Exposé Online banner

Gösta Berlings Saga — Sersophane
(Icosahedron IC02, 2016, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2017-02-17

Sersophane Cover art

This Swedish band has never been prolific, but they compensate in quality what they lack in quantity. It’s been five years since Glue Works, and I’m happy to report that Sersophane lives up to the band’s high standards. The album kicks off with “Konstuktion,” a short, energetic tune that might bring to mind classic surf music with its driving beat and epic melody. The title track is the first of the three more substantial pieces that make up the bulk of the CD. It has a rolling triplet rhythm that wastes little time jumping into high gear and features several sections of differening moods and textures. I particularly like one part where it seems like the drums are playing in a different meter than the rest of the band and they gradually bring it all together. There’s some outstanding bass work in the tune as well. “Fort Europa” has a great melody with a slight Middle Eastern feel to it and tricky accents that keep everything interesting. There’s a nice electronic interlude called “Dekonstruktion” before they dive into the 15-minute monster “Channeling the Sixth Extinction.” It’s hard to single out highlights in a piece that’s this solid all the way through. Gösta Berlings Saga is a band to be reckoned with: Alexander Skepp’s drumming is powerful and inventive; Einar Baldursson is stellar on guitars, including both electric and acoustic as well as lap steel; the keyboards, mostly by David Lundberg, are massive, featuring classic sounds like electric piano and Mellotron as well as any number of other sounds, with some help from theo others on synths as well; and I’ve already mentioned Gabriel Tapper on bass — he takes on the Taurus pedals sometimes as well, for an even bigger sound. The album finishes with a brief piece for acoustic guitar, and a chance to reflect on how good it was. At a bit under 40 minutes, the album is on the short side, though it’s certainly better to be left wishing for more than wishing it would end sooner!


Filed under: New releases, 2016 releases

Related artist(s): Gösta Berlings Saga

Latest news

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more

2020-03-17
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music world, and festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more

2020-03-06
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Haakon Ellingsen - Bounty – Many many years ago (in issue #12 to be precise) we reviewed a wonderful and heavily Beatles influenced psychedelic pop album titled Kindergarten by Norwegian trio The Last James. Haakon Ellingsen...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues