[Review] Graular – Ashes EP

Graular is a young Norwegian band formed in Oslo in 2017 that offers modern Progressive music, with influences from multiple genres and styles. Their debut EP titled “Ashes” was released on May 28, 2021 and contains 4 tracks, two of which were previously released as singles. The disc opens with the title track “Ashes” with soft guitar arpeggios and dark atmospheres, an effected vocal and dilated sonorities. Soon with a change the guitar offers harder riffs and the vocal is very warm and expressive, you can hear the influences of modern groups such as Leprous and the singing is a strong point of the track. “Spitfire” begins with always dark, classic Nordic sound atmospheres given by powerful guitar riffs and a massive drum, while the vocals are very delicate. Despite the influences of modern bands they manage to insert personal traits and characters, with tempo changes that are an added value of their sound. The singing changes according to the development of the music and it is a very positive aspect, good. “Dark Triad” is one of two songs previously released as singles, and begins with a dreamy piano atmospheres and a delicate and expressive voice. A change transforms the track making it full of ideas and variations, the vocal is a great protagonist but the constantly changing musical part is really of a high level. They offer a short but intense guitar solo and the intensity increases with the passage of the song, unpredictable in the changes and certainly a track that captures the attention, showing compositional and executive technique. Closes the EP “Collide” which is the other track released as a single previously, which starts with atmospheric sounds and a deep and very warm vocal. Not long in coming a change that takes us into a modern Prog song with massive guitar riffs and sometimes choral voices. The music is very intense and concluding with this track makes you want to listen to the record again in the future, to capture the many facets of their sound, complex and harmonious at the same time. An album that struck me for its freshness, modern sounds and the interpretation of Prog starting from sources of inspiration such as Leprous and Haken, but transporting them to their personal and original world. Technically very prepared and with very clear ideas both in the compositional and executive phases, offering a first high-level record release. A listening recommended to all lovers of modern Prog sounds, outside the classic canons of the 70s but projected towards the future of the genre, the genre is alive and with exponents like these we have proof, congratulations to Graular.


01. Ashes
02. Spitfire
03. Dark Triad
04. Collide


Lyth Bendik Hole / Vocals
Jarle Lunde / Guitar
Per Morten Hagabråten / Guitar
Tor Arne Birkeland / Bass
Fredrik Songe / Drums

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Author: Jacopo Vigezzi

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