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Änglagård - Epilog CD (album) cover

EPILOG

Änglagård

 

Symphonic Prog

4.07 | 506 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Eetu Pellonpää
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The second album of Änglagård continues stylistically the direction which was pointed out in their debut album "Hybris". Three suites lasting between eleven and fifteen minutes are surrounded by two minute opening and closing numbers, and there's also a short track with just few noises called "Rösten", which is just a really stupid joke in my opinion.

The first track "Prolog" is a stunningly beautiful opener, the melody resembling the romantic classical music. Sadly the following maneuvers slightly caused disappointments for my hopes, which the wonderful album opener evoked in me. There are still very good moments in "Höstsejd" (The Autumn Rites), but also some annoying elements; The sounds of electric guitar and drums are maybe "too modern" for my taste, bringing up more associations of the 80's neoprog than the older symphonic music of the 70's. These features don't luckily emerge from every movement of this composition, which wanders a bit too much around for my own personal musical taste, not reaching many climaxes, but more like just searching it's way to the finale from all possible directions. The appreciation of this kind of music with enormous amount of themes and details is certainly a question of preferences. And I underline that despite my criticism there are some very stunning moments on this album. I just find it frustrating as I can't escape thinking that maybe there should have been more time used for working more to the integrity of arrangements for the group's musical ideas. "Skogsranden" (The Edge of The Forest) begins with beautiful melody of piano and flute, where more instruments of acoustic chamber orchestra joins. The creation of strong feeling here has been accomplished very successfully, there are calm, beautiful elements combined with more fearful melodic passages, it could be just like the title suggests, looking to a dark forest from a lighter pasture. I didn't like the trademark of this band which soon follows, an aggressive part which jumpy rhythms. There's a wonderful calm eye of the storm in the later part of the composition, with some subtle female vocals. "Sista Somrar" (The Past Summers) follows the opening style of the preceding composition, and luckily for me continues as calm and very harmonic and calm classical music influenced quite long long. But as the fourth minute is reached, the elements which I dislike and specified before assume the control again. In the ending the music turns again more sweeter and melodic, leaving me wondering how wonderful folk-oriented art music these musicians might have been able to do. The short closing track "Saknadens Fullhet" (The Missing Completeness) is again melodic, with very beautiful descending piano melody. Irritatingly, the short opener and closer were the tracks which pleased me most on the record.

The song title translations are my own conclusions, so I won't guarantee that they stand absolutely for what the band meant with them. This record with an exceptionally fine album cover is recommended for mellotron enthusiasts, fans of Swedish prog renaissance of the 90's and those who are interested of symphonic rock music with aggressive compositional solutions. If one accepts the band's invitation to their chaotic and jumping neurotic realms, this record will be a true joyride. I admit that these musicians are truly professional players, but not as qualified as composers in my opinion. I liked "Epilog" a bit more than "Hybris", but haven't spent much time listening to this either.

Eetu Pellonpää | 3/5 |

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