Welcome to my progg blog! That's progg, not prog, because that's how the Swedish progressive music is spelt here. Progg isn't merely progressive in musical terms, it refers to the Swedish alternative political movement in the 70's as well. Therefore you'll be able to read about Fläsket Brinner as well as Knutna Nävar as my blog progresses. Please note there are no downloads here, only reviews and Youtube links!
Wednesday, October 4, 2017
ARCHIMEDES BADKAR – Tre (MNW, 1977)
International relevance: ***
Ranked #6 on the blog's Top 25 list
A stellar act operating in the most
open-minded area of the 70's jazz scene, with core member and
percussionist Per Tjernberg (also known as Per Cussion) bringing
strong afro influences to the table, thus making Archimedes Badkar an
exhilirating ingredient of the progg movement.
Debuting in 1973 with the ridiculously
rare self-released ”Rumpstek” 33/3 rpm single, they soon hooked
up with flagship label MNW. Their first album for MNW was the
magnificent ”Badrock för barn i alla åldrar” in 1975, followed
by ”II” in 1976, finishing off their quartet of albums in 1979
with ”Bado Kidogo”, a joint venture with Tanzanians Afro 70.
However, my personal favourite is ”Tre”, (”three” in
English), an exuberant blend of afro rhythms, Balkan and Indian
touches, and jazz. No wonder, as the line-up includes excellent sax
player Christer Bothén (later to front the similarly styled Bolon
Bata) and multifaceted drum wizard Bengt Berger.
With such prominent players and such a
broad palette of musical traditions to choose from, ”Tre” just
can't get boring even if it tried. It opens with the hard blowing
jazz of ”Badidoom”, moves on to the soft-spoken ”Bhajan”,
then by way of ”Världens liv” and ”Akombah” to the tender
”Slum” before heading for the lilting sounds of the mbira in
”Tumpianomusik” (”thumb piano music”), then bursting into the
extatic three part suite ”Pharaoh/El Legend/Marrakech” where
Bothén gets his chance to show off his free jazz credentials with
versatile trumpeter and sometime Iskra member Tommy Adolfsson
breathing down his neck, and then makes its way through the playful
”Desert Band” before closing the show with the reflective
Archimedes Badkar were never an
orthodox band but they always paid respect to the traditions that
offered source material to their eclectic and ever so captivating
mix. All their albums are high carat nuggets, but this is their
special musical brew at its most potent. ”Tre” stands out as one
of the most inspiring and impressive achievements of the entire progg era.
Unfortunately, "Tre" is conspicuously underrepresented on Youtube, with, for instance, the jazziest tracks unavailable, but the three excerpts below will hopefully give you an idea of the album's delightfulness.