Avatarium - All I Want

Avatarium - All I Want

(EP, Nuclear Blast, 2014)

AVATARIUM did manage to catch many of us off-guard because the name of Leif Edling raised all the Doom Metal red flags, so we were waiting something in the vicinity of CANDLEMASS or, at least, KRUX. Sure, the self-titled LP was not quite a surprise as far as the music genre was concerned but the presence of a female singer turned to be huge news, and in the end of the day a most powerful card on 70s-keyboard driven AVATARIUM's Doom Metal. In hindsight, I believe that Leif did choose wisely (if this was his decision) and stepped away from any CANDLEMASS resemblance (singer-wise) and created a killer lineup that showed its teeth with an equally killer debut. So, with all the gathered momentum, the Swedish band released “All I Want” that is a nice looking vinyl with two brand new recordings and three live ones.

If you follow the ‘more the merrier’ motto, then getting this EP will not be a ‘value-for-money’ purchase. But if you love special editions, then “All I Want” can be easily a Xmas present, especially the gold edition. The first and title track is riff-based and shines via the Hammond-type keyboards and - of course - Jennie-Ann Smith’s most characteristic singing. As compared to the LP’s tracklist, this song seems like a left-over but is still catchy and worth-having. “Deep Well” is cut from the same cloth but I think it’s way more interesting starting off with an almost Blues tempo and then gains speed and heaviness standing closer to the debut album’s sound. Yeah, I think AVATARIUM is one of the rare cases of bands that know exactly what they want and where their music is heading, claiming so early the ‘trademark’ status. The other side of the vinyl has three songs that were recorded live in ‘Roadburn’ and I am sure you will be impressed by Jennie-Ann Smith’s effortless singing and how close (or even better) these versions sound to the studio ones. I really can’t wait to put the record on the turntable and fully enjoy the keyboards and the echo effect on the guitar solo in “Pandora’s Egg” and the yet-again Blues-y “Bird Of Prey”.

Sure, “All I Want” is more appealing to record collectors, and if you feel that two new songs are not enough, then you definitely are not one of them, so walk by. Having releases like this one makes me feel better that, no matter what, vinyl will continue to offer quality listening times, staying at a safe distance from the ultra-compressed and only-good-for-headphones productions.





Side A
01. All I Want
02. Deep Well

Side B
01. Pandora's Egg (live)
02. Tides Of Telepathy (live)
03. Bird Of Prey (live)


Leif Edling - Bass
Jennie-Ann Smith - Vocals
Carl Westholm - Keyboards
Marcus Jidell - Guitar
Lars Sköld - Drums