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Ragnarok - Ragnarok CD (album) cover

RAGNAROK

Ragnarok

Psychedelic/Space Rock


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onzmusic@msn.
4 stars Being a member of the band it is hard to be unbiased when it comes to previews. But I have to say that the raw energy of this album, along with Lea Maalfrid's vocal, is more representative of what Ragnarok (NZ) was. We, as a band, had an intense and wonderful time creating the music for this album. There were many influences from other bands and this mix, along with our own ideas, made up the substance of the music we recorded. CHEERS

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#58650)
Posted Wednesday, November 30, 2005 | Review Permalink
russellk
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars A fried of mine had a copy of this (hi Glenn) and I guess I must have heard it half a dozen times on his stereo. I'd love to find a copy somewhere.

I loved the opening track, 'Fenris', a real burner, and I also remember 'Rainbow Bridge' with fondness. I wasn't a fan of female vocalists, but Lea Maalfrid was excellent. Overall the music fitted comfortably into the Floydish groove, harking back to the late 60s and early 70s. Competent, enjoyable, with nothing that really grabbed me. I wonder what I'd think now, 30 years later?

Do you know, I never realised this was a Kiwi band?

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Send comments to russellk (BETA) | Report this review (#116432)
Posted Tuesday, March 27, 2007 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars I have their two studio albums and the live one. This is my least favourite, mostly because of the female singer who's vocals i'm just not a fan of.

This is mellotron heaven though and that's what makes it so good along with the tracks i'm familiar with from their live release. Interesting that those songs feature male vocals. "Butterfly Sky" is a dreamy, melancholic tune with lots of mellotron and those laid back male vocals. Great tune. "Rainbow Bridge" is another highlight. It's very mellow to start. Male vocals after 4 minutes.This sounds so beautiful.The vocals become more passionate 5 1/2 minutes in. "Raga" is the other highlight for me.

I love the style of music this band from New Zealand plays and if you can get your hands on their "Nooks" album or the live one you will be impressed i'm sure.This one is good but the female vocals bring down the rating for me. 3.5 stars.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#265017)
Posted Monday, February 08, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Ragnarok Review

What can I say? Classic Progressive Rock from New Zealand in the 1970s. The first album (self titled) is a real gem, and, even today after nearly 40 yrs of listening, I consider it an all time favourite album from ANY artist in the prog rock genre.. Why? well, its not particularly complicated in terms of say, 'Yes' technicality or 'Crimson' wierdness, but the synergy of the band and its instrumentation as it paints and weaves through the album puts me in what i call my 'dharma place' : that place where I am free from desire and fear and am just experiencing pure bliss.

Lee Maalfrid's Vocals are superb: she was undisputably the best female vocalist in Aotearoa at the time, as well as a very fine songwriter. She is Boudicca and Medusa all rolled into one as she moans and cajolls her people with a warning in 'Fire In The Sky'. In 'Caviar Queen' she 'has 'ridden over mountains and men for ages and ages gone by' and ' the earth does indeed tremble when she sighs...fantastic lyrics and a guitar riff that even now, is technically well crafted as it sours over the chorus. The instrumental tracks like 'Rainbow Bridge' and 'Dream Sequence' are great for the m p3 player at any time, but especially for just chilling at home.

Awesome.

Limited remastered CDs are available through the keyboard player in the band (yes..Andre Jayet, original member) and there was talk of a possible reunion albeit, w/o Maalfrid.

'Nooks is another masterpiece from 1976. I saw the band do a support gig for Jan Hammer and Jeff Beck and quite frankly, they blew the latter band off the stage. Needless to say i went straight to the shop to buy Nooks the next day! (yes people..I have an original Vinyl copy of Nooks, as well the original Cassette of Ragnarok, and now, the remastered CDs as well.)

The Title track on Nooks, is a masterful instrumental that will take you higher and higher into prog heaven, finally unwinding you and leaving you in a state of new consciousness. 'The Volsung' is a story of the Vikings..the track starts with the sound of the sea and you can hear a ship on the tide....then the intro of accoustic guitar and a wailing vocal..the story is told '...our ships sailed....past ice shores and snow covered fur trees......cast a last look to our fatherland..swift long ships heading for the open sea...sword and shield emblazened by the sun...Thor grant us the wish to die like men...warriers voices raised in songs of war..."' you can almost TOUCH the Runes around the crew's necks!!

These guys are great and know exactly what they are doing....both albums have helped create a solid foundation of prog consciousness.

Both fine albums aren't for just collecting. They are keys for Your Assension..................

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Send comments to dawning_horn (BETA) | Report this review (#439790)
Posted Wednesday, April 27, 2011 | Review Permalink
apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Neo Prog Team
3 stars Auckland-based short lived act from New Zealand,formed in 1974 by three members of the disbanded Sweet Feet: bassist Ross Muir,keyboardist Andre Jayet and drummer Mark Jayet,all coming from the city of Christchurch.With guitarist Ramon York and female vocalist Lea Maalfrid joining they soon built a great fame and toured extensively around the country.By summer of 75' the band recorded their self-titled LP,released on Revolution.

The style comes as a cross between ELOY's spaceness,PINK FLOYD's psychedelic face and BABE RUTH's Hard Prog style with a few TANGERINE DREAM-like Electronic beats added.And while all members contribute on the decent vocals of the album,it's the star of Maalfrid which really shines with her powerful,slightly hoarse chords,not unlike Jennie Haan of BABE RUTH.The album is characterized by the slow-tempo compositions,based on the strong,psychedelic use of synthesizers and the heavy guitars all over,often wrapped under orchestral-like arrangements.Notice also the great use of mellotron on most of the tracks,nicely blended with the background synths.Not all the album is based on the singing talent of Ragnarok's members,as a couple of tracks are all instrumental with an evident leaning towards more Electronic musicianship in the style of CYBOTRON,blended with Space Rock passages.However the lack of flexibility and the similarities of the style among the tracks prevents the album to make a huge impact.

If you are a dedicated fan of the aforementioned bands,Ragnarok is definitely your thing.Good musicianship,based on orchestral mellotron, psychedelic synths, doomy guitars and some great vocal lines.Recommended.

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Send comments to apps79 (BETA) | Report this review (#562257)
Posted Friday, November 04, 2011 | Review Permalink
2 stars There's a lot of folk, viking, metal and even electronic music bands and songs called Ragnarok or Valhalla. There are two Ragnaroks into progarchives. This Ragnarok is older than the most of the Ragnaroks around here. I will stop saying Ragnarok.

This is deir debut album. And the only one I have. I tried to get into this album, but I could not. I like the first track, Goodbye Copenhagen. But this album is uncatchy for me. I don't like the female vocals. It have some folk parts. But it's a pink floydish atmospheric psych. They aren't a bad band, but listening to this album I felt a lack of personality.

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Send comments to VOTOMS (BETA) | Report this review (#971460)
Posted Wednesday, June 05, 2013 | Review Permalink

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