Friday, October 5, 2012

SUGET – Suget (Suget Musik, 1979)

International relevance: ***
Swedish vocals

Little known album from a nationally and internationally largely completely unknown band. Information on the band used to be quite rare, but a recent article in a local paper reveals a fair bit of the band's history.

Suget came from Sollefteå in the North of Sweden. At the time of recording their sole, privately released album, they consisted of a full nine people, including a horn section. They got together as early as in 1976. Their reputation grew slowly in their area, and after an outdoors gig in their hometown, they recorded ”Suget”. Singer Leif Lundberg wrote most of the slightly peculiar lyrics, while bass player Leif Lundberg penned much of the music. The band was very busy during the first years following the release, but in the mid 80's activities slowed down, although Lundberg states that they never really disbanded, only took breaks of various lengths. That said, it wasn't until 1996 that they appeared on stage for a first comeback show in Sollefteå. By the beginning of September 2012, they performed their most recent show, with songs mostly drawn from the album, but they also included a couple of recently penned songs. During the 00's, keyboard player Morgan Sjöqvist played pub gigs being Mogge in the Håkan & Mogge duo. For georgraphical reasons, questions have been raised as to possible connections with Wildmarken, also from the Sollefteå area, but as for now, nothing along those lines has been confirmed.

”Suget” was recorded in Ullånger, a few miles outside the city of Kramfors. It's a highly competent affair and quality sounding effort of basically pretty straightforward rock, although some tracks have a funky swagger. Tracks like ”Tomtar och troll” and ”Våren” even have a very appealing folk rock touch that actually reminds of UK folkers Spriguns. (If you play ”Tomtar och troll” and Spriguns' ”Dead Man's Eyes” back to back, you will notice the similarities.) Songwriting is almost consistently good and the performances are inspired. Although the songs aren't amazingly innovative, it still sounds fresh and genuine. Apart from tracks already mentioned, favourites include the flute laced ”Jag står på min himmel”, and ”En drömmare” with a distinct Latin influence and vocals slightly reminiscent of outsider hero D.R. Hooker. Suget really had that elusive unknown factor that made their album greater than it would have been if any other band would have recorded exactly the same songs in the same way. It draws you in and have you coming back to the album repeatedly. Given the album's scarcity, a CD release would certainly be welcome. It's a pity that this little gem is kept hidden in the far off North.

Thankfully, someone has it up on Youtube in its entirety for you to treat yourself with a fine slice of tail-end era progg rock.

1. Tomtar och troll
2. Våren
3. Passa dej!
4. Dagens nyheter
5. En drömmare
6. Smygarn
7. Jag står på min himmel
8. Sökka
9. Regnet
10. Vindar
(All in one file.)

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