Elektrum- In the Far Field
(OHM CD 7013)

From Aural Innovations #38 (Jan 2008)

It has taken the Danish- UK band Elektrum featuring Claus Bøhling (Hurdy Gurdy, Secret Oyster) over 10 years to finally make this studio CD. The CD is basically the band setting up in the studio in Aalborg, Denmark in April 2005 and playing their live set and recorded it. I think the other days were spent mixing. We get some of the songs they were playing in the late 90’s as well as one old Hurdy Gurdy song, Lost in the Jungle, one of the few songs with singing. The songs are all basically a bit of riffing but mostly Claus playing solo lead guitar. Amazing stuff. Crystal begins the CD and is a slowly bluesy piece with Claus playing a great guitar solo. Silence is next and has a bit of an eastern feel and you can really hear the great bass playing of Ian MacDonald as well. His soloing at the end of this song is amazing as the while band just kicks it up to high gear. Chakra is a more laid back track and almost dub at times. Claus plays a beautiful solo at the end. Lost in the Jungle, the old Hurdy Gurdy number is next. Dark Meet is one I have never heard before and begins with a bass line and then the drums and then finally Claus kicks in with some spacey whammy bar guitar and hammer ons as the track builds. Another great 70s hard rock solo at the end of this track. Skies Limit, another old song is next. This is a more laid back blues number until the middle when it totally takes off and gets funky and he rips off some more killer guitar. Platin has also been played for a long time and is another funky jammer and in the middle Ian and Claus put on djembes and have a little drum jam in the middle.. Yes.. they also do it here… New Land was one of the new songs they played a few years ago when Jeff King was playing drums in the band. He sadly passed away recently. Excellent song. Solid Underground is another old one and this has a great riff and the band rocks it hard as Claus rips it up on the guitar. The CD ends with Nearly There, the shortest track at 3 minutes. A great CD but the sound production is really dry sounding but the songs and the music are fresh and alive… If you like to hear some great guitar playing with a bit of a spacey edge at times, check out Elektrum. Great and solid playing by the rest of the band as well.. Can’t forget them…

Check out the band web site at: http://www.myspace.com/elektrum
Check out the record label web site at: http://www.stoneislandrecords.com

Reviewed by Scott Heller

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