Band: The Divine Baze Orchestra

CD Title: “Once We Were Born”

Band Website:

Label: Transubstans Records


Release Date: 2008


It’s interesting how, as we get further along the musical timeline, what once sounded retro takes on an almost new-found sound-style. You still have that feel of familiarity and yet it doesn’t sound old at all. So where am I going with this? Well these were just some of the thoughts I had as I listened to the first CD entitled Once we Were Born from new Swedish band The Divine Baze Orchestra. When I first put this disc on the player there was no question as to its musical heritage, and yet the more that listened to it, the more I began to hear the music for what it was, apart from it’s influences even though those influences are pretty strong.


The Divine Baze Orchestra is a quintet originally formed in 2003 consisting of Oliver Eek (guitars, vocals), Tobias Petterson (bass, vocals), Christian Eklof (drums, percussion), Daniel Karisson (organs, Mellotron) and Alexander Frisborg (lead vocals, guitars). Musically the 10 tracks on Once We Were Born hearken back to the late sixties or early seventies. Think about bands such as early Deep Purple, Uriah Heep and others along that line. These are compositions built on a blues foundation, but then expanded and shaped by some pretty interesting out-side influences such as jazz and even a bit of classical. Songs like “Orange and Turquoise” (6:06) exude that late-night, smoke-filled, seedy-bar blues feel. Yet others like the opening track “Dance” (5:49) feature a more complex arrangement that is fueled by some heady Mellotron and growling organ. And so it goes throughout the CD’s 10-tracks, one track will emphasize more rigid blues arrangements while the next moves all over the map. I also have to say lead vocalist Frisborg reminds me a lot of Ray Weston of Echolyn. As a matter of fact some of the tracks bear a distinct Echolyn influence namely “Choose Your Green” (3:53), “in Search” (4:15), “The Man from my Mother’s Brother” (6:22) and “Little Man” (4:20). These four songs in particular start off with either a heavy blues or rock feel but find time to veer off into many other musical styles. When it’s all said and done The Divine Baze Orchestra really pack a whollop. This is heavy proggy blues with some cool stuff going on behind the scenes connecting the musical dots. What this means is that these tunes have a lot of staying power.


For a first time effort Once We were Born has a lot to offer for fans of that earthy proto-progressive rock style. And as I mentioned there are times where you feel you’re listening to some un-released Echolyn tracks. The music is genuine and according to the notes recorded “live” in the studio to preserve the band’s on-stage sound. The Divine Baze Orchestra manages to mix up a little psychedelic, blues and prog and craft a great sound that not only works on CD, but I’ll bet just rocks in a live setting. You really should check these guys out.