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SALVA

Crossover Prog • Sweden


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Salva picture
Salva biography
The long lasting friendship of Stefan and Per goes back to the early 80's when they were about seven or eight years old. Their meeting, however, had nothing to do with music. They were both on the same handball-team and has been friends ever since. Growing up they found that they shared a burning passion for music and formed their first band in their teens. The emphasis on the music was hard rock and heavy metal and the band played some live shows at school happenings and such.

In "gymnasiet" (the Swedish equivalent to high school) Per met keyboard player Johan through mutual friends. They gelled instantly and Per persuaded Johan to join the band as well. In their late teens they felt it was time to make some money off the music so they started playing cover-songs on the live circuit of south-western Sweden (pubs, clubs, parties etc.) with great success. To this day they are still performing in this manner (under the "Stämband"-moniker) and have been doing so for the last 12 years.

The SALVA-project has been the brain-child of Per for many years but it hasn't had the chance to fully blossom until now. He finds it very fulfilling to finally be able to write and record the kind of music that is dearest to his heart. As always, it's very hard to put labels on music, especially when it's your own, but the closest would probably be to describe SALVA'S music as symphonic hard rock with occasional folk tendencies.

From the SALVA website: http://www.salvaband.com/

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Buy SALVA Music


Sigh Of BoreasSigh Of Boreas
White Knight Records
$19.99
$28.72 (used)
ThirstThirst
Ais 2011
$18.98
$4.98 (used)
Thirst by Salva (2011-10-04)Thirst by Salva (2011-10-04)
JFK
$47.26
Left To BurnLeft To Burn
Perand KB Records
$19.99
Salva Carrasquito by SalvaSalva Carrasquito by Salva
PID
$20.47
YelloboneYellobone
Friends of Friends 2011
$15.23
$19.26 (used)
A Handful Of EarthA Handful Of Earth
Perand Records
$23.39
Complex HousingComplex Housing
P-Vine Japan/Zoom 2011
$24.67
$4.63 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
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1h 27m
SALVA MEA' 97 - FAITHLESS (MAXI SINGLE) Ref 0290 USD $20.07 Buy It Now 12h 46m
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SALVA discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

SALVA top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.47 | 35 ratings
A Handful of Earth
2004
3.85 | 49 ratings
Left To Burn
2007
3.89 | 103 ratings
Thirst
2011
3.89 | 18 ratings
Sigh of Borea
2016

SALVA Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

SALVA Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

SALVA Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

SALVA Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

SALVA Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Sigh of Borea by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2016
3.89 | 18 ratings

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Sigh of Borea
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Prog Team

4 stars This 2016 album was the fourth studio release from the Swedish band, who are based around multi-instrumentalist and singer Per Malmberg. It had taken five years since their previous release, and is actually the first time I have come across them even though they released their debut back in 2004. I have seen some reviews where they complain about the vocal style, but I found it quite refreshing and different to the normal gentle style beloved by many. Musically this is all over the place, from the bombastic and over the top prog metal to folk and everything in between. It doesn't sound as if it is a recent album, but is far more reminiscent of the vibrant neo prog scene from the Nineties. They have used IQ as a reference point as much as they have Yes, particularly in the keyboard runs, and I soon found that I was smiling while listening to it.

Any band that starts with a fifteen minute long song is always going to get my attention, especially if it takes a long time for the vocals to start, and I thoroughly enjoyed the melting pot of styles that is going on here. It really is all over the place, yet it somehow it always makes sense. For example, the dual picked acoustic guitars combined with over the top staccato keyboard chords make total sense in the title song, as it does when it segues from that straight into a more reflective and gentle section. The flute is a wonderfully delicate touch, and I admire the restraint in some of these songs as there is the distinct threat of them turning it up and blasting through, yet they are always in control and when they do strike the riffs it is always in the perfect place. Stefan Gavik is a fine guitarist, and to hear him let rip over the top of delicate piano is quite something. I can see I'm going to have to seek out more of their material.

 Left To Burn by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.85 | 49 ratings

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Left To Burn
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Salva is a band from Sweden with 3 albums in theor pocket since now, Left to burn is the second offer from 2007. Well, I had hard times listning to this release in one spin, I don't know why but something is missing in overall sound. Is a decent album, with some nice instrumental passages, specially some good keyboards, but I don't like the voice at all, is to in front like the drums, and is not pleasent to my ears. The music is a combination of heavy prog passages with some folk touches here and there, not really bad but is not a convinceing offer to me. The best tune is A dying rose , nearly 11 min where the arrangements are more then ok, the rest of the pieces are decent but fail to impress me big time. I don't get it how some listners considered this to be a masterpice. 3 stars, ok but nothing more.
 Thirst by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.89 | 103 ratings

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Thirst
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by mgarrett

5 stars Swedish band Salva are back with their third release and follow up to 2007's "Left to burn". It has, in my humble opinion, been well worth the wait (even if one could wish for a shorter waiting period in between albums in the future).

Salva's music is a rich, adventurous hybrid of symphonic prog, heavy metal, folk and even pop- rock in the Beatles-tradition. This album sees the band taking another big step in their musical development and it is nice to hear that "Thirst" incorporates even more heavy influences than on previous releases. Some of the riffs are really killer.

The album kicks off with one of the album's heaviest riffs in "Exclamation Point". Nice interplay between riffing guitars and mellotron in odd time signatures. Intense and powerful vocals takes over in the verse with heavy staccato playing from the band. Salva's strong harmony vocals are introduced in the b-part/chorus, recalling the vocal-work of old greats such as The Eagles and The Beach Boys but set to a heavy, pushing pulse of intense playing. The song slows down after a couple of minutes in an atmospheric breather with arpeggio guitars and a soaring Moog-lead before taking off again with a melodic guitar lead set to arpeggiated synthesizers which kind of reminds me of Muse. More heavy riffing, a blistering guitar solo and some great vocal passages leads back to the main theme which closes the track. A great album opener!

The second track, "Primoris Iugum" displays the folky side of Salva with superb accordion and mandoline-led themes that takes the listener in to a sparse verse with passionate vocals, acoustic guitar, upright bass and accordion. A heavy riff leads in to a richer part with guitars, hammond organ and harmony vocals. The song then settles down again to an atmospheric background with lovely counterpoint harmony vocals that reminds me a little bit of Gentle Giant. A downright folk passage with accordion, mandoline and tin whistle leads to a quick reprise of the heavy riff before settling in a mysterious almost arabic-sounding guitar theme set to atmospheric synths and interesting rhythm work from bass and drums. This leads in to a coda with acoustic guitars, warm hammond organ and more superb vocal harmonies in a counterpoint fashion. This section recalls Pink Floyd circa Dark Side-era. The track closes with a reprise of the folk theme. Lovely, rich, folky track that is also available as a music video on YouTube.

"Adjustment for all" (Funny paraphrasing on "And justice for all") is, with its 12 minutes, the closest Salva comes to a prog epic on the album. The instrumental themes that fills up the first five minutes range from rich moog-themes to almost funky guitar riffing until it slows down in a presentation of the main theme with mellotron-flutes a'la "Strawberry fields forever" and acoustic guitar. The song goes in to a sparse ballad with nice piano work before erupting in a beautiful, melancholy guitar solo. The song shifts to more force again before halting in an eerie moog-solo over a jazzy setting of rhodes piano, bass and brushed drums. The song then moves over the main themes in order to conlude in a heavy retro-prog theme over-flowing with powerful guitars and mellotrons. This track is superbly adventurous and rich and is one of my personal favourites.

Next we have "Can of worms". It starts with a chilling mellotron-cello which is quickly interupted by a heavy guitar riff. This brings more modern metal bands to mind. The lead vocals on this song are handed over by main singer Per Malmberg to guitarist Stefan Gavik who does a really good job as well. This track is a bit more straight forward with pumping guitar riffs and nice harmony vocals throughout. The chorus introduces some lovely high pitched vocals and the band even introduces some dissonant sounds which further broadens their sonical pallette. After an atmospheric interlude of evocative synthesizers, a blistering guitar solo over a fast paced riff increases the intensity for the closing chorus and ending riff. Really cool song in a heavy metal-vein.

The fifth song, "Frost", is introduced by the bass of Fredrik Lindqvist resting on a bed of atmospheric synthesizers and an ominous grand piano. This song sounds really symphonic with heavy riffing guitars and lush classical strings recalling the sound of gothic metalbands such as Nightwish and Therion. The verse takes the intensity down a notch as a bridge to the softer, almost romantic b-part. After a second verse the riffing takes over again and leads the song in to an amazing synthsolo that continues over several different parts. The song then concludes, first in a beautiful coda with some highly emotional vocals by Per Malmberg set to arpeggiated guitars and atmospheric synthesizers and then in a peculiar melodic ending theme with rhodes piano, guitars and flute. Great song!

"Losing battle" is something we've never heard from Salva before. It's a piano ballad with what seems to be a string quartet. Wonderful vocals from Malmberg with equally wonderful piano playing from Johan Lindqvist. This is the shortest track on the album clocking in at only 3:30 and works perfectly as a beautiful, romantic interlude between the longer, more proggy tracks.

The album closes with the 10-minute track "One week" which starts with an arpeggiated electric guitar theme that builds with the rest of the band joining in as the theme progresses. The music continues with a rhythmic passage with a lovely moog lead until reaching the main guitar riff theme. The song suddenly breaks down in to an atmospheric soundscape that brings electronica and ambient music to mind which leads in to the first verse. Drums and bass join in a slow paced chorus that introduces Salva's trademark harmony vocals. After this the track picks up speed with a funky, almost bluesy feel with great riffing and Hammond organ filled with attitude. The song takes another turn when the tempo halts and goes in to a tight rhythmic theme with drums, bass and moog bass. Over this the soaring lead guitar of Stefan Gavik conjure up the ghosts of Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton. Great guitar solo! Via several different themes and passages the song concludes with the main guitar/hammond theme and ends with the lonely tones of a musical box which closes the album (which seems to be a Salva tradition).

This album is simply amazing and Salva's greatest achievement yet. Can't wait for the next album. My warmest recommendations.

 Left To Burn by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.85 | 49 ratings

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Left To Burn
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars This is SALVA's second album from 2007.These guys are from Sweden and this is a concept album that deals with rage, frustrations and fears. Some heavy lyrics here actually.Weird cover art. I'm not really a fan of the vocals and they sound like they're double tracked a lot.

"No Greater Wrath" opens with atmosphere as faint spoken words can be heard. It kicks in around a minute.The drums sound too upfront here. Catchy song though as the vocals come in before 2 minutes. Nice guitar solo after 6 minutes and we get accordion and mandolin late. "Ord Ver.2" is more laid back with a beat and vocals. Swedish vocals on this track only. A synth solo after 2 minutes when the vocals stop followed by a guitar solo then the vocals return. "Dying Rose" opens with accordion and a sample of children playing.The music kicks in quickly and vocals arrive before a minute. Heavy guitar and piano come and go. A change before 7 1/2 minutes as atmosphere and faint vocals can be heard then it kicks back in with aggression.

"Clara Leaving" is a catchy tune with vocals. A pretty good song actually. "Aska" is an instrumental that opens with strummed guitar as sampled mellotron comes in. Piano and bass join in as well. It turns heavy then the mellotron returns after 5 minutes.The guitar starts to solo then it settles down a minute later.Good song. A top three. "Stained" is my favourite. It opens with the word "Unforgivable" then a nice heavy sound eventually kicks in.This is good. Mellotron 7 1/2 minutes in then it calms down with spoken vocals. Some ripping guitar 4 1/2 minutes in. "Underneath" is the other top three. It settles down quickly with flute-like and a beat. Reserved vocals join in. It's fuller after 2 1/2 minutes when the vocals stop. Vocals are back as it settles and these contrasts continue. Accordion later.

The last three songs really save this from being 2 stars in my opinion. Just not a fan at all of the first half of this album.

 A Handful of Earth  by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.47 | 35 ratings

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A Handful of Earth
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

2 stars If this is not an art rock band,then which is?SALVA come from Sweden and were formed by three friends in 2003.At the end of 04' their hard work finally was ended up in their debut ''A handful of earth''.

If you expect full-blown complex progressive rock from SALVA,look somewhere else.SALVA insist on playing a rather groovy-styled short-track-oriented rock form with accesible musicianship and lots of rhythmic parts.Were is the progressive rock style then?Firstly it's the heavy use of analog keyboards and the quite limited digital ones.Secondly their guitar melodies have an intense Scandinavian feeling and they also use instruments like cellos,flutes and harmonica in some parts .Then comes the mass of distorted vocal lines,while actually hints of legends like KING CRIMSON are obvious in the guitar work.Do this elements make them a prog rock band?....I really do not know...The thing I do know is that the album gets somewhat boring along the way,all melodies and grooves sound soooo similar,that is quite annoying at some point...Accesible rock in progressive forms?Progressive rock in accesible forms?The future of prog sound?...I would prefer another direction for progressive rock music...

 A Handful of Earth  by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.47 | 35 ratings

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A Handful of Earth
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

2 stars 2.5 stars. SALVA are from Sweden and they play melodiic synth / drum led music with litle in the way of guitar solos. The vocals are the main focus though and I don't like them at all. I've been listenining to this cd all week and it hasn't gotten any better for me because of my problems with the vocals.

"Never Again" is fairly heavy to begin with as synths arrive, deep vocals come in before a minute as it settles down. Lots of synths in this one. "A Thousand Deaths" again has a nice heavy intro with vocals after a minute,and again I don't like them. This is catchy at times and even becomes a little jazzy 7 minutes in. "Trick Of The Century" is one of my least favourites on here. A synth led track with vocals 2 minutes in.

"Land Of Obscurity" is heavy to begin with but settles down as vocals arrive quickly. Good guitar solo 2 minutes in as the tempo continues to shift. "Faith Versus Reason" opens with guitar and drums. More excellent guitar 3 1/2 minutes in with a synth solo 7 minutes in. Guitar ends it. "Rain" has a catchy intro but I can't get past the vocals on this one. "Gone" has some heaviness before a minute but it's brief as synths and drums will lead the way on this one. I do like the guitar before 7 minutes though.

This is one of the few records that miss the mark with me on several levels.

 Left To Burn by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.85 | 49 ratings

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Left To Burn
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by ProgLucky
Forum & Site Admin Group The Founder of Progarchives.com

5 stars MY DISCOVERY OF THE YEAR 2007...!

Follow up to "A Handfull Of Earth" (2004), their second release "Left To Burn" is an amazing album. SALVA is hard to pigeon hole; many genres of progressive rock including folk with strong JETHRO TULL influences, hard rock/heavy metal of DEEP PURPLE and URIAH HEEP and symphonic (nice WAKEMAN-esque keyboard breaks) with some great vocals/harmonies. It is a great skill played on traditional, classic and modern instruments.

In fact, it's an essential PURCHASE from a brilliant band...!

 Left To Burn by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.85 | 49 ratings

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Left To Burn
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by pussywillow

5 stars Yes I'm giving this 5 stars too.

A stunning piece of genius. Quite simply this is the best album I've heard in a a long long time.

It's just got everything.

Imagine all of your favourite Prog, Rock and Metal bands rolled into one. The influences here range from King Crimson to Deep Purple and the likes of Uriah Heep and even ELO. Just listen to the riff on 'Clara Leaving' and you'll hear something that Deep Purple at their finest wouldn't have any trouble recording. they've actually made THAT hammond sound contemporary - amazing.

This album transcends the gap between 70's old school and the neo Prog of the 90's in one big happy slice of your favourite cake.

Only trouble is, like your favourite cake, there isn't any more.

Damn.

Reform guys PLEASE.

Go and buy. If you don't you'll never forgive yourself.

 A Handful of Earth  by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.47 | 35 ratings

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A Handful of Earth
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by pussywillow

4 stars I am not going to disagree with my co-reviewers.

This is magnificent. How the hell I missed this band, is worrying....

Think Arena meets Crash Test Dummies, chuck in a bit of Purple, Kayak and an smattering of jazz (don't let that put you off btw) then you have almost got Salva.

I was surpsised to see they were Swedish - and that almost put me in mind of the more folky elements of Lake of Tears' work.

This album has everything you could want in a Prog LP : riffs, keys aplenty, atmospherics, fine vocals, harmonies....ach it's all been said, and I can't really add anymore. Yes point taken about the drumming, but I think only old father times (like me) will notice the absence of a live human behind the drumkit here.

My only gripe is why do they call themselves Salva ? Sounds like a cold-sore cream !

Recommended.

 Left To Burn by SALVA album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.85 | 49 ratings

BUY
Left To Burn
Salva Crossover Prog

Review by mgarrett

5 stars Salva's long awaited second album, "Left to burn", is finally out and I'm happy to say it has been well worth the wait. They have even exceeded my expectations with this new release. I was a big fan of their first album, "A handful of earth", and have been waiting anxiously for the follow up. The rich symphonic prog with folk and metal-leanings is still the foundation for Salva's music but they have evolved and refined both their sound and their compositional skills since the debut album. This is noticable (at least to my ears) throughout the album.

I have a hard time picking out favorite tracks but if I was forced I would say; "Ord ver. 2", a beautiful folky song with one of the best guitar solo's I've ever heard from Mr. Gavik and lyrics sung in Swedish as a one-off; "A dying rose", one of two "epic" tracks on the album where the variation is quite superb, still it remains cohesive throughout the entire song; "Stained", the heaviest track on the album with haunting, melancholy and almost whispering vocals by Mr. Malmberg.

To sum things up; I would say that this is symphonic prog at it's best and I give it my warmest recommendations.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition.

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