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På skive


«Tell Us»

The Swedish quartet Goran Kajfeš Tropiques – bandleader-trumpeter-synth player Goran Kajfeš, keyboard player Alex Zethson, double bass player Johan Berthling and drummer Johan Holmegard, was formed in 2011 when Kajfeš was commissioned to compose and perform music to a performance by the Swedish modern dance company Vindhäxor. Tell Us is the third album of Tropiques, the first one that is not released by Kajfeš’ label, Headspin Recordings, but by the Finnish We Jazz, and presents an augmented version of Tropiques with violinist  Josefin Runsteen and cellist Leo Svensson Sander.

The musicians of Tropiques, the core quartet and its expanded version, are key members of the Swedish creative and alternative music scene and play in such groups as Fire! Orchestra and the Fire! trio, Ghosted, Gard Nilssen’s Supersonic Orchestra, Dungen and Oddjob as well as Goran Kajfeš’s Subtropic Arkestra. Tell Us suggests three hypnotic and seductive, groove-based extended pieces, all credited to Tropiques.

Tropiques takes its time in developing its sensual and infectious, layered grooves. The opening piece «Unity In Diversity» develops its sensual and caressing theme like an exotic, snake-charming dance, exposing cleverly and methodically its hypnotizing-psychedelic spells and leaving enough space for the six musicians to introduce their own incantations that lift the minimalist theme off the ground. The following «Magmatique» offers a more rhythmic groove but still stresses Tropiques’ collective limitless urge for untimely, atmospheric sonic exploration. The third and last piece «Prije i posle» (Before and after in Croatian. Kajfeš family roots are Croatian) blossoms like a flower that reveals its many beauties, with each element and layer growing out of what has come before and adding a driving, emotional powers to its hypnotic groove.

Tropiques offers a perfect antidote for the quick-fix eye candy rolling down your smartphone screen. Trade Tropiques for the exploitative social media apps and stay connected with the organic grooves of Tropiques instead of the superficial ones of greedy conglomerates.

Eyal Hareuveni

Goran Kajfeš (trumpet, synthesizer), Alexander Zethson (piano, organ, synthesizer), Johan Berthling (double bass), Johan Holmegard (drums), Josefin Runsteen (violin), Leo Svensson Sander (cello)