Gyllene Tider

GT25 Special – Now only Bio Reflex remains – again

HALMSTAD - It was the evening of March 19th. It was after four o’clock when the car rolled into a wet and black Halmstad. The rain had followed me all the way home from Vollsjö, Skåne, The Aerosol Grey Machine studio and Gyllene Tider’s recordings for “Finn 5 fel”.

  In just a few hours, the tickets to the extra concert at Örjans Vall would be released and just out of curiosity, I took my car by the Ticket Center to see if anyone had defied the weather gods.

  They had. Not one or ten. The full side of the building was lined with sleeping bags, umbrellas, raincoats and anything imaginable to protect against the rain.

  I rode in the diesel Mercedes that in the beginning of the 80s caused teen hysteria. I rode the Återtåget train in the 90s that caused welfare state nostalgia. But this! Grown up people – don’t for a second believe that this was just teenagers – risking their health and being late for work just for these hot tickets for the home arena concerts.

  Sure, I was a proponent for [having GT play] Örjans Vall back in 1996, but back then the idea was buried in the county’s massive red tape and all they gave were cheap excuses, even though Gyllene Tider themselves had offered to pay to have the grass covered. That’s why I believed in one sold out Örjans. One. Not two. And definitely not… three!

But a mass pop psychosis over the generational gap seems to have struck the country, a collective abstinence for “Sommartider”, clapping of hands, power pop refrains, oooh-oooh choruses, and Farfisa organs which apparently got aggravated with the intake of mazarins last year.

  Not even the eternal pop visionary Per Gessle, who once sent a letter to the editor at NME (in Swedish!) and got it published long before Gyllene Tider was known outside of Halmstad, could have known this was coming.

  While I was observing the guys during the recording sessions there were two things that hit me. First was the sound, whose chemical pop formula and enchantment would’ve been broken had any one of the five been missing. Next was the commitment – it has been a long while since all of them actively participated in the recording process. At the same time, I was wondering if they had realized what they had done. I mean, the star quality gauge isn’t really maxing out regarding the image and the rock attribute.

  But then something that the folklore researcher Åke Daun once said hit me. To reach popular appreciation in Sweden, you have to be happy and natural, simply ordinary. You can’t be too brilliant a star here… then the audience may get reserved – which derives its origin from our ideals as an agricultural society. In the U.S. and Great Britain however, it’s the more extravagant and elegant artists that reach real star status.

  As this is being written, the band has become an exhibit at the Halmstad Länsmuseum, and two Örjan concerts have become three. The 50,000 tickets to Ullevi sold out in a few hours and 400,000 will see the golden triumphal process through the country. I don’t know what remains after that. Everything is sort of done. It would in that case be that Gyllene Tider “does” a Rolling Stones; that they go back to their roots and make some really exclusive concerts at Bio Reflex in Getinge and in Figarosalen in Halmstad, where everything started. That would be something.

Translation by Thomas Evensson for TDR

This article was written for an earlier version of The Daily Roxette.
Technical errors may occur.

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July 6th, 2004

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