Swedish rock/grunge band Oblivious’ latest is an 8-track gem of 70s hard and balladic rock with a grunge echo in the vocal of Isak, specifically Layne Staley and Josh Homme, but I’m sure others will hear others and veer more to the rock precursors. C’est la vie.
Opener Silver Tongue certainly posits the hard rock credentials with pounding riff and percussive cow-bell, but the soft-rock harmonies also hint at the grunge duality. Second Strike Gold is more grunge to the fore – but I could get lost in these distinctions so suffice to say it is another fine song. Third Deluded Darling opens with a Hendrix wah wah riff, and opening line ‘an enigma wrapped in a riddle’ is perhaps the least original of the formulaic – if successful – aspects of this generic sound. I like fourth BjalkenI Ditt Oga particularly, a pretty ballad highlighting the excellence of Isak’s vocal, and working engagingly in the band’s native language. Fifth What A Trip returns rocking, then sixth By The Neck slows to another beautiful ballad at its start – reminding of early Alice In Chains – then breaks into a pounding riff. Seventh You Are The Wall is all rock anthem, and closer Entering The Night showcases acoustic guitar and reasonably complex, sustained melodic harmonising.
My kind of music.