Dungen

Skit I Allt

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    8
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AllMusic Review by

Dungen aren’t exactly mellowing in their old age, but Skit I Allt -- which roughly translates to “fuck it all” -- finds the band relying less and less on the fuzzy psych-rock fireworks that filled earlier albums. Instead, the guys dream up a sophisticated, widescreen version of psychedelia, with folk and offbeat jazz playing as big a role as guitar heroics. The result is part retro, part avant-garde, and part polyrhythmic elevator music, which is to say it sounds wholly Dungen. Frontman Gustav Ejstes still plays more instruments than anyone else, but Dungen are no longer his solo project. They're a power trio, with longtime partner Reine Fiske draping his spiderweb guitar riffs over everything and Johan Holmegard handling most of the percussion duties. Mattias Gustavsson is also credited as a full-time member, but he only makes several appearances, playing bass on the sprawling “Högdalstoppen” -- the album’s most supercharged rock song, with Hendrixian solos and a blissed-out, spooky/trippy intermission that evokes early Pink Floyd -- and “Nästa Sommar,” a quieter number that cools things down with fingerplucked guitar, flute, and double-tracked vocals. Ejstes still sings exclusively Swedish, but it doesn’t matter; music is the universal language here, and Dungen’s instruments do most of the talking. Like 4, the band’s first album to feature a permanent band, Skit I Allt may come to be viewed as transitional album, the place where Gustav Ejstes and his band of Merry Pranksters began to frequent the jazz club as often as the rock & roll garage.

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