One trail To Heaven

In The Labyrinth: One Trail To Heaven

For sure this is one splendid appetizer. It will definitely make you wanna search, find and buy all the other “works” of this Swedish progressive psychedelic band. It’s like a ‘Best Of’ including songs from their 3 CDs so far (1994’s The Garden Of Mysteries, 1999’s Walking On Clouds and 2002’s Dryad) plus some unreleased original material including a Moody Blues cover (“Cities”). One hour of fine-old-sweet-progressive-folk-eastern influenced-psychedelic instrumental (mostly) music. Mastermind of the band is multi-instrumentalist Peter Lindhal who plays a serious amount of instruments in order to achieve his purposes. Mellotron, viola,guitar, bass, saz, zither, mandolin, baroque travers-flute, quena, synths, piano, melodeon, darbouka, daf to name a few… It’s hard to pick favorites. He deals with so many branches of well-played progressive music. Like a huge Labyrinth with numerous corridors. Each corridor, a different musical inspiration, a separate musical approach. The whole album is overwhelmed by a continuous flow of musical sounds and timeless tales that were put in the right order by the right person. Peter, a modern Thiseas, opened a trail to Heaven, in which, All of Us are Free to follow!

TimeLord Michalis
for TimeMazine

In The Labyrinth – One Trail To Heaven CD (Trail)

I first heard In The Labyrinth and their various side projects on the Vegetable Man Project compilations reviewed elsewhere in this issue. I was impressed with their sophisticated Middle Eastern-influenced prog-psych-folk-rock, so contacted the band to find out more. It transpires that In The Labyrinth have been around since the early 90s, so clearly I have been missing out by having been unaware of their music for so long! This album is a compilation of material recorded between 1993 and 2004 and released in 2011. There are tracks taken from their albums The Garden of Mysteries, Walking on Clouds, and Dryad, as well as alternative versions and unreleased tracks. The band is centred around Peter Lindahl, a multi-instrumentalist who is credited on the sleeve with 22 instruments plus voice. There are also additional instruments from Håkan Almkvist, as well as guest appearances from 10 other musicians and vocalists. As all this suggests, there is a very big, full sound going on here. The musicianship is of a very high standard, as is the artwork which depicts a fantastical landscape with almost photographic realism.

Lost in the Woods is an evocative instrumental bringing together aspects of psych-folk, prog, and Indian music. Escape from Canaan combines atmospheric electronic music with Middle Eastern influences. Moorish Rhapsody is broadly categorisable as folk-rock, adding to that North African musical influences and intricate guitar work. The Garden of Mysteries II is an effective blend of Indian music and jazz. Over the Wall sets Himalayan-themed lyrics (including Yeti references!) to a prog-folk/world-fusion musical backdrop. Muscarin Madness is a prog-psych-rock piece with quirky drug-fuelled lyrics and an unusual and creative arrangement incorporating bells, zither and castanets. Deep Saffron is instrumental prog-folk that recalls The Morrigan or Colin Masson's solo work, but with additional psychedelic and Indian influences. The Night of the Baskerville Killer sets eerie, chilling lyrics to an atmospheric, echoey psych-folk-rock arrangement. There's some effective use of flute and sitar, as well as virtuoso guitar work. The Endless City is an intense and mindbending psych-rock instrumental. Cloudburst features an ethereal mixture of angelic vocals, atmospheric electronica, and soothing chimes and babbling brook sounds. A top quality album, recommended to anyone who is open minded about music.

ADDENDUM: It turns out that I had misinterpreted the motivation behind the song Muscarin Madness. It is clearly a song about hallucinogenic mushrooms, but rather than being 'drug-fuelled', it has a deeper layer of meaning that I had initially missed. Peter writes "this strange gnome sitting out in the woods has the ability to lure unwary mushroom and toadstool pickers even deeper into the forest until they've gone astray. And in reality this theme plays on the risk of picking fungi that's bearing dangerous (and even occasionally narcotic) toxins". So in effect, it is a song that advises about the potential dangers of mushroom use rather than a celebration of it. Also, the lyrics were inspired by a painting Peter made in the 70s as an illustration for an unfinished fairytale. As such, the imagery in the song is inspired by fantasy, not hallucinations. I stand corrected, and offer this addendum as a clarification :-)

Kim Harten for

In The Labyrinth
: One Trail to Heaven
(translated from Swedish into English)

In The Labyrinth is quite unique within the Swedish music scene and most likely also on an international scale. Behind the name hides Håkan Almkvist (sitar, tabla, electric bass, electric guitar) and Peter Lindahl. The latter is an amazing multi-instrumentalist who sings and plays about 25 instruments (on this record and even more on other productions), this including saz, mellotron, viola da gamba, guitars, zither, baroque traverse flute, synths and a variety of percussion such as darbouka and frame drums.
Lindahl also composes nearly all the music of In the labyrinth and weaves with incredible skill together influences from prog rock, psychedelic 60 and 70s pop, North Indian, Turkish and North African music, baroque and much more.
One trail to heaven is a compilation including songs from the duo's three albums and some previously unreleased tracks as well as a Moody Blues-cover. The music is constantly changing and the listener never knows what to expect. For every time I listen, I discover new details among these complex arrangements. The album is an excellent introduction to this brilliant and literally labyrinthine world of music!
Lira likes this!
Rasmuss Klockljung for LIRA

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven

This compilation from solo artist (though with friend Håkon Almkvist) Peter Lindahl, reThe witch danceally is a good indicator of where and what musical genre he delivers and creates! Mostly taken from his various album releases, but also tunes that are specially included here: "Lost In The Woods" previously unreleased/ " The Endless City" Previ- ously unreleased/ "Cities", a cover version of a Moody Blues song. Peter Lindahl is quite an accomplished musician playing : Viola Da Gamba, mellotron, electric guitars, acoustic guitars, bass, zither, man- dolin, flute, piano, percussion etc. etc. The music herein is very varied beautiful symphonic folk-like, think : Anthony Philips (ex Genesis), Pink Floyd (More –period) Mike Oldfield (the early days) and mix them, then add some very personal Lindahl sequences!
I find it quite wonderful music and I love the English leanings (Muscarin Madness) Lindahl sometimes blend western music with oriental spice, though only brief and it works wonders! I really like this compilation, but I would honestly love to hear the various tracks in their, if I so may say, natural environment or from the original source, the original albums!! Otherwise I think this is a fine document to the world of In The Labyrinth!! I would really love to hear more!!
Tonny Larsen

In The Labyrinth: One Trail To Heaven

Founded by Swedish musiCover art for One trail to heavencian and artist Peter Lindahl, In the Labyrinth released a handful of platters in the 90s, represented on the compilation One Trail to Heaven, along with unreleased and alternate cuts. Euro-psych folk leanings and some exotic accents shore up the world prog aura, making One Trail to Heaven a dense, flowing gathering of tracks, the sequencing wiping out any hint that this is a collection of scattered cuts over a few years. Some of the lyrics veer into a strong fantasy bent with the Yeti and the Lord of the Mushrooms, but in the context of the music, and some of the older school progressive details, it all dreamily comes together on its own and as an introduction to Lindahl/In the Labyrinth. It’s a softer approach to blurring the lines between psych and progressive rock, relying more on flow and melody than frantic wig outs to get some levitation. Handling the lion’s share of instruments himself, Lindhal weaves both a tight and ethereal tapestry of sounds that should appeal to fans of prog, as well as pastoral pop, folk and rock. Unsurprisingly, there is a take on the Moody Blues’s Cities included that further widens the vista, but also fits in snugly with some of the more adventuresome cuts like the unreleased The Endless City.

mr. atavist

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven


Sometimes there is a very fine line between where Psychedelic stops and Progressive Rock starts. Sometimes there is no line at all. Take for example this specially prepared compilation from Sweden’s In the Labyrinth entitled One Trail to Heaven. The band is essentially the duo of Peter Lindahl on various instruments such as keyboards and exotic-stringed things and Hakan Almkvist on Sitar, E-bow guitar, bass and tabla. Together they enlist the support of ten other’s on various tracks to create a dreamy, melodic set of compositions that will certainly appeal to fans of either genre.


With just a tick under a hour’s worth of music here, these 13 tracks are an eclectic mix of styles and influences but the overriding sense of direction is one of Middle Eastern and Asian vibes: loads of sitar, tablas, flutes, zither, Spanish acoustic guitar, and even a saz. That’s not to mention the Mellotron, violin, and electric guitars that show up from time to time. It’s a mix of instrumental and vocals with tracks taken from four or five different earlier releases and a couple of unreleased tracks to make it special. The sound is at times ethereal, dreamy, and then it’s also very worldly with various ethic influences. It’s a softer melodic styled prog that will have some reference points in the work of Mike Oldfield, Gandalf and even Eris Pluvia.  In the end I think In the Labyrinth avoid falling into the New Age category because their compositions tend to me more complex. Certainly the arrangements create a greater sense of depth and structure and while the floating vocals or trippy sonic landscapes are all over these tunes, there are also many times where the music does some interesting change-ups.


The music of In the Labyrinth might make some pleasant background playing, but it’s actually much more than that.One Trail to Heaven presents an intriguing blend of contemporary ethnic influences that stay with you long after the disc is out of the player. As I say, this is the kind of thing that will appeal to fans of many genres. Well worth checking out.  

Jerry Lucky


In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven

Although a so-called ‘best of’ compilation seems better suited for a band or artist that has already achieved some degree of commercial success, ‘One Trail To Heaven’ is a damned good argument for newcomers to check out any of In The Labyrinth’s three albums. Led and arranged by Swedish composer Peter Lindahl, the music takes the listener on a winding journey across Europe and Asia, often fusing different cultures and styles of folk into a beautiful mix. As ambiently-inclined as Lindahl’s work tends to be here, there is a wealth of diverse sound and beauty to soak up on ‘One Trail To Heaven’.

In The Labyrinth is another one of those artists I have come across that seems painfully underexposed. Comparisons could be drawn with Australian innovators Dead Can Dance; this music envelops several cultures, from Northern European folk to Indian sitar- exploration and Far East ambiance. What makes the sound so convincing is in the execution. The instrumentation is authentic and admirably performed, and the production crisp and professional. Occasionally, Lindahl will opt for a more conventionally Western singer-songwriter approach (as is the case with the fantasy-glazed ‘Muscarin Madness’) but the majority of this compilation is geared towards showcasing his more ambitious orchestrations. Hammered dulcimers, ‘Chinese flute’, and a myriad of Arabic percussion are some of the instruments heard here.

For a compilation, ‘One Trail To Heaven’ enjoys a healthy sense of flow, often to the point where I could be fooled into thinking this is a regular studio album. On top of a handful of preferred picks from the three albums, there is also unreleased material, exclusive to this compilation. For me, ‘Moorish Rhapsody’ is the highlight of this ordeal; a Celtic-Arabic folk fusion with warm, Beatles-like vocals not dissimilar from Arjen ‘Ayreon’ Lucassen’s voice. The melancholic ‘Over The Wall’ is another favourite of mine, whisking the listener away to Nepal and a spiritual quest to Kathmandu.

Peter Lindahl’s work is vast and deserves a much greater audience than he has thus far been given. Although this is technically not a studio album, ‘One Trail To Heaven’ makes for a perfect introduction to the music of In The Labyrinth. Within the course of an hour, many cultures are explored, and each leaves a gorgeous impression. The diversity does make for a somewhat scattered listen, but as compilations go, this is gold.

May 27, 2012 by
Conor Fynes for
Prog Sphere

In The Labyrinth
: One Trail to Heaven

I've been a fan of In The Labyrinth (aka Swedish multi-instrumentalist Peter Lindahl) for some years now, and was very happy to receive his new album "One Trail To Heaven," a compilation of cuts from 1993The witch dance to 2004, for review. Lindahl's music takes ethnic instruments and moods but blends them with modern synthesizers, usually to quiet, melodic effect... but not always. 'Lost In The Woods,' the opening track on this album, begins with a huge gothic introduction before wending its way into an acoustic guitar and piano based reverie. 'Escape From Canaan' brings in deraboukah and a mysterious voice-like synth sound, 'Moorish Rhapsody' roughens things up with electric guitar, 'The Garden Of Mysteries II' is a brief interlude of birdsong, saz and ethnic percussion, while 'Monsoon' matches a piano with light instrumentation. 'Karakoram Waltz' is a particularly lovely track where all the instruments meld perfectly, in a style not unlike that of Cornish musician Tim Wheater. 'Muscarin Madness' is a little bit of quirky glockenspiel/zither, 'Deep Saffron' adds strange ethnic voices to a spooky track, while 'Night Of The Baskerville Killer,' from the excellent album "Dryad," has a terrific vocal - Lindahl should do more of this. 'The Endless City' and 'Cloudburst' are both unreleased tracks, both excellent. The only fly in the ointment is a rather vapid version of Justin Hayward's 'Cities.' For those not yet aware of this highly talented musician, this album, covering so much of the man's work, is a superb introduction.

In The Labyrinth – One Trail To Heaven
(Trail Records 2011, CD)

March 30, 2012 Aural Innovations
From Sweden, In The Labryinth combine Folk, Psychedelic and Progressive Rock influences with a passion for Indian/Middle Eastern music. The baCover art for One trail to heavennd is headed up by Peter Lindahl and to date have released three full length albums – Garden Of Mysteries, originally released in 1996 and now reissued by Transubstans Records (see accompanying review), Walking On Clouds (1999), and Dryad (2002). One Trail To Heaven is a 13 track collection that consists of songs from the three albums, alternate versions of songs from those albums, two previously unreleased songs, and two contributions the band made to compilation albums.

The CD includes four songs from Garden Of Mysteries, one from Walking On Clouds, and two from Dryad. Among the alternate version songs is a longer and better developed recording of Lost In The Woods, the opening track to the Dryad album. Karakoram Waltz is a meditative ethnic-folk instrumental that was In The Labyrinth’s contribution to the One World Tapestry album, released by Musea Records in 2007. I never knew about this album until I got this compilation so that was a nice surprise. Deep Saffron is an all instrumental version of the song from Dryad, which on the album had some narration. The Endless City is a previously unreleased track, being a dark and moody psychedelic-orchestral instrumental. Very cool; I would love to hear this developed beyond its 3 minute length. Cloudburst is the other unreleased track and is a deeply meditative atmospheric piece that I enjoyed. We also get Cities, In The Labyrinth’s contribution to Higher: A Tribute to the Moody Blues, a 3-CD set released by Mellow Records in 2006.

One Trail To Heaven clocks in at just a hair short of an hour, so as an existing fan I would like to have heard more unreleased music and/or songs that were exclusive to compilations the band contributed to. But as an introduction for the uninitiated to this wonderful band it’s an outstanding collection.

Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz


In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven

In the Labyrinth is a Swedish progressive and psychedelic ethnic rock/folk project that has been for years led by multi-instrumentalist, producer and artist Peter Lindahl. He started making music already in the hippie ere in the beginning of the 70’s and there is an album out called Peter Lindahl & Friends: Psychedelic Sweden that includes some of these early recordings. From the beginning of the 80’s he was in a band called Alladin’s Lantern that played Middle-Eastern music and that in the 90’s turned into Labyrinth and then soon into In the Labyrinth. The mystical, dreamy music of In the Labyrinth has been influenced by traditional music from various places like Turkey, Middle-East, India, The Andes and Greece as well as mediaeval and early classical music, but also 60’s/70’s psychedelic rock, pop and folk. In addition to Peter, an important member is Håkan Almkvist who plays mainly bass, electric guitar, sitar, tabla and sampler, but the band’s albums have also featured other musicians.

One Trail to Heaven includes some of the best pieces from the band’s three CD’s now remastered as well as previously unreleased material. This one-hour-long package has 13 tracks in total some of which are instrumental. At times I’m reminded of for example the Russian band Ole Lukkoye like on the track called ”Escape from Canaan”. Sometimes I get a bit of New Age vibes from the album which always makes me a bit alarmed but as a whole this compilation is a very pleasant, soft and wonderful release that has some incredibly great atmospheres and melodies. The track “Muscarin Madness” has a nice, British folk feel to it that somehow brings to mind Jethro Tull. I should also mention the Moody Blues cover “Cities” that also starts to rock out bit. The whole album has that sort of magical feel of fantasy and adventure that I really like. One Trail to Heaven is an excellent way to get inside this magical labyrinth and it’s possible that you will never want to find your way out of it.

28.03.12 by Dj Astro for Psychotropic zone

In The Labyrinth - One Trail To Heaven

"Travel deep into the recesses of that hidden ashram you always fantasized about. Music is playing and it sounds something like this. In The Labyrinth is a project masterminded by multi-instrumentalist Peter Lindahl. Utilizing the assistance of other musicians he's created an intoxicating psychedelic landscape over the course of four albums. The music blends psychedelia with world music flavors. Backwards tracked guitar and sitar, harp, tablas, Mellotron, hand percussion all co-mingle into one mind warping trip into the inner mind. Much of this music has been out of print for years, so Lindahl collaborated with Trail Records to release a compilation of sorts.  It gathers some of the best tracks from the canon as well as unreleased material. Fire up the hookah and enjoy. Late night listening madness will ensue..."

-Ken Golden
Wayside music

Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven *****

Prolusion. IN THE LABYRINTH is the creative vehicle of Swedish composer and multi-instrumentalist Peter Lindahl. Just when this venture was formed and named is a bit uncertain, but in 1994 the first full album production with music issued under this moniker was released as "The Garden of Mysteries". Since then two more albums followed, the most recent of these "Dryad" from 2002. "One Trail to Heaven" is a compilation pulled from all of these CDs, and was issued by the US label Trail Records in 2011.

Analysis. The US-based label Trail Records has made a fine job in unearthing and releasing under-appreciated and overlooked artists in the last few years, specializing in music generally coined as psychedelic progressive rock, and not limiting themselves to merely assembling the usual dime a dozen best of compilations or reissuing previously released items either. Each of their releases consists solely of tracks that have been given a superior remastering, and also sports new artwork. And in the case of In the Labyrinth, two previously unreleased tracks and a cover version of Cities by The Moody Blues have been thrown in for additional value. What separates this eleventh album from this small, high quality label from all of their previous releases is the shift in style. In the Labyrinth do incorporate some psychedelic touches in their various excursions, most commonly raga-inspired string instrumentation, but by and large, this is a project with a firm foundation in folk music, or perhaps world music is a better description. Drums and percussion are firmly cemented within folk music traditions throughout, eastern-tinged and tribal inspired the most common rhythmic backbone, with the occasional lapse into territories emphasizing Western and Celtic traditions. And what goes for the rhythm department is very much the case for the other instruments utilized as well, in a variety of subtly different approaches. Escape from Canaan is firmly based on Middle Eastern-inspired folk music, performance and instrumentation both inspiring most Western based listeners to think about this geographical region. While this particular creation is a one of a kind on this disc, a more common approach is explored on cuts like Deep Saffron, where the Eastern sounds carry more of an Arabian-oriented flavoring. And the most common sound can be exemplified by a track like Muscarin Madness, a piece that neatly combines details from both Eastern and Western folk music. In the cuts featuring lead vocals Lindahl's approach is a fascinating and effective one incidentally, giving most of the exotic-sounding instrumental textures and details plenty of space for the non-vocal parts, while the vocal themes - as well as the vocals themselves - are more firmly based on Western European folk music. Symphonic backdrops cater for most of the progressive parts of this musical mixture, although a fair bit of structural development and sophisticated instrumental arrangements do add an art-rock sheen to the proceedings as well. The compositions are rarely challenging however, and the charm and beauty of these creations reside in the subtle and exotic department rather than the unpredictable and dramatic.

Conclusion. Progressive folk music with psychedelic details is the name of the game as far as In the Labyrinth goes, beautiful and exotic music the territory explored, far away from the boundary challenging music of the great innovators, closer at hand to the likes of Gandalf and Vangelis. More refined and sophisticated than either of them, more progressive if you wish, but ultimately music whose charms will reside in sound and arrangements rather than structural development or instrumental virtuosity. If you enjoy artists like the aforementioned Gandalf alongside Eastern-tinged music and find the thought of the two combined within a progressive framework tantalizing, In the Labrinth is an artist that will provide you with many delightful experiences.

Olav M Bjornsen: December 15, 2011
The Rating Room

In the Labyrinth - One Trail To Heaven (Trail Records , 2011)

'Psychedelia of Distant Lands'

In the Labyrinth is the project of Swedish multi-instrumentalist Peter Lindahl. One Trail To Heaven is a genre-defying compilation of some of his best work along with some previously unreleased recordings and alternate renderings of songs from Peter’s exclusive personal archive.
It’s hard to categorize In the Labyrinth. Although the group is freq- uently featured in progressive rock publications because of its psyche- delic and progressive rock sounds, the band frequently ventures into world music territory, incorporating Indian, Middle Eastern and Celtic music influences and instrumentation.
There are basically three types of pieces on the album. One set contains progressive rock with enchanting mellotron and Floydian electric guitars. There are also songs that are deeply inspired by folk rock and the psychedelic sounds of 1960s British bands. Lastly, there are tracks where Lindahl and his colleague explore distant lands through the use of sitar, saz  and  many  other  traditional  instruments.
Peter Lindahl provides vocals and plays mellotron, guitars, bass, saz, zither, mandolin, flute, synthesizer, piano, melodeon, viola da gamba, darbuka, daf, percussion, recorders, effects, programming; Håkan Almkvist plays sitar, e-bow guitar, electric bass, table. Guest musicians include Helena Selander on background vocals, Mikael Gejel on sampler and flute, Robert Eklund on archlute, Helena Jacobssen on background vocals, Stefan Andersson on electric bass, guitar & slide guitar; Kristina Fuentes on background vocals, Karin Langhard-Gejel on background vocals, Ulf Hansson on darbuka, and Marcos Chagallo on violin.
One Trail To Heaven is a wonderful record that skillfully brings together classic progressive rock, psychedelic music and the traditional sounds of the world.
Digital download version

Angel Romero – January 7, 2012
Posted in CD Reviews

In The Labyrinth - One Trail To Heaven

I was quite surprised when I reCover art for One trail to heavenad (after I had listened to the CD) that One Trail To Heaven by In the Labyrinth was a compilation album, because it flows so well from piece to piece.
In my book, the music on One Trail To Heaven fits perfectly into what we know as World Music, at least my definition of World Music, that is, a fusion of many musics inspired by a variety of different cultures. While listening to One Trail To Heaven I am transported to the Orient, Turky, Ireland, Spain... a many more destinations I cannot identify, all this while keeping a British/Scandinavian Prog flavour to the music.

One Trail To Heaven by In the Labyrinth is an excellent album indeed. If I play the reference game, I would compare the music on One Trail To Heaven to Steve Hackett's recent works, but also his collaborations with East European band Djabe. The music on One Trail To Heaven is mostly instrumental, but some tracks feature some nice lead vocals by Peter Lindahl. His voice is pretty close to Anthony Phillips', and there are some similarities between this album and some of the music produced by Mr. Phillips. At times I also feel that One Trail To Heaven would be a good soundtrack for a production by Le Cirque du Soleil.

One Trail To Heaven is an excellent album and it will often find it's way toi my CD player. I will also check out In the Labyrinth previous CDs, hoping that they are of the same level of quality as this one. Great stuff indeed!!

Published by Mark on: 14 Dec 2011

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven

Peter Lindahl is the founder and leader of the band In the Labyrinth. He created some engaging music in which Northern psychedelic folk blends harmoniously with Middle Eastern music in the mid to late 1990s and has released this new album "One Trail to Heaven" on the Trail Records label. The tracks included on the album are the most fascinating compositions with a new re-mastered sound as well as some previously unreleased material and alternate versions of songs from Peter's exclusive personal archive. Produced, engineered, mixed and mastered by Peter Lindahl in his studio in Stockholm, Sweden. Recordings were made between 1993 and 2004. All songs were written by Peter Lindahl with the exception of track 4: Peter Lindahl & Mikael Gejel; track 10: Niklas & Peter Lindahl; track 11: Peter Lindahl & Stefan Andersson; track 12: Justin Hayward (Cromwell Music Inc. OBO Essex Music Inc.) Vlad Milyavsky & Alex Tsalikhin, November_2011.

This album is primarily the work of Peter Lindahl, who plays most of the over 25 different instruments. Valeria Troubina's artwork is amazing and draws you into the CD right from the start. As a longtime fan of the sitar, I was mesmerized by the amount of sitar presented on this album. The myriad of places Lindahl visits on this journey are worth the price of admission alone, since he transports you to some very exotic locations from the comfort of your mind. You feel like you are transformed and in the location for each song as the power of the melody and strength of the music allows your mind to drift from the tedium of daily existence to stand atop Himalayan heights or out on the dark moors of the Baskerville. Every note sounds like it has been chosen precisely and every dance or melody is full of emotion and inspiration.
Buy this; you can thank Peter Lindahl later.

Track Listing:
1. Lost in the Woods opens slowly and quietly with bells, evocative vocal surroundings, chimes and keyboards. It sets the perfect mood of relaxation for this festive time of the year. The sound and strength of the emotions for this opening sets you up for the sitar and acoustic guitar arrangements that follow. The guitar and keyboards weave a pattern of mystery with water effects and the return of the sitar. Flutes join in later to seal the deep spiritual feeling of the piece. Similar in sound to some of Blackmore's Night. Great way to open an album. You know you are embarking on a journey you will enjoy repeating in the future.
2. Escape from Canaan opens with drums, percussion, and eastern rhythms, before the sitar and tabla beats join in to bring home the feelings, sounds and surroundings of this ancient land creating a mystical world.
3. Moorish Rhapsody takes things in a slightly different direction with guitar work and vocals. Another of the best tracks on the albums. Helena Jacobssen's beautiful backing vocals and the bass strings give this track a different sound. Lindahl's vocals remind me of Justin Hayward a little on this track. The Spanish guitars and rhythms are excellent and add to the authenticity of the sound.
4. The Garden of Mysteries is another Eastern sounding instrumental full of sitar with Darbouka beats surrounding. Birdsong and what sounds like a cuckoo bird invoke the feeling of the natural world surrounding us as the Eastern melodies engulf your senses. The flutes and keys add to the variety of sound coming from this garden.
5. Monsoon opens with keys, tabla, and the sounds of falling rain, before the piano joins in to add variety to the mix on this album.
6. Over the Wall is the best track on an album of greatest hits for me. The opening lyrics and vocals are wonderful and put you as the listener directly in the middle of the experience of the song. The drums, flutes, sitar, and surrounding effects are otherworldly. You can imagine those Himalayan heights and the "pinnacles of snow" just from the description provided.
7. Karakoram Waltz is set near the Himalayan heights and you can still feel the power and majesty of this magical place reflected perfectly within this music. The flute work on this track provides stillness and majesty.
8. Musicarin Madness opens with bells, chimes and keys, accompanied by some excellent electric guitar. Kristina Fuentes provides soft and elegant background vocals with Lindahl on lead vocals.
9. Deep Saffron opens with soft strings and lead electric guitar, with orchestration surrounding. Cool, relaxing effects set to wonderful key tones.
10. Night of the Baskerville Killer is full of mystery from the tales of the great Scotland Yard sleuth Sherlock Holmes. The second best track on the album for me. You feel as if you are right on the moors in the dark of night with this one.
11. The Endless City is an interesting musical view of a dark city, full of industry. The opening bass and percussion will have you thinking of the countless buildings and people bustling through this modern city.
12. Cities uses vocals to describe the city more accurately, aided via acoustic and electric guitar, sitar and 60s sounding rhythms. This one really brings home that early Moody Blues/Justin Hayward sound from Lindahl's vocals, with the support of strings.
13. Cloudburst brings back memories of Genesis', Unquiet Slumbers for the Sleepers, with the opening to Blue Jay Way mixed in. Helena Selander's beautiful vocals may just capture you and send you off to slumbers.

December 22nd 2011
Mark Johnsson
Sea of Tranquility

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven

In The Labyrinth is actually one man named Peter Lindahl (many of you already knew that) and this particular recording, although issued in 2011, is a collection of compositions from his albums with some reCover art for One trail to heavenworks and a couple of not yet published songs over the time span of 1993 and 2004. There are some guest musicians on his recordings but reading a list of what instruments Peter plays is like another Mike Oldfield. Take a look : Peter Lindahl / vocals, mellotron, guitars, bass, saz, zither, mandolin, flute, synthesizer, piano, melodion, viola da gamba, darbouka, daf, percussion, recorders, effects, programming. For those wanting the music of that period, it sure does bring back some nice memories. It also gives you a nice overview of his work.

This is what you’d consider a mostly lush mind expanding electronic recording very much along the lines of the Austrian composer Gandalf and like fellow Swedish composer Bo Hanson. You might also compare some of this music to German master Deuter (although Deuter has gone all new age now). Lindahl is one of the most respected musicians in the Swedish progressive psychedelic music scene, and with this recording, you see why. Some of the music is very powerful and not “new age” but huge and deep and otherworldly often times. You get a peek at the colossal symphonic, the dripping rainbows of eastern, and even some folk and psychedelic drenched trip music. It’s an unusual mix when you listen to the whole CD as one. Oh and for the mellotron lovers, you’ll be in heaven (as the title of the CD suggests).

I personally love this type electronic music that really spreads out and takes flight. It’s iron clad in the progressive music field and keeps away from even a sniff of New Age. This compilation CD is way good enough to join your collection, even if you have the three original albums, because he brings out new versions from his archives and you get new compositions too. It’s hardly a typical best of. The musicianship is first rate and the music is never boring. It passes my ADD test too, with many emotions and imagines brought up, excellent dynamics, and great use of a large host of instruments from all over the world. Recommended and well worth your time if you like anything at all about majestic mixed with psychedelic fused electronic and acoustic music from the past.

Reviewed by Lee Henderson on January 6th, 2012

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven
4 stars

IN THE LABYRINTH is the creative vehicle of Swedish composer and multi-instrumentalist Peter Lindahl. Just when this venture was formed and named is a bit uncertain, but in 1994 the first full album production with music issued under this moniker was released as "The Garden of Mysteries". Since then two more albums followed, the most recent of these "Dryad" from 2002. "One Trail to Heaven" is a compilation pulled from all of these CDs, and was issued by the US label Trail Records in 2011.

Progressive folk music with psychedelic details is the name of the game as far as In the Labyrinth goes, beautiful and exotic music the territory explored, far away from the boundary challenging music of the great innovators, closer at hand to the likes of Gandalf and Vangelis. More refined and sophisticated than either of them, more progressive if you wish, but ultimately music whose charms will reside in sound and arrangements rather than structural development or instrumental virtuosity. If you enjoy artists like the aforementioned Gandalf alongside Eastern-tinged music and find the thought of the two combined within a progressive framework tantalizing, In the Labrinth is an artist that will provide you with many delightful experiences.

Windhawk | 4/5 | 2011-12-26

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven3 stars
3.44 | 3 ratings

3 stars IN THE LABYRINTH is the brainchild of Swedish songwriter and multi-intrumentalist Peter Lindahl. From the mid to late 1990s he has produced three albums under this moniker. Now a new compilation includes the most fascinating compositions, some previously unreleased material as well as alternate versions of songs from Peter's exclusive personal archive. So all in all the songs represent a timeframe from 1993 to 2004. You can expect atmospheric nordic folk blended with psychedelic respectively Middle Eastern elements coming from sitar, saz, tabla aso, mostly presented by Håkan Almkvist who collaborates on nearly every track.
Hence this is far away from a one-man show definitely, Lindahl is supported by a bunch of musicians as for the instrumental and vocal attendance. Multiple impressions are worked in coming from a wide range of common and exotic instruments like arch lute or quena for example. In order to point out some exceptional songs - Karakoram Waltz convinces, due to a fantastic combination of flute, mellotron and guitar this is such a lovely thing. And including celestial female vocals the wonderfully melancholic Deep Saffron gives me the shivers everytime I listen.
On the couple Night Of The Baskerville Killer and The Endless City the band comes out of the wood really when offering some psychedelic and spacey attitude. Featuring ethereal moments, sugar-sweet melodies and charming harmonies this is certainly designated for some relaxing. 'One Trail To Heaven' is another excellent release on Trail Records, in best tradition so to say. When you're awaiting some ambient ethno/folk music this will be the right track - 3.5 stars.
Rivertree | 3/5 | 2011-12-16

In The Labyrinth
: One Trail to Heaven

I still remember very well the previous In The Labyrinth releases with lots of instruments being used, a musical fantasy that sounded like visiting the whole world as an exotic place, and the side project called Orient Squeezers with more Indian and psych associations of influences. Peter Lindahl compiled here some 60 minutes of material out of his three ITL releases, with new mixes, combinations of songs and a few unreleased tracks to form a new, well hanging together limited edition album. The sound is a bit more stuffed than before, almost too perfect so that it sounds a bit more dense and clean as a studio project, without spatial progresses of surprises. Returning ideas are the kind of middle eastern Ali Baba fantasies dominated by oud and tablas, finished off with keyboards and different (acoustic and electric) guitars (-I guess there are a few electric guitar passages added especially for this release-), and secondly, a few returning moments of songs with a progressive, almost symphonic and acoustic based feel. The studio setting gives the exotic story line that small association with those Dead Can Dance inspired bands, although Peter’s music has more story and melodic body in it, within the time frames. In The Labyrinth is a well chosen name that gives the right association before imagining with the hearing process the unfolding world expressed with it. For this it is no surprise to know Peter is also a painter of such visions onto canvas.

In The Labyrinth is Peter Lindahl on vocals, background vocals, mellotron, viola da gamba, electric guitar, electric bass, saz, zither, Spanish, Western & twelve string guitars, mandolin, baroque travérs-flute, quena, recorders, samp- lers, synthesizers, piano, melodeon, darbouka, daf, percussion, sound effects & programming ; Håkan Almkvist on sitar, E-bow guitar, electric bass, tabla and sound effects.
Appearing more sporadically are:
Helena Selander on angelic voice improvisations and background vocals, Robert Eklund on arch lute on “Cities”, Mikael Gejel with sampler on “The garden of mysteries II” and flute on “Moorish Rhapsody”, Helena Jacobssen on background vocals on “Moorish Rhapsody”, Stefan Andersson on electric bass, accompanying guitar and slide guitar on “The Endless City”, Kristina Fuentes on background vocals on “Muscarin Madness”, Natali Knutzen on background vocals on “Cities”, Karin Langhard-Gejel on shared background vocals on “Monsoon”, Ulf Hansson on darbouka on “The garden of mysteries II” and Marcos Chagallo on violin on “Cities”.

Background biography on the musicians (compiled in cooperation with Peter Lindahl):

A bit more background on the musicians : Peter Lindahl around 1977-79 played quena flute in Coiron which was a Latin American band focused on performing music from Peru, Bolivia, Chili, etc. The band toured for a couple of years. The instrumentation comprised largely the traditional items of the Andes, meaning pan flutes, quena and tarka flutes, Spanish guitars, charrango, bombo (drum from Paraguay), a variety of percussion but also viola da gamba, violin and travérs-flute, while they also sang in multi-layered harmonies. For a while they were becoming well known as far away as Germany but they never toured outside of Sweden. The band diminished after the band leader Gaston Willaman died about 10 years ago. Their final CD consisted merely of Gaston and a musician from Uruguay named Rickardo Collazo. During the 80s Peter busked around playing at smaller venues and at a few bigger establishments, then he took part in a trio called 'Ljungeld' (meaning lightning) which consisted of two of his oldest friends, Håkan Stockhaus and Stefan Ottman who along with Peter is responsible for the forthcoming In The Labyrinth album 'Samas antaral' which is still in the works. Ljungeld was mostly a 'live' act but they did make a considerable amount of demo recordings.
At the same time Peter was also engaged in a trio called 'Aladdins lampa' (Aladdin's lantern) which in the early 90s evolved into Labyrint and then later In The Labyrinth. The line up for this band was an ever changing one, though some members remained consistent, that is Mikael Gejel, Ulf Hansson and Peter. One of the musicians who came and disappeared quite hastily was Stefan Andersson, with whom he had yet another side project in the late 90s writing and recording songs in the vein of Gothic rock with an inclination towards fantasy authors such as H P Lovecraft. One of the tracks on 'One trail to Heaven' is a recrafted, cut down version of one of their songs, once called 'Relic' but now renamed 'The endless city'. This duo, which they called Lovecraft, never went out live but they made quite a few recordings.
Besides this Peter Lindahl has been working sporadically with lots of other musicians, mainly in his own studio, though nothing really serious. A few cassettes and CDs have been released on a smaller scale in Sweden and abroad where he either produced music for meditation and relaxation or just played the flute (with lots of echo) on a variety of albums.

Håkan Almkvist has been part of many bands, to start with, Helmer mudd which was very much his own creation and had their seat in Uppsala north of Stockholm. In fact, he's always been active in that town, occasionally paying Stockholm a visit to participate in various festivals, often with a connection to India.
The most important achievement of Håkan's (apart from playing with In The Labyrinth) is in Peter’s opinion Orient squeezers which incorporates such musicians as Hans Bruniusson (once the drummer of Samla mammas manna) although it is basically a one-man-band-thing with Håkan doing everything himself from playing the sitar to creating arrangements with sampled, oriental percussion-loops, synthesizers, electric guitar, bass and sound effects. This summer he went out 'live' with this concept by bringing together a number of musicians from Uppsala and one even from India who plays tabla. Three CDs by Orient squeezers have been released so far on his own label in conjunction with Record heaven while one 'live' album is being prepared for release eventually.
In the 90s Håkan was very much engaged in another one of his creations, Ensemble Nimbus. Hans Bruniusson played drums there as is often the case with Håkan's projects. They released three CD albums on an international scale and have yet another album in the works somewhere.
Also Håkan had a project in the vein of experimental ambient music called 'Tweendeck 2'. The other member of this duo was Lars Ek on clarinet, while Håkan took care of all the sampled sounds and percussion.

Helena Selander has never really gone out public with her talent, apart from singing in ITL, but has sporadically recorded both her own music and others' compositions in Peter's studio during these past 20 years. Besides In The Labyrinth, her interests lie in country, Irish and Spanish music but she has also contributed to several of Peter Lindahl’s albums aimed for meditation and relaxation, from which the last song of 'One trail to heaven' has been extracted and subsequently cut down from over 20 to 5½ minutes.

Robert Eklund has a classical background, playing a wide variety of lutes but also celtic harp, ukelele, acoustic and electric guitar, piano, keyboards, etc and is also a proficient singer. For a year or so Peter and Robert were both engaged in a quartet named 'Sefardia' together with a female vocalist from Uppsala and Miriam Oldenburg who played the accordion.

Mikael Gejel had a trio together with Stefan Ottman and Peter in the mid 70s which they called Karlavagnen (i. e. Ursa major). They performed here and there in Stockholm and were known to use an unorthodox setting for their 'live' acts where they varied between instruments like sitar, tabla, recorders, quena flute, acoustic guitars, melodeon, jews harp, acoustic guitars and vocals. 'Karlavagnen' and 'Aladdins lampa' set the base for what much later would evolve into In the labyrinth.
Other acts of Mikael are: Vilmejds lekare (late 60s - early 70s), Drakhjärta (with, among others, Karin langhard- Gejel, this band having been active in more recent years), but also in those already mentioned, Karlavagnen and Aladdins lampa.

Helena Jacobssen has been vocalist in quite a few rock bands though Peter cannot recall what they're called since it's not the kind of music he's into. For a while in the mid 90s she, Stefan Ottman and Peter had some things going on the side but this was just for fun. Today Helena lives with Mikael Gejel with whom she has a lot of common interests, like healing, ancient spirituality and higher teachings playing on the old masters.

Stefan Andersson has already been mentioned in the text about Aladdins lampa (Aladdin's lantern) in the Peter Lindahl section. He plays both electric guitar, bass, percussion and sings in Lovecraft while in Aladdin's lantern he kept mostly to his electric guitar.
Kristina Fuentes was only engaged in two different songs on the third ITL album, Dryad. During the 90s she was involved as a singer in her brother's ethnical Latin-American band called Soledad and before that, during a couple of years, in the Chilean band Rucali which regularly performed all over Sweden and which cut two of their albums with Peter as their recording engineer. Brother Alejandro's band Soledad was also engineered by Peter in the 90s.
Natali Knutzen was part of a band called Cassiopeia and also Beabella, which still appears to be active. One of In The Labyrinth's violin players Marcos Chagallo used to be part of the afore mentioned group too.

Karin Langhard-Gejel
See notes about Aladdins lampa!
She was a part of Aladdin's lampa and the early line up of ITL but vanished in 1994 after a few years of activity.
Ulf Hansson Same with Ulf, or Darbouka-Ulf as they used to call him. He disappeared without a trace after around 1995 or 1996. Before putting together Aladdins lampa with Mikael Gejel and Peter in 1980 he used to play with several other musicians and bands often leaning on Balkan traditions.
Marcos Chagallo played the violin on many tracks yet to be released by ITL and on a few which did see the light of day as inclusions on various CD compilations, like 'Cities' (Mellow records), The black plague (Gew gaw) and 'Rökstenen' (Musea). He was active with ITL mainly around 2004 - 2009. He was also once part of one of Natali Knutzen's bands, for which Peter made a demo about 6 years ago.
Marcos's predecessors on violin with ITL were Micke Lövroth and to some degree Kirk Chilton, who also played with Håkan's band Ensemble nimbus, but they did not participate on any of the tracks belonging to 'One trail to heaven'.

Audio : Soundcloud
Label info : Trail Records

Gerald van Waes
Psyche Van Het Folk

In The Labyrinth - One Trail To Heaven - 2011

In The Labyrinth is a project from the Swedish multi-instrumentalist/painter Peter Lindahl. A musician who avoides musical boundaries. His dreamlike and mysterious compositions has influences of Middle Eastern music and psychedelic folk. He founded In The Labyrinth in the mid to late nineties and recorded so far three albums (“The Garden Of Mysteries”, “Walking On Clouds” and “Dryad”). “One Trail To Heaven” is a compilation album that includes some remastered compositions from those albums as well as some previously unreleased material and alternate versions. Peter Lindahl is working together with Hakan Almkvist and there are several guest musicians who appear on those three albums. The album is produced, engineered, mixed and mastered by Peter Lindahl and is released on the Trail Records label.

Peter Lindahl - vocals, background vocals, Mellotron, viola da gamba, electric guitar, electric bass, saz, zither, Spanish, Western & twelve string guitars, mandolin,baroque travérs-flute, quena, recorders, samplers, synthesizers, piano, melodion, darbouka, daf, percussion, sound effects & programming; Hakan Almkvist - sitar, E-bow guitar, electric bass, tabla

Appearing here and there:
Helena selander - Angelic voice improvisations, backing vocals; Mikael Gejel - sampler, flute; Robert Eklund - sampler, flute; Helena Jacobsson - background vocals; Kristina Fuentes - background vocals; Natalie Knutzen - background vocals; Karin Langhard-Gejel - background vocals; Ulf Hansson - Darbouka; Marcos Chagallo - violin; Stefan Andersson - electric slide guitar, electric bass

The album opens with a previously unreleased version (with long intro) of “Lost In The Woods”. A composition originally from the “Dryad” album. The music sounds dreamlike and mysterious and has influences from Middle Eastern music. Carpets of mysterious synths combined with layers of acoustic instruments and percussion. And on top of that beautiful melodies played on instruments like the sitar. This description counts actually for the whole album. The next four compositions “Escape From Canaan”, “Moorish Rhapsody”, “The Garden Of Mysteries II” and “Monsoon” are from the album “The Garden Of Mysteries”. The opening of “Escape From Canaan” and “The Garden Of Mysteries II” reminds me of the later work of Loreena McKennitt. The used instrumentation sometimes make me think of bands like Dead Can Dance. You can float away on the music and visit unknown and exotic places. “Moorish Rhapsody” has beautiful vocal lines and Spanish guitars and could have been from a David Arkenstone album. The song seamlessly goes into “Monsoon” which includes piano and Mellotron flutes. The melodic electric guitar melodies reminds me of artists like Gandalf or Mike Oldfield. The next song “Over The Wall” is from the album “Walking On Clouds”. A ballad beautifully sung by Peter Lindahl and with delicious Mellotron strings. Also this song has a strong Middle Eastern atmosphere. In “Karakoram Waltz” you can find nice flute melodies next to electric guitar parts. “Musicarin Madness”, “Deep Saffron” and “Night Of The Baskerville Killer” are from the “Dryad” album. The first and last song have more Irish folk influences. “Deep Saffron”, an all instrumental version, is very mysterious and has more Middle Eastern influences. The previously unreleased track “The Endless City” has psychedelic/spacey guitar and keyboard parts. “Cities” is a cover version of a Moody Blues song. This atmospheric album full of delicate songs ends with an extract from a previously unreleased track entitled “Cloudburst”. I would describe this song as a spacey soundloop with Angelic voice improvisations.

I really enjoyed listening to this album full of delicate, dreamlike and atmospheric music. I like the mix of Northern folk and Middle Eastern music. I therefore would like to recommend this album to the adventurous and open minded prog lovers. Especially to fans of the work of artist like David Arkenstone, Gandalf and Loreena McKennitt.

In The Labyrinth: One Trail To Heaven

The Story of One Trail To Heaven is as much about the label as the artists. Coming from Trail Records, a label that specializes in remastering and re-releasing progressive and psychedelic music, you expect great things and this album definitely delivers in style. Recent releases include the Russian-Psych Tripwave and the must-have Sky Cries Mary Taking The Stage Live 1997-2005 collections. Other notable releases from Trail include Ole Lukkoye’s Petroglyphs and Siddhartha's Trip To Innerself and with this collection they focus on one of the brightest representatives of the Swedish progressive psychedelic music scene.

Artist and musician Peter Lindahl founded psychedelic folk band "In The Labyrinth" in the mid 1990's and recorded a number of engaging albums in which Northern psychedelic folk blends harmoniously with Middle Eastern music. The band’s new compilation album "One Trail to Heaven" includes some of their most fascinating compositions as well as some previously unreleased material and alternate versions of songs from Peter’s exclusive personal archive.

Trail sought our Peter Lindahl with the idea of the project and made him an offer that resulted in this collection. The final track selection was distilled from over three hours of source material that was provided by Peter. Mastered and edited in the NY Trail Records studio, the remastered audio quality is completely superior to the original releases. After listening to the remastered tracks, everybody was totally blown away by how much better the audio quality was.

Peter Lindahl plays well over a dozen different instruments including electric guitars, mandolin, synths, flute, darbouka, saz and zither and along the way he is joined by Hakan Almkvist and about ten other supporting musicians and vocalists. The results are as varied as the instruments with exotic flavors and a cross-cultural medieval feel. It's one part Lord of The Rings and one part Prince of Persia with the music suggesting golden palaces in times past. Rich and multi-layered, peaceful and powerful, each song is it's own journey to a new and mystical place. Though Swedish in origin and trans-cultural in roots it's perhaps important to note that English is the spoken language here. The lyrics are a poetic, telling classic, timeless tales of old.

One Trail To Heaven deftly mixes elements without being an overt experiment in anachronism or falling into the belittling fantasy category. It's a beautiful, spacious album that takes the very best from an archive of dedicated, visionary musicians and makes it available to contemporary audiences as a limited collector's edition cd with improved sound quality. It's a timeless album with resounding permanence, very highly recommended.

Rust magazine

In The Labyrinth: One Trail To Heaven

In the Labyrinth are a fairly unique Swedish band who mix Indian and Middle Eastern motifs with symphonic rock, medieval sounds, and elements of Swedish folklore. The instrum- entation is diverse: Mellotron, sitar, flutes, mandolin, violin, accordion, woodwinds, zither, assorted ethnic percussion, not to mention vocals, electric & acoustic guitars, and bass. The music itself is still largely western and conventionally melodic, it’s just the instrumentation that’s unique. While the music is heavily instrumental, the warm male vocals in English and beautiful female vocals are a strong point. About the only reference that comes to mind is a more proggy Dead Can Dance. Mystical, melancholy, mesmerizing, magical stuff that will have you transfixed.

One Trail to Heaven (2011, 60-minutes, digipack) is a compilation, but the music has been remastered, resulting in significant sonic improvements, and about 40% of the CD is previously-unreleased. This CD draws from the previous ITL CDs: The Garden of Mysteries (1994), Walking on Clouds (1999), and Dryad (2002). Three of the tracks are actually different versions than what appeared on those CDs, and there are two previously-unreleased tracks plus a cover of The Moody Blues’ Cities.


In The Labyrinth: One Trail To Heaven

In the labyrinth have released 3 albums so far: The Garden Of Myste- ries, Walking On Clouds, and Dryad. Our friends from Sweden, after several years, are back with a compilation album by Trail records. It has 13 songs: escape from canaan, Moorish rhapsody, the garden of mysteries II, from 'The Garden Of  Mysteries'. Lost in the woods (in a different version) and over the wall from 'Walking On Clouds' plus muscarin madness, deep saffron, night of the Baskerville killer from 'Dryad'. Several unissued songs are included. Don't forget to mention their excellent cover of Moody Blues 'Cities'. The music of In The Labyrinth is a mix of progressive and psych with eastern flavour (due the great use of such instruments as sitar). For a starter I would recommend to grab 'Walking On Clouds' which has one of the best mix of eastern psychedelic music in this divine song 'dervish dreams'.

George Markou
Gew gaw

In The Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven (in Swedish)

In The Labyrinth The witch danceär ett unikum i svenskt musikliv, och sannolikt även internationellt. Bakom namnet står Håkan Almqvist (sitar, tabla, elbas, elgitarr) och Peter Lindahl. Den senare är en makalös multiinstrumentalist som sjunger och spelar omkring 25 instrument (på den här skivan, ännu flera på andra plattor), bland dem saz, mellotron, viola da gamba, gitarrer, cittra, barock traversflöjt, synthar och en mängd slagverk som darbuka och ramtrummor.
Lindahl komponerar även nästan all musik i In the labyrinth och väver på ett otroligt skickligt sätt samman influenser från progrock, psyke- delisk 60 och 70-talspop, nordindisk, turkisk och nordafrikansk musik, barock, och mycket mer.
One trail to heaven är en samling som innehåller låtar från duons tre skivor, några tidigare outgivna spår samt en Moody blues-cover. Musiken växlar ständigt skepnad och lyssnaren vet aldrig vad som väntar härnäst. För varje gång jag lyssnar upptäcker jag nya detaljer i de komplexa arrangemangen. Plattan är en utmärkt introduktion till denna briljanta och bokstavligen labyrintiska musikvärld!

Lira gillar!

Rasmus Klockljung för LIRA

In The Labyrinth -One Trail To Heaven  (In Dutch)

Net voor het einde van 2011 kwam de CD "One Trail To Heaven" uit op het Amerikaanse Trail Records label van de Zweedse band In The Labyrinth, die vanaf 1996 zo nu en dan een CD uitbrengt. Drijvende krachten achter deze band zijn multi- instrumentalist Peter Lindahl, die al sinds halverwege de jaren 60 bezig is met het maken van muziek en basgitarist Hakan Almkvist (Ensemble Nimbus, Orient Squeezers, Flying Food Circus en Tweendeck Cover art for One trail to heaven2), die ook nog verschillende oosterse instrumenten bespeelt, waaronder de sitar, tabla en E-bow gitaar. In 1996 bracht In The Labyrinth hun eerste CD uit, getiteld "The Garden Of Mysteries", die in 2012 opnieuw zal worden uitgebracht door het Transubstans label. In 1999 kwam de opvolger "Walking On Clouds" op de markt en in 2002 "Dryad", en beide CD's werden door Record Heaven gereleased. Op "One Trail To Heaven", waarop enkele gastmuzikanten meedoen (Helena Selander - zang, Marcos Chagallo - viool, Stefan Andersson - gitaar en basgitaar), staan verscheidene songs van die CD's, aangevuld met onuitgebrachte nummers en alternatieve versies.

Het openingsnummer "Lost In The Woods" komt van "Dryad", maar duurt hier 2 keer zo lang, doordat er een lange intro aan toe is gevoegd en daardoor is dit nummer een stuk krachtiger geworden. De muziek, die net als de meeste nummers oosters klinkt, is om bij weg te dromen. Dan volgt er een nummer met een dreigend ritme, getiteld "Escape From Canaan", dat van de CD "The Garden Of Mysteries" komt, evenals de volgende 3 nummers. De eerste daarvan heet "Moorish Rhapsody" en de Ierse klanken aan het begin, verrassen me aangenaam, maar al spoedig verandert de muziek en wordt een stukje progressiever en oosterser, waarbij de schitterende zang van Peter net een beetje meerwaarde toevoegd. "The Garden Of Mysteries II" is de volgende song en deze begint met vogelgeluiden, gevolgd door oosterse klanken, waarna het nummer feilloos overloopt in "Monsoon", dat als laatste van de 3 aan de beurt is en een stuk meer de symfonische kant uit gaat.

Van de CD "Walking On Clouds" krijg ik nu "Over The Wall" te horen, een prima symfonische popsong met een heerlijk oosters tintje. "Karakoram Waltz" is een gecombineerde versie van diverse nummers en zo ook een combinatie van oosterse en westerse stijlen muziek en dit vrij rustige instrumentale nummer brengt me haast in hogere sferen.

Van de CD "Dryad" staan er 3 nummers op "One Trail To Heaven" en "Muscarin Madness" is er daar één van. De song heeft een vrolijk ritme en ik krijg daardoor de neiging mee te gaan fluiten en kan onmogelijk stil blijven zitten, zo wordt ik door dit stukje muziek gepakt en ook nu weet In The Labyrinth een gladde overgang naar het volgende nummer te maken en deze instrumentale versie van "Deep Saffron" klinkt schitterend en mysterieus, maar is helaas bijna een minuut korter dan de versie, die op "Dryad" staat. Ook "Night Of The Baskerville Killer" komt van "Dryad" en deze song schreef Peter samen met zijn te jong overleden broer Niklas. Het is een lekker klinkende symfonische song met oosterse en westerse klanken, op een perfecte manier met elkaar verweven en met verschillende tempo wisselingen, waarbij ik mee ga bewegen. Nu volgt "The Endless City", een fantastisch onuitgebracht nummer, dat dreigend klinkt en zo'n spanning opbouwt, dat ik besluit de volumeknop iets hoger te zetten, zodat ik maar niets van de muziek zal missen. De enige song, die niet door Peter geschreven is, heet "Cities" en dit is een cover van het Moody Blues nummer, die op een schitterende wijze wordt vertolkt. "Cloudburst" is een gedeelte van een niet uitgebracht nummer, dat, mede door de geweldige zang improvisaties van Helena Selander, klinkt alsof ik in de hemel beland ben en sluit deze fantastische CD op waardige wijze af.

Carry Munter

In The Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven (in German)
raal Records (2011)
(13 Stücke, 59:38 Minuten Spielzeit)

In The Labyrinth ist das Musikprojekt der beiden schwedischen Musiker Peter Lindahl und Håkan Almkvist. Das Projekt entstand aus der Band Alladin's Lantern, die bereits 1980 in Stockholm gegründet wurde. Im Jahr 1993 wechselte der Name zu Labyrinth und später dann zu In The Labyrinth. Die feste Konstante in diesen Gruppierungen war aber immer Peter Lindahl. Lediglich drei Studioalben sind bisher unter dem Namen In The Labyrinth entstanden. Im Herbst 2011 erscheint nun eine Zusammenstellung aus den Alben, die um drei neue Stücke, eine Moody Blues Coverversion und einige veränderte Tracks ergänzt wurde.
Nicht alle Instrumente werden von Lindahl und Almkvist gespielt, vielmehr haben sie sich eine ganze Anzahl von Gastmusikern zur Seite gestellt. Stilistisch bewegen sich Lindahl und Almkvist im Rockbereich, der durch traditionelle türkische Musik inspiriert wurde. So ist es nicht verwunderlich, dass sowohl in der Instrumentierung wie in den Klangfarben und Rhythmen oftmals orientalische bzw. aus dem mittleren Osten herrührende Elemente in der Musik auftauchen.

Was hier (in der beschreibenden Form) etwas merkwürdig klingen mag, funktioniert musikalisch allerdings ganz hervorragend. Bisher hatte ich von der Band noch nichts gehört, so dass ich die Zusammenhänge zu den Studioalben nicht ziehen kann. Das neue Werk heißt „One Trail To Heaven“ und bietet einige Auszüge aus den Alben „The Garden Of Mysteries“, „Walking On Clouds“ und „Dryad“.

Hymnisch, mit Glockenschlägen und herrlichen synthetischen Chören beginnt der Opener „Lost In The Woods“. Das klingt wie ein faszinierendes Intro und legt so den Grundstein für das Album. Schon hier klingen akustische Gitarren und Sitar sehr mediterran bzw. orientalisch. Auch kommen Elemente von britischem Folk mit hinzu. Ein wenig erinnert mich dies auch an Musik von Künstlern wie Gordon Giltrap. Sehr melodisch nimmt dieses erste Stück schnell gefangen.

Noch intensiver mit orientalischer Perkussion geht es dann im zweiten Track „Escape From Canaan“ weiter. Man sieht förmlich orientalische Landschaften vor dem geistigen Auge dahin ziehen und meint die Derwische tanzen zu sehen. Man wird in diese Musik hineingezogen, wie in eine Szenerie aus 1.000 und einer Nacht. Es fällt schwer sich dieser Faszination zu entziehen, denn Lindahl und Almkvist gehen sehr melodisch vor und ergänzen dies durch eine teils mystisch wirkende Instrumentierung sowie herrliche, teils hypnotische Rhythmen.

In "Moorish Rhapsody“ stellt die rockig gespielte E-Gitarre einenDance of the witches Kontrapunkt zu den orientalischen und folkloris- tischen Elementen dar, was ebenfalls eine hohe Anziehungskraft auslöst. Und so vermischen sich die unterschiedlichen Stilelemente. Hier kommt dann auch erstmals Gesang hinzu. Auch die anderen Tracks bieten genau diese Stimmungen. Instrumentaltitel wechseln sich mit gesungenen Songs ab. Vor allem die Instrumental- stücke sind es, die mich am meisten packen und diesen ethnischen Touch aufweisen. Einige der Tracks erinnern mich auch eine Spur an Klaus Hoffmann-Hoock bzw. Mind Over Matter.

Alle Stücke wurden sehr homogen in einer Reihenfolge auf dem Album platziert und so miteinander verbunden, dass das Werk sehr kompakt und in sich stimmig wirkt. Man hat als Hörer das Gefühl keiner Compilation, sondern einem Konzeptalbum zuzuhören.

„One Trail To Heaven“ ist eine gelungene Zusammenstellung von Tracks des Projektes In The Labyrinth. Man kann sehr gut einen Eindruck des musikalischen Oeuvres bekommen, das hier ausgezeichnet mundet und Appetit auf mehr macht. Eine sehr schöne Platte, die bei mir noch einige Runden drehen wird.

Stephan Schelle, November 2011

In The Labyrinth -One Trail To Heaven  (In French)

Note : 6.5/10  In The Labyrinth est un projet avec à sa tête le Suédois Peter Lindhal, grand admirateur de lointaines contrées (l’Inde en particulier où il effectua dernièrement deux voyages). De renommée ultra confidentielle – il vend moins de 100 disques par an dixit un de ces amis – le multi-instrumentiste extériorise cette admiration en tâtant des jouets musicaux venus des pays visités.

"No Trail To Heaven" est une compilation regroupant des titres inédits, de nouvelles compositions et des morceaux déjà présents sur ses trois premiers albums. Cela s’entend puisqu’il est aisé de discerner les périodes d’enregistrement – de 1993 à 2004 - rien qu’à la qualité des mixages (majoritairement effectués dans son studio personnel à Stockholm). Il est tout aussi facile de cerner les influences au fil de ces années. Le pèlerinage initiatique des différent pays qu’il a visité l’a amené à jouer de plus de 25 instruments qu’il se propose de mettre en valeur ici.

La démarche se rapproche énormément de Blackmore’s Night par son inspiration mais aussi à Camel (la mélodie de "Lost In The Woods Previously" jouée en boucle allant crescendo) ou Mike Oldfield (le son de guitare sur "Moorish Rhapsody" ou "Monsson"). Les rythmes sont très majoritairement lents afin de permettre la mise en place d’une atmosphère propice à une sorte de recueillement permanent. Sur le peu de sont chantés (et on ne peut pas dire que c’est la principale qualité de Peter), une grande partie est interprétée par la gente féminine ("Moorish Rhapsody", "Muscarin Madness") très souvent sous forme d’incantations.

Mais il ne faut pas se tromper, les vedettes ici ce sont les instruments avec énormément de percussions, sitars et tabla pour marquer le rythme, accompagnés des instruments classiques de notre culture tels la flûte ou le violon qui viennent alors nous rappeler au bon souvenir des dernières moutures de Mandalaband sur le titre hommage à Sherlock Holmes "Night Of The Baskerville Killer". Quelques compositions semblent cependant en décalage avec l’ensemble comme "The Endless Of City", noire et moderne (mais à l’image de son idée de notre monde industriel) et "Cloudburst" où l’incantation lente et planante de Helena Selander plombe un peu l’énergie développée en amont.

Finalement, que conclure de cette compilation ? Que Peter Lindhal est une personne de grand talent, que son amour des instruments de tous pays est une force dans son envie de faire partager son admiration. Mais est-il possible de réussir à transmettre cela à l’auditeur lambda éprit des références citées dans cette chronique ? Et bien…oui ! Cette potion folklorique saura lui plaire à partir du moment où il acceptera les quelques petits défauts présents ici et là grèvant quelque peu le tableau idyllique. Cette compilation est à prendre comme un disque témoignage, ouvrant la porte à la discographie de Peter Lindhal.

Music waves

In The Labyrinth "One Trail To Heaven" (Trail Records 2011) - In German

Die schwedischen Psychedelic Ethnic Ambient Rocker In The Labyrinth waren lange von der Bildfläche versch- wunden. Mit einem Sampler tauchen sie beim amerikanischen Label Trail Records wieder auf. Die 13 Stücke sind zwischen 1993 und 2004 eingespielt worden, mindestens 7 der Songs sind bereits auf dCover art for One trail to heavenen längst vergriffenen CDs der Band enthalten, die vor langen Jahren veröffentlicht wurden. Sechs Songs sind bislang unveröffentlicht, darunter das Moody Blues Cover "Cities". Die Multiinstrumentalisten Peter Lindahl und Håkan Almkvist stehen hinter dem Projekt, diverse weitere, als Gäste gelistete Musiker waren partiell an der Einspielung beteiligt. Die lyrischen Songs haben überwiegend orientalisches Flair, spielen mit abendländischem Psychedelic Rock, der viel Folk enthält, durchaus aber kernig rocken kann. Dezente Dunkelheit liegt über den Tracks, ein mystischer Hauch, der die lyrische Zartheit der Songs geheimnisvoll trägt. Alles ist sehr positiv und schöngeistig gehalten, die Philosophie der beiden Musiker will positive Signale setzen, ohne kitschig oder als Mainstream zu wirken. Die kraftvolle Handperkussion in Begleitung der orientalischen, Folk- und Rockinstrumente im Breitwandsound drängt sich nicht auf, ist klug und eingängig arrangiert, ohne sich anzubiedern und hat viel Selbstbewusstsein und Inhalt. Trotz des steten positivistischen Charakters können die Songs auch kritischen Hörern gefallen, die überzuckerte Harmonien eher ablehnen. Hin und wieder kommt so mancher Song mit einem Hauch früher Pink Floyd daher, was auch dem wohl gelungenen Gesang zu danken ist, der mit erweitertem Hall groß im Arrangement sitzt. Schwerer Mellotron-Bombast schwelgt mit symphonischer Note über den Folkmythen. Alle Achtung, die Songs sind schick und beeindruckend. Eine runde Stunde schwelgen in The Labyrinth 13 Songs lang im epischen Schönklang, bis die CD viel zu früh endet. Mehr davon.

Volkmar Mantei

In The Labyrinth - One Trail To Heaven  (In German)

Bei den Zusammenstellungen des Labels Trail Records kann man sich bisher darauf verlassen, dass die Musik höchst interessant und selbst den Proghörern weitgehend unbekannt ist. Ausserdem kann man sich sicher sein, dass auf dem Cover von Trail Records kaum Informationen zur Musik zu finden sind. Wozu gibt es schliesslich Internet.

Der 1951 geborene Peter Lindahl macht schon seit den 70ern Musik, was allerdings nur selten auf Tonträgern dokumentiert wurde. Aus jener Zeit stammt die Musik auf "Psychedelic Sweden", der bis 2011 einzigen reinen Solo-Veröffentlichung von Peter Lindahl. In den 80ern war er im Rahmen der Formation Alladdin's Lantern aktiv. Aus dieser Zeit scheint es keine Aufnahmen zu geben. 1997 traf Lindahl auf Håkan Almkvist und gründete zusammen mit ihm In The Labyrinth, ein Duo, das zwischen 1997 und 2011 drei Studioalben mit zahlreichen Studiogästen herausbrachte.

"The Trail to Heaven" beinhaltet ausgewählte Stücke aus den Studioalben sowie bisher unveröffentlichtes, oder bearbeitetes, zwischen 1993 und 2011 aufgenommenes Material.

Zu den wichtigsten Inspirationen von In The Labyrinth gehört die sog. World Music, genauer gesagt indische, türkische und griechische Musik, ebenso Ennio Morricone, Mike Oldfield, psychedelischer Pop der späten 60er, Goran Bregovic und Musik aus Nahost.

Es entsteht eine sehr friedliche Musik für die sanften Gemüter, die sich zwischen traditionellem, auf analogen Keyboards gespieltem Retroprog und den Einflüssen aus vielen für uns exotischen Kulturen bewegt. Herkömmliches Fundament aus Bassgitarre und Schlagzeug bekommt man nur sehr selten zu hören. Diese Rolle übernimmt die gerne als ethnisch beschriebene Perkussion. Dazu gibt es viel Mellotron, Sitar und akustische Gitarren, die hin und wieder von dem wortlosen Damengesang, oder von den englischsprachigen Gesangsbeiträgen des Leaders gekrönt werden. Die Stimmung der Stücke wird Freunden von Camel, Anthony Phillips oder George Harrison gefallen. Nicht selten gelingt es Peter Lindahl und Håkan Almkvist eine verträumte Märchenwelt hervorzuzaubern, die alles Negative ausblendet und dem Hörer eine exotisch-folkloristische Reise ohne grosse Überraschungen, ohne Ecken und Kanten ermöglicht.

Peter Lindahl ist zudem noch ein begabter Grafiker, dessen Bilder passande Titel wie "Lord of Mushrooms" tragen und gut geeignet sind die gerne belächelten Klischees von Fabelwesen und anderen Einhörnern zu bestätigen. Ich persönlich habe nichts dagegen hin und wieder in eine Märchenwelt entführt zu werden und alles Negative auszublenden. Deshalb ist mir die aus World Music, Retroprog und psychedelischem Artpop bestehende Fantasiewelt von In The Labyrinth sehr sympatisch.

Siggy Zielinski


In The Labyrinth One Trail To Heaven (in Norwegian)

Å si at Peter Lindahl er sentral i In The Labyrinth er nærmest en underdrivlese, men også hans trofaste våpendrager, Håkan Almkvist bidrar rimelig mye. I tillegg er det med diverse gjesteartister slik at skiva i sum blir et bandprosjekt og ikke et sololøp. Skiva er bandet sin fjerde utgivelse og debuten ”The Garden Of Mysteries” kom allerede i 1994. En slags forløper til In The Labyinth var bandet Aladdin’s Lanternwas som startet opp så tidlig som i 1980. Det bandet ble etablert av tidligere omtalte Peter Lindahl, Mikael Gejel og Ulf Hansson som også var med å starte opp In The Labyrinth. I dag er de to sistnevnte bare med som gjestemusikere, men gjør en utmerket jobb for det. Som alltid når vi snakker om dette svenske ensemblet er det et umisskjennelig drag av Midtøstenvibber over musikken. Skiva er en samler eller en samling av bandets beste låter fra bandets tre utgivelser. Det er også noen nye versjoner av låtene men også en ny ikke tidligere utgitt låt og verket er på nesten en hel klokketime. I selskap med dette flotte psykedeliske folkprogbandet føles det ikke langt og dette er ei skive med noe for enhver smak. De som vil ha eksotisk instrumenter som darbouka, oud og tabla får det, og det er også mye akustisk vellyd og symfoniske øyeblikk samt mye mer. Hele tiden er det melodisk og drømmende og til tider litt søtt men jevnt over interessant og med bra essens. Den mystiske undertonen som mange av låtene kreerer gjør dette verket til noe mer enn et mediokert verk og denne innfallsvinkelen får vi høre allerede i starten av skiva. ”Lost In The Wood” stammer opprinnelige fra den tredje skiva ”Dryad” og var den gangen på 2 minutter og førti sekunder men er nå svulmet opp til nesten det dobbelte i denne versjonen. Låten avgir masse Midtøstenvibber og er både mystisk og drømmende i beste Into the Labyrinth ånd. Hovedleverandør av det mystiske er de mange fargerike synthene og som en meget god assistent trår sitaren til sammen med diverse akustisk instrumentering. Fra samme skive (Dryad) kommer også låtene ”Musicarin Madness” og ”Night Of The Baskerville Killer” som er tett opp mot originalversjonene og som henter inspirasjon fra irsk folklore mer enn Midtøsten til en forandring. Den tidligere ikke utgitte låten ”The Endless City” er stenket med artefakter fra musikk som tilsynelatende bekjenner seg til sentralstimulerende midler med all dens space og psykedeliske vinklinger.  Vakker er ”Karakoram Waltz” med nydelige fløyte, elektrisk gitar og mellotron i super samhandling. Mer mellotron- delikatesser finnes i den supre balladen ”Walking On Clouds” som igjen fører oss til midtøsten og hvor Peter Lindahl sin fine stemme virkelig kom- mer til sin rett. ”On Trail To Heaven” indikerer tittelmessig høytflygende tanker men så langt fører ikke skiva oss tross alt. Derimot er det ei supermelodiøs og avslappende skive som har noe felelstrekk med artister som Loreena McKennitt, Mike Oldfield, David Arkenstone og Gandalf men som står støtt på egen ben. Årsakene er mange til det,men kombinasjonen av folklore fra nordlige og mer sørlige strøk er svært tiltalende. Låtmateriale er atmosfærisk, gjennomarbeidet, velklingende dog uten overdrevet brodd men med mange fine og velfungerende harmonier. I sum ei trivelig og vel spilt skive med melodiøs og jevnt over rolig stemningsmusikk.

Ulf Backstrøm

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven

In The Labyrinth is the brainchild of the Swedish songwriter, singer and multi-instrumentalist Peter Lindahl, who plays, amongst others, guitars, bass guitar, synthesizer, piano, mandolin, percussion, the mighty Mellotron and a number of exotic instruments like the saz, zither, viola de gamba and the darbouka. Most of the time he's assisted by Håkan Almkvist on sitar, e-bow guitar, electric bass and tabla. From the mid to the late nineties, Lindahl has recorded three albums under this moniker: The Garden Of Mysteries (1994), Walking On Clouds (1999) and Dryad (2002).

People who missed these releases might be interested in this compilation album. It includes his most interesting compositions, some previously unreleased material as well as alternate versions of songs from Lindahl's exclusive personal archive. So these songs mark a time frame from 1993 to 2004. On this release you can expect atmospheric Scandinavian folk blended with psychedelic and Middle Eastern elements made by instruments such as the sitar, the saz or the tabla. Those instruments are especially played by Håkan Almkvist, who collaborates on nearly all tracks.

Of course, the input of both musicians in the music of In The Labyrinth is significant. However, you can't say that you're listening to a duo, because they're supported by many   musicians both for the instrumental and the vocal parts, like background vocalists Helena Selander (tracks 1,5,9,12,13), Helena Jacobssen (track 3), Kristina Fuentes (track 8), Karin Langhard-Gejel (track 5), flautist Mikael Gejel (track 3, sampler on track 4), archlute player Robert Eklund (track 12), guitarist-bassist Stefan Andersson (track 11), violinist Marcos Chagallo (track 12) and Ulf Hansson on darbouka in track 4.

This release certainly has its fine moments, especially if you like some mellow stuff. However, one The witch dancehour filled with only mellow music can sometimes be too long. Sure, from time to time the Mellotron parts sound interesting and give the music a progressive rock sound, but I would rather like to hear more up-tempo passages in the music that provide for more variety in the compositions. Now the music tends to sound as new age music that reminded me of the mellower albums recorded by the Austrian musician Gandalf. Certain parts also seem to be influenced by early Tangerine Dream, especially as far as the Mellotron parts are concerned. The ethnic influences throughout the album are very original and made me think of the way Peter Gabriel added them to his music. However, I must admit that after a while I got a bit bored of all these ethnic sounds.

Yet the mixture of Middle Eastern, Indian raga, Scandinavian folklore, Turkish folk music, world music, new age, ambient, psychedelic and progressive rock is very original. Therefore I would like to invite all prog rock devotees to give this music a try despite the fact that it certainly differs from what we generally regard to be prog rock music.

Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)

In the Labyrinth: One Trail to Heaven

In The Labyrinth have been around for some time now and are not your average prog rock band, in fact they are quite unique in what they do. The band is in fact a project of Swedes Peter Lindahl and Hakan Almkvist, who have released three albums since 1994 and One Trail To Heaven can be considered a best of album. It features tracks from all their albums (some in a different version), two unreleased tracks and a cover of Cities by Moody Blues.
Why are they so unique? Because they mix folk music from a lot of different cultures, with progressive rock and singer-songwriter stuff. The two members are both multi instrumentalist who employ a large array of instruments to get the sound they want. They also use a lot of guests on their albums for background vocals, (Lindahl is the main vocalist) and even more ethnic instruments. Next to familiar (prog) rock instruments like guitars, bass, mellotron, samplers and synthezisers instruments like viola da gamba, saz, zither, mandolin, quena, melodion, darbouka, daf, tabla and sitar are used. All these instruments give the music a mix of Gregorian (opener Lost In The Woods with its Dead Can Dance intro), Arabian (Escape From Canaan), Indian/Asian (Over The Wall’ brings Nepal to mind) and Spanish (Moorish Rhapsody) influences. The tracks in which Lindahl sings show a singer-songwriter influence like on the ’Over the Wall’ where his pleasant voice is not unlike George Harrison or James Taylor.
So it is unique, but is it any good? Well, I fear that the album failed to impress me. My main objection is that it is all so nice and pleasant. The sound of the band sometimes comes very close to elevator music. The whole album went by very pleasantly with very few moments where I was surprised or intrigued. Muscarin Madness I liked because of its medieval atmosphere and psychedelic sound. Moorish Rhapsody had some nice upfront electric guitar parts.
Do not get me wrong, the musicianship is very good and they succeed in creating an ethnic atmosphere that is different in every song, whilst still managing to give the album a coherent feel. Often they use percussion rather than a drum set which might explain the lack in dynamics. Lindahl has also a very pleasant voice. The last four tracks do end the album in a good way. Most proggy track is Night Of The Baskerville Killer with its sitar and lengthy guitar solo and reminded me of Mike Oldfield. The Moody Blues cover is also very pleasant with added violin, arch lute and upfront bass. The Endless City sounds quite experimental and Cloudburst is an atmospheric album closer. So it’s not all negative but most of the album passed me by without leaving a lasting impressing.
So to be quite honest I’m a bit confused by this album. I really respect the musicianship and the unique sound they tried to create and sometimes they do manage to grab me, but those moments are really too few to give this album a very positive rating. IMHO the music of In The Labyrinth could have benefitted from a little bit more rough edges and a little less elevator music.

Conclusion: 5 out of 10

In The Labyrinth - One Trail To Heaven  (In Italian)

Con tre album alle spalle, disseminati lungo un periodo piuttosto lungo, il progetto di Peter Lindhal a nome In The Labyrinth, svedese e non è un dettaglio, pubblica una raccolta con inediti. Peter ha messo nella sua musica svariate influenze che vanno dalla musica degli anni ’60 e dai Pink Floyd alla musica popolare balcanica e turca, cercando di creare un prog altamente suggestivo e ricco di influenze world music, con una vena malinconica di fondo che lo rende assimilabile, per certi versi, a certo gothic dei Dead Can Dance e seguaci.

Armonia e bellezza regnano sovrane nelle composizioni di questo artista piuttosto originale, che ci incanta subito con la sognante “Lost in the Woods”, dove appare anche il sitar a dare un ulteriore tocco esotico e magico al tutto. “Escape From Canaan” unisce mistero a suadenti armonie orientali. “Moorish Rhapsody” è più rock delle precedenti, dominata da un ritmo incalzante e da suoni elettrici, anche se non mancano gli elementi descritti sopra, ma sono miscelati in un contesto più moderno e quindi più fruibile. Con “The Garden of Mysteries II” si torna ad atmosfere più ricercate ed intriganti, rumori della natura si integrano a ritmiche sorrette da tablas e percussioni, con un buon mix di musica europea e orientale. Tutto il disco ruota attorno a queste coordinate e i tredici brani proposti (uno è una cover dei Moody Blues) sono tutti molti piacevoli.

Il labirinto musicale di Lindhal è un posto dove è piacevole perdersi, nessun affanno e nessuna paura ad abbandonarsi alle sue melodie e anche quando sono tristi non sono mai disperate e si ha sempre la certezza di trovare la via d’uscita. GB

Rock Impressions

In The Labyrinth: One Trail To Heaven (In Japanese)

【新入荷】シタール、タブラの幽玄な音色を軸としたエキゾチックなメロディーと、キーボード群によるファンタスティックなメロディーが調和した唯一無二の シンフォニック・ロックを展開。

スウェーデン出身シンフォ新鋭、11年編集の未発表6曲を含むコンピレーション・アルバム。マルチ奏者Peter Lindahlとシタール奏者Hakan Almkvistの二人で構成されたデュオで、多くのゲストを交えて制作されています。シタール、タブラの幽玄な音色を軸としたエキゾチックなメロディー と、キーボード群によるファンタスティックなメロディーが調和した唯一無二のシンフォニック・ロックを展開。リリカルなキーボード、幻想的なメロトロン。 スパニッシュからウエスタンまで弾きこなし要所ではロング・サスティーンでむせび泣くギター。たおやかなフルート、素朴なメロディオン。北欧らしい荒涼と した透明感をまとったファンタスティックなメロディーに、異国情緒満点のシタールが絡み付くことで生み出されるサウンドは、万華鏡のように次々に表情が移 り変わっていきます。穏やかに語りかけるようなヴォーカル、天井から降り注ぐかのような女性コーラスも素晴らしい。北欧シンフォ・シーンでも確固たる個性 を主張している彼らの入門盤としても最適の一枚。デジパック仕様。



In The Labyrinth: One Trail To Heaven (In Japanese)

Peter Lindahl(g/b/flu/mellotoron/per/string)を中心に'80年に結成された北欧産Progressive Folk Rockバンド、これまでに発表されたAlbum収録曲及び未発表曲から選曲/編纂された'11年コンピ盤が三面デジパック仕様で登場!'94年デビュー 作『THE GARDEN OF MYSTERIES』から'02年作『DRYAD』までStudio作三作品収録曲に、'Lost In The Woods''Karakoram Waltz''Deep Saffron'各未発表/インストver./未発表曲'The Endless City''Cloudburst'、さらにTHE MOODY BLUES'Cities'カヴァーver.を収録。作品を重ねる毎にサウンド/arr.面で洗練の度合いを高める一方で、未発表曲/オリジナルよりもさ らにPsychedeliaなarr.が秀逸なカヴァーを含め一貫して貫かれている、北欧TradとIndia/Orientalのエッセンスを融合し た、このバンド独自のTrip/DruggyなAcid Folk Rockの魅力が存分に堪能できる、入門編としてもコアなアイテムとしても秀逸なコンピ盤です!!

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