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Sleeping in Traffic: Part One [Import]

BeardfishAudio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

Price: $20.38 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 11 Songs, 2010 $9.99  
Audio CD, 2007 $13.99  
Audio CD, Import, 2009 $20.38  

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For Beardfish from Sweden, stylistic barriers are there to be torn down. Their unique sound mixes elements from a variety of genres, from prog through independent to jazz rock, classical music and metal, from sixties, seventies and eighties influences to the most contemporary and trailblazing variations. Their latest album, Destined Solitaire, is a musical adventure trip of the unusual kind, ... Read more in Amazon's Beardfish Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 20, 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Imports
  • ASIN: B002QEISJ8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #779,664 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. ...On the Verge of Sanity
2. Sunrise
3. Afternoon Conversation
4. And Never Know
5. Roulette
6. Dark Poet
7. Harmony
8. The Ungodly Slob
9. Year of the Knife
10. Without You
11. Same Old Song (Sunset)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent homage to 70's progressive rock May 26, 2007
Format:Audio CD
Sweden's Beardfish make their debut on Inside Out with the first part of their Sleeping in Traffic piece. Firmly rooted in the aesthetic stylings of 70's prog, most notably Gentle Giant, Genesis, and Zappa, Beardfish's aim is certainly not to break any new ground, but rather to pen songs that carry a distinct retro prog rock sound to them -- and this disc is testimony to their success.

Starting with the beautiful accordion melody of "On the Verge of Sanity", the album moves into heavier (as in purer) prog rock domain, at once evoking the surprising turns of Gentle Giant's earlier work, particularly in the way the acoustic guitars are arranged. The song is blessed with big dynamic shifts, rocking hard thanks to the tight rhythm section; and then slowing down in order to create dense, instrumental passages. Rikard Sjoblorn is not merely responsible for the amazing vocals here -- he also plays guitars, accordion, percussion, and keyboards. The synth work on the album is uniformly gorgeous -- the blazing organ sound is reminiscent of Uriah Heep or even early Deep Purple, but the piece also stands out for its Zappa-esque craziness and the maniacal screaming at the finale.

More of the band's Zappa influence can be detected on the twelve-minute monster "Roulette", which starts out more in the vein of Supertramp's melodic signature and then transforms into Camel's smooth acoustic guitar arrangements. Having toured with Paatos before, the stark, brooding tone of their music is carried over and comes through during the middle section, which is ultimately darker than anything else on this album. Sjoblorn doubles his vocals here, creating a somewhat disturbed "internal dialogue" vibe, as his subconscious spews forth psychotic statements to contrast his regular, more heldback vocal style.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars rock with imagination July 25, 2007
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I've been a fan of Beardfish since seeing them at ProgDay 2006. I would call their previous release, The Sane Day, the best album of the new milennium so far! Why do I feel so great about their stuff? Because the music is intricate while still being incredibly fun, the themes are engaging and imaginative, and because it's so obvious that the band works together well as a unit. This music is dynamic and really grabs you. Highly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't wait for Part 2 February 5, 2008
By todd
Format:Audio CD
Another prog band from Sweden? What era of Genesis do they sound like?

Actually, this band takes its cues from acts like early Zappa, Gentle Giant and Focus. They are very reminiscent of another Swedish prog outfit, Ritual, and like those guys, they touch on Swedish folk, canterbury scene prog, and some fusion style rock ala Gentle Giant. They wear their influences on their sleeve, but at the same time, perform it with edge and energy.

While the afore mentioned Ritual leans more towards canterbury and folk, Beardfish leans towards bluesier performances on some of the material here. Its very believably done, as the lead singer, Rikard Sjoblom, is a very credible vocalist, sounding like a cross between Steve Miller and John Popper (Blues Traveler). The keyboard work here is standard prog, but on some of the pieces here they are reminiscent of old blues rock acts of the early '70s. That is not to suggest that this isn't polyphonic prog, because it is.

They also explore darker themed material than traditional Swedish prog and they are excellent writers. But just when you think they're delving deeper into traditionally goth-rock territory, they swing out with a folky, story-based song that they whole-hearted sell out to, with playful abandon and a real love for their roots, not unlike, once again, Ritual. They can be whistful when they want to be, and they can really smoke. And the vocals, for a change, are excellent. Sjoblom can really belt a tune when wants to. On the song Harmony, he wails like no prog vocalist I've heard in recent memory. The song Harmony itself is superb, but its a traditional blues-rock tune bookended by polyphonic, prog flourishes.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More Swedish Prog Worth Hearing December 5, 2007
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I hadn't heard of Beardfish until fairly recently when a posting on the Procol Harum forum "The Beanstalk" sang its praises. Though the keyboards on Sleeping In Traffic:Part One sound nothing like those in Procol Harum, it is obvious that the guy making the post was jazzed merely because keyboards figure so prominently in Beardfish's music. I like keyboards as well and am keen on some of the great prog rock that has emanated from Sweden in the last twenty years, so I took the plunge and ordered this.
There are a couple of tunes here that stand out immediately, the rest take a few more listens. The short accordion intro, oddly reminiscent of something I've heard by R Crumb and his Cheap Suit Serenaders, neatly segues into a very meaty Sunrise. That alone is enough to grab your attention. Then the McCartneyesque Afternoon Conversation completely changes the mood and illustrates the band's versatility.
The heart of the CD is the epic Roulette, a lyrically bleak but musically interesting treatise on the future of humanity, which evokes the cultural attitudes of the avant-garde of the late 1960s. After that high point, the rest of the album is decent but mostly not as impressive with the exception of The Year of the Knife and the last segment of Same Old Song.
Overall, I'd sum it up by telling you that this CD is another example of modern Swedish Prog that is worth hearing. The music is imaginative and the lyrics intelligent. What more can you ask for?
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