The latest album from West Of Eden, entitled Rollercoaster (Reactive
Records (Sweden), is the second from this six-piece Celtic crossover
group. Comprised of twelve average length tracks, the band has developed
their sound, making it even more accessible than on their self-titled
Fronted by stunning vocalist Jenny Schaub who also plays accordion, the
band also consists of Martin Schaub (piano, keyboard, acoustic guitar,
mandolin, harmony vocals, accordion and additional electric guitar), Lars
Borg (bass), David Ekh (electric guitars, dobro, e-box, nylon-stringed
guitars), Ola Karlevo (drums, percussion) and Tobias Edvardson (fiddle
and harmony vocals). Guest performances by David Stiernholm (whistles,
oboe) and Jorgen Fischer (Uillean pipes), Sventa Gustafsson (bodhran) and
others as well as a four-piece a string ensemble on four of the tracks
round out the album's lineup. The album was written by Martin and Jenny
The upbeat title track that reintroduces familiar audiences to Jenny's
sweet voice opens the album. Layers of harmony vocals and traditional instrumentation
blend during the chorus contributing to the accessibility of the band's
sound. "The One" and "Hold Your Horses" continue to
develop the band's accessible sound, uptempo with richly arranged vocals
and lush arrangements blending modern with traditional instruments.
The traditional folk-oriented ballad "(I Still Remember) How To Forget" begins
with a calling whistle part before Jenny's gentle lead vocal begins to
carry the tune. A contemporary arrangement of traditional instruments during
the bridge is highly notable. "Short & Sweet" and "Mandolin
Song" are similarly arranged but are both vocally more delicate. Jenny's
vocals in "My Alien" are delightful and are mixed way up; the
acoustic guitar is wonderful. The "Crescent Moon" and "The
Swings" ballads are quite enjoyable with Jenny's vocals being perfectly
complimented by the supporting arrangements, especially in the tracks'
The upbeat tunes "In A Little While" and Corrs-like "Didn't
You, Didn't I" balance pop accessibility with folk roots in typical
West of Eden style blending traditional with modern instrumentation. Instrumental
work in the bridge of each track is especially notable. The album closes
with an everso quiet ballad entitled "Just That I Love You" dominated
by Jenny's vocals with very light, almost non-existent instrumental backing.
You can find out a lot more about West of Eden at their website <http://www.westofeden.com>.
There you'll find photos, further information, soundbites and ordering
information. A most enjoyable follow-up album perfectly blending stunning
vocals with traditional and modern instrumentation, this new one from West
of Eden is worth a trans-Atlantic journey and is a must listen!
- Musical Discoveries