What Is Success?
Erik Borelius' music has always been hard to put a label on. Now, as he releases his eighth album - the sixth from his own record-company, he is pushing back the frontiers further. . It's still hard to say if it is pop, rock, jazz or music for guitar-freaks. One thing is for certain though - with this album Erik leaves the instrumental genre for a while - he sings on all the eleven melodies. And the guitar? Of course, it's still there! When work on Erik's latest album, the collection Guitar, was coming to a close he felt it was time for something new. Erik has always enjoyed singing and was curious to hear what it would sound like if he composed from the basis of his own voice - if he made songs that suited him. 'It's a completely different matter to make music with vocals. The voice in itself gives room for so many emotions. With the guitar it can be harder to reach all the way. Because of that composing was easier and more pleasurable than I had anticipated. With the voice, possibilities are unlimited - you can use it as a background, rhythm-instrument, choir or bass. Creatively it is the ultimate instrument', Erik says. His lyrics deal with unusual subjects. For example he writes about the older generation that is forgotten by their children in Woman on the floor. The romantic The fan is a story about a boy who worships a soccer-hero and how he gathers courage to contact his idol. In the title-tune What is success? he gives a description of how humans have a tendency to value success and happiness in terms of money and assets. 'Part of the fascination with working as I do is to see the album develop with me as the director. A great deal of work concerns technical matters but it is always connected to the artistic dimension in this job. 'For example Fredrik Bergström's drum sound took some time to find. We experimented with paper, microphone-angels and multiband-compressors to get the short, tight sound that doesn´t take much space but is simply there', Erik says. As on all of Erik's albums since Duende, Aare Pöder plays the keyboards. Among other melodies, you can hear him in Woman on the floor where he also plays a solo. A young, promising singer - Rebecca Zätterström, sings harmonies and backing-vocals. Johan Adelstål has designed the album. Reviews: '... He plays and sings with a supreme sense of closeness. Well varied compositions, with lyrics that reach deep down. Erik Borelius uses both his guitar and his voice in order to produce a personal and warm address. He succeeds all the way. Well worth listening to!' (Nerikes Allehanda) '... an incredibly fine piece of craftsmanship which forms the base and when the songs grow each time you listen to them, the total sum becomes really good. This year's surprise from Sweden?' (Sundsvalls Tidning) 'On the verge of full points. The owls smile, or rather sing beautifully in the trees. Just like the Guitar God himself - Erik Borelius - possibly Sweden's best at handling a guitar and now even - as it turns out - a singer of class. ... writes songs that ought to make Donald Fagen and Walter Becker jealous. ... If you like the clever lyrics by Steely Dan you have a perfect alternative here... And a most perfect one at that.' (Örnsköldsviks Allehanda) 'The whole record is in parts so perfect that you shiver with pleasure. But a warning is issued. Don't try to listen idly to this because then the music will not give you much back. No, this demands more. Put your head-sets on, and sit back and enjoy.' (Värnamo Nyheter, Smålands-Tidningen, Vetlanda-Posten, Tranås tidning) '... both pirouettes on the nylon strings as well as screaming electric guitars, and in addition he has quite a cool voice... good songs and pleasant arrangements... A softly swaying, jazzy rocky craft put together by parts that make me think of names such as Steely Dan, Pink Floyd and Paco De Lucia' (Göteborgs-Posten) 'Erik Borelius is a divinely gifted guitar-player, but he can certainly sing too. ... You feel the bubbling, simmering and boiling in tracks such as The loner, Shandor and Manhandle - these are bridge-building jazz-rocky songs that want to reach across all boundaries. And why not, let them free, after all, spring is just around the corner.' (Eskilstuna-Kuriren) 'You wonder why he hasn't sung before, since this works so well and feels quite natural. When he uses his voice the product becomes more varied, filled with joy and interesting.' (Bohusläningen med Dals Dagblad) 'Bold, Borelius! ... this is, if anything, more interesting than the predecessors. Firstly, the lyrics are good, unusual and thought provoking... Secondly, the melodies are anything but ordinary. For example, 'Woman on the Floor' makes you think of Steely Dan... it is impressive that Erik Borelius has dared to stray from the beaten track, risked losing the odd fan and has done something completely different.' (Norra Västerbotten) '... this is music that is easily accessible and yet it is far from main stream.' (Dala-Demokraten) '... The album includes a number of beautiful melodies and musical surprises... Rebecca Zätterström supports Erik's efforts and the choir sections are some of the highlights on the record... The guitar playing... Erik Borelius is one of this country's best and he gets plenty of opportunity to show this. Maybe his skill is made even more obvious here where there are breaks in-between the efforts. ' (Upsala Nya Tidning)