In this series of new Transubstans Records releases, I meet with a new band called Ginger Trees. Along With the Tide is their second album, and it is described in their press release as “a fine release that holds the influences of everything between Porcupine Tree to Uriah Heep, Kula Shaker and Pink Floyd. Great melodies, especially in the vocals, and a band to watch out for!!” I think this is pretty accurate. Ginger Trees successfully blends many influences, from prog rock to hard rock to classic rock to blues rock.
The first time I listened to the opener Forever This Longing, I couldn’t help being reminded of a project between Mikael Åkerfeldt and Dan Swanö named Sörskogen that never saw the light of day. The track I mentioned surely reminds me of Sörskogen’s song Mordet i Grottan. Actually, the part that makes me feel that way is Rasmus’ singing.
Throughout whole record, there is present a mellowness and smoothness, even in the bluesy/hard rock songs, the band tends to show their melodic side. You will notice here that I mentioned hard/blues rock twice up to now, well the band does not “hide” their guitars, I would say that they are just a bit careful, trying to not get too much over the limits and explode, but walking the line between that mellowness and harshness. The 70′s legacy is here, but not quite as much as with their labelmates Three Seasons. Ginger Trees love to wake up that 70′s reminiscence, but still to keep up with contemporary music. The band keeps their course rather slow, and I would describe it as baladous, doomy hard rock. Speaking of balads, the closing track Kurukshetra is indeed a very nice piece of work. It is a refreshing lagoon of melodious ecstasy amidst today’s sea of boring ballads.
Every one of the songs on this album will certainly have something you like, no matter who you are. The riffing in the title track, the melody lines in Poseidon, the acoustics in Shadow of the Mountain, the lyrics of New Day (“And it feels like rain, giving life to those who dare to cross the line and walk out into the new day…”), the Porcupine Tree presence in Breathe, the straight-edge hard rock in The Swirl, together with the aforementioned opening and closing tracks, you may find it out if you give this album a chance. I will keep my eye on you, pals!
01. Forever this longing
02. Ghost of another age
03. Along with the tide
05. Shadow of the mountain
06. New day
08. The swirl