Henry Miller hosts another killer lineup led by Dungen.
Thursday, September 23, 2010
The music of red-hot Swedish band Dungen arrives like a landslide of literary devices: juxtaposition, alliteration, metaphor, allegory and hyperbole which transform into complex musical expressions. In this group’s world, a Keith Moon-like drum fill can snuggle up to a docile flute as if they were destined to be together.
It’s only fitting that Dungen’s recent album is titled Skit i allt (Swedish for F*** It All), a most appropriate motto for music that follows untraditional paths and has no boundaries.
As subversive as the group’s sixth LP is, it’s still a departure from their previous work. It’s even more experimental.
“[Skit i allt] doesn’t have a collage vibe,” says frontman Gustav Ejstes after a gig in Memphis, Tennessee. “It’s more solid than the other records but at the same time there’s improvisation.”
The opening track, “Vara Snabb (Be Quick),” is a jazzy Mahavishnu Orchestra instrumental led by sharp percussion in the spirit of Art Blakey.
“The drummer played this jazzy groove for me and I had this song that fit perfectly,” Ejstes says.
It’s as simple as that for the multi-instrumental talent to write a song. Ejstes – known in many circles as a musical prodigy – grabs ideas and motivation from the most unlikely sources, like hip-hop. In early September, Ejstes had a chance to rub elbows with one of his hip-hop heroes at All Tomorrow’s Parties.
“I got a record sleeve signed by DJ Kool Herc,” he says excitedly. “I saw his set and it was unreal; I don’t know if I was dreaming or not but it was him, a true creator.”
Ejstes’ innovative music may not sound anything like the hip-hop of DJ Kool Herc, but both musicians share the same attitude when it comes to music: Skit i allt.