Keyboard maestro – climate champion Flower King Tomas Bodin says there’s still hope

A lifelong musician, semi-legend in the progressive rock world and just as environmentally conscious as Hasse Fröberg and Pär Holmgren, Flower Kings keyboard virtuoso Tomas Bodin is principal music composer for ”Crime of the Century”. A happy character, Tomas still sees the climate dangers ahead. – We’re on our way to Hell, but there are things we can do about it.

Theatre music composer. Prog rock maestro. Epic constructor. When Hasse Fröberg needed a partner for ”Crime of the Century”, the choice was easy. Besides, after years of recording and touring with the Flower Kings, Hasse knew Tomas Bodin would be the perfect foil to work with.

- It’s all very exciting and effortless, says Tomas Bodin, who’s intent on using his prog rock credentials/contacts to make sure ”Crime of the Century” gains the attention it deserves.

- After having played on Ayreon’s latest album, that project’s leader Arjen Lucassen offered his services. This would be a perfect time to use them. Also, I’m in contact with [ex-Yes keyboard player] Rick Wakeman; a solo from him would be lovely!
The ivory tinkler says most of the words come from Fröberg and that he himself contributes most of the music, although…
- Hasse has a good deal of great AC/DC-riffs, which give a great blend with my Beatles veins and prog rock leanings. Between the two of us, there’s no prestige whatsoever.
Whereas Hasse Fröberg could never write on demand, with Tomas Bodin there’s another story.
- I love to compose very freely and spontaneously, it works as therapy for me. But writing on demand is a much greater challenge. The rush of succeeding is a tempting carrot, at least for a winner head such as myself.

Speaking of the four ”Crime of the Century” characters, Tomas confirms one part has been given to Nathalie Lorichs, a friend and collaborator of classic rock giants Jon Lord and Glenn Hughes. Nathalie’s voice can be likened to that of Yvonne Elliman, well-known for ”I Don’t Know How to Love Him” in rock opera ”Jesus Christ Superstar”. The clear, fragile voice of Lorichs suits the part very well, and there are plans on recruiting rock n roll heavyweight for the parts of ”The Father”, ”The Artist” and ”Mr. Money”. The names have yet to be confirmed, but Bodin has clear visions of what Mr. Money should look like.
- I envisage a thin reckless dude with grasshopper’s legs, wearing a purple tail-coat, almost Edward Sciccorhands-like, but with no consciense at all. Even in the opera’s phase three, when people are starving, Mr. Money catches opportunities of earning money. Even then he sees the logistics problems which he can profit from! There’s a song called ”Everyone’s a Loser”, which is a real positive singalong, ha ha ha!

So, what are Tomas Bodin’s personal opinions on the climate question? The words flow out of the composer’s mouth like burning fire.
- We’re on our way to Hell! This is no game. This is no TV show you can switch off. I think it’s bullshit when people say the ups and downs in climate have been going on forever. I compare those folks to the tobacco lobbyists, who said there was no proven link between smoking and cancer. Well, now it has been proven!

In what ways do you contribute to the environment in your own every-day life?
- There are so many little things one can do. I minimize the number of lamps lit in the house. I pull out the phone charger plug when I don’t use it. And do you really need to use the car wherever you go, or could you find alternative transport? For instance, when me and the boys work on ”Crime of the Century”, we always co-ride with each other.

Daniel Reichberg

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