[Review] Bresk – A Journey Through The Life Of Peder Balke 1804-1887

Bresk is a Norwegian trio that offers Nordic instrumental Progressive Rock, born from an idea of the tastiesrista Lars Christian Narum. The band is completed with son Jon Anders Narum on drums and brother Peder Narum on bass, and the proposed sound is ELP and Kayboards-driven 70s Progressive Rock inspired. Their debut album “A Journey Through The Life Of Peder Balke 1804-1887” was released on January 28, 2022 via Drabant Music contains 10 medium length tracks. The album opens with “Awakening” an introductory track with a dreamy atmosphere, a mixture of keyboards enriched by short-lasting effects. The second track “Napoleonic Wartime Overture” immediately showcases the solid sound of the band centered on keyboard works, sometimes virtuous and 70’s style. A track that brings to mind the golden years of Prog, with a rhythmic session full of tempo changes, supporting bass lines and keyboards that positively dominate the scene. The band immediately showed the great inspiration and the excellent state of form, proposing refined ideas and enhancing the technique of the artists involved. Distorted keyboards begin “The Mountain” which on the sonic evolutions of the Moog and Clavinet develop the song, characterized by an elaborate drumming and driving bass lines. The succession of keyboard inserts are of exquisite workmanship and the malgamation between the instruments is of a high standard, giving that extra quid to the track. March-style rolls open “Sailing the Northern Coast” which develops into a Symphonic Prog centered on Hammond’s melodies. The bass lines are deep and carrying, and the song recalls the more melodic tracks of bands like Procol Harum, with the intensity that increases with the passing of the minutes. The shorter track “North Cape Arrival” is very energetic and shows great use of keyboard effects, continuing the journey through the sounds of the past. The rhytmic session is solid with elaborate drumming and intricate bass lines, while the keyboards are free to vary on the short but intense theme. “Hangin ‘Out with the King” is another organ-driven track, with an engaging rhythm session and enjoyable solo parts. Here, too, the intensity increases with the passage of the piece and the solo plots become more elaborate with the passing of the minutes, enhancing the technique. The longest running track “The Revolution of 1848” which exceeds 5:30, revolves around the intertwining of keyboards and continuous tempo changes in the rhythm. More vinine to the sounds of bands like the ELP, it easily interchanges Hammond, Clavinet and Moog, adding at times a dark touch typical of the sounds of the early 70s. A concentration of technique on all the instruments, well composed and executed passages, if we close our eyes it will seem to be back 50 years, a real pleasure. “Balkeby” features an organ background and deep bass lines, with softer drumming and a softer atmosphere. A passage full of pathos and very intense, which shows a more symphonic and delicate facet of the band’s sound, which manages to increase the intensity in some changes. More pulled and intricate “The Fire” instead shows a more sonic sprint facet, with vertiginous accelerations and complex textures. The bass lines are hypnotic, the drumming more technical and enriched by continuous tempo changes, while the keyboards always offer the dynamic test we are used to during the previous tracks. Closes the album “The End” a track where the organ and deeper and more experimental sounds permeate the sound. Dilated and dark sounds, with a deep and minimal rhythmic session, on which the long notes of the organ guide us at the end of the listening. A 70’s style Progressive Rock album, with the sound characteristics of the trio drums-keys-bass a la ELP. This listening takes us back to the golden years of Prog music with keyboards as protagonists, solid and elaborate drumming and intricate and supporting bass lines. There are all the ingredients that a listener expects when he approaches to listen to a record of this kind, also enhancing the individual technique of the band’s artists. A listening recommended for all lovers of classic Prog sounds, guided by keyboards and in ELP style, an excellent debut for this band, which manages to bring the purest sounds of Prog to the present day.


01. Awakening (1:32)
02. Napoleonic Wartime Overture (5:00)
03. The Mountain (5:12)
04. Sailing the Northern Coast (4:38)
05. North Cape Arrival (2:43)
06. Hangin’ Out with the King (3:04)
07. The Revolution of 1848 (5:37)
08. Balkeby (4:08)
09. The Fire (5:01)
10. The End (5:10)


Lars Christian Narum / Hammond Organ, Clavinet, Moog
Jon Anders Narum / Bass
Peder Narum / Drums

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Author: Jacopo Vigezzi

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