Silhouettes

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Band Name Fredrik Pihl
Album Name Silhouettes
Type Album
Released date February 2011
Labels Self-Released
Music StyleProgressive Metal
Members owning this album1

Tracklist

1. Above the Surface (ft. Mattias Eklundh) 07:14
2. The Demonic Masquerade 08:15
3. Memories 08:20
4. Silhouettes (ft. Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal) 10:58
5. By the Blue Horizon (ft. Lalle Larsson) 06:16
6. The Twelfth Night 08:40
Total playing time 49:43

Review @ HeadCrush

21 April 2011

Swedish bag of tricks

When a guy answers " romantic-noisy-melancholic-heavy-weird-classical-jazz-fusion metal, with a touch of guitar " to the question «how would you define your music? " you feel or guess, that discovering his album might be an ab-so-lu-te-ly fascinating experience or nothing because…what the Hell is romantic-noisy blah-blah-blah ?

A thing is sure, to listen this Silhouette you must necessary have a wide open state of mind because from riffs which would not deny Meshuggah to strange melodies played by a pianist born in another galaxy the music proposed here is quite unusual.
In six titles this crazy Swedish is going to amaze you although the instrumental guitar with a big " I " is your thing and also barriers, you just don’t have.

Fredrik Pilh has, from my point a view, opened a breach in the quite closed world of the instrumental guitar. While many artists, for a first record, choose to let show some recognisable influences, taking then the risk to be assimilated to a genre that might be not really representative of their real sensibility, this guy chooses to involve you into a totally personal adventure.
The presence of prestigious guests such as Mattias " IA " Eklundh or Ron Thal don’t change or influence anything. These two friends just give all they have to enter into the compositions written by Fredrik. It is rare even, very rare but here, no ego just musicians dedicated to the music

The music of this crazy guy is strangely accessible Above the surfaces title opening this album is really representative of the state of mind of this record, with its sound effects and voices going crescendo, a very heavy riff arises to result in a heady melody.
The format of this track, its measures, evolves, change, mixing different rhythms. If the transition towards Diabolical Masquerade is imperceptible the change of universe is really surprising because it is not any more the guitar which leads but the piano of Lalle Larsson, the tones change but the whole still really beautiful

I am not going to extend over the technicality of Fredrik's guitar play, it would be reducing and wouldn’t bring anything useful to the description of his music, know simply that all that the electric guitar can count of techniques (tapping, sweeping, legato,…) is in this record perfectly mastered as well as sensibly used.

The danger with a record containing so many and different styles is to lose the auditor, to give a feeling of "desultory", the trap is avoided here because as an example a title as Memories even evolving through various rhythms keeps a cohesion and a very high level of musicality.

This whole record seems to turn, from my point of view, around a musical part somehow resuming everything I’ve wrote above: Silhouettes. The paradox is that it is the title has been written at least. This title is carried by the madness of Lalle Larsson, the strange way he plays his piano, the absolute freedom we can perceive gives to this track something really special making me feel that It’s the heart of this album.
The musical relation between Fredrik and Lalle seems to be as deep as strong, both music is closely match and invite the auditor to a strange and beautiful immobile trip.

Even if, I must admit, I had the love at first sight for this album, I must try to be the least partial possible.
This album is not perfect as long as the perfection is of this world, it suffers from a “home production” which not give justice, no drummer but a beatbox on By the blue horizon track, a sound of synth makes you feel that finally, jump through a closed window is a wonderful idea.
This kind of criticisms can be made to all the musicians with no fortune, but if only the music interests you, don’t stop to this consideration.

This album highlights a fact; while some guitarists just recycle some other invents new languages. Fredrik is one of those guys, for a first album, the risk can seem enormous but at least its postulate is to share his musical universe. I don’t think he missed the goal and also, I don’t think he cares about the risk.

In conclusion, I would say that here is an album which certainly, requires a real open-mindedness although using codes sometimes taken from the Metal with a big "M"or some coming the Free Jazz world, the Rock and finally from many others genres makes not really easy is appropriation.
It is the kind of record that raises in me the eternal question: what an Alien of this kind would offer if he get more money to produce next time?

I hope I will discover it one day.

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