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Ragnarök - Path CD (album) cover



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Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Interesting album from this veteran Swedish act, issued some 36 years after the band formed and 17 years after their prior release if I got my history right.

The 8 compositions on this creation have several similarities; of which the most common is the extensive use of undistorted and acoustic guitars in multiple layers. Three layers of guitars aren't uncommon; and it may even be more in segments too; although the ears could be deceiving in that.

Two basic styles are explored here. The first of these is a calm, mellow form of rock where the aim seems to be the creation of captivating melody lines and strong atmosphere; with leanings towards folk music as well as jazz in style.

The second set of tunes are more psychedelic in nature; with musical elements coming and going, a strong feeling of improvisation and distinct psychedelic tendencies due to careful use of dissonances and disharmonies in the soundscape. On these creation the band are quite similar to acts like Öresund Space Collective; if ÖSC ever were to record an acoustic album I'd guess that the end result could be pretty similar to this one.

One for open-minded folk and jazz fans this release; and followers of psychedelic music of the more mellow variety should find this one interesting too.

Report this review (#191634)
Posted Wednesday, December 3, 2008 | Review Permalink
3 stars Do not confuse this band with the New Zealand symphonic prog group or the heavy metal outfit from the 80-90's! Those Swedish people belong to the first period of the Swedish Progressive wave during the 70's. The band vanished in the 80's but the leader Peter Bryngelsson could be heard in various groups (Triangulus, Urban Turban?) or as a solo artist. Ragnarök reformed in 1991 and published "Well", an unnoticed opus at that time. So, one could pretend that the real return of our Swedish musicians occurs now. The line-up is complete and even the original engineer Anders Lind answered the call. What a welcome return! They are a typical example of atmospheric and melancholic prog made in Sweden. Their first albums (four were published) are real classics among prog heads. "Fjärilar I Magen", the second one, is a gem. I remember finding this album in a second hand record shop in Lyon, when prog was underground, much more than now since no CD reissues and no online vendors existed. A diehard Crimso lover, I was seduced by this album and its blend of fragility with power, ethereal atmospheres with nervous guitar parts, plus some folk influences and great effects. Yes, the first era of King Crimson but without the mellotron. It was one those rarities I often played during my first radio shows. "Path" includes eight delicate instrumental tracks, essentially based on the acoustic and electric guitars. For sure this album is not the masterpiece I was waiting for (I am a bit too nostalgic, I know). But there are some great moments though. So I recommend it.
Report this review (#266486)
Posted Tuesday, February 16, 2010 | Review Permalink

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