There's a seemingly endless supply of new music from Sweden just pouring out this month and the creative factor does not seem to be suffering from the excess supply. In fact, if anything, the competition and cooperation among these musicians is generating excellent new music at every turn.
Bask is something of a super group for Sweden's new folk scene. This trio featuring Jonas Simonson on flutes, Sten Kallman on saxes and percussion, and Hans Kennemark on fiddle have collectively been in the vanguard of this current wave of innovation, working with bands like Filarfolket, Den Fule, and Groupa and in collaborations with artists like Ale Möller and Niss Kerstin.
"Vals fra Munkedal"
Väsen take a much more assertive approach on Gront, their second album as a quartet. While they too present a primarily acoustic sound, they are looking for a larger bang, and do not hesitate to bring in jazz, rock and whatever else suits their need. It's never overt, but these elements are often present in their newly composed folk songs. Yet the final effect is one of ancient songs reborn.
Available at cdRoots
Bask: © 1999 Catherine Edvall
Vasen: ©1998, Cliff Furnald and Tony Sandin
Audio © 1999 Xource/MNW-Sweden and Northside-US