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The Flower Kings produce progressive rock music that is as cute as their name suggests. Don't worry - they're not whimsical, nor are they hippies. They are an extremely technical band and write some really great rock music.
This Swedish outfit make music that has been described as both ""symphonic" (a good thing!) and "computer game-like" (perhaps not such a good thing!) "Back in the World of Adventures" is a truly joyful album - even the darker moments are bursting with musical life and excitement. From the opening 13 minute epic, you now you're in for quite a ride.
There's not actually a great deal of singing on this album. Hans Froberg (lead vocals) has a fairly unremarkable voice - for me at least. He can easily hold the notes and has a fairly good range. His accent comes through nicely, but the overall vocal experience is nothing special. The other five musicians have a lot going for them. Keyboards, bass, two guitars and some nifty drumming buld up some really excellent harmonies (see "Theme for a Hero"), some psychedelic rock scenes ("My Cosmic Lover") or moody and brooding heavier parts (like in "Go West Judas")
Highlights on the album include the epic opening and closing tracks - the latter "Big Puzzle" echoing many of the musical themes set out in track 1, "World of Adventures". "My Cosmic Lover" is wonderfully accessible and always brings a smile to my face with it's happy-pop-edge and strong bongo percussion section! There are some sadly forgettable tracks too - "Road to Oblivion" feels like a bit of filler. Perhaps this isn't surprising. The Flower Kings have been criticised for simply releasing TOO much material. In ten years they recorded over 18 hours of music - something like one album a year. The quality can suffer.
I stumbled upon this band whilst browsing the internet. I was so delighted with their sound that I nipped out and bought a double CD set which included this CD and "Retropolis" - their follow up album. I still play both regularly and enjoy the cheery, summer feel of the music. It's good stuff but not great stuff.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 World of Adventures
2 Atomic Prince/Kaleidoscope
3 Go West Judas
4 Train to Nowhere
5 Oblivion Road
6 Theme for a Hero
7 Temple of the Snakes
8 My Cosmic Lover
9 Wonder Wheel
10 Big Puzzle