Thursday, August 20, 2009


As I mentioned earlier in the week, I'm a fan of the Scandinavian folk group Groupa. About a year or so ago, I wondered about what they were up to lately, and found out they had a relatively new album out called Fjalar that I had not heard of. It is available on Amazon from one seller for almost $30, not including shipping. The other option is to purchase the MP3 version of the album, but I'm not that brave yet. I like to have a physical copy of my music without the need to burn it on a disc or worry about it getting accidentally deleted. I've been secretly hoping to see Fjalar for a cheaper price, but never did. This week, I did find it cheaper at CD Roots. I saved a bundle of money buying it from that guy!

Amazingly, the CD arrived this afternoon. I've listened to it exactly once, and here are my first impressions:

First, this album sounds very different from the Groupa I used to know from the 15 years collection. The horns are gone, and the emphasis on dance tunes is gone too. This is an album with a lot of space in between the fiddle playing, flutes and percussion. There is also a lot of piano used. A couple tracks feature only piano. That was unexpected! Groupa's sound is now much quieter, a little more intense and is almost avant-garde rather than based on the usual folk music.

This album works well as a whole. The pieces all fit together. There may not be any completely outstanding tracks, but each one adds to the overall sound of the album. I see this as an album that should be listened to from beginning to end. An album, ya know? There are fewer melodies here than what I'm used to from Groupa, but I still really like it! It's been too long, far too long, since I've bought a Scandinavian album, and this was a good one to buy. I'm now inspired to pick up some of their other work before it's gone for good.

If I have any other thoughts once I listen to the album more, I will write them here for you!

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