GARMARNA  Guds Speleman

Try listening to this album on a sunny day, and soon the sun will fade, you'll realise that you are lost in a dark ancient forest, wolves will howl right near you, and one of those wolves will have a...

Try listening to this album on a sunny day, and soon the sun will fade, you'll realise that you are lost in a dark ancient forest, wolves will howl right near you, and one of those wolves will have a woman's voice.

Gamarma is a swedish band playing modern folk-music. Ancient scandinavian music is dark and powerful, it drives you far away from where you are, it drags you into the rythm and changes your world using some old magic. Garmarna plays old folk tunes in modern (but not pop) arangements, with traditional acoustic instruments (though electric guitars are also in use). Those old-time ballads about life and death with its deep sound seem to be a part of some dark ancient ritual. Someone said that Garmarna sounds like a twelfth-century version of Pink Floyd. Well Garmarna seems to come from the an abyss deeper than the abyss of time. Garmr is a name of a demonic wolf or hound who, according to the scandinavian mythology, guards the gates of Hell. Garmarna is the plural form for Garmr.

The group was formed in 1990. This release, 'Guds Spelemдn', was recorded in 1996 and won the Swedish Grammy award. The title of this album, 'God's Musicians', is rather gloomy: the wolves of Hell decided to play for God. They've done it brilliantly though, combining darkness and light, melancoly and beauty, Heaven's harmonies and Underworld's tunes.

According to the mythology, before the end of the world Garmr will escape and steal the Moon from the sky. Then the Sun will darken, the stars will fall down, and after that the gods will have a final fight with the beasts (Garmr among them). After this battle there will be no gods, no beasts, no people, and the Earth itself will vanish. I know the perfect accompanement for this last battle: Emma Hдrdelin's impassive voice and the dark music of Garmarna.

24.03.2000, Ксения РОЖДЕСТВЕНСКАЯ (ЗВУКИ РУ)