Art rock band, Happy Freuds are made up of two Spanish members and two Swedish brothers who have been living in Spain for 7 years – Teo Holmstrom (Lead guitar, lead vocals), Victor Holmstrom (Drums), Maverick Domene (Rhythm guitar) and Edgar Gómez (Bass). The band find the core of their sound in influences that come from 70’s classic rock to 90’s alt-rock. During the last 3 years they have played over a 100 gigs around Spain, and in 2019 they released their self-produced album “Echo Of Sound”. Recently they’ve had the songs remixed by seasoned studio professional Duncan Morrison from the UK. Morrison has worked with Peter Gabriel and Joe Strummer among many others. The revisited 11 track project, is simply entitled “Echo Of Sound – Duncan Morrison Mix”.
The latest album version is bigger, bolder and just that bit darker than its predecessor, and it demonstrates just how formidable Happy Freuds have become, developing into an alternative arty rock powerhouse with a new mixing engineer on board. Duncan Morrison adds that special expanding authentic ingredient to their sound that elevates the band from great to world class.
“Push”, “Allmans Big Feet” and “The Mountain”, stand tall in the band’s catalogue, but the entire album is a consistent maelstrom of creativity: epic crushers such as “In Black”, “Chauncey” and “Song-X” are complemented by acoustic, and more cleanly driven arrangements like “To Blue”, “Low-are-the-punches” and “Overcome 2019”.
Not to forget the closing track, “Rocking and Stumbling”, which finds the band in a tight and dynamic mood. The songs cover a lot of sonic terrain from the explosive rhythms to the ethereal swirling vocals.
The original album package was pretty hard to improve on but this remixed edition tries its damnedest to turn things up to eleven, and it succeeds. “Echo Of Sound – Duncan Morrison Mix” sounds like a modern take on vintage rock, resurrecting the likes of Zeppelin, Sabbath and The Doors.
More importantly, the solid musicianship, the creativity and the youthful energy of the Happy Freuds come forth strongly. The band’s skill-set is on full display, as the powerhouse vocals and the guitar work provide timeless sonic flourishes that’s impeccably complemented by the rhythm section, providing a reminiscent feel.
Much, if not all of “Echo Of Sound – Duncan Morrison Mix” will satiate even the most discerning listeners. For every realized section of melody to mayhem, with its circular vocal phrasings and slippery riffing, there’s a bone-crushing rock jam that completely mesmerizes.
There’s something reassuringly uncompromising about this recording, something almost primal in its stubborn cling to a sound resolutely out of step with whatever constitutes the alternative or the mainstream right now.
So many trends in guitar music have come and gone through the decades, but Happy Freuds have found their way into its core fabric. And now they come out swinging on “Echo Of Sound – Duncan Morrison Mix”, flaunting reminders of a triumphant time in rock.
Happy Freuds revisit the full spectrum of the genre’s hard-hitting thrills, at the same time affirming the potent formula this band is establishing for itself. Happy Freuds stir rock’s sensibilities in all the right ways. Could “Echo Of Sound – Duncan Morrison Mix” be the sound of a movement being reborn? I certainly hope so!