Sol Invictus – In a Garden Green

“In a garden green” is one of the more recent albums by one of the most well-known neofolk bands around. Albums like “The blade”, “Hill of crosses”, this album, and a couple more can all be filed under the “new Sol Invictus style”. This means Tony Wakeford with quite some talented guest musicians, such as Karl Blake (bass), Matt Howden(violin) and Sally Doherty (vocals and flute).

These albums are all characterized by high quality music, the typical cynical lyrics, and of course the characteristic voice of Tony. However, I must say that for me “In a garden green” is maybe the best Sol Invictus album I know, at least when compared to the other “new style” albums. Every song is beautiful, intelligent, and not too soft (like some tracks on “In the rain”). The sound is very full and warm, consisting of guitars, great violin parts by Matt Howden, a firm bass guitar, various vocal parts and here and there some great pounding drums.

The concept of the album is appealing (“Nature is a stormtrooper in a camouflage smock”), with lyrics about nature, war, people, religion, and so on. There are also two traditional texts on the album, of which one is by Hildegard van Bingen. Anyway, I could go on and on about this album, but if you like Sol Invictus you really should have this album in your possession; for the music of course, but also for the lyrical part and the nice artwork (by Tor Lundvall).

Is there one song that stands out? Well, maybe “Ave Maria”, which is a bit of a surprising song with a great melody-line, and the beautiful voice of Sally Doherty backed up by the typical voice of mister Gae Bolg. And finally “No one”, which is just a great song with a catchy refrain… “No one sees what we see / No one believes what we believe”.
Outstanding album!

artist: Sol Invictus
label: Tursa
details: 1999