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5 stars What a come back... After the interesting debut of Journey of the Shaman, Nemrud followed up with the amazing new concept album Ritual. After these years Nemrud founds there own face and sound which will stay in history of progrock music for years as classic Nemrud sound. This album is first evidence of it.

Tracks are as following:

In my Mind is candidate one of Nemrud's classics. Here, you're given a taste of Mert Gocay's great guitar work, along with his harmonic vocals. The atmosphere suddenly changes and it is really tranquil and in moments relaxing with smooth vocals, so it is great how they suddenly changed from a provocative and strong opener, to a soft and calm. These changes in the tracks to appreciate Nemruds mixture of sounds and feelings. This one proves that psychadelic and progressive music can be catchy and still fantastic.

Sorrow by Oneself is a very laid back track, with good singing, interesting lyrics, and effective guitar. In the middle of the songs fantastic moog work by Topel welcomes you than very catchy melody by guitar takes us through very interesting part of the song which full of energy with great drum work.

Light; unbelievably short, relaxed and mellow feeling that Nemrud is so succesful in creating...I need more and more but at least I know that after this comes "Ritual"

After a weird intro, "Ritual" leads us in Psychedelic territory, the music is dreamy and trippy but the sound is typical of the early 70's, less aggressive than debut album but with the same spirit, only that more delicate and elaborate, simply delightful. The characteristic voice of Mert Gocay and the nice work by all the band (specially by the drum and keyboards) demonstrates us this band is in the road towards huge achievements. The song goes in crescendo and the instruments keep joining and making it more complex, the tortured guitar of Mert Gocay takes us through the eras of Nemrud from their early effort, to the classic era, all in a lapse of minutes. These 18 minutes are pure prog brilliance...

Mert Gocay clearly shows maturation on this album as the music is more elaborate, better produced, with the whole album having much better cohesion in themes and moods. Nemrud again shows strong Pink Floyd influences, but I also hear some similarities with the Camel, Uriah Heep and Eloy in places.

Easily a five-star masterpiece...An essential acquisition for those of you interested in the psychedelic side of progressive rock, especially if you want to hear something different. Highly recommended !!

Report this review (#966734)
Posted Thursday, May 30, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars My Ritual begins! After the low-key, psych-tinged symphonic prog of their debut Journey of the Shaman would make a triumphant and spectacular return with this highly-regarded follow-up. 'Ritual' is, without a doubt, the group's crowning glory, featuring complex instrumentation, darker themes and a more overtly progressive style than debut, showing just how far the band had progressed in a relatively short space of time. The album starts with "In my Mind" a track that has a bit more of Rock than I usually find in NEMRUD, but after a few minutes of this hybrid between soft Symphonic and Rock, it's obvious that the band members know their business, changing melodies with very catchy moods. I like the vocal part especially second section. "Sorrow by Oneself" is a playful sounding track with some great catchy synth melodies with three parts.The first part is mainly based on vocals and acoustic guitar with a beautiful melody. Second part has an awesome synth part comes in, totally mind blowing if you ask me.The last part is my favorite more rockish kind of, thanks to fast guitars and fast rhythm. "Light" has the nice guitar, synth and is far more gentle. Likewise the third track is well enough played and presented, but the last one very extraordinary and high-end to me. ''Ritual'' It's an epic suite. It's organic. It never looses continuity even when the theme moves from a clean guitar melody to a keyboard riff, to warm singing and to the tendentially hard-rock finale. I beleive it will became an all-time favorite of prog fans worldwide through the ages. Conclusion : Good, high-quality compositions, and performed by one of the tightest bands you will hear. Ritual is a solid listen throughout and ages quite well--this will remain in my changer for the forseeable future. If you prefer your prog to center around rock (and not pretentious themes or multi-layered arrangements), then Ritual is a must! Bad, I don't like the sound quality, there is an intolerable noise like vinly not clean. Songwriting: 5 Instrumental Performances: 4 Lyrics/Vocals: 5 Style/Emotion/Replay/Technical: 4
Report this review (#978185)
Posted Saturday, June 15, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars Nemrud's Ritual appears to be the defining "moment" of this band's career. After debut album of some exceptional material and some mixed results, they pulled it all together on this very good composed four-song concept album about the schizoid person who tries to face himself in the dreams. The story played out lyrically and instrumentally with very few spoken word and spacey sounds alternating with strong melodies and harmonic vocals. Hence we have an album which defies categorisation. At times this is indeed Psychedelic Rock, but it is also highly symphonic. On top of that, the album arguably represents one of the first examples of the genre now defined as Psychedelic Symphonic Prog. The album opens with the amazing In my mind which is truly a magnificent composition and is performed flawlessly by all the musicians involved. The song starts beautifully with an spacy music featuring a bit of distorted guitar, soft keyboard and ambient drumming with dynamic work on tom and snares. In fact, the combination of guitar and drum is really nice and has become one of attraction points for this track. The key strengths of this song includes the brilliant flow of the music as well as the melody that brings the music along the way with a feeling of peace of mind during the wonderful flow. Sorrow by oneself; continues the nuance and style of the opening track in ambient spacey nuance. Again, the guitar work flows beautifully, followed with gentle voice of Mert Gocay. The main attraction of this track is probably the interlude in the middle of the song. It demonstrates the great combination of keyboard solo and rhythm section that comprises drums and guitar. One thing that is very good also from the band's music is the moog work that flows dynamically in tight guitar along with the music flow. Light; brings the music into more downbeat style with smooth drive on vocal as well as rhythm section. The tempo is of course lower than any other two tracks that precede it. This is about the time to cool down the music in a more dramatic way. This has made the album much more interesting to enjoy because at the first two tracks NEMRUD deliver the music in mixed tempo and this time demonstrates much more dreamy to create another emotional atmosphere to the listeners. And Ritual....Deadly bells, background sounds, synth and a narrator for the storm to start. 2 minutes of dark psychedelia than the organ plays minor chords like in a requiem on which the narrator says something. The song speeds up in the second half with a very beautiful melody on guitar and wonderful vocals. A clear reminiscence to Eloy, the kings of German Psychedelic Rock.

Bass and Kicks in where the band's style is more highlighted. It is in my opinion the best song of the album, with an outstanding and heavy riff mixed with floating moods. Brilliant, one of the best Psychedelic Rock songs ever. If you're new to be the band, then Ritual is a good starting point. It shows that excellent prog music was not being produced only in England and the USA. NEMRUD was one of the first Turkish groups to make great records on that style outside the english speaking countries and Ritual is their magnum opus.

Five stars, an essential masterpiece for prog rock fans. That's all what I got to say.

Report this review (#987169)
Posted Thursday, June 27, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars For me this is the first turning point in the career of Nemrud. Before this album, the debut was mainly a mix of psychedelic and rock, now it is a step forward towards the solid progressive rock scene. The overall mood on this album is relaxed and very atmospheric, but it can as said earlier on, from time to time be fairly heavy.

"In My Mind" a perfect start to the album and one of my favorite tunes of Nemrud. Excelling on any way possible including lyrics and emotion. This is a journey of musical ecstasy.

"Sorrow by Oneself" is quite catchy and is quite love at first sight due to the beautiful melody then the song explodes into an epic with the whole band joining in.

"Light" Just an excellent mellow short song. Say no more!

The album ends with "Ritual", which essentially to any fan of Pink Floyd and Eloy will remind their early days with a creepy sounds that is soothing to the ear and is a great introduction. Soon, gentle and very phased guitar chords are played over a steady bass/drum beat for the next few minutes. Mert Gocay's vocals on this track are very echoey and very other-worldly. The extended outro has very retro overtones, and the guitar solo at the end fits very well over that. In short, this is 18 minutes of progressive nirvana.

Mert Gocay did a an excellent job on creating the signature Nemrud sound. He is leading band to more symphonic way with this album. I have two grouches; first one is about drum on this album; there are two different drummers played two albums, I like old one unfortunately. This one is way too calm/easy for the record and it appears as very oppressiveness with the sound. Second is record quality, I listened this record in various set-up but the sound is thick and deep hiss sound.

Anyway, here is my conclusion: Nemrud's musical tempo almost never exceeds medium and on Ritual tends to be more in the medium slow range. Listening to this and debut album, I hear influences from numerous other bands. Like many prog bands I hear Pink Floyd and Eloy but I also hear Camel, Nektar and Moody Blues.

Trippy, aerial, floaty and representing well the fantasy atmosphere of the 70's, Ritual will be a delight for newbies and veterans, looking for a new band to give an ear.

Report this review (#987801)
Posted Friday, June 28, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars Nemrud's second studio album is brilliant, and the best they have ever done. After the concept album Journey of the Shaman, the band decided to do something more in line with what they had done previously as can be noticed by the use of spacey synths. There isn't a weak moment on this offering, and every passage of it is so memorable. The whole album is really like some sort of weird lucid dream i'm not sure how else to describe it. It's really atmospheric in my opinion, it really got me hooked with the opener "in my mind" and kept me in the loop till the "ritual" ends. Ritual is an incredibly strong record filled with fantastic songwriting and musicianship throughout, and if you've enjoyed any of Nemrud's debut work it's fair to assume you'll appreciate this album as well. Although there are a few flaws, they are small enough to not have any major impact on the quality of the album. Overall this is Nemrud's best album so far and is a high point in progressive music.
Report this review (#988753)
Posted Saturday, June 29, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is one of the best albums to ever come out in these days from Turkey. "Ritual" has a very good balance between Symphonic and pyschedelic progressive rock. Every track is simply perfect; finely crafted and feature lots of outstanding instrumental moments and vocal deliveries-- Gocay and Topel are on top of their game and playing as a very tightly as a group with Gocay is the one member dominating composing two albums. "In my mind" The perfect combination of riffs and musical changes suits the concept perfectly, a crisp, ferocious guitar sound, dark, fluid organ and the best example of Nemrud's ability to create spacy mood. The instrumental last section is powerful and tense, and its quietude doesn't actually remove any of the force that has been built up before it. The shift back to the story is handled perfectly, atmospheric chatter and all, and the ending no less so. Probably my favourite moment for the Nemrud rhythm section. "Sorrow by Oneself" is also brilliant, from the guitar interplay with added keyboards, occasional taps on percussion and Gocay's voice on the opening to a mocking, not louder, but more powerful section to the beautiful synth and guitar slightly more psychedelic section, last part is very upbeat tempo with lovely melody on the guitar. "Light" The piece is very soft and calm, it gives you a short break before the epic title song. "Ritual" Nemrud finds themselves. This is the band that would appear 2 years later. Ritual is a complete masterwork. The song is able, right from the opening keyboards and guitar to whisk you into another world. When the vocal starts you forget this time, this planet, this world. You are somewhere else, somewhere far far away, and nothing matters. Words cannot express this feeling. Great composion! The song is finished with energy by the band, and then the song gradually fades with the same synths playing strange noises. A true masterpiece of progressive rock. In my opinion 'Ritual' is the fountainhead of all psychedelic space prog and is the album that guarantees immortality for Nemrud. Mastermind of the band Mert Gocay leads to band another dimention with this record. I doubt that anyone here is ignorant of the band but in the unlikely event you haven't heard it you're in for a wonderful awakening when you do. On the CDs saying the record is live and analog, which is very rare but the sound is not clean enough, you can hear 'hess' sound unfortunately. My rating is just about music and it is 5-stars of course!
Report this review (#993497)
Posted Monday, July 8, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars Another "Love or Hate" album from Turkey...I read all the reviews regarding this album. Most of'em are very pleased what they are hear but lots of 1-2 stars on the rating section too...Again, you can't judge people's oppinion. Here is mine :)

The theme of this record is ritual in the dream.This second release from the band is more complex and darker than thier previous album. Throughout the four pieces on this album, the listener is taken through many different themes, such as suicide or utter depression and the feeling of being lost, but the music is well conceived and well played on the parts of all musicians on the album. What's for certain, though, is that this album began a long string of excellent album from this group and for the next years they have to make an album that better than Ritual.

Based on trademark riff structures from multi-tracked guitars, "In my mind" has a genuinely complex Symphonic Prog structure, with continuous organic progression throughout, awash with key, tempo and mood changes in an ever-flowing monster of a piece. It even has a final sting in its tail with a fantastic guitar motif that is gone before it has time to sink in. The composition and complexity of the song is excellent.

"Sorrow by oneself" is a mellow tune with gentle vocals, guitar, synth, drums and moog.The focus is on the lyrics on this one.

"Light" acts as a type of intermission. Peaceful, preparing us for the onslaught.

"Ritual" is my favourite track, opening with scary atmosphere, slowly building tension until a killer riff is finally unleashed. Forever shifting and changing within a hard rock framework, the track proceeds with organ and guitar soloing to segue into deep which continues the mood with touch of guitar choir. It also contains some stunning instrumentals including thrusting power space rock, and it rocks off to an unexpected abrupt end on the catchy guitar melody. Rock doesn't get much better than this!

Possibly the easiest way to describe album's music is just to imagine well balanced mix of Pink Ployd slight psychedelic, Uriah Heep heavy keyboards-led prog and the result mixture as Eloy produced sound. Guitar and Keyboard works are great, vocals -very competent, songs have their melodies, but most important - common atmosphere is real 70-s. Highly recommended.

Report this review (#998608)
Posted Monday, July 15, 2013 | Review Permalink
Second Life Syndrome
5 stars This sophomore album from Turkish proggers, Nemrud, has been a little bit of a battleground of late. It seems as if people either love it or hate it, but I'm not sure why that is. All I can say is that I LOVE this album, and of course I listened to it right after I did a countdown of my favorite albums for the first half of 2013 on my Facebook page, The PROG Mind. That kind of thing always happens to me. Sheesh.

Getting back to the album, I wasn't sure what to expect from this album, as it is labeled psychedelic/space rock. Yet, I would venture to say that it has quite a bit of neo-prog influence to it, too. In fact, I would daresay this album leans more towards the latter than the former. The music is generally easy-going, but technically brilliant at the same time. We get soothing synth and organ solos, delicate guitar passages, incredible solos, and blistering drum sections (is there such a thing?) all within one track, such as on "In My Mind" (my favorite track on the album). The music progresses very steadily sometimes to a soaring melody or climax; or sometimes it jumps around a little. So, even though on the surface it may seem like a soft and easy album, it really is genius once you let it sink in a bit.

The vocalist, Mert, has such a good voice with a slight accent. He really uplifts the music with his pleasant and strong tone, as can be seen on the short track, "Light". He makes this track something special with his smooth delivery and wonderful vocal melodies. Yet, the album is very dark as it follows a shaman through depression, sorrow, loss, etc. So, the vox are often very soulful and emotive---just the way I like them.

With all that said, however, this album is not for metalheads, certainly. If you like beautiful prog rock that features melody and structure, stunning climactic moments, and dark and profound ideas; then this album may please you.

Report this review (#1003908)
Posted Tuesday, July 23, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars Here it is... My first review is coming for "Ritual"... In my opinion, the more solid album from Nemrud. Undoubetly JOTS contains some of the Nemrud's classics but, in general, I think Ritual works better as a whole and, Nemrud, a prog-rock band from Istanbul, builds its own "music suits with concept" wall in 21st century prog era. Here, there are some well done dramatic scenes all along the record, a great rhythmic work, nice harmonic progressions led by the guitar and a solidness in the composition which is obvious on "In my Mind".

"Ritual" is just a classic. Plain and simple. Listeners should pick this work to pieces over a number of pages and still not do it the justice it deserves in any review. Nemrud tell of an epic struggle between good and evil in this masterpiece. Chapter by chapter your attention will never falter. Nemrud had almost certainly mastered the art of telling stories with music, although much of the lyrics are clearly closer to poetry than prose.

I can hear this record on and on from start to end and I never get tired or bored of it. Ritual is a gem of progressive rock, and one of the best albums this band ever recorded.

Report this review (#1004053)
Posted Tuesday, July 23, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars One of a handful of classic prog rock to be recorded in these days. Incredible prog.rock album harking back to the glory days of the genre. If you like Pink Floyd, Eloy, Camel and similar bands you are going to be suprised by how good this is, extremely melodic and beautiful, amazing dynamics and many subtlties if you look under the surface. Topel's keys and Gocay's guitars are highlights, both play their instruments with a ton of originality. They compare themselves, or should I say connect themselves with the 70's, so right away I'm thinking they'll rip off a band or two. Yet, with ears straining to hear a chord, melody or anything else from the past, I'm shocked to say they come out wholly original and that's a hard thing to do, even few months ago. So, for me, it's very easy to say 'Ritual' is a modern masterpiece and should be high on your list of best ofs of the this year. It is for me and rightly so! Highly Recommended for retro prog. lovers! Keep on proggin' ..!
Report this review (#1017314)
Posted Tuesday, August 13, 2013 | Review Permalink
Heavy Prog & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars I have to agree that while this is beautiful music, it is quite simple. There are no fiery solos, no complicated time signatures, and very few shifts in dynamics. Actually, some of the recording harkens back to the 70s in that there are subtle "flaws" or "mistakes" caught in the analog tapes that modern digital systems would clean up (sanitize). This can be charming and excusable--if the music were difficult to play/perform. But it's not. The stuff you'd find someone "risking" feedback from on Soundcloud. Very nice music but neither a prog masterpiece nor an excellent addition to any prog lover's music collection.

Plus, it's so short! Less than 40 minutes! And it's not even an "EP"! What do they think this is? The Seventies?

Report this review (#1020396)
Posted Sunday, August 18, 2013 | Review Permalink
4 stars I continue to explore the resent days of prog and go to the Turkish band "Nimrud"s second album "Ritual" from this year 2013. I have earlier been prejudiced to space rock. Prejudicies are often good to have but here I was wrong. There was nothing of long and meaningless soundscapes with no other meaning than exist and flourish around in a dopey feeling. No, this was the opposite, a great piece of music which probably will please those who like Pink Floyd or even more Eloy. Nimrud is made up by Mert Göcay on guitars and vocals, Aycan Sari plays bass, Mert Topel keyboard and Mert Alkaya drums. Many Mert in the same band then. I also like the cover with red dry and cracked soil.

Nemrud's music is easy to love. I love Göcay's accent which is not very unlike Eloy's singer. He sings well both in higher and lower levels. The four tracks are just lovely. This is not modern incomprehencible music, but old style very nice rock. I like the sound of the 70s rock and Nemrud has the same style(in some form). Great guitar and keyboard. The melodies are very nice and has something for everyone. My favourite tracks are "In my mind" and "Ritual" and the both of them would I recommend every day! The two others are also good but not in the very same class.

The comes the hard thing for me, to rate this album. 4,5 would have been the fairest rating and with 4 stars I am a bit unkind. But still I am little new to the band and the genre and would perhaps higher my four if I let it rest for a while. This is definitely one of the best releases from 2013. Perfectly deserving all the praisings it could get. I will give Nemrud's second four strong stars!

Report this review (#1047368)
Posted Sunday, September 29, 2013 | Review Permalink
4 stars With a compact running time of under 40 minutes, Nemrud are clearly aiming for quality over quantity with Ritual, their second album, and on the whole I'd say they hit the mark with these long, dreamy space rock excursions. Lead guitarist Mert Göçay offers vocals here and there, but as is typical with space rock of this variety the focus is on shimmering instrumental passages. Mert Topel draws you in and spaces you out with his keyboards, whilst drummer Mert Alkaya has a knack for unleashing sudden drum interventions just at the point where a mood change would be most effective. The three Merts (plus bassist Aycan Sarı) have pulled off a good one here.
Report this review (#1060207)
Posted Tuesday, October 15, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars While Journey of The Shaman a most certainly had a flair for the dramatic, slightly melancholic aspects of music, Ritual is in many ways like it, yet fundamentally different. The bulk of the material isn't as in-your-face as I experienced the predecessor to be, perhaps due to the fact that it was my first encounter with the whole Turkish scene.

Debut album showed some clear influences, mostly in the shape of early Eloy, while still maintaining a high level of originality. Ritual, these influences are in no way as notable, and I confidently state that they firmly and successfully express their own, unique sound on this release. It's more relaxed, mature and sophisticated than the emotional, atmospheric but still slightly rougher, slightly unpolished music coming out of Journey of The Shaman, More daring in compositions, the use of many ideas that, almost magically, manages to form a single harmonious unity every single time.

As for the music, it contains even more classical overtones and is clearly more complex than Journey of The Shaman, but when for some bands that means a colder, more mathematical approach, not so with Nemrud. Because the music throughout the album is positively vibrant with warmth and richness, with often short , tranquil passages of excellent guitar and synth, intertwined with more dramatic passages and very often. The few bits of really notable electric guitar still shows some relation and admiration to Andy Latimer, but in the next second they are as far from the man as possible with the smooth, warm tone one can expect for this kind of music. That same warmth is not only limited to the instrumental side of the album, the vocals are equally soothing and patoral. The greatest difference, musically, must be that of the compositions. Here we're served a more modern, in the words relative meaning, sound. More electronic, bordering on sharp from time to time. If you for some reason find this bothering there's no need to be alarmed: Guitar-soaked melody will redeem that.

This is an album covering many moods and atmospheres along the way, but the one that lingers is above all the amazing laid-back, feel-good warmth and the fact that while staying true to this, that it still manages to be such an instrumental firework. It is, simply put and taken as a whole, a dark album. One that should be enjoyed indoors, in wintertime, with pleasant company, a glass of wine and in beautiful settings.

Mert Gocay's composer ability is simply great, showing off his well natural skills that happen to be undeniably outstanding. More than bringing you to tears, this piece will take you to unrevealing heights where you can only let go of everything and die for a fugacious moment that will bring you back to life itself. A geniality made music.

The opening In My Mind represents what Progressive Rock is, the band has divided it in several parts but I find really three clear divisions. The first part is chaotic and dramatic, the instruments seem to fight one with the other, guitar and keyboard seem to go through different paths and that's exactly where the beauty of the song relies, around the third minute the song begins to show a perfect structure that is often interrupted by another confusing and brilliant passage.

Second song Sorrow by Oneself opening with Gocay's elegant acoustic guitar, the song follows a simple progression but reaches crushingly beautiful peaks. Gocay's soothing vocal floats softly above Topel's atmospheric keyboard, creating a rich and grandiose musical atmosphere.

A very little one Light; a beautifully, melodic piece, starting with Gocay's guitar. Fairly laid back overall but this track really soars to powerful heights capable of taking the roof off and has one of those hair standing up on the back of your neck endings.

Ritual...What a song! 20 years later its release, it will sounds fresh an innovative, imagine how it must have sounded for people hearing it for the first time in 2033! For my particular taste, there have been a few other long epics that have surpassed this track as the best in that category of song. But, on one hand, this was one of the first, and it's still one of the best, and on the other, many if not all the bands that have recorded long symphonic-style epics since 70's have used this especial track as their primary point of reference and guidance. And there's no need to discuss how brilliant the music is, especially, for me, the magnificent opening of the song, which sounds like chaos organized to perfection, a superb juxtaposition of elements in the ultimate rock canvas, with so many colors and textures floating around at the same time and in such incandescent way that one can only surrender at the pure genius of it all. Aycan plays plain, clean bass, revolutionizing the instrument; Gocay is an artist with a brush full of colors; Topel plays around like the painter who tries to come up with the right formula; Alkaya acts like the timekeeper, the final judge that gives music its direction. When Gocay's voice appears it's not to annoy us with his unusual voice like in debut but to soothe us with a magnificent display of melodies and vocal harmonies, in what might be his shiniest performance ever, even if we don't have a single clue what he's singing about. All clicks in this song, from the brilliant structure that is never predictable but always coherent enough so that it never confuses us, to the alternation of dazzling technique and soft melody. One of the highest points in progressive rock's history.

As everything else in life, Ritual may not be to everyone's taste, but if you really want to understand what vintage prog is all about on these days, do yourself a favour and get it at once!

Report this review (#1165013)
Posted Friday, April 25, 2014 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
4 stars NEMRUD are back with their second release and the majority feel that this is a step up from their debut called "Journey Of The Shaman". I really enjoyed the debut myself as the band seemed to have a style similar to ELOY, and I think the complaints towards both bands are also similar as people point out the simplicity of the music and the less than average vocals. But for me Psychedelic music is all about creating a mood and being innovative. The vocals are secondary really and while the music may not be complex it really takes me to another place in my mind. By the way these guys are from Turkey which is where one of my favourite albums in the Psychedelic realm was created by SIDDHARTHA.

So we get four long tracks and they keep it under 40 minutes which is appreciated by yours truly. The story here is about a schizoid man who tries to face himself in his dreams for his own enlightenment. This one is darker and more melancholic than the debut.

Up first is "In My Mind" and it opens in an experimental manner before that melodic guitar comes in along with the drums. It picks up after 1 1/2 minutes then the vocals join in. He sings "Darkness grows in my mind...Fear erases the memories...The past is gone, in my mind...Courage releases unknown tales...Dreams appear in my mind...Shadow covers reality". The organ comes in floating as the vocals continue. Love the sound 6 minutes in, it's so uplifting as he sings "Welcome darkness, my restless friend...I am going to fly one last more...In my mind is only pain...All the memories are drained...Opened my eyes but I cannot see...What is being done to me?!?" The music turns heavy 8 1/2 minutes in when the vocals stop. Great track. "Sorrow By Oneself" opens in a very melancholic manner reminding me of a cross between FLOYD and PT. Vocals arrive as it continues in this laid back and slow moving style. A change 3 1/2 minutes in when the vocals stop as we get some interesting synth sounds and more. The guitar comes to the fore then it kicks in before 5 minutes but settles back quickly, although the tempo will continue to change. This is really good.

"Light" is by far the shortest track at just over 2 minutes. Spacey organ, beautiful guitar, and a relaxed beat as the vocals join in. "Ritual" is the final track and the epic at almost 18 1/2 minutes. Some eerie soundscapes here early on, and when the vocals come in the lyrics match that mood as he laments about being alone in the dark. The sound builds and seems to become more uplifting as it plays out. Incredible stuff right here. A change 5 minutes in as the vocals stop and the music becomes more relaxing. Vocals are back and I like when the guitar solos. It changes and picks up 7 minutes in. We get some light here as he sings about his fear disappearing and the music is more upbeat. An organ solo 9 1/2 minutes in when the vocals stop. He's back singing but the mood and lyrics stay positive. It all comes to a stop 14 minutes in, then it kicks in fairly heavily. It ends in an experimental manner much like the way the album started.

I couldn't give this anything less than 4 stars just like their debut.

Report this review (#1166282)
Posted Sunday, April 27, 2014 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is a review of delux LP version of Nemrud - Ritual

This album represents for me, this is Nemrud's creative peak. The songs are arresting, the vocals sublime and - like Eloy's "Inside" - it is one of the few concept albums that really works, rather than simply being a collection of vaguely thematically linked songs with a hit single and some below par filler thrown in for good measure.

Ritual is a concept album, about the troubled person who tries to face himself in the dreams for his own salvation. What makes this album one of the best Nemrud offerings, is the way the classic formula of electric guitar, Organ and Smooth vocals comes together so well. I had felt that on their previous album, and indeed on some that followed, that the overall feel of the album was marred by moments of banality. 'Ritual' doesn't seem to suffer for this.

"In My Mind" is a great opener, complete with the sound of a robotic sounds at the beggining. Apparently the band had acquired a tape from various keyboards for this. I'm not convinced about the poetry that sits on top of the music on this track, but the guitar part, and the energy of the song do make for an exhilerating opener.

In "Sorrow by Oneself" Nemrud present their most accomplished and moving songs.

"Light" is a simple beautiful song, opening with gentle keyboard, and setting the scene for a fine perfomance from Mert Gocay. One of the best moments in the album.

For the closure title track "Ritual", the song is really a splendid piece of contemporary music breaking the borders of labels and styles; this work helped - and helped too much to set the guidelines for what we today call prog-rock or simply prog. It has a powerful melody and great guitar part at the opening. It's my favorite Nemrud's track as well. The music flows naturally with ambient vocal at the opening, moving up into an energetic style with drum beats and guitar riffs. I always repeat this track whenever I play this album like what I'm doing now. The combined work of keyboard and electric guitar is really excellent.

This is a really good album with Mert Gocay's best lyrics, compositions, and a great overall effort from the band that really deserves the attention that it gets. It is not quite a masterpiece, however, and Nemrud managed to create those in the forms of future albums that will follow.

If you haven't heard this album, it is highly recommended as an excellent addition to your psychedelic rock collection.

Report this review (#1388450)
Posted Friday, March 27, 2015 | Review Permalink
4 stars While I generally agree with the other enthusiastic reviews of this album, I just wanted to add some comments on the sound quality. There is a noticeable amount of hiss, particularly between songs, and the bass drums are cranked way up high. On my car stereo, I have the bass and treble turned up all the way because that's the way I like it. But when I play this CD, the bass of the drums overload my speakers, causing them to distort wildly. I have to push a bunch of buttons and go through a couple of menus in order to adjust the bass so I can hear this one CD. (Remember when you could adjust the bass by just turning a knob?) Anyway, the atmosphere on this album is brilliant, and it makes up for any other perceived shortcomings, in my opinion. But I am surprised no one has commented on the somewhat primitive sound quality. Oh, and the break between the last two songs is clumsy, like someone inserted a track separator in the wrong spot, and it turned into a gap of silence in an awkward place. I am going to seek out the vinyl, because I think it may sound better.
Report this review (#1532843)
Posted Thursday, February 25, 2016 | Review Permalink
4 stars The second album by Nemrud, a Turkish band influenced mainly by Pink Floyd and Eloy, but also other classic symphonic prog bands like yes, genesis, camel, and etcetera. The name of the band came from a turkish high mountain that has statues of ancient gods and is a sacred place. It is always welcome to have new bands with good quality of music, as I said previously this album is mainly space rock that have a good structures without exaggerating with jams, but also includes symphonic passages that add variability in the music composition. The vocals also adds a good feeling to the music. However, not all the music is excellent, and there are parts where the quality of music diminish and its not consistent. Finally, I considered it a excellent addition to any prog collection, but far from being a masterpiece.
Report this review (#2120643)
Posted Wednesday, January 23, 2019 | Review Permalink
4 stars 1. In My Mind (10:22) - starts with a minute of default spacescape atmospheric noise which evokes imagery of a landing spaceship, before building into an Eloy-esque slow paced guitar driven beat. Lyrics in slightly broken English are simplistic and covers as many prog cliches as possible within 60 seconds (darkness, fear, dreams shadows). As the synth builds into a dreamy section we are treated to some of the vaguest of default nonsense lyrics: "The time has come, the music almost begun". The fractured English is of course excusable given the band's native language but there is an element of crowbarring in lyrics just so that they rhyme, particularly in the megaphone-spoken mid-section: "The gates of gream lie waiting as you see, there's not much to say just follow me". However, the melodic instrumental section, particularly from the synth organ is very well put together, before we're back to the lyrics, this time misquoting Simon and Garfunkel: "Welcome darkness my restless friend", providing another cliche: "opened my eyes but I can not see", and a final slightly clunky line "What is being done to me?" before we're back to the instrumentals, which for the final two minutes moves from something which wouldn't be out of place at the back end of Dark Side of the Moon to a heavier Steven Wilson style sound. Ignoring the lyrics themselves, the vocals are solid and instrumentally it is a good 10 minute piece.

The detail above also summarises the album as a whole - the lyrics can make you grimace at times but if you focus more on the composition as a whole it is solid. In between tracks there is quite a lot of hiss for whatever reason, which is a bit irritating.

2. Sorrow by Oneself (7:46) - First half is incredibly Eloy. See 'Point of No Return'. As above the lyrics are a little weak but overall a decent sounding first half of the track before the second half returns to a style more reminiscent of Pink Floyd's Animals. Surprisingly though before this really gets going we switch to quite an upbeat riff towards the end of the track which again finishes with a lot of hiss.

3. Light (2:18) - A short dreamy number which doesn't add much other than to build into the final epic-length title track.

4. Ritual (18:24) - The intro to the track does its name some justice, with tension-building off-key piano and percussion easily evoking imagery of a dark sacrificial rite of passage. Again, the trick here is to avoid listening to the exact lyrics and focus on the mood and melody of the track which is very very good. Essentially, pick any of the most popular prog albums of the late 70s/early 80s and you can probably pick out similarities to parts of this track. There's even a point half way through where if you're not paying attention you'll think you're listening to Dire Straits' Sultans of Swing. Against my better judgement I quite like it, even if later on the lyrical torture ends at a peak: "go to sleep and dream again... soon your hopes will rise and then... from all this gloom life can start anew... and there'll be no fear soon". After this though there's another 5 instrumental minutes so you're able to forget the lyrics as the tune appears to slow to a close, only to start back up again with a powerful and dark sounding final thrash which i'd compare to Porcupine Tree's Signify. I'd even go far as saying that this final section of darker, heavier prog is the piece de resistance of the album, and the reason why at the last minute I've bumped this up from 3* to 4*. Finally, that "spaceship" from the start departs into the white noise hiss.

Report this review (#2420216)
Posted Friday, July 17, 2020 | Review Permalink

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