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Yggdrasil - Yggdrasil CD (album) cover

YGGDRASIL

Yggdrasil

 

Prog Folk

3.12 | 6 ratings

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apps79
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars 70's underground band from Munich.They were formed in 1970 by Walter Waidosch (violin, flute, bass), Jacob Fisher (piano, bass, guitar) and Peter Jakob (sax, flute), soon joined by Werner Vill (vocals), Fred Beck (guitar, flute) and Reinhold Fries (drums).Yggdrasil played live mainly in pubs, discos ans school parties with only a limited number of appearances in more serious venues and they recorded some tracks at the Bavaria Studio, which got lost in time due to an unacceptable sound.As Fischer left the band in 1971 for a period of 18 months to complete social services due to being a conscientious objector, Uli Kellner joined Yggdrasil on guitar and bass and this line-up recorded some tracks for an upcoming album at Meilhaus Studio in 1972.The vinyl lasted no longer than 30 minutes due to limited financial sources and never escaped the premature stage of the metal acetate edition, reputedly produced in no more than 10 copies.Today the luck of these copies is unknown and the 2009 Garden of Delights CD reissue comes from Walter Waidosch'es master tape, with no less than 13 bonus tracks.

Impressively Yggdrasil's sound had reduced Kraut Rock influences, they appear to be closer to the smooth style of British Folk Rock bands, as they headed for more refined arrangements and had a gifted vocalist singing in English with a clean and sensitive color.Their supposed only LP, covered here in the first five tracks, is an epitome of soft and elaborate Psych/Prog Rock with folky undertones, containing lots of flute work and acoustic guitars, often interrupted by decent electric textures with some nervous guitar plays.They seem to be closer to the psychedelic side of Folk Rock, the rhythm section is pretty groovy and the flute parts are mostly atmospheric, but they had also a great sense of melody on these pieces, while the electroacoustic shifts are more than welcome and pretty tight.So, prepare for some mellow Prog Folk, where the absolute highlights are Vill's incredible voice and the strong amount of interesting flute moves.

Tracks 6-13 come from 1970, when the band draw some attention, covering the music for the TV series ''Sommer in Sizilien''.All tracks were recorded at the Scala Studio in Munich and suprisingly offer an even more progressive attitude due to the presence of Jacob Fisher, who was an accomplished pianist/keyboardist.So, next to the familiar Folk Rock style of the band stand some great acoustic piano lines and the presence of Hammond organ, giving Yggdrasil a deeper and more convincing sound.The arrangements remain smooth and melodic, somewhere between Psych and Prog Folk Rock, with many loose jams and delivered in a totally instrumental mode.

Tracks 14-18 come from a couple of studio rehearsals of the group during their existence, the recording quality here is pretty poor and the band offers a more electric-based Folk Rock, featuring eventually the strong appearance of violins, now they sound a bit like compatriots EDEN with a more pronounced Folk content.These could have been some really cool tracks if have been recorded properly.

As Jacob Fisher rejoined Yggdrasil afte his services, the band continued for some time as a seven-piece group, while most of its members ran another group called Weed until 1977.It was about the same time when Yggdrasil dissolved, as Vill quit the band, Peter Jacob lost his passion for music and Reinhold Fries joined another act named Fun.All members sporadically abandoned the music industry, while Fred Beck became a drug addicted and unfortunately died in 1983 due to liver failure.

Not much Kraut Folk in here, but if you enjoy the softer side of Progressive Rock and a good dose of folky, flute-driven soundscapes, this is a great album.Warmly recommended.

apps79 | 3/5 |

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