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Änglagård - Hybris CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.38 | 1582 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Special Collaborator
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
5 stars Some years ago a friend gave me a copy of this Anglagard CD telling me that he had found this band while digging in the web. Since the first dark notes of Jordrok which made me think to Gentle Giant I realized two things:

1) prog was not dead 2) prog can be good even with Swedish lyrics

In particular I was familiar with bands like Eloy which even with a strong German accent were used to sing in English. Initially Swedish appeared weird to me, but if you consider that one of my favorite bands today are the Hungarian After Crying and that I was already used to the Kobaian, it didn't take me too long to adapt my ears to something different from English. This was quite long time ago.

But this is how I have discovered progarchives.

This is my story with the album. Now let's speak of music. As I have written the first feeling is close to Gentle Giant, but the sudden changes in the volume were common in ELP, especially in Trilogy. Some passages have a YES flavor but the folk moments involving flute which in the first track are alternated to symphonic shorts in 5/4 are a mix of Genesis, Camel and make me think even to Gnidrolog. So it's clear that this band has a lot if classic prog influences, but it's also strongly original in my opinion. Said so, "Jordrok" is a short suite which flows very well and is full of interesting things not totally exploited.

"Vandringar i Vilsenhet" is Swedish. I mean that the sounds and the mood remind to the cold atmospheres typical of Bo Hansson and his Lord of the Rings. It's where the Swedish lyrics arrive first. The high pitched voice is similar to that of Squire but the melody and in particular the guitar make me think to Mike Oldfield or better, to the great Finnish multi- instrumentist Pekka Pohjola. The main theme is alternated with apparently disconnected parts with odd signatures and even a short moment of flamenco. However the remind to Pohjola is a consequence of the big role interpreted by the bass on this track long, complex and dark as the first. the final crescendo with the hypnotic guitar sounds very influenced by King Crimson.

"Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet" is opened by an untuned accordion which is suddenly replaced by a musical explosion. Frequent changes in signature in a YES style lead to a calm moment of acoustic guitar and keyboards very close to the early Marillion but the general mood of the track is more classic than neo.

"Kung Bore" starts with classical guitar followed by piano. It's another crescendo in 7/4, I think. The structure is still the same of the other tracks, a sort of patchwork of different odd signatures alternated with symphonic moments underlined by the flute. Also this track has lyrics and its melody is excellent. Here I can hear influences of all the classic bands but in particular Genesis.

So let's stop here. This album is so full of things that describing everything is a work too big. I'm not sure that it deserves completely the full five stars which I'm going to give it, but it contributed in renewing my passion for prog, so I'm grateful to it.

octopus-4 | 5/5 |


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