Crash Nomada
Atlas Pogo

1. From town to town
2. Leila
3. Watcha gonna do with yr life
4. Dustbin of history
5. Embrace the chaos
6. Golondrina blues
7. Bring 'em down
8. Mayflies
9. False unity
10. Itineranza
11. Renegade democracy
12. Welcome to Europe

Ragnar Bey (Vocals & Saz-Cümbüs)
Toro (Drums)
Tomo (Bass)
John Hagenby (Guitar & Saz-Cümbüs)
Walter Salé (Accordion)
Dolores (Trumpet)

Exile Deluxe (as Dorlene Love 2008)



Released 28/3-2012
Reviewed 17/5-2012


This February we had a release from Century Media called "oriental metal", which is a compilation album of orientalish metalish bands (ish) - or at least bands doing songs in oriental (ish) metal (ish) style (ish?). One month later this album was released by the band previously known as Dorlene Love and here we're served oriental music mixed with balkan tones, African rhythms and folk music in generall. I'm baffled - where did this wave of world music come from?

Based in Sweden, Chrash Nomada has grown to be a world act not only due to their world (ish) music but also in popularity. Outside Sweden they have lots of fans and their music is signified by the use of "unusual" instruments like accordation, trumpet and saz-cümbüs (which is a form of Turkish guitar, I'd describe it… ish). Their rhythms are mainly inspired by music from the Mediterranean Sea and the Middle East. However, the music feels far from a cultural chaos because this is integration at its finest - at least in the tracks where they succeed to make everything work. Like the opening song From Town To Town and later tracks like Mayflies and Iteranza. Unfortunately I can't say that these are the songs that springs to mind when I'm thinking of the album even though they are my fondest memory. Instead I remember the boring song Golondrina Blues and the eleven minute long concluder Welcome To Europe as I'm thinking of 'Atlas Pogo' and that memory consist of weary music with lots of accordation and not brilliant in the stereo.

Since the album has been available some time now I've taken the time to look around the Interweb for reviews and what most reviewers seems to be agreeing of is that this band works better live than on album. And even though I haven't seen them live, I'm prepared to agree with them. However, this isn't the kind of music that I normally spend my time with and it seems like more reviewers than I have that problem. perhaps this is because of Crash Nomada and their music being so unique? Maybe… But my problem is that I'm not normally engaged with this kind of folk punk or world music, whatever you'd like to call them. Still, I think 'Atlas Pogo' do shine from time to time and except for the already mentioned three songs there are Watcha Gonna Do With Yr life and Bring Ém Down that works really well with their nice flow and delightful rhythms, all though not being perfect songs for any occasion. The music is clearly made for physical movement and dancing and they are packed with joy and optimism to those ready to embrace it. But I still think these songs would work better outside in summer sun on a stage where these Mediterranean rhythms can wash over you like a wave from the sea washes over you on a beach in Dubrovnik.

I think 'Atlas Pogo' is an interesting and good album but I can't help feeling that this album doesn't really have what I'm looking for in an album. Some songs are good, the production is decent and they have their own style, but the twelve tracks that makes the album feels a bit too much for me. Not that 52 1/2 minute necessarilly means it's too long, but here it does and I think the main reason for that is the almost eleven minutes long concluder that isn't just long but also quite dull. And that's never a good combination. The vocals isn't exactly what I would call excellent either but Ragnar has a personal and charismatic voice which is important as well. Instrumentally I can't say I'm too reliable since I'm no expert in many of these instruments and music where it's used but I think they sound pretty good the way they are all though it gets a bit too much sometimes. Overall though I think it works pretty good.

So, the first Dorlene Love album as Crash Nomada… A decent album, all though no masterpiece. But it's not trash either and had they left the last song on the drawing board I think they'd earned another H as well. However, in the current form I think 'Atlas Pogo' has my approval without golden stars but I think these new songs will make them shine even brighter live now than they've done before… ish.



Label: Transnational Records/Cosmos/Triada
Three similar bands: The Clash/Mano Negra/Gogol Bordello
Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Recensent: Caj Källmalm

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