Artist: Kaipa
Title: Keyholder
Label: Inside Out Music
Year of Release: 2003
Artist/ Band Link (click for details/ ordering)

The Review:

Kaipa returns in 2003 with Keyholder. Similar in style but this time around there’s an overall harder edge and more structured song writing and diverse instrumentation through. Notes From The Past to me seemed to have been going through the motions to create a prog classic. It is, but at the same time it was too formula driven. Keyholder breaks that mold and strikes out in a more modern direction.
I really don’t hear much of The Flower Kings influence aside from the guitar sound. Some have even compared the two bands only because of Roine Stolt. I really don’t think thats fair, besides it should be the other way around since Kaipa has a recording history dating back to the 1970's.
Also they steered further away from any kind of comparison on Keyholder. Roine's guitar playing seems more in a hard rock vein in parts rather than the fluid style often found on The Flower Kings recordings.
Roine Stolt (guitar) & Hans Lundin (assorted keyboards and main song writer) are again joined by vocalists Patrik (Ritual) & the angelic Leena. Both are in top form and for those who like more diversity, Leena’s presence is used much more this time around.
Patrik has one of the best voices in prog, heck in rock music to come along in years. He emits so much emotion and power that it send chills down my spine when he sings. Some hear Freddie Mercury in his vocals. Patrik can even be called the Swedish Freddie Mercury. I wonder if he has done any Queen songs...hmm.
Leena counters his power with beauty and softness. Her angelic voice just is a pleasure to hear especially on “A Complex Work of Art”, which is one of my favorite songs to listen to of 2003. I would to hear more stuff from her. Maybe even something outside Kaipa.
The rhythm section this time around is slightly different. Joining Morgan is bassist Jonas Reingold of The Flower Kings. Although I’d prefer they’d use other musicians outside of The Flower Kings line-up, this is one of the better rhythm sections in recent progressive rock history that I’ve heard in a long while.
To my ears, Roine’s guitar playing is quite possibly his best to date, not saying his previous works aren’t any good. He just seems to get better and better each time that I hear his recordings. You can hear what I’m talking about especially on “The End of the Rope”.
Now a days some prog fans are so picky as to what they like or dislike but I have to say Kaipa is right up there on the top with some of the best music the progressive rock genre has given the music community in the past 30 years. They fill a void left by the founding fathers/mothers of progressive music. I think this is a true statement because they are a product of the 70's rather than a revival act.
I always look forward to when a band like Kaipa takes a bit of the past and updates it with current trends without being trendy. They produce timeless progressive music that will be as fresh today as it will be 30 years from now.

I highly recommend Keyholder as a must have disc for 2003. So please support your favorite dealer and order this disc today. You won’t regret it!

Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on September 21st, 2003


1. Lifetime of a journey (8:14)
2. A complex work of art (11:57)
3. The weed of all mankind (9:29)
4. Sonic Pearls (6:06)
5. The end of the rope (13:59)
6. Across the big uncertain (8:30)
7. Distant voices (13:00)
8. Otherworldly brights (7:08)

Reviewed Discography

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