Understand The World (LP)

Metal Temple

Grade: 10/10 – MASTERPIECE

For me the 70s was the best era for Metal and Rock music. Most of the Metal and Rock we hear today was originated by past bands of these special times like DEEP PURPLE, LED ZEPPELIN, RUSH and many more. Back then most bands used slight overdrive and many Keyboards (organ style). I have heard that there has been a gradual awaking lately with bands that play similar patterns of vintage Rock / Metal, one of the many have been THREE SEASONS. The band originates from Sweden, yes the same country that has been playing a huge role in the Glam Metal / Hard Rock renaissance. However, it seems that Sweden has other music abilities.

The first song “Set In Stone” immediately sent me back to 70s Hammond / electric piano of DEEP PURPLE and I was amazed. The song is classic Psychedelic Rock and if nobody told me that I was listening to an album from 2012, I would have probably said that it’s an 70s album, wow that’s impressive. “Searching” starts with a nice drumming, Psychedelic Punk styled guitars, once again amazing keyboards and with a mellow riff. In overall, it is a pretty solid song. “Far As Far Can Be” is an amazing ballad with harmonic vocals and nice guitar riffing. I listened to this song for like four times in a row, sending me back to DEEP PURPLE / GRATEFUL DEAD, the song again in cooperates amazing psychedelic riffing and great Keyboard work. If you like PINK FLOYD and GRATEFUL DEAD don’t miss “Understand The World” with an ambient atmosphere. More Metal, heavy Rock pops up on “I Would Be Glad” with a classic 70s vintage Metal sound. For me it was the best song on the album. When I saw that there is a song with a name of a lady I immediately thought about “Lalena”, however “Maria” is an instrumental track. It showcases the band’s ability in playing epoch Rock music with yet again amazing riffing, guitar strumming and divine keyboards. “Can’t Let Go” is a must catchy song and a Solid 70s experience.

I got to say wow , these guys threw me back forty years and because of them I had to dig up all my 70s mp3s on my CPU. I got really emotional there by the great music by amazing artists; I sure will try and keep up with this band. For me it is masterpiece, for you it depends. If you like 70s Metal you would be shocked in a good way. If not, you will be grateful that we still have bands that are willing to play this divine style of music.

www.metal-temple.com

DME Music

Grade: 5/5

Wish coming true, three alchemists from Sweden purify their winning formula.

Innovation isn’t this Swedish band’s forte who are all the better for it. Singing guitarist Sartez Faraj, bassist Olle Risberg and drummer Christian Eriksson firmly seize their own – and the kindred spirits’ multitude’s – thirst for classic hard rock devoid of its later metallic restrictions and deliver exactly what might quench such desire on an epic scale. From the organ and guitar unison of “Set In Stone” on, the trio harness the soulful panache of bell-bottom swing and never shy from a catchy chorus inside a swirling wigout. So if there’s some repetition in the wah-wah-smeared “Searching” or the instant hit “I Would Be Glad”, it only reinforces the songs’ live feel, especially when the groove slows down.

But it’s in the ballads that the group’s melodic verve shines the brightest, as “Far As Far Can Be” wraps its delicacy in acoustic web that, almost invisibly, turns into a gilded, Hammond-rattling cage. The bars forming a sharp riff, “Ain’t Got Time” is the heaviest piece on offer and can easily challenge any old time stomper for the sheer memorability of interplay which intensifies blissfully and switches the rhythmic gear until its climax leaves the listener begging for more. And the more comes with the wordless magic of “Maria” and title track where the lucid electric gauze thickens into a picturesque, layered folk tapestry with a dose of acid fizz for dramatic effect, before the highly charged “Can’t Let Go” brings things to a close with a loose bluesy drive. It’s as irresistible as it gets, so the worldly understanding is mutual.

www.dmme.net

Proggnosis

This one is a no brainer. Swedish band Three Seasons plays some killer late sixties early seventies Blues inspired Psychedelic Hard Rock. For me it is clear that the band that inspired them the most is Deep Purple, and Three Seasons are better than Deep Purple has been on many of their albums (mostly from 1980 on) and just about as good as on their great ones.

Understand the World gives us 8 tracks, all in the 5 to 8 minutes range, all having some fantastic Hammond organ driving the songs, Blackmore inspired guitar and a rythm section that supports the music perfectly. Add to that powerful vocals that really fit with the music (sung in English with no noticable accent) and a live  feel to their sound with crisp clear production… and what else do you want? Perhaps some excellent and totaly original compositions? Well there you have it!!

If you are a fan of that muscular heavy and hard sound of  that great era of the early seventies, Understand the World is an album you don’t want to miss.

My highest recommendation indeed!

www.proggnosis.com

Sea of Tranquility

Grade: 4.5/5

If you love ’70s styled hard rock dripping with Hammond organ and heavy rock guitar work, and happened to miss out on Swedish act Three Seasons’ previous release Life’s Road, fret not, because they have a brand new one out called Understanding the World which ups the ante even further. Though the whole retro thing coming out of Sweden is certainly not anything new or groundbreaking, but if you crave those vintage sounds, bands like Three Seasons are certainly scratching that itch.

Comprised of just Sartez Faraj (guitars, vocals), Olle Risberg (bass), and Christian Eriksson (drums), Three Seasons certainly have a full, rich, and powerful sound, which can be compared to Deep Purple, Uriah Heep, Grand Funk Railroad, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Cactus, Iron Butterfly, Humble Pie, and Vanilla Fudge. At the core of the sound are the commanding Hammond organ (not sure who plays that here) and beefy guitar riffs & tasty solos. Tunes like “Set In Stone” and “Searching” are steeped in blues rock, psychedelia, and hard rock, with Faraj’s powerful vocals and sizzling licks playing off the swirling Hammond, and the awesome instrumental “Maria” is a like a long lost Deep Purple track circa 1969, with mesmerizing Blackmore & Lord styled guitar & Hammond passages. The atmospheric “Far As Far Can Be” will take you back to late ’60s psychedelia, while “Ain’t Got Time” and “I Would Be Glad” are thumping blues/boogie/funk laden hard rockers that will prompt you to get out your air guitar, raise your fist in the air, headbang, and get your groove on. 7-minute closer “Can’t Let Go” is like the perfect marriage of Cactus, Deep Purple, Grand Funk, and Humble Pie, a real swinging, heavy rockin’ affair filled with catchy grooves, crunchy riffs, tasty Hammond, and soulful vocals.

To be honest, I really dug Life’s Road a lot, but Understanding the World takes this style to another level. This is just a fun, heavy rocking good time from start to finish, a feast for Hammond & guitar lovers, and anyone who likes their hard rock to contain plenty of groove. More please!

www.seaoftranquility.org

Paranoid Hitsophrenic

Grade: 4/5

Three Seasons is a three piece progressive rock band from Sweden who play it old school. Understand the World is their second full-length album, released on Transubstans Records.

Opening track “Set In Stone” firmly establishes the band as modern day prog peddlars with plenty of odd time signatures, effect-laden vocals and organ freakouts.  The band plays the freshest and best brand of uncompromisingly heavy prog this side of 1971.  In truth, Three Seasons plays some of the most authentically early 70s sounding rock out there.

“Searching” is simply one of the best discoveries of the past month or so and one of the better songs of the year.  The band lays out a hard rock riff along the lines of classic Leaf Hound or Captain Beyond, heavy with stop-start funk, before slowing their step a touch for a slow groove that builds subtly back to the main riff to close the song out.  This song is destined for great things in the Doom Charts.  “I Would Be Glad” is another heavy highlight.

Not content however to just stick to one style, the band shows plenty of versatility and variation throughout the disc, as evidenced by “Far As Far Can Be” which brings out the band’s more intimate and softer side, a side of the band that will come to dominate most of the middle of the record.  Three Seasons do understand dynamics by slowly building back up to a hard rock finish.  Though they show a great flare for the proggy dramatic, the band is more than a cobbled together collection of odd timings and organ swells, there is a genuine catchiness to many of the songs.  “Ain’t Got Time” is proof of that as I guarantee the line “Deep Down in the Hole” will get caught in your head after a couple of plays.  Be forewarned.

They don’t waste time either, never losing control over their compositions.  At just a pinch under 8 minutes, the title track is the longest song on the album and this is due more to it being played at a slower tempo than it having gone pear shaped and unwieldy from being over written.  They do have a penchant for writing longer songs, and they are all highly structured and they have left room for themselves for soloing and improvisation, but overall, they are highly structured songs.

The album closes in fine fashion with “Can’t Let Go”, the band getting back to the hard rock groove that had been established early on in the album.  The song also features a great Chuck Berry-like guitar solo in the middle, that is a true solo by the strictest definition, meaning unaccompanied.  The other instruments jam back in for a big finish.

It’s safe to say the band knows what they’re doing and they do it in a controlled, directed manner.  That said, there’s still a lot of ‘feel’ to the playing and a sense of fun.  In other words it’s not one of those stuffy prog albums that takes itself too seriously, but it is something that a lot of hard work went into.

Highlights include: “Searching” and “Set In Stone”

theparanoidmusicblog.blogspot.se

Sweden Rock Magazine

Grade: 7

Blues-based, heartfelt, heavy and nostalgic. There we got the adjectives to describe the Heby-oriented trio Three Seasons, who now follows up their debut-album ”Life’s Road” with even more of the ”new-yet-old”. The band got their roots firmly hammered into the early 70’s, and like a cross-fertilisation between Black Crowes and Deep Purple, they mix the rawness of rough bluesy rock with beautifully quasi-classical elements.

It’s natural for Three Seasons that a big fat 12-bar blues like ”Ain’t Got Time” is followed by the moodily beauteous ”Understand The World”, dominated by a melody-friendly 6/8-beat (although a blues-solo is put in here too, which is a drawback).

To me, the very peak of the album is the magical, instrumental ”Maria”. It seems to be brought in from the small church by the village, but also from the dance barn in the middle of the forest, and its devoutly aching guitar solos get the thoughts to whirl towards the softer, more melancholy 70’s of Ritchie Blackmore. Another sound in the organ pipes though when the ending ”Can’t Let Go” snorts like a rutting, feral bull.

(For a photo of the review, click here)

Artrock.se

Grade: 9/10

I don’t know what the thing was with the Three Seasons debut album ”Life’s Road” that arrived last year. It has time after time sucked me back in, although I wasn’t overwhelmed at the time of the review. The same goes for the sequel ”Understand the World” which is now here, but this time it didn’t take me as long until I ”got it”. Their ingenuous way of taking on the classic 70’s rock is right up my alley. And that the music is draped with even more hammond organ than before is also a massive plus in my book. Now we get to take part of the groovy and riffy rock as it is thought. We get an organ which time after time duels with the guitar, while at the same time giving it support. A not completely unknown duo named Jon Lord and Ritchie Blackmore often fiddled pottered with this, with a famous result. As such, I most often think about Deep Purple when Three Seasons play their music for me. But it isn’t fair to stop there, since I just as often think about Uriah Heep’s heavy groove or the dynamics of Led Zeppelin. And we mustn’t forget some The Doors-trippiness and the progressive vein hinting that Gov’t Mule can be found in the band members’ record collections. But I have already mentioned these big names in earlier reviews of the records from this band. We just have to accept that you can’t play the good old heavy rock without being compared with the big names. But I want to emphasise that Three Seasons have found something that is their own, and they should absolutely not be though of as an imitation.

Actually ”Understand The World” doesn’t differ a whole lot from it’s predecessor except that the boys have now taken another step up on the quality ladder. The compositions feel more elaborate, the dissolute jam parts fit better into the whole and overall, everything feels more substantial. Just as before, it is the wholeness of the album that sucks me in. We are ferried through strong up-tempo rock songs to more well-balanced, progressive pieces where the band is jamming in a controlled manner. Everything fits together in a distinct way which makes it difficult to mention any single songs. But that doesn’t matter, because for the 50 minutes this trio gets to reign, I enjoy every second, and surely that’s the point of music? Either way, I’ve now got the thing with Three Seasons and I’ll advice those of you who appreciate riffy, jammy and down-to-earth 70’s rock to check out this band too.

www.artrock.se

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