The Norwegian formation Kerrs Pink was founded in 1973 and in 1980 the band released its eponymous debut album, followed by Mellow Oss in 1981, but one year later Kerrs Pink called it a day. In the early Nineties Kerrs Pink re-united and since then have delivered five studio albums with long breaks in between: this new album entitled Presence Of Life is from 2021, the previous effort Mystic Spirit (see review)from 2013!
Listening to this new Kerrs Pink album is like travelling back in time, to the glorious Seventies symphonic rock years, I love it, unsurpassed! The six compositions (between 4 and 13 minutes) feature a lush vintage keyboard sound (lots of Hammond, alongside Minimoog synthesizer and the Mellotron choir - and violin sections) and outstanding guitar playing, fuelled by a powerful rhythm-section, and topped with good English vocals, by Magic Pie singer Eirikur Hauksson, he has an obvious accent but sounds very inspired. The interplay is strong, very dynamic, especially between the harder-edged guitar and Hammond organ. Like the good old days of Uriah Heep (rocky side) and Focus (classical undertone). My highlights.
Away From Shadows starts with sumptuous Hammond organ and guitar, then majestic Mellotron choir and rock guitar riffs join, the interplay is powerful. Then a mellow part with warm vocals, and moving guitar. Halfway a wonderful Grand piano and Mellotron violins duet, again moving guitar joins. The classical undertone is obvious. Now we can enjoy 'Hammond Extravaganza', what an exciting sound! Finally sparkling piano runs, followed by an acceleration, in a bombastic atmosphere, the Hammond shines, again!
Luna is a short mellow piece, it contains fine interplay between guitar and piano, embellished with Mellotron choirs, and warm emotional vocals, simply beautiful.
Finally, the epic composition In Discipline And With Love, close to 13 minutes. First a slow rhythm featuring sensitive guitar and soaring Hammond, the interplay by the Hammond and guitar has a strong classical undertone, it sounds very dynamic. Now exciting Minimoog flights join, typical Old School prog, wow! Then a dreamy climate with warm vocals, piano, vocal harmonies, and in my opinion a steel guitar sound. Halfway lots of shifting moods, embellished with fat Minimoog runs, a fiery guitar solo with Hammond, again a majestic Mellotron choir sound, and finally delicate work on the Grand piano, between jazz and classical.
***+ Erik Neuteboom (edited by Dave Smith)
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