The Past Was a Blast

On their third album, ”The Past Was a Blast”, Stockholm quartet Future Elephants? deliver their most direct and concise songs so far. Their unmistakable style is intact –heavy riffs, organic interplay, and elements of progressive rock – but it's more modern and immediate than before.
As always, the lyrics are quite contemporary, while the music stays deeply rooted in the Seventies, when Holegård pioneered Swedish hard rock as the frontman of Neon Rose, and later Wasa Express, while Holmberg toured and recorded with and without Magnus Uggla as one of the lead guitarists of Strix Q. Playing wise, the album marks a huge leap forward: Roger Holegård sings with more authority than ever. Dante Holmberg enrichens the sound with string instruments like guitar, lapsteel, E-bow and dobro. Drummer, Sigvard Frenzel, added various keyboards and engineered the recordings, while Anders Lundquist's bass playing takes a more central role than on previous albums.
The bulk of the material was written by Holegård-Lundquist, either together of separately. A snappy rocker with cheeky, playful lyrics, ”Shake the Snake” was the album's first single, and was universally greeted by fans as a great party starter. The riff-heavy ”Walking With a Dead Man”, features special guests, Christer Falk (sax) and Aida Jabbari (vocals), while ”Ground Floor Man”, featuring music by drummer Sigvard Frenzel, has a touch of psychedelia. Even before the album's release, Sweden's two main rock magazines, Sweden Rock Magazine and Rock'n'Roll Magazine, interviewed the band.
Sweden Rock Magazine also gave the album a rave review, awarding it an 8 out of 10 rating. The album was produced by Future Elephants?, mixed by Chris Laney, and mastered by Classe Persson.
Everyone who has heard it, agrees: this is Future Elephants? strongest effort to date.

Humans Passin' Thru

January 31, 2020 saw the release of the long-awaited sophomore album by Stockholm based quartet, Future Elephants?

”Humans Passin’ Thru’” (S-Rock/Border) is available on both gatefold vinyl and CD (including one bonus track), as well as numerous streaming services.

The band’s self-titled debut album was released in November 2016, and was partly based on jams that were later molded into fully formed songs, some of considerable length,. This led many to describe the music as Seventies type hard rock, with progressive tendencies. The new album is more melodic, while retaining the solid power and the organic playing of the debut album.

This time, each song has a clear identity. During the course of the album, several styles are given ”the Future Elephants? treatment”: A sing-along drinking song, ”Another Pint of Ale” (the album’s first single). A catchy, yet dystopian, ”World In Flames”. The über-heavy riffs of ”Stolen Credit Cards”. An eerie warning of cyberspace predators (”Peter_17”), and the melancholy ballad, ”A Last Farewell”, a heartfelt tribute to fallen musical heroes including a full choir.

Multi-section epics like ”Free World’s Falling Down”, and ”Magic Window”, are great examples of the classic Future Elephants? sound that make listeners recall the days when rock bands actually played together, both live and in the studio. A time when a song was as long as it needed to be to tell the full story, and no song was complete unless it had a soaring guitar solo.

Future Elephants? were founded by Roger Holegård and Dante Holmberg in 2013. The line-up was stabilized with the addition of Anders Lundquist, who joined in 2015. The current line-up fell into place when Sigvard Frenzel joined the band in the summer of 2018.

A co-founder and former frontman of Swedish Seventies hard rock pioneers, Neon Rose, Roger Holegård (lead vocals, guitar) became an integral part of the Swedish rock scene. He went on to join jazz rock outfit Wasa Express, steering them in a more rock oriented direction while touring extensively. Holgegård’s authoritative voice, and stage presence are crucial to Future Elephants? appeal.

Lead guitarist, Dante Holmberg, takes pride in his guitar tone – and for a reason. Ever since the Seventies, he’s carved out his characteristic playing: part blues chops, part melodic invention, all feel. The fact that it’s possible to sing along to many of his solos remains testament to their timeless quality. Dante, too, has been an important name in Swedish popular music, playing with Magnus Uggla (the classic era) and Strix Q, Joyride (winning an award for Guitarist of the Year in the process), as well as lending his skills to international acts like Steve Gibbons and Boney M.

Sigvard Frenzel (drums, percussion, keyboards) has played with numerous acts over the years, from new wavers Subshow and blue-eyed soul rocker, and one time Hollies frontman, Mikael Rickfors, to Tone Norum and late 80’s glam pop phenomenon Trance Dance, to legendary NYC rocker Johnny Thunders. Frenzel’s playing is heavy, yet precise, and his technical ability knows few boundaries.

Anders Lundquist (bass, backing vocals) has been described as the musical glue of the band, focusing on locking in with Frenzel, while filling the gaps with melodic flourishes when needed. One of the band’s specialities is creating synergy effects by combining seemingly disparate musical sections, and making them go well together, and that’s when Lundquist’s arranging skills come in handy.

Just like the band’s self titled debut album, the new album was recorded, engineered, co-produced (with the band) and mixed by the legendary Anders Oredson. Yes, the very same man who engineered Neon Rose’s pioneering debut album, ”A Dream of Glory and Pride” (1974), as well as its follow-up. Oredson boasts an impressive track record, having engineered and/or produced hundreds of albums over six decades. If anyone knows his way around both new and vintage gear, it’s him. Once again, he’s back to show the kids how the big boys do it.

The CD edition and digital releases contain the bonus track, ”Bo-toxic”, which was left off the vinyl for optimal sound quality.

All in all, ”Humans passin’ thru” shows a band that keeps developing their craft as songwriters, while becoming an even more well-oiled rock machine. The interplay is no coincidence: most of what you hear was recorded live in the studio, and it’s impossible not to feel the organic, intuitive interaction between the players.

Let’s leave click track, cut-and-paste editing and autotune to the youngsters – Future Elephants? are the real deal.

Future Elephants?

November 16, 2016 marked the release of Future Elephants? self titled debut album.


Future Elephants? were initially formed by two musicians, each with an illustrous past.


Roger Holegård made waves as the lead singer and main songwriter of Swedish hard rock pioneers, Neon Rose. Between 1974 and 1976, the band released three albums that have become sought-after cult classics. He then took jazz-rock legends Wasa Express in a rockier direction for two albums and numerous tours, before forming Truck.


Dante Holmberg is best known as the lead guitarist and main songwriter for late 70’s/early 80’s Stockholm rockers Strix Q, who released four albums, and toured extensively – both on their own, and as the explosive backing band for Magnus Uggla. Dante has since become an accomplished lapsteel player, performing and recording with the country-tinged Joyride.


A couple of years ago they decided that it was time to start a band again. Jamming and working on ideas while trying out members finally led to the birth of Future Elephants? together with drummer Rolle Lindgren and bass player Anders Lundquist.


The songs, mostly passing the five-minute limit, soon turned into collaborative efforts, until there was enough strong material for an album. Renowned sound engineer Anders Oredson, whose CV reads like a who’s who of Swedish music, was chosen to oversee the recordings, which took place at Crunch Studios in Stockholm. Interestingly enough, it was also Oredson who recorded Neon Rose’s first album, back in 1973!


Every track on the album has a story, whether it’s about the human love for gadgets, damaged childhoods, autumn melancholy, a holiday trip that goes wrong, or our shameful treatment of the furry friends that we are supposed to share this planet with. Lead singer/guitarist Holegård interprets the lyrics with powerful conviction, adding some theatrical elements along the way. Holmberg’s tasty solos are characterized by timeless blues chops, attitude and carefully chosen notes (think Leslie West, Peter Green and early Clapton). An effective rhythm section, Lindgren and Lundquist build a solid, yet inventive, foundation.


The double three-sided vinyl album, includes a download code and is produced by Future Elephants? and Anders Oredson. Overdubs were kept to a minimum, to preserve the human feel, which is highlighted by the dynamic mastering. 


The result is a heavy, guitar based rock, incorporating subtly progressive tendencies. While they have their own sound, it’s possible to hear that the members came of age musically during the Seventies.