passages. The bass sound is pretty good and noticeable, I dare say is the first thing you actually listen here. Keyboards play a main role here, as background or with solos, they give a special flavor to the sound. I like the different moments of this epic, the bombastic ones, and the calmer ones, all together create a strong unit, a strong introduction.

"Turn it up" has a softer sound, nice melodic rhythms and a catchy chorus. Here I cannot help but thinking of both, Spock's Beard and once again, Yes. The music here is not that complex as the previous one, the sound tends to be friendlier and easier to dig. A good song, but by no means the best of the album.

"The World is Caving in" starts with 45 seconds of a capella, then piano joins and create a soft melody for two minutes. Then there is a change when drums and keyboards enter, so the music changes direction and becomes heavier for moments, though it always slows down and keep that gentle sound. After four minutes there is a very nice keyboard solo. And in the rest of the time the song repeats itself, making an interesting piece, but for some reason I am not that enthusiastic with this track in particular.

"Can't take it with you" is a very curious track, seems that the progressive rock element is forgotten due to that introductory piano and percussion sound that creates a kind of latin- american or bossa-nova sound, but it is a tricky one because later it becomes chaotic and with the rock element on it, more interesting. This shorter song may have been a risked experimentation, because I believe you either love it, or hate it. The normal voice is pretty good, but what I totally disliked were those vocals saying la la la, horrible.

"There's Nothing Wrong With the World" is one of the finest tracks of the album. The bass sound is lovely, always present as a main character, creating good lines and helping building up the structure. The keyboard work is also excellent, adding different atmospheres that at the same time create images and mind passages. The keyboard solo at half the song is short but great, and greater the way the song changes and introduces new elements.

"Bite the Grit" has a dreamy atmosphere and a peculiar sound at first, but later it changes to a tense and maybe dramatic sound that lasts only for some seconds. Then the song returns to its original proposal, and keep making some changes every once in a while. The guitar work is great here; too bad this is the shortest song, I believe it could have been more exploded.

Finally "When Fear Came to Town" completes the album. In this ten minutes you will have a different Karmakanic sound, not that symphonic one we are used to. It is complemented by some other unusual rhythms. Like in the beginning, we listen to a soft acoustic guitar accompanied by delicate vocals, giving the impression of being a ballad. At first I thought it would eventually explode, but I was wrong. The same soft rhythm is kept until four minutes where it makes a change. Vocals disappear and a dreamy sound prevails, sharing a melancholic feeling. The last two minutes have nice guitar and drums, and open the exit gates, I mean, you know the album is finishing.

Well, I did not find this album as extraordinary as I though. The opener track gave me high expectations, but in spite of the cool songs, in moments I felt it inconsistent, so it did not catch the attention, nor the love I would have liked to have for it. For that, my final grade will be 3 stars..

Enjoy it!

memowakeman | 3/5 |


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