The Amazing Love Sabbath and Joni Mitchell

The mushy, squishy, kaleidoscopic electric folk of the Amazing’s second LP, Gentle Stream, suggests the Stockholm ensemble spent hours at a Fairport Convention, poring over dusty Nick Drake, Tim Buckley and Love LPs. And while that most certainly would be true of band member Reine Fiske, who’s best known for his work with like-minded psych retro-rockers Dungen, the group’s vocalist and songwriter, Christoffer Gunrup, spent most of the time he was working on Gentle Stream listening to the music that inspired him as a kid: Black Sabbath, Eric Clapton and Wu-Tang Clan.

“I was listening to a lot of stuff that doesn’t come out on the record,” he says. “I was so into my own stuff that it’s hard for me to describe my inspirations.” That said, the singer cites “life in general” as his main inspiration on the album. “I was breaking up with my wife, and stuff like that,” he tells Hive nonchalantly. “There aren’t any breakup songs on the record. I tried to leave that behind me and look forward.” Here, though, he looks backward at some of the most influential artists and experiences that have shaped him over the years, and by proxy, played a part in the creation of the resplendent Gentle Stream.

1. Black Sabbath’s Master of Reality

“Black Sabbath were one of my main influences when I was growing up,” Gunrup says. “I love the ’70s albums best, the early ones. My favorite one would have to be [1971’s] Master of Reality. I love the rawness of the whole album and the production.”
2. Joni Mitchell’s Blue

“I love Blue, but I wasn’t listening to it a lot while making Gentle Stream,” says the singer, whose sound owes a debt to Mitchell’s Laurel Valley musical roots. “I like the album’s arrangement and Joni’s lyrics. My favorite song is ’Little Green.’ It’s just beautiful song and her playing is incredible. The whole feeling of that album is just something I love.”

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