Monday, December 29, 2014

December 29th, 2014 - Desolation La Roja

Good evening!  Tonight the Meista is going a bit more progressive and mellow tonight with the double album "Desolation Rose" from veteran Swedish prog-rockers The Flower Kings and a La Roja Artisan Amber Ale from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales!

Album Info:
  • Artist: The Flower Kings
  • Title: "Desolation Rose"
  • Release date: October 28th, 2013 (12th studio release by the band)
  • Record company: InsideOut
  • Personnel: Roine Stolt - vocals and guitars; Hasse Fröberg - vocals and guitars; Jonas Reingold - bass guitar; Tomas Bodin - keyboards; Felix Lehrmann - drums
  • Major themes: The major theme of the album is peace.  Of the album, Stolt said the following: "Being somewhat of a political statement, the epic theme of Desolation Rose is a logical step in a time where perpetual war, famine, environmental threats, religious conflicts dominate the media and our minds. This is a time to wake up and the music on this album takes you on a journey where you are forced to questions what the mainstream media feed us and to rethink your whole worldview on all of the above. This is in many ways a typical Flower Kings album, but we have also taken it into another realm where we do take chances and where you may struggle to get into the music - or the lyrics - but trust me when I say that you will be rewarded, as this may be our most involved, important and interesting album ever."
  • Musical style: Progressive rock
  • Sound: Very "old school" '70s prog rock with elements of jazz and straight ahead rock and roll.  Soaring and ethereal Howe-like guitars make way for more groove centered bass work and swinging drumming along with the unique vocal stylings of Stolt and Fröberg.  And don't let the track titles fool you... this is very uplifting stuff musically!
  • Tracks:
  1. "Tower One"
  2. "Sleeping Bones"
  3. "Desolation Road"
  4. "White Tuxedos"
  5. "The Resurrected Judas"
  6. "Silent Masses"
  7. "Last Carnivore"
  8. "Dark Fascist Skies"
  9. "Blood Of Eden"
  10. "Silent Graveyards"
  11. "Runaway Train"
  12. "Interstellar Visitations"
  13. "Lazy Monkey"
  14. "Psalm 2013"
  15. "The Wailing Wall"
  16. "Badbeats"
  17. "Burning Spears"
  18. "The Final Era"
  Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
  • Website:
  • Brew: La Roja Artisan Amber Ale
  • Style: American Wild Ale (in the Flanders tradition) / Sour Ale
  • Serving: 22 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 7.2%
  • Pour: Dark toffee-amber in color with a very thin white head that dissipates quickly.
  • Nose: The nose is rather tart with some more subtle dark fruit and malt as well.  There are aromas of lemon, green apple, berries, red wine, plum, caramel, oak, and leather, horse blanket.
  • Taste: Not as tart as I was expecting, La Roja still is a lovely sour ale with flavors of sour fruits, caramel, and spice.  There are notes of lemon juice, red wine vinegar, toffee, clove, nutmeg, and more earthy notes like oak and straw.
  • Mouthfeel: Medium bodied
 Overall pairing: The complex and tart, yet mellow flavors of La Roja go great with the epic progressive sound of "Desolation Rose"!


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