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The Amazing: Gentle Stream [Digipak]

Track List

>Gentle Stream
>International Hair
>Fog, The
>When the Colours Change

Album Reviews:

Record Collector (magazine) (p.102) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[T]he tone of Fiske's Gimour-esque guitar patterns and Gunrup's yearning vocals often hit the right spot..."

Album Notes

Audio Mixers: Mattias Glavå; Magnus Josefsson; Sven Johansson.

Recording information: Fashionpolice Studios, Stockholm; Sonores Studios, Gothenburg.

Unknown Contributor Roles: Per Larsson; Lisa Isaksson; Jennie Ståbis; Magnus Josefsson; Christoffer Gunrup; Fredrik Swahn; Moussa Fadera; Linnea Isaksson; Jonas Odhner; Jonas Kullhammar; Reine Fiske; Alexis Benson; Johan Holmegard.

The second full album by the Amazing finds the onetime side project settling further into its own existence, as the Swedish band embraces a wide temporal range of sonic touchstones revolving around the idea of lush delicacy. The title track starts the album with a sweet glaze of acoustic and electric guitars that sounds like the kind of '90s bands that loved the Cocteau Twins a little more in their later phase. It's a bit shoegaze but never heavily so, keyboards adding a bit of extra bliss and zone while the drums act as a bit of a secret punch. The singing seeps sweetly through like a bit of Richard Ashcroft goes a-ha -- and definitely not as dramatic as the former, in this case thankfully. With that, Gentle Stream feels like its title, a series of songs that are carefully arranged and performed but feel in listening like a meander down the titular object. It's a breezy, sometimes melancholy, but never dour listen, as songs like "International Hair" and "When the Colours Change" show, while without ever going full-on hero rock, a song like "Gone" fires up in context just enough. The nice sax part on "Flashlight" adds some moody grooves to the gently swinging number -- there's definitely a bit of Nick Drake at work throughout in the vocals and overall feeling, which starts coming to the fore more as the album continues -- while "Dogs" feels more like a stately classic rock number in its descending verses, at least a bit. The album as a whole clearly values the arrangements and overall instrumental performances perhaps even more than the singing, with numerous extended codas and breaks where the performers stretch out to the full. ~ Ned Raggett


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