Atlas

Atlas was a Swedish symphonic-rock band that issued the album Blå Vardag on Bellatrix in 1979. Four-fifths of the band released a second album as Mosaik.

Members: Björn Ekborn (organ, piano, clavinet, synthesizer, Mellotron), Erik Björn Nielsen (organ, piano, synthesizer, Mellotron, electric piano), Janne Persson (guitar, percussion), Micke Pinotti (drums), Ulf Hedlund (bass, bass pedals)


Atlas coalesced when guitarist Janne Persson — veteran sessionist for singer/songwriters Lasse Tennander and Lars Fernebring — teamed with three aspiring musicians: bassist Uffe Hedlund, drummer Micke Pinotti, and keyboardists Erik B. Nielsen and Björn Ekborn.

Blå Vardag was released in 1979 on Bellatrix. It features five instrumental numbers, including three in the seven-minute range: “Elisabiten,” “Den Vita Tranans Väg,” and the title-track. Side one is largely consumed by the 14-minute epic “På Gata.” Nielsen and Ekborn are both credited with Mellotron, synth, and organ. The album was recorded at Studio Bellatrix and Berges Ljudstudio and produced by the team of Michael Thörne and Ulf S. Danielsson (Eskaton, Höyry-Kone, Ensemble Nimbus). The cover was illustrated by Hedlund. Soundwise, the music is comparable to mid-period Camel (Moonmadness, Rain Dances) and fellow French acts Carpe Diem and Terpandre.

Persson concurrently played on albums by Dan Tillberg and Niels Jensen. The Atlas lineup, minus Ekbor, continued as Mosaik and self-released an eponymous album in 1982. Persson surfaced later that decade in Grace. Nielsen did ’80s-era stints in Rockamöllan, Bag of Rhythm, and Silver Mountain.

Blå Vardag was reissued in 1995 by Swedish archivists Ad Perpetuam Memoriam.


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