The Hairless Heart Herald - The Best Of Progressive Rock
Home Up





Tomas Bodin - I Am

Tomas Bodin - I AmThe latest offering from Tomas Bodin is quite unique in many ways, as Tomas himself describes it as a 'Rock Opera'!

Having had the opportunity to interview Tomas back in April 2005 when The Flower Kings performed with Magenta in London (see interview), Tomas told The Hairless Heard Herald all about this release. Now I have had the chance to hear it, I would say that Tomas was correct in his description. I AM is a life story of being born, having your life, then dying, and then on to the afterlife, all in just under sixty four minutes, but within that time is an incredible musical journey, and creditable performances all round.

Tomas as you all know is the keyboardist with The Flower Kings, so therefore the keys are played by the man himself on the album. He is joined by fellow stable mates Jonas Reingold (bass) and new addition Marcus Liliequist (drums). The guitar is performed by Jocke JJ Marsh from Glenn Hughes fame, and the vocals are shared by Anders Jansson who has the large majority, Helene Schonning and the wife of Tomas, Pernilla Bodin.

Just three tracks which are epic lengths average around the twenty one minute mark each, and within those very tracks are a number of styles, including classic 70's rock, blues, jazz and a touch of ballad type soft rock. To compare the music and influences, it is in many ways like The Wall meets Jesus Christ Superstar, but in places Deep Purple influences such as In Rock and Machine Head style spring to mind during the first piece. There is a distinct Flower Kings sound as you would expect too, and towards the end, the Floyd Great Gig In The Sky sound is apparent with the female voice rising and falling, and in places Helene's voice is similar to Kate Bush.

This is well written and well composed too, Jonas' bass just cocoons the whole opus, while the vocals from Anders, fills the gaps with many fine ranges and harmonies. The keyboard sounds range from a Mellotron to Hammond to piano and so on, but it gives you the impression of what it would sound like if it was to be performed live, and it seems like there could be great possibilities if it was to happen.

This is a most enjoyable album, and I would expect the Flower Kings fans to rush out and purchase it. It should attract the concept album lovers too, and I hope many other people who are looking for something a little to the side of progressive rock.

Danny Mayo

Tomas Bodin


ŠThe Hairless Heart Herald 2001-2009. Reproduction in any means or form of material published on this site is strictly forbidden without the express permission of the editor.