The Quill – Earthrise

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This band brings back a lot of memories, one of those is the interview I’ve done with singer Magnus Ekwall and bassist Roger Nιlsson in Manchester in the backstage area of one of their shows supporting Monster Magner 15 or more odd years ago…

In between I have to admit that I wasn’t paying much attention what they were up to, so listening to their new album was a great chance to reconnect! And I am glad that I had the chance to listen to their new work, which is amazing.

First of all, Magnus’ voice sounds great with its very beautiful tone and its unlimited potential, which gets better as he is growing older. Then, it’s the band’s music that stands out from miles away from the swampy “stoner” tag they usually throw at them. Christian Carlsonn’s guitar parts is an excellent study of Tony Iommi, as well as Mick Box, that gentle giant who is rarely given the credit he deserves for his work on the classic ‘70s Heep albums that carved the way inspiring many younger players.

The Quill has always been a Sabbath heavy rock kind of band, but they also bring several other elements that play an important role in their musical approach. Their arrangements are daring, the changes in the tempo and melodies are constant and their dedication to the essence and the songs’ needs is enviable. But, most importantly they know how to make songs that can “breathe”, with everything having their time and space, making them more dramatic.

The most characteristic example it’s the 7-minute epic “Dwarf Planet”, which kicks off with a slow hypnotic tempo which builds up to mountains of riffs. Also, the almost 10-minute long “Evil Omen” follows the same recipe with an impressive shaping up of the melody, which at its most dynamic part flirts with psychedelia. The album is not lacking fast songs, with “Keep On Moving” and the title track being the most noteworthy.

So far, “Earthrise” is one of the best albums of the year…