What happens when you leave four dudes in the French mountains? While we cannot tell for all the dudes out there, we do know that for Fredrik, Stefan, Craig, and Rasmus from Copenhagen-based quartet Halasan Bazar this turned out to be a highly conducive environment that brought into existence ‘Burns,’ the band’s third album. And here’s a cool thing about it: we can all profit from it, because ‘Burns‘ is a real happy-sad psychedelic treat that will keep your head shaking and your eyes rolling in a delightful dreamy trance.
Halasan Bazar‘s sound brings many comparisons to mind: there’re plenty of 60s vibes in the tradition of The Kinks or The Monkees; there’s indie fuzz-rock à la Neutral Milk Hotel; there’s some lo-fi goodness reminiscent of Pavement. Yet the outcome of such a blend is particular in its own right. What is more, the songs on ‘Burns‘ have this appealingly instantaneous feel to them: they are like spontaneous polaroid pictures capturing life’s rawest moments. And that’s no coincidence: Halasan Bazar actually laid down the parts - vocals, acoustic guitars, drums, and piano - mostly live, without edits.
The first taste of this authentic and raw quality is ‘Honest People.’ With its lively yet dreamy guitars and retro vocal harmonies, the song has something wistful about it - like an old school yearbook, sparking memories and at the same time unearthing old vulnerabilities. ‘Freak,’ packed in the middle of the album, is a ready-to-go psychedelic anthem for all weirdos and misfits: “I’m a freak till I die,” Fredrik wails in the chorus with dedicated determination that leaves little choice but to sing along. ‘Burns My Mind‘ is an absolute heart-winner: it’s infectiously groovy, and dynamic, and warm. Strings add a classy touch to the tune, smoothing out its rock’n’roll sound. A similar trick is used on ‘Get Sick And Die‘ where delicate strings come in rather unexpectedly, contrasted to rougher garage vibes. ‘The Comedown Pt 2‘ is a perfect closing track: moderately paced, with irresistible bluesy guitars.
The bottom line is: ‘Burns‘ is a colorful sonic kaleidoscope, rather unique in its richness and intensity; it’s music by and for honest people. ‘Burns‘ will be officially released worldwide on March 17 on Requiem Pour Un Twister, but you can feast on a pre-stream below NOW!
- March 17th - Release @ Osramhuset, Copenhagen - with The Slackliners
- March 22th - Le Motel, Paris
- March 24th - Supersonic, Paris - with Os Noctambulos & Thomas Subiranin
Photo credit: Harald Holst
BURNS Cover photo: Lomostatic