Bogdo Ula - "Charge" (Bogdo Ula 2010, BOGCD004)
Bogdo Ula - "Aerograd" (Bogdo Ula 2009, BOGCD003)

From Aural Innovations #42 (May 2011)

Bogdo Ula - "Charge"

From Finland, Bogdo Ula is the trio of Samuli Kristian on guitar, Ivan Horder on drums and bassist Jean Ruin. "Bogdo Ula uses free improvisation as a tool to express and convey emotion through music." CHARGE: Big heavy fusion rock, nice full sound, no vocals. Actually very pleasant so far! Only minimal visions of Musician and Guitar Player magazines staring back at me with their ugly Satriani and Malmsteen faces!! ULTRAVIOLET: I appreciate the improvisational spirit that has gone into these tracks but for my personal tastes it's too much in the 70's/80's mentality of macho guitar gods dressed in their black leather, swaddled in 4 necked 54 string guitars that cost 2.5 million dollars that once belonged to Yngwie's master teacher... Tho it's pleasant and very well done!? OMNOGOVI ZONE: I do appreciate that there are no ominous growly cookie monster vocals and that the music is simple and heartfelt! Some very pretty moments on this one. KLOBAR: More uptempo frenetics... quite a wall of sound for a trio. These guys would probably blow yer socks off live!?! STRATOSPHERE: More atmospheric abstract music in the "stratosphere"... I'm floating in space and can't find my lighter.... picks up the pace.... I found my lighter and I'm heading for the next planet. AMETHYST ROCK: Yes, it "rocks" like an amethyst...?!? More artful rocking that starts to be a bit noodley and samey! But if this is yer thang then it could never be too much!? PROTO-SUN: Again, we are floating thru jazz fusion space heading straight for the Proto-Sun but I will not burn up because the spirit of Frank Zappa has made me a protective "floating in space towards the sun" suit... yes, you have to have one out here... okay the "Guitar Player" magazine demons are starting to get me. NAUTICAL TWILIGHT: Yes, more of the same, I just don't know what to say, I surrender!!! Alternative/punk etc. never existed in this world. RA-UNION: Kinda cool, very retro... ya know I'm a good natured sort but I have to say this isn't Aurally Innovative, pleasant, well done, yes but... OLYMPIC WHITE: Last song, cool sound, late nite stillness... nice spooky slow, maybe I've been too harsh on these guys?! Nah!!!!

Bogdo Ula - "Aerograd"

Bogdo Ula on this one is the duo of Samuli Kristian on guitar and Ivan Horder on drums. FIREWHIRL: More lovely fusion as if the last 35 years of music evolution never happened. In the CD booklet there are written stories for each song. At first I assumed they were lyrics but every song is instrumental. HORIZON: Ambient noodle rock music, what I always try to get my musicians to not do. COSMIC STRING: Am I losing my marbles or is this CD player playing the same track over and over!??! Are these the leftovers from the other album?? The tracks that go nowhere and do nothing for no reason. Is this the soundcheck that got recorded? Oh no, it's the endless guitar noodle/doodle, I'm in hell... sorry for being so negative I really shouldn't be reviewing this. YARDANG" Uptempo doodling, the angry aggressive noodle. MOMENTS OF TURBULENCE: Oops, I missed a track but the good news is it doesn't really matter because they all sound exactly the same!!! REDSHIFT: The written stories about the inspiration for the "songs" are really much more interesting than the tracks themselves, so maybe they should have just recorded a vocal of the stories/observations?!?! I'm sure there are people out there who think this is pure genius, I'm just not one of those people!! I realize that my music tastes are drastically different from most people but I assume that's why I'm asked to do reviews?!? EDGE: This forever doodle is like if they got the kids on American Idol to instead of singing endless covers of Barry Manilow and Justin Timberlake got them to get down and funky/experimental with some Ella Fitzgerald skat singing! That seems like it would be an improvement but it really wouldn't be. Now, even my wife's complaining about it (the music) and she's a much nicer person than me who always tries to say something positive....

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Reviewed by Carlton Crutcher

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