Album review: Märvel – Märvelous

Märvel celebrate their roots and deliver rock to the masses

Way back in 2002, three Swedish high-school exchange students living for a year in Colorado enjoyed jamming their weekends away when they suddenly got picked up by an indie label to record their debut EP. But in the end, it didn’t work out as they hoped; their dreams turned into a nightmare when they went back to Sweden and never got to see a copy of the master tapes. 

Then, in 2008, the tapes from the EP were apparently destroyed in the Universal Studios fire in 2008.  Now, after 17 years of touring, seven LPs, one EP and heaps of singles, Märvel re-recorded those four songs from the EP that kicked off their career.

The first track Amaze-O is full of power and reminds you of Ace Frehley’s muscular guitar style.  There’s also fat riffs with a bass guitar and drums that sound like they don’t want to stay behind, with the band chanting along: ‘Ohhh yeah yeah yeah yeah, amaze-o!’. This intro acts as a foyer before you walk into the main room, when suddenly at the two-minute mark, a storm of solos kick in and then finish the track with the same tempo and riffs which started the track. 

The second track, Märvellous, keeps the same line the band manages: pure contagious hard rock  with lyrics that hint at the way they felt when they signed up with a label (such as being treated as rockstars, hearing all the time how marvellous they are and then left alone to try their own luck once they’re not profitable anymore).  Or simply that story of the rocker guy that is in love with the famous girl who is the high society’s main attraction and when her ephemeral fame has disappeared, he will be there for her.  

Public School 75 is a vivid story from the Swedish trio and an anthem for all the rockers who have lived through times of hell and misery within the walls of any school, no matter which grade. And again, the band delivers simple rock and roll – contagious riffs and solos are accompanied by the very well executed bass guitar and drums.

The fourth and final track A Taste of Platinum was re-recorded for a third time. The first time it was recorded for the 2002 EP which disappeared in the fires, and it was recorded a second time for their 2005 debut album, ‘Five Smell City’. Now, the most recent recording shows us that they wanted to play the song the best they can, and they absolutely did it.  This well-known track for the old-time fans will be well accepted and for the new ones could be a pleasant addition due to its history.

Märvel’s career speaks for itself.  They don’t care about trends or posturing.  They don’t want to play sophisticated, virtuous, fast, perfect music. They just want to create rock and roll straight up from their hearts, describing the experiences in their lives. 

The King, The Vicar and The Burgher must be stoked with their achievements.

Märvelous is out now via The Sign Records.

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