Kaipa - Keyholder

Year of Release: 2002
Label: InsideOut
Catalog Number: IOMCD 132/SPV 085-65982
Format: CD
Total Time: 77:03:00

Keyholder is the second release by the re-formed Kaipa - Roine Stolt (guitars) and Hans Lundin (keyboards) - and again features Ritual's Patrick Lundström on vocals, Morgen Argen on drums, and Jonas Reingold on bass with Aleena also on vocals. It's hard not to hear the Flower Kings in Kaipa, something I opined on last time, not sure whether Stolt had brought the TFK sound to Kaipa, or the other way around. Most of the music, however, was composed by Lundin; only three tracks were composed by both Lundin and Stolt. The lyrics on the other hand are mainly the work of both.

Instrumentally, Keyholder is a rich tapestry of sounds, there being a great deal going on in each track. Because each piece here is quite lengthy, each becomes a mini (or not so mini) epic, all painted mainly in broad strokes with bold colors (not quite as bold as TFK, mind you, but certainly enough to light a room... so to speak). And as such, there is no succinct means of "describing" the music without, essentially, providing a play by play. And anyway, Bobo has ably given you a sense of what to expect in his own review - a fact that may well have you wondering why I've given this album a go. Well, since my cohorts and I do differ in opinion on a couple of things, I thought at least I'd share them along with some of my general observations. Stolt solos beautifully throughout, almost breezily during "End Of The Rope." Aside from the expected symphonics that would engender such a comparison, there are times when the music recalls Yes, as during the pastoral section of "Across The Big Uncertain." Or in "Distant Voices." Although Lundström's voice has a darker edge that Jon Anderson's doesn't, one can almost imagine either of these pieces on a latter-day Yes album. The arrangements to be found on Keyholder also include some subtle country and western elements (slide guitar, or so it sounds, to begin "End Of The Rope"), vague middle-eastern motifs (the subdued "Sonic Pearls"), and a certain rock toughness ("The Weed Of All Mankind"). It is the lushly arranged pieces and musical interplay that are the highlights... the only minus here for me, and this was true on Notes From The Past, were the lead vocals of Aleena. While her tone is often okay, for me, the execution is not pleasing to my ear. Here is where the others and I have a differing opinion.

For all these lengthy excursions, the album seems tighter than Notes..., and with more direction. Though some tracks to have the feeling of being two separate pieces bonded together, each of those parts work well, and somehow manage each time to get back to the initial point. And because it is so lush, it is an album that takes time to absorb - a good thing. Of course, one should listen to an album more than once to gauge its true measure, but this is one of those that it may taken dozens and dozens of listens before every nuance is sussed out.

Lifetime Of A Journey (8:14) / A Complex Work Of Art (11:57) / The Weed Of All Mankind (9:29) / Sonic Pearls (6:06) / End Of The Rope (13:59) / Across The Big Uncertain (8:30) / Distant Voices (13:00) / Otherwordly Brights (7:08)

Hans Lundin - Hammond organ, synthesizers, mellotron, pianos & vocals
Roine Stolt - electric & acoustic guitars, percussion & vocals
Morgan Ågren - drums
Jonas Reingold - fretless & Yamaha custom basses
Patrik Lundstr¨m - lead and backing vocals
Aleena - lead and backing vocals

Kaipa (1975)
Inget Nytt Under Solen (1978)
Solo (1978)
Händer (1980)
Nattdjustid (1982)
Notes From The Past (2002)
Keyholder (2003)
Mindrevolution (2005)
The Decca Years 1975-1978 (2005)
Angling Feelings (2007)
In The Wake Of Evolution (2010)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin SE

Added: December 14th 2003
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website: www.kaipa.info
Hits: 562
Language: english


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