ARTIST:

CARPTREE

(SWEDEN)
TITLE:

EMERGER

(2017)
LABEL:

REINGOLD

GENRE:

PROGRESSIVE ROCK

TAGS:
Neo, Symphonic
""Emerger" puts an end, in a very beautiful way, to seven years of absence. "Emerger" is a chiseled diamond that can claim the title of best neo progressive rock album of 2017."
CALGEPO (27.12.2017)  
5/5
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Seven years have elapsed between "Nymph" and "Emerger" from the Swedish band Carptree.  We have been waiting so long as the band offered us between 2003 and 2010 albums of a great quality! Then this never-ending silence.... which ended up in 2016 with the release of an EP entitled "Between Extremes" which finds its place on the album.

As a reminder, at the head of the group there is Niclas Flink whose voice, a mixture of Fish, Peter Gabriel or even Phil Collins, is so special. Then, the keyboards held by Carl Westholm, the spiritual son of Tony Banks, Mark Kelly, Clive Nolan. The recipe of Carptree's music remains the same : progressive rock, with a neo tendency, to which are added a few grams of symphonism and a light touch of metal. Like the great chefs, the Swedish combo masters his subject which synthesizes a whole part of progressive music with always very inspired compositions.

The artwork, using the colors of "Nymph", illustrates the atmosphere that sticks to the skin of Carptree made of dark, obscure and heavy melodies like limbo from the bottom of which these hands come out to hope to find some assistance. Because to emerge, it is necessary to have known the bottom of the abyss. Everyone will of course make his own interpretation but this seems to be the basic idea of the album with 'Feeting Deep' which begins directly, without emphasis, with a wall of cathedral built with the synthesizer underlining the vocal lines which resonate in a limpid way and in which the listener, not refractory, lets himself be carried. Because the strong point of "Emerger" are first of all these lines, Niclas delivers an outstanding performance, always lively, without exaggeration and natural. There is only to hear the emotion that he transmits in 'River' to the almost dramatic and shivering aura, to give you goose bumps.

But what would the voice be without a custom-made musical dressing?  Then the keyboards, the organs ('Between Extremes') give body and volume to the whole album. The layers coat it with long tracks often extended without any superfluous length coming to make the ensemble puffy. There are no eighth notes, few quarter notes, all are white and round notes which allow the ambiances to settle down and to be ingrained in the mind. Where Carptree stands out, it is not by locking itself completely in a sclerotic style thanks to a subtle display of the guitars, the rhythm section and the female choirs which bring each one their stone to the building as the album develops. Rather discreet on the first three tracks (except for the choirs), these instruments take on more amplitude to balance the musical spectrum, being part of the band's trademark, as witnessed by 'Ultimately Lifeless' and 'Return And Never Ever Leave', more rock with aggressive riffs and a more dynamic rhythmic. Avoiding to be locked in the shackles, 'Pourous' calms down the game by adopting a more stripped and concise style which brings a little oxygen compared to this density. That leaves the final 'Immersive Attention', less immediate compared to the other tracks, which requires more time to fully reveal itself, like a bride, just before 'Dwindle Into Greatness', a remix from the 2016 EP, comes, as a bonus, to close this album in a symphonic way.

With a brilliant production, "Emerger" sees the return of Carptree on the front of the progressive scene that he left for too long. The challenge was big and it is formidably taken up because it does not disappoint. The Swedish duo innovates and experiments little but it doesn't matter, as the work is very well constructed and thought, both accessible and demanding, respectful of the work of the elders from whom it is inspired. Let's hope we don't have to wait another seven years to enjoy the next offering. 


More informations on http://www.carptree.com





TRACK LISTING:
01. Fleeting Deep
02. Between Extremes
03. The River
04. Ultimately Lifeless
05. Never to Return and Never Ever Leave
06. Porous
07. Immersive Attention
08. Dwindle Into Greatness

LINEUP:
Carl Westholm: Guitares / Basse / Claviers
Jesper Skarin: Batterie
Niclas Flinck: Chant
Öivin Tronstad : Guitares / Choeurs
   
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