In a time when swedish rock music has found its praise across the ocean in the Uk, and mostly in America, I think it
is only fair that I write a bit about one of those rock bands that have broken through over there and across Europe.
Soundtrack Of Our Lives.
A band formed in 1995 in Goteborg (Gothenburg). The second most important music town after Umea.
Stockholm has never been the place to find swedish music in by the way.
Even though the bricks were layed way before 1995,
in the shape of the band called Union Carbide Productions. That band was consisting of some of the members that would form
TSOOL. UCP claimed a fairly good reputation and are always found on lists over greatest swedish rock bands. America was in
love with them as well. Which could be a ground stone in why TSOOL has been so successful over there as well.
albums UCP was no more and after a couple of years Bjorn Olsson, who had left UCP after two albums, called Ebbot Lundberg
and asked if maybe they should form a band.
Ebbot was just about to have a long rest, walk the mountains and sail the seas,
but the love for music was too strong and he said yes.
After leaving UCP, Bjorn had demoed alot of songs and those were
now the ground parts in the new sounds that Ebbot and him started to shape and create.
They recruited Ian, guitarist, from
UCP as well and Martin Hederos, keyboards, Fredrik Sandsten, drums, and Kalle Gustafsson, bass, from other crashed bands.
1996 they released a Vinyl and an EP and they got a record deal and released their first album, Welcome To The Infant Freebase.
It took Sweden with a storm. It was just a matter of time until people understood the although brutal, but incredibly beautiful
rock that TSOOL was making.
Even though at first TSOOL wanted to release a CD Box Set, due to all the songs they had recorded,
around 70, but the record label refused. So they said they wanted to release a double cd and be the first band in the world
to debut with a double cd, but again the record label refused. So sadly(?) it just became a single cd. But what a cd it was.
still contained 20 songs. From ballads to all and out punk rock songs.
A total success and confirmed that Swedish rock
could still produce some fantastic music.
After a succesful winter the tensions in the band became too big and Bjorn left
the band, again so to speak.
A new guitarist, Mattias Bjared from Hederos old band joined just before the whole band would
crack and TSOOL managed to live on.
In the start of 1997 TSOOL made their first attempt on England. They played some rather
praised gigs alongside Hurricane #1.
Later in the year the follow up album was recorded.
Extended Revelation (For the
Psychic Weaklings of the Western Civilation) was released and it didn't become as big of a hit as expected. The sound was
calmer and more psychedelic. A lot of stuff that didn't make it on the first album was put on this instead.
the release TSOOL had been in England again, this time as the support band for Kula Shaker.
In spring of 1998 the real
England focusing started. With the relase of the album and a tour the english press became lyrical and swarmed around TSOOL.
In Sweden the hype was starting to be put on a high but 'calm' level which came to a very anti climatix end of the year when
the Swedish Grammy Awards nominated TSOOL for the best Heavy Metal Band. Which as Ebbot said "They could have nominated us
for the Nobel Prize for Chemistry and it would have been the same". It was a total disgrace and a big stir in the press. Luckely
TSOOL didn't win.
During the summer of 1999 they toured Europe as the support band for the Cardigans.
So finally, after
a calm time in Sweden, when TSOOL mostly concentrated on their abroad 'needs', Behind The Music was released in early 2001.
Even though not as strong as their debut it became a huge hit in Sweden. They toured and got known as one of the best live
bands. (Even though they had been that for many years.)
And again it was time to focus on the abroad market. The help would
come from a very unexpected side. Noel Gallagher and Oasis.
But with consisting touring and big dreams of becoming as big
as their heroes they finally broke through for definite in the summer of 2002. Even though they got alot of hype before, the
tour with Oasis was the final touch.
And now this upcoming spring of 2003 The Soundtrack Of Our Lives are set to crack
America for sure. With tv apperances and a massive US Tour coming up all is set to be the King Road that TSOOL have always
wanted from the start.
Make as many people as possible hear their fabolous rock music.
So a bit of a personal view then on what TSOOL has made so far.
I am still slightly surprised that Behind
The Music became TSOOL's break through across the world, because their debut album is just so much better. Not saying BTM
is a bad piece of work, cos it is not. With songs like Sister Surround and Tonight it is quite hard to fail.
To the Infant Freebase is just so much more.
It is the album which defines everything that Soundtrack Of Our Lives always
have stood for. A psychedelic and heavier Rolling Stones practically.
It is though a very dark album. It has something
hanging over it that is hard to define. Maybe exactly a Soundtrack of our lives and society in the mid 90's. But if you let
the album live with you for a while, letting it free to breath alongside you, you finally discover a massive treasure. As
mentioned it contains 20 songs so it is a difficult album in that aspect of it too, but underneath it all lays a glittering
work. Songs like Instant Repeater '99, Gran Canaria, and foremost the incredible, and top 5 swedish rock songs ever, Firmament
Vacation, makes 'Welcome..' to a milestone in rock history.
Extended Revelation (For the Psychic Weaklings of the Western Civilation) is the weakest of TSOOL's albums
even though it has that incredible title. Slower and even more darker makes it just a bit too filled with slush. But you can
still find the shining diamonds here and there as for example the first single from that album entitled Black Star.
With Soundtrack Of Our Lives touring so much they got more known after a while as the greatest swedish live
band. Always putting on a fun and interesting show. With the excentric Ebbot leading the concerts to the heights of course.
Behind The Music came out the expectations had gone up again due to the live factor. And it is, as I have said earlier, a
better work than their second album, but it is slightly too long. A factor that TSOOL always have not taken into consideration.
The album has some weak songs which drags down the album but it is a fairly consistent work.
And what is most important,
it proves that TSOOL has never been a one hit wonder and that they are here to stay for a long time more. Because what is
Sweden when you can have the world?
"They're gonna build a brand new planet
They're gonna leave for another world
They're gonna build a brand new
And leave us all here on our own
Just like they did before
They're gonna build a new dimension
And make a Soundtrack of Our Lives
They're gonna build a new dimension
drill a hole of the imaginary time
They say we're part of an alien nation
Better run for the Human Race
They say we're part of an alien nation
it when they say that we gotta get out of this place
They're gonna build a brand new planet
They're gonna make it on the other side
Maybe some day you will find it,
if you think it worth all of your strife
Moutains made of over-indulgence
And a sea made of heroin
They're gonna build a brand new planet and leave us
all here on our own
Just like they did before"
Welcome To the Infant Freebase 1996
1. Mantra slider
Firmament vacation (A soundtrack of our lives)
3. Underground indian
5. Instant repeater
6. Embryonic rendezvous
7. Four ages (Part II)
8. Grand Canaria
9. Endless song
10. Confrontation camp
11. Blow my cool
12. Senior breakdown
13. Bendover babies
14. The homo habilis blues
15. For good
16. Magic muslims
17. Rest in piece
18. Retro man
19. Theme from Hallo
20. Legend in his own mind
Extended Revelation 1998
3. Let it come alive
4. Interstellar inferiority complex
5. Century child
6. Safety operation
7. Impacts and egos
8. Aqua vera
9. From gravity to gold
10. So far
11. Serpentine age queen
12. Mega society
13. Black star
14. Love song No 3105
15. Jehovah sunrise
16. All for sale
Behind The Music 2002
1. Infra riot
2. Sister surround
3. In someone elses mind
4. Mind the gap
5. Broken imaginary time
6. 21st century rip off
8. Keep the line movin'
10. Independent luxury
11. Ten years ahead
12. Still aging
13. In your veins
14. The flood
15. Into the next sun