It’s been eight years since Anekdoten released any new music or a new album. Nicklas Barker is a very busy man when it comes to projects alongside Anekdoten including My Brother the Wind and as a composer for a horror film to follow in the footsteps of Fabio Frizzi, Agitation Free, and Goblin entitled, El Ultimo Fin De Semana.
Not to mention the soundtrack group, Morte Macbre. This year, the group are back with a new album since 2007’s A Time of Day. Until All The Ghosts Are Gone is a welcoming return to the band’s music and let me just say that I’ve embark on something special yet hypnotic to the cosmic outer limits that have taken me to a whole new level.
Mind you, I’m new to Anekdoten’s music since hearing their 2-CD compilation back in 2009 of Chapters which covered their history of their first five album and unreleased material. This year, I’m getting back on the wagon of their music and listening about three times of their new album, I was very impressed of how they bring the Progressive Rock genre to a gigantic crunch and making sure the flames of King Crimson doesn’t burn out and making it go for years and years to come.
Opening 10-minute track, Shooting Star begins with an ambient/atmospheric introduction between the keyboards done by Anna Sofi Dahlberg before setting to hurtle through the milky-way cosmos. The band are going into a heavier territory filled with psych-hard rock guitars, mellotron’s galore, and very much like a space rock adventure before settling into the Steven Wilson Insurgentes-era that would have made the master proud.
Get Out Alive goes into a heavier rock approach in the styles of Pink Floyd’s pre-Dark Side-era and a bit of Astra flown in to capture the calmer sounds thanks Nicklas’ guitar adding a heavenly-like approach as bassist Jan Erik Liljestrom takes on the vocals. I love that midsection that Barker and Jan followed by drummer Peter Nordins and Anna’s keyboards head back into the outer limits for an ascending voyage as Barker’s guitar both lead and rhythm, breathes into a higher yet climbing melody.
Theo Travis (Soft Machine Legacy, Steven Wilson, and The Tangent) appears as a guest on Flute on two of the tracks on the album. On If It All Comes Down to You, it has a jazzier approach as Theo goes into the sounds of Ray Thomas and Peter Gabriel in a waltz tempo as Anekdoten give Theo a chance to shine while the late ‘60s/early ‘70s essence comes in full circle on the closing track, Our Days are Numbered.
This composition is I think, at their best. It’s immense, stirring, and propelling instrumental piece. It also let’s Anekdoten do some mind-boggling improvisations between each other on their instruments followed by Gustav Nygren’s blasting saxophone work that is an homage to Dick Parry (Pink Floyd), John Coltrane, and Bernie Living (Manfred Mann Chapter Three).
Gustav makes you feel that you are walking alone in a darker alleyway and imagine if someone is following you. The music in the midsection captures the tension and follows Gustav to see where he would blast at the right moment and bring it to a standstill with an alarming and blaring moment.
It is a proud return for Anekdoten to release some mind-blowing music that will make you probably want to take note. It’s a band that may or may not be for the faint of the heart. After listening around the fifth time now, Until All The Ghosts Are Gone is the band unleashing not just a masterpiece, but a journey that will take you unbelievable worlds that you haven’t seen before from beginning to end.