Trallskogen — Trollskogen
(Nikasounds (no#), 2017, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2017-12-18
Trallskogen is an international band led by Swedish singer and composer Annika Jonsson, presently living in Saarbrucken, Germany, which she and the rest of the band call home. Their sound is strongly rooted in a Swedish folk music style, though strong elements of jazz, as well as rock and pop, are also pervasive in the band’s sound. While Jonsson sticks to composition and singing, the players include guitarist Steffen Lang, pianist Martin Jäger, double-bassist Felix Hubert, and drummer Kevin Naßhan. It’s an interesting mix of styles across the album’s nine tracks (the last track is hidden, starting several minutes after the final listed track “Farväl” ends), blasts of free jazz and more cerebral jazz elements mix freely with Jonsson’s vocals, which are clearly rooted in a folk style, though adapted for the jazz support, then out of nowhere the band might start moving in a rocking direction, giving the whole sound a very distinct and unique flavor, one that superbly showcases the talents of all the musicians involved. Jonsson’s compositions fuse the various styles beautifully, and her lyrics (all in Swedish, I presume) seem to caress the melodies in perfect balance across this expressive musical panorama.“Äldvans,” for example clearly expresses a playful vocal jazz-pop style across it’s three-plus minutes, but the performances by the four players are positively amazing throughout. “Han Drack” begins with a splendid one minute solo vocal before piano and other instruments join in to support the effort, then in a sudden but fluid change, the whole piece shifts gear into a jazzy scat number before coming round full circle. One can’t really draw easy comparisons between this and anything else out there, Trollskogen is one beautiful and mysterious parcel in a world all its own.
Related artist(s): Trallskogen
Roswell Rudd RIP – Jazz trombonist Roswell Rudd, one of the distinctive players of his instrument in many strains of music, has died at the age of 82. With a career stretching back to the early 60s and over a hundred recordings featuring his playing, he leaves behind a substantial legacy. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2013. » Read more
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more