Swedish multi-instrumentalist Rikard Sjöblom recently announced his new album under the Gungfly moniker, ‘Alone Together’. Set for release on the 4th September 2020, it follows an extremely productive past few years, whether it be working with English progressive rockers Big Big Train, or taking the lead with Gungfly.
Today sees the launch of the video for the epic title track of the album, and you can watch the clip created by Crystal Spotlight here:
Rikard comments: “Alone Together is a song about loss, about not being able to take care of your child because of mental Illness and being forced to put them in an institution or a care home. Musically it’s an adventurous piece for me, I wanted to mix many different styles and sounds and I even ended up growling a little which I haven’t done since Beardfish days. I also mixed that with surf guitars and ballad piano... go figure!”
Rikard comments: “I started writing these songs about a year ago but then it took some time to get started with the production because I had two tours lined up, one with Big Big Train in November and then opening solo for The Flower Kings on their European tour in December. After that my focus shifted back to Gungfly and it felt really nice so it all came together pretty fast!”
‘Alone Together’ saw Gungfly recording as a trio, with brothers and previous collaborators Petter and Rasmus Diamant on drums and bass respectively. “It was a lot of fun playing both keyboards and guitar because I had come up with a lot of nice parts but I knew early on that I wanted to make the album with the brothers on drums and bass – luckily they were very up for it!” This ‘power-trio’ have focussed on the rock this time, and you can hear that loud and clear: “I didn’t want to smother the production with layers upon layers of keyboards and bells and whistles but instead tried to keep it prog rock with the focus on ROCK. I wanted every instrument to mean something in the mix.” This is evident on tracks like ‘Happy Somewhere In Between’ and the 13-minute epic ‘Traveler’, where Gungfly have never hit harder.
The album cover features a painting by American artist Kevin Sloan (The Flower Kings). Rikard comments of the piece: “I had just written lyrics for the song ‘From Afar’ and was looking at Kevin’s paintings when I came across this one and I couldn’t believe the connection, particularly the lyric 'A million eyes watching glimpses of each other’s lives'”.
The full track-listing for the album is as follows:
2. Happy Somewhere In Between
3. Clean as a Whistle
4. Alone Together
5. From Afar
6. On The Shoulders Of Giants
7. Grove Thoughts (Bonus Track)
8. Shoulder Variations (Bonus Track)
Rikard Sjöblom is perhaps best known as the multi-instrumentalist frontman of Beardfish, who established themselves as one of the most consistently brilliant modern-day progressive rock bands over the course of eight studio albums. In recent years, he has also become known for his work with English progressive collective Big Big Train, playing live with them as well as performing on their recent studio albums.
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