For songwriter and producer Jonas Reingold, in his main profession bassist with Swedish prog rock act, The Flower Kings, his band Karmakanic is much more than merely a musical side show. Whenever he has the time, he devotes himself to the group which consists of a nucleus featuring Reingold himself, Göran Edman (vocals), Krister Jonsson (guitar), Lalle Larsson (keyboards) and Zoltan Csörsz (drums). “Karmakanic consists of a core band, with guests coming and going,” he explains the general principle of the group. The guests on their latest album, Who’s The Boss In The Factory, include renowned musicians such as his Flower Kings colleague Tomas Bodin (keyboards), Andy Tillison of The Tangent on Hammond organ, accordion player Lelo Nika, who has worked with jazz pianist Joe Zawinul, and tenor saxophonist Theo Travis, whose career résumé features renowned artists such as Robert Fripp, Gong and Soft Machine. This list indicates that Karmakanic consciously cover a wide stylistic range on Who´s The Boss In The Factory. Reingold: “I would describe the album as traditional classic progressive rock with some fusion and jazz thrown in. In a live environment, we extract the pieces and give the solo sections more space. I believe that we have some of the best players around, so it would be a shame not to let them shine.”
Karmakanic got together in 1999. Reingold wrote a couple of songs that reflected upon the internet and cyberspace. He had worked with Göran Edman on a couple of occasions before, so Edman was the natural choice for a singer. The pieces developed into the concept album Entering The Spectra, and Karmakanic was born. The band recorded the album in 2000 and 2001 and had former Flower Kings skinsman Jaime Salazar man the drum kit. Entering The Spectra was released 2002, and 2004 saw Karmakanic embark on a small European tour to promote the subsequent album, Wheel Of Life. New drummer Zoltan Csörsz had worked closely with Reingold over the years in The Flower Kings, The Tangent, etc., so he seemed an obvious choice as a regular Karmakanic member. Now Who’s The Boss In The Factory, the band’s third and most diverse album to date, is ready for release. The CD was recorded at Reingold’s own Reingold Recording studios and mixed at Pama Records, Cosmic Lodge and Reingold Recording. A compositionally and technically accomplished masterpiece which lives up to the highest expectations.
There’s the 20-minute symphonic rock number, ‘Send A Message From The Heart’, which would be difficult to surpass in terms of its imaginativeness. “I worked with three different themes throughout the song,” Reingold explains. “I used the themes in different keys, modi, time signatures etc. The lyrical context is uplifting, San Francisco-ish, sunny, its message is that it’s better to speak from your heart rather than your mind. So I invited my son Alex to start off the CD. He sings the first verse. I think the lyrical context gets even clearer when sung by a five-year-old kid.” ‘Eternally’, which comes in two parts and is devoted to Reingold’s parents, who died last year in a tragic car accident just before Christmas, is no less impressive. “I used real strings on this one just to enhance the feeling, and Lelo Nika performed a wonderful accordion solo. He is a real genius, nailing the vibe of the song impeccably.”
Reingold can be proud of an album which he intended to simply make the listener feel good – no more and certainly no less. “I try to make as good music as possible and have a fun time while I’m doing it,” says Reingold. “As long as everybody puts the music first and enjoys themselves it’s good enough for me.”