Jim Alfredson is best known for his work with acclaimed jazz trio organissimo and is considered among the best Hammond organists working today. His newest project is a solo album known under the name THEO that originated as a rediscovery of Alfredson’s affection towards the classic era of progressive rock. Inspired by classic bands like Yes, ELP, King Crimson, Pink Floyd, and Genesis, THEO brings epic songwriting and sweeping narratives back to the forefront with contemporary sensibilities and production. The album is scheduled for release on January 27, 2015 via Big O Records (USA) and Generation Prog Records (Europe). It is available as a download, as an audio CD, and as a limited edition CD / Blu-ray set with 5.1 surround mixes.
Says Jim, “The over-arching theme of the album explores how we react to power. Some people react by protesting and demanding change. Some subscribe to the ‘if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em’ mantra. Some ignore it all together. And some of those who do expose it are scapegoated and exiled. In the midst of all this, we’re all just trying to live our lives and do the best we can. It seems that the era of the protest song is long gone. The political and social activity in the music of the 60s seems to have petered out and been replaced by faux rebellion, pre-packaged and test marketed. The message is essentially one of questioning power and authority and dissatisfaction with the status quo. From a musical perspective, my goal with this album was to return progressive music back to its melodic roots and the keyboards back to the forefront. I wanted to be reverent of the past classic groups but with my own spin and get away from the really heavy, guitar-driven prog that is very prevalent now.”
Along with Jim on keyboards, THEO’s ‘The Game of Ouroboros’ features Gary Davenport on bass, Kevin DePree on drums, and Jake Reichbart on guitar.