I’m still battling a backlog – have there ever been so many releases? In the air transport business that I work in we refer to all the air travel bookings being made right now (at very high prices) as ‘revenge travel’ (although it’s the sort of revenge which is a case of cutting off your nose to spite your face)!
And I suppose that the multitude of songs, EPs and albums so far this year must count as ‘revenge tunes’. Most musicians must have revenge on their minds where Covid is concerned after what it did to their livelihood.
Anyway, that’s my excuse for why I’m only listening tonight to a song that was released on 28th April.
Sagofrön (it translates a la Google to ‘Fairy Seeds’!) is Jimmy Almén, out of somewhere in Sweden but I don’t know quite where. He wrote to me a while back promising new material at the end of April and he’s as good as his word.
As it’s in Swedish I would have been lost without a translation which he kindly provided and it is immediately obvious the ‘Dröm’ (‘Dream’) is a more of a dystopian nightmare, one in which rocks as big as islands come down from the sky, crushing everything they hit.
Taking shelter in the basement of a house, the stairwell collapses, taking everything with it. Digging their way out the survivors find the external terrain has gone too, along with all the people and animals.
The song stands as a metaphor for many scenarios. The obvious one is nuclear war, which if you believe the doom mongers (especially those in the US), we are teetering on the edge of, although I really don’t think so. Even Mad Vlad isn’t that mad.
On a more parochial level it is the Ukraine war and Sagofrön has transported you to Mariupol a year ago or Bakhmut right now.
Perhaps even the environment and ‘climate change.’ I hope not.
On the other hand it could be a ‘War of the Worlds’ or ‘Independence Day’ situation with the giant rocks being spaceships arriving from Planet Zog with evil intent.
Or even just an asteroid shower, or wayward comets, along the lines of ‘Armageddon’ or the (far superior) ‘Deep Impact.’ Or an earthquake.
Any such evocative song has to hit the spot and Sagofrön does, with a delivery that provokes comparisons with Zager & Evans’ seminal 1969 hit ‘In the Year 2525 (Exordium & Terminus)’.
His vocal is soothing and comforting, quite at odds with the dramatic subject matter. It’s the sort of voice you’d hear when that moment comes and hypersonic missiles are winging your way at the speed of light but the government spokesperson insists you’ll be alright if you crawl under the stairs and hide under the duvet.
Indeed, it’s almost a lullaby.
You might think that can’t possibly work. But it does.
Jimmy Almén sings and plays guitar. Johan Almstig is the producer and played other instruments and Rebecka Barlach provided backing vocals.
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