Hoven Droven — Hippa
(NorthSide NSD6062, 2001, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2001-12-01Well, I'm not sure I wanted a "kinder, gentler" Hoven Droven, but that's what we've all got on their 2001 release. It's not entirely acoustic, though the electric guitar is rather subdued, appearing only here and there, and fiddles and sax take the lead roles. Drums, while often present, never approach what you'd call rock. It's a pleasant enough album, with catchy hummable tunes and that peculiar Nordic way of being both lilting and melancholy simultaneously, but it does significantly lack most of the things which make Hoven Droven special to me. As long as this turns out to be a diversion rather than a new direction, and the band either returns to their previously aggressive mode or moves on to something new which is equally exciting, Hippa will seem like a quiet diversion. If it signals a new direction, however, they run the risk of disappearing into the bulk of the Nordic revival, another good but not outstanding proponent of Swedish traditional music slightly reinterpreted. Even the heaviest rock musicians sometimes take an afternoon off from the noise, so I can't begrudge these guys this set, and I won't hesitate to recommend it to fans. If you haven't heard Hoven Droven yet, I'd recommend starting with one of their first two albums – unless you're coming at the band from the folk side rather than the rock side, in which case you can start here.
Related artist(s): Hoven Droven
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more