David's Review Corner
, June 2011
Naxos entering the world of crossover music—whatever next? Magnus Rosen was the former electric bass with the heavy metal group, Hammerfall, and now launches his solo disc career with an album largely devoted to his own music and that of colleague, Jan Alm. Their ‘pop’ style compositions have been garbed with the trappings of the world of ‘classical’ music, the accompaniment supplied by the Gothenberg Symphony and a string quartet drawn from the orchestra. Other ‘pop’ stars have been here before, but it is offered with much commercial expertise, the twelve tracks mixing the symphonic world of the opening track, Trandens, to the soft grained sentimentality of Gate to Heaven, the orchestra called upon for shimmering film-score backdrops. Rosen tries his hand at adapting Bach, and uses Jimi Hendrix’s fabulous melody Purple Haze as the disc’s highlight. He also ventures into orientalism in the solo track, Romance between East and West, the melodic content quite catching. Obviously a very gifted musician who shows his dexterity and enviable technique in such tracks as Badinerie, while the orchestra and quartet are hugely supportive in a world unusual for them. A more informative sleeve note would have been most welcome by those yet to come into contact with Rosen.