Album: The Return of the Sons of Ra

Artist: Bogdo Ula

Genre: Jazz, Jazz-Rock, Pop, Avant-garde Jazz

Started as a group of two artists in Finland, Bogdo Ula, (Samuli Kristian and Ivan Horder) became a free style music band mastering their work in jazz or psychdelic rock genres. After releasing 3 albums, they started learning the techniques of recording and mixing. Since their work was commented as mainstream and minimalistic, there was a need of bass player and soon they recruited Jean Ruin in their band. This changed their landscape and the music band soon got acknowledged across globe. Their music focussed on poetry and paintings, keeping Zappa’s idea intact and executing it by composing songs on one full take. After highly acclaimed and successful album, their fourth album and also the fourth as trio, “The Return of the Sons of Ra” was released in autumn 2013. With this album their imagination spread across cold interstellar panegyrics, to bustling deep space technical wizardry, in simple a musical time travel into space.

bogdo ula_the return of the sons of ra

Song Rating
Yours ’til the End of Dance ★★★★☆
Sons of Ra ★★★★☆
Killing Horizon ★★★½☆
Full Hypersurface ★★★★☆
Aludra ★★★★½
Io Gas & Coal Company Wish You Bon Voyage ★★★★☆
Arcs Come Down ★★★½☆
Flank Speed ★★★½☆
I Left Tomorrow ★★★½☆

Album Analysis:

1. Yours ’til the End of Dance

Their previous album ended on a high note thereby increasing the expectations on this album. Jazzing up with smart as well as intriguing (acoustics and bass) guitar and the whisper of beats from cymbals marks an interesting and mysterious start to their album. Definitely worth the wait.

2. Sons of Ra

Continuing from where they left in the previous track, you hear a well-crafted and very unconventional work in their second track. The Samuli Kristian guitar deserves a bundle of credit. The single notes from the acoustic guitar with the backing of bass guitar makes it perfect jazz thereby creating a perfect galaxy environment. As the tempo increases the beats sinks gradually aggravating an avant-garde jazz feel.

3. Killing Horizon

This is where you see the trio jam together to show their talent. As the jamming begins, a dusky mood is created. Jean Ruin bass is like jagged, while Kristain and Horder kill it with sharp rhythmic edge.

4. Full Hypersurface

This track starts on a spacious and silent note, the trio have made this one into an inevitable track. The pauses In between brings in the mystery and the mixing from the mid secession turns this into dark fusion. Ruin has maintained the balance between guitar and beats with his bass.

5. Aludra

The track picks up the peace and mood into the world of Jazz Rock genre. Kristain gives a 70s and 80s jazz feel, bass from ruin is tempting and Horder bears are synchronized and symmetric with the guitars. It drags and ends incomplete, which makes it a killer.

6. Io Gas & Coal Company Wish You Bon Voyage

This might be the first track that starts off with a melody. Kristain brings in a very rustic romantic vibe while Ruin and Horder back it with meteorite blasts in between pauses. It exhausts and relaxes the listeners. The end notes are rhyming and rhythmic.

7. Arcs Come Down

“Arcs Come Down” gives a space battle feel. With rocky guitar work and dribbling beats, this one is groovier. The intentions are clear and settled making it very ground approaching mix.

8. Flank Speed

“Flank

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Speed”- ironic to the name this one stars on very slow, tempting and guessing note. As it approaches beyond a minute, all that you hear it complete jam taken out of garage. Kristen tries hard to keep the track meaningful but it falls flat in places. This one turns into complete experimental track showcasing some of their creativity.

9. I Left Tomorrow

Another track which starts with whispering and a silent note. If not the improvisational nature of bass guitar this one doesn’t fall in as a jazz number. It does not seem to sync well. After listening to good jazz numbers in this album, “I Left Tomorrow” falls out of the pack and turns more like rock genre.

Album Verdict: Go for it!

Album Rating: ★★★★★★★★☆☆