Öström was a member of the famous Esbjörn Svensson Trio (no, us neither, but presumably if you like jazz you’re all over them), until Mr Svensson perished in a tragic diving accident.
Öström says in the Press release: “During the years after Esbjörn’s death I struggled to find my way back to life. At times it has been really dark. When I have been at my lowest, the music has always been there to save me; it has been my parachute.”
That explains a lot about this album. It’s basically smooth jazz in its best sense, with complex arrangements and instrumentation but lots of melody, and, given that Öström is a drummer, tons of rhythm.
We mention in the Mmoths review (elsewhere on these pages) that the Review Corner has been bathed in a warm sea of happiness this week and this is one of the reasons: it’s just a nice album. There’s a sunny, happy vibe — because of, not despite, the bleakness Öström suffered following the death of his friend — and the music draws in various other genres to infuse the jazz, such as RnB and even prog. The songs are all solid (because he’s a drummer we guess) so never sound like anything other than jazz, particularly in the solos from guitarist Andreas Hourdakis. There’s some trumpet from Mathias Eick on The Shore of Unsure. If opener Dog On The Beach doesn’t warm your heart, go and check your pulse.