Tuesday 30 October 2018

Hallas - Excerpts From A Future Past

Labels: The Sign Records
Formats: Vinyl/CD/Tape/Digital
Release Date: 13 Oct 2017


1. The Astral Seer
2. Repentance
3. Nebulon's Tower
4. The Golden City Of Semyra
5. Star Rider
6. Shadow Of The Templar
7. Illusion Sky

I've felt the need tonight to delve into something different and less abrasive. Swedish 70's hard-rock worshippers Hallas and their debut full-length from 2017 should do nicely. Release on Swedish retro/hard-rock/heavy metal label The Sign Records, it follows their 2015 self-titled EP. They're about to head out to support Graveyard on their Scandinavian tour, so they're keeping very esteemed company. 

There’s nothing wrong with venturing into territory that’s easier on the ears from time to time. Retro rock (as some like to call it) is really growing thanks to a huge number of bands from across the globe, with Scandinavia very much at it’s forefront. Hallas is a band that’s gathering more momentum and it’s easy to see (and hear) why as album opener The Astral Seer brims with progression. keyboard flourishes and clean singing that hasn’t been affected by the usual Americanisation. It’s all very natural sounding and true to heart.

With Repentance, Hallas increase the length of their instrumental passages and layers, enhancing their music with subtle psychedelia, while vocalist/bassist Tommy Alexandersson sounds akin to Sting during his days in The Police when he reaches the higher registers. Nebulon’s Tower is an engrossing instrumental piece that highlights the folk-elements within their sound. “Excerpts From A Future Past” is very much an album for people who genuinely like music. There’s so much musicality present on songs like The Golden City Of Semyra that it’s so easy to get sucked in to it all. Again, the band’s progression is present as well a tempered but meatier percussion element, which give the music extra bite. 

Nicklas Malmqvist’s keyboard work that opens Star Rider is ridiculous, as it breezes through the scales from low to high. This is a super catchy song with some nice pop-like melodies and crunching guitars. I’m not afraid to say that It’s got me feeling quire sleepy in a cosy sort of way. Before you know it (or if you’re in a completely blissful trance), penultimate song Shadow Of The Templar is whisking you off on a journey into the star-filled night sky of the album’s cover. There’s a slight cosmic feel to it all and an upbeat one at that. The album’s final song Illusion Sky is a slower and more melodramatic song. Ultimately, it sums up the Hallas signature sound perfectly and rounds out a record that’s definitely worth more dues than it’s received so far. There are times when a different perspective is needed and this record gives you that without being showy or obtuse. Fantastic.

You can stream and download "Excerpts From A Future Past" via The Sign Records here:-

Physical copies are still available to purchase here - https://freighttrain.se/en/the-sign-record/

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