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Änglagård Hybris album cover
4.35 | 1864 ratings | 145 reviews | 55% 5 stars

Essential: a masterpiece of
progressive rock music

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Studio Album, released in 1992

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Jordrök (Earth Smoke) (11:10)
2. Vandringar I Vilsenhet (Wanderings in Confusion) (11:53)
3. Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet (From Clarity to Clarity) (8:04)
4. Kung Bore (King Winter) (12:57)

Total Time 44:04

Bonus track on all reissues:
5. Gånglåt Från Knapptibble (Marching Tune from Knapptibble) (7:19)

Line-up / Musicians

- Tord Lindman / electric and nylon & steel acoustic guitars, vocals
- Jonas Engdegård / electric and nylon & steel acoustic guitars
- Thomas Johnson / Mellotron, Hammond (B-3 & L-100), synths (Solina, Korg), clavinet, pianet, piano, electronic church organ
- Anna Holmgren / flute
- Johan Högberg / bass, bass pedals, Mellotron (effects)
- Mattias Olsson / drums, concert bass drum, tambourine, vibraslap, po-chung, gong, glockenspiel, tubular bells, bongos, Tibetan finger cymbals, wind chimes, a-gogo, cabasa, African drums, effect-flute, varied bells and percussions

- Pär Lindh / performer (unconfirmed)

Releases information

Artwork: Göran Stenberg with Anders Johansson (design)

LP Colours - COSLP 013 (1992, Norway)

CD Mellotronen - MELLO 004 (1992, Sweden)
CD Mellotronen - MELLO CD 4004 (2000, Sweden)
CD Exergy Music - EX9 (2003, Sweden)
CD Änglagård Records - ANG 01 (2009, Sweden)
CD Arcàngelo - ARC-3035 (2013, Japan)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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ÄNGLAGÅRD Hybris ratings distribution

(1864 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(55%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(27%)
Good, but non-essential (12%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

ÄNGLAGÅRD Hybris reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Marcelo
5 stars An inspiration for a lot of Scandinavian bands, ANGLAGARD's first production is a must have in any prog collection. Maybe one of the few albums that everybody loves, and it's not merely coincidental. After the decadence of the great bands in '80s, and the poor approach to the original style from neo-prog bands, ANGLAGARD arised like the true response for all those who considered prog music dead and buried.

This album was a true inspiration for many Northern Europe bands like SINKADUS or LANDBERK, who emphasized the sadness and nostalgy found in "Hybris", making a sort of new "melancholic Scandinavian mellotronic" style. Precisely, "Hybris" is a party for Mellotron lovers.

Is KC best spirit present at this album? Yes, but increased. The four long tracks are unforgettable complex and melodic gems, and I'm sure that any prog lover can't be disappointed with this magnificent and original masterpiece.

Review by Sean Trane
5 stars This is the first one from that Swedish trilogy from 93 that made another Golden Age of prog and created if not a wide public, a wide array of band that followed on the heals of this one and Landbrek and Anekdoten. The influences here are clear Genesis, KC, Yes etc,,, but so well digested that this becomes original again . As one listens to this with the headphones, his head starts to turn as the music twists bends, twirls, dances from one movement to the next. Mind boggling how they can find their way through the numbers in concert. I just have one slight complain: the first number might have been placed last on the album for the sheer harshness of it makes it difficult to aboard this as it should. Every time I listen to this I program it as such: 2,3,4,1 and this goes exceedingly well.

Review by loserboy
5 stars Without a question ANGLAGARD are/were one of my personal progressive rock favourites with their dynamic vintage 70's sounds and deep dark mellotron runs. Both albums "Hybris" and "Epilog" are killer albums of epic proportions and deserve to adorn everyone's collection. "Hybris" was their first album and really introduced me to their deep picturesque music. For those less familiar with ANGLAGARD will simply freak out over their real keyboard accents with mellotron, hammond B3, piano and church organ and their amazing guitar, drum, flute and bass interplay. This stuff really does sound like something out of the 70's with long songs and excellent musicianship. There is a little bit of singing in native Swedish tongue but is not ever in the forefront and gets lost in the instrumentation. One of the biggest highlights for me here has been ANGLAGARD's use of classic instruments including the ol' Richenbacker bass, Gibson electric guitars, flute and mellotron. Nothing sounds "synthy" or plastic here.only rich pure music. If you are lucky enough to snag a copy of Mellotronen's re-mastered version will get an extra bonus demo track of a early working of a tune from "Epilog". Essential music guaranteed...!
Review by Steve Hegede
5 stars What is there to say about ÄNGLAGARD's "Hybris"? 1993's "Hybris" is one of the top prog albums released since 1969. This album features four tracks ranging between 8-12 minutes in length. The four compositions overflow with aggressive Rickenbacker bass and Hammond organ riffs, hell-ish mellotron, FRIPP-inspired guitar lines, and gentle Swedish-folk melodies. ÄNGLAGARD formed in the early 1990s as a reaction to the terrible neo-prog of the late 1980s. Their goal was to bring respect back to progressive rock, and did they ever! The band's second album, "Epilog", is also a classic. If you're new to the prog scene, quickly add this CD to your collection.
Review by Prognut
5 stars What else I can add to all the reviews.....not much I guess!!! Few artists achieved this level with their first album. What this 6-piece band showed to the world in 1992 with Hybris, is that the PROGRESSIVE rock music was alive and well. A killer album that you just have to get for your collection...A MUST, a Mellotron masterpiece dream that has everything a progressive fan is hungry for, a monster symphonic statement that will knocked your socks off. Highly recommended.
Review by lor68
5 stars Well it's not the most original album of the nineties (here you find some references to CATHEDRAL's "Stained Glass Stories", SHYLOCK's "Ile de Fievre", regarding of their dissonances, but also an epic style in the vein of EMERSON LAKE & PALMER), but it's anyway a jewel, one of the best ones in the nineties, along with for example ECHOLYN's "Suffocating the Bloom" or AFTER CRYING's "De Profundis"...even though at the end you could erase one star from the evaluation, cause unfortunately the weak vocalist (in a few sung tunes to be remarked inside their album) is able to "risk" the fortune and the reputation as well of the most important Scandinavian "shooting star" ... and moreover this latter is too much involved in changing the rhytmical patterns and mood as well, if you regard their overstated attempt to make some extremely various and "new" small music "pieces" of their harmonic puzzle...but nevermind, above all when it's a minor defect in the contest (especially inside their long suite), cause after almost 20 years the present album makes us feel so good and discuss a lot anyway. Besides, I don't think that for example another Scandinavian band like Flower Kings is able to do the same with their music, despite of their strong presence inside the international prog scene!

"Hybris" is already a classic number, but it will remain as the unique jewel along with "EPILOGUE", cause the band will brake-up in a few years...long memory after all!

Review by Hibou
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Like a long lost friend from the early 70's, "Hybris" showed up unexpectedly in 1992. But make no mistake about it: it was made in '92 (the clean production attests to that). As James Hill said, their music sounds as if former YES and KING CRIMSON members had recently joined forces for a gig. And what a gig! The music of 'Hybris" is complex, sharp, almost edgy and with dark overtones - it sometimes sounds downright strange. At other times, you'll come across poignant passages that will make you ache with longing. The overall effect is simply mesmerizing: like a musical Disneyworld, the soundscapes change at dizzying speed and take you where no music lover has ever gone before. This is perhaps the least 'symphonic' (I'm referring here to the 'choppy' nature of some passages) of the prog albums that I truly enjoy. Unless you are completely brain dead, I'm sure you'll find in "Hybris" a whale of an album. A gem, pure and simple.
Review by Proghead
5 stars It's easy to understand how a band like ÄNGLAGARD had to happen. Let's see what happened in the prog rock scene in between the thirteen years before "Hybris" came out near the end of 1992 right up to that time: punk, disco, and new wave brought an end of prog rock by 1979. People were getting so desperate for something from their prog heroes in the '80s, they'd even welcomed ASIA, which I thought was just a pop band trying to pander to the Lowest Common Denominator. YES and GENESIS went pop. The Neo-prog scene emerged (such as MARILLION) which while welcomed by many progsters, many others derided it as being nothing more than a modernized update of the GABRIEL-era GENESIS sound. By 1991-92, things were really looking down on some of the big name prog acts: YES gave us Union, which is regarded by many as a big disaster. Likewise, ELP gave us Black Moon, which wasn't all that great, in my opinion.

That gave room to a Swedish band, in which half the members were 17-18 (that is drummer Mattias Olsson, guitarist Jonas Engdegård, and keyboardist Thomas Johnson - the other half, being older, around the 23-25 age range consisted of guitarist Tord Lindman, bassist Johan Högberg, and flautist Anna Holmgren). This band was called ÄNGLAGARD. Despite having members of age where they were either too young or not even alive when many of the great prog rock albums came out, they were obviously not pleased with how prog was going. If they had to put up with ASIA, if they had to put up with Love Beach, only to have the band reunite 14 years later and give Black Moon, they knew they had to take matters in to their own hands. And this was their approach: ditch all digital equipment, never lay their hands on a Yamaha DX-7, get themselves a Mellotron and Hammond organ, get themselves a whole bunch of other instruments, as long as it wasn't made after 1975 (except for the Korg Poly/Mono synth that came out in 1982). Basically take matters in to their own hands.

If many people think just how original Änglagård are hadn't tried hearing albums like CATHEDRALl's "Stained Glass Stories", or side two of SFF's "Symphonic Pictures". In fact the opening cut, "Jordröck" sounds a like like side two of the already mentioned SFF album, but with plenty of HACKETTt-like guitars, and some really nice, gently, pastoral passages with that Nordic feel. The rest of the album is of the same high quality, unbelievable complex music from musicians who obviously play like they were ten years older than they really were. There are the occasional vocals in Swedish, but are only brief. There's enough Mellotron and Hammond organ to make any '70s prog fan happy. And in fact, the traditional '70s prog fan not happy with the neo-prog scene, and not happy with digital equipment more than welcomed ÄNGLAGARD with open arms, even from people who obviously don't bother with most albums released after 1977 or 1978. I can see how this band set the prog world by storm.

It might be hard to believe that this album was actually availble on LP as well as CD at the time. The LP, released on the long defunct Colours label out of Norway was beautifully packaged complete with lyric booklet which has lyrics to all the songs, as well as photos of band members, various other photos, and what band member played what (in Swedish - in which they also included an insert in English which described the history of the band up to that point, and the band members and the instruments they played).

No doubt about it, "Hybris" is definately one of the best '90s prog albums.

Review by Menswear
5 stars oH MaN!! tHIs OnE's A KeEpeR! Hey, one of the 5 best prog bands from 1990-2004. In 15 years, Anglagard has reached new standards in quality, dexterity and elegance. Who are those people? What talent!! This is a trully great prog ballet. Higher in quality than Epilog in my humble opinion. Why? More punchy and dizzyness along the whole album. Epilog is strong in some points, but overall, this one packs a tighter and meaner wallop. A more agresssive approach. I like the 'Tony Banks' way of playing the keyboards and the flute is played by...a lovely lady. Perhaps it could explain the emotion and the delicate intrigue the album is providing. Man oh man, with record like these, 90's prog shines with brillant colors. The first track is especially tasty and catchy. Such power combine with an almost feminine, graceful way. You know what I mean, that's why there made of sugar, spice and everything nice. Pretty cool artwork and jaw-dropping pictures inside the cover. Hey, they even tooked the inside pictures themselves. Once again, WHO ARE THEY? And that drummer! What a freakin' drum pounding viking! And the keyboardist! Tony Banks ressurected! And the guitar player! He carries many melodies only by himself, and we feel every single note he's playing. Makes a great sound. You'll see. A warm hug from the cold, cold north. The best thing from Sweden since guitar prodigy Ingwie Malmsteen. My 90's pick with Echolyn and Spock's Beard for best prog over 1990. * WAY BEYOND 5 STARS*
Review by richardh
5 stars A Mellotron Classic!

After the eighties neo prog scene subsided and turned into a more sophiscated brand or 'art pop' we really needed a band to remind us of what the original symphonic prog experience. However this is no imititation. Anglagard draw very heavily on their Scandanavian folk heritage and there is never one moment here that reminds me of seventies prog. A puzzle within a conundum within a paradox. New music that reflects the old.

Nothing here is rushed. The atmosphere is allowed to build slowly and the compositions and playing are as tight as a bell. No slackness just beautifull playing throughout. Superb recording.If you don't have this in your collection then why not??!

Review by The Prognaut
5 stars It was one of those abrupt, boisterous Saturdays at the most important music flea market in the heart of Mexico City: El Chopo. So, as usual, I bumped into my old prog dealer, "El Ganso"; and he led me to the newest stuff he's been shipped to lately. As I flipped back and forth inside the LP's box, I came across this oddly strange record that showed a bizarre kind of sun in its cover and I retrieved some info on the album from El Ganso, he didn't know much about that particular item just that it was a Swedish band that was about to perform next Dec. the 12th at the Foro Cultural Azcapotzalco (some sort of forum that lent its facilities for the Änglagård concert I attended to, I'm talking about 1993 my fellow prog fans). I bought the LP for marvelous $4 bucks and waited patiently for two months, ticket in hand; to go see those Swedish guys.

For the moment I listened to the album for the first time, I completely embraced it, I shocked myself to the bone, I was pretty much sure that until that moment I had never listened to anything like that (of course I hadn't because I was clearly influenced by PINK FLOYD, GENESIS, MARILLION, YES, CAMEL...) and I made ÄNGLAGÅRD one of my favorite bands ever despite that was the only album they had released so far. The day came: Dec. 12th. One of the most important celebration days in Mexico due the religiosity surrounding the country, the day of "La Guadalupana", The Virgin of Guadalupe. The subway was crowded, every source of transportation was unable to be rode in due the seas of people trying to reach to "La Basílica de Guadalupe" (the most sacred Catholic precinct in the city)... the ÄNGLAGÅRD concert was about to start and I was about to burst into flames because of the expectation and the emotiveness to watch them play for the first time (I was already in love of Anna's exquisite flute performing and amazed with Mattias drum skills). To make this story even shorter, you may assume I attended the concert and that I had a wonderful time during the after show with the band, there was a CD autograph session and Anna's flute was missing...

I wanted to make this review this way because the first impact upon ÄNGLAGÅRD is unforgettable, in every single detail. The drum striking by Mattias is outstanding, unbelievable and out of this world, you just can't imagine how he manages to play that way, sometimes as fast as he cans, sometimes impetuous and some other as calm as the wind... spectacular. Anna HOLMGREN's performance in that concert and all along the 4 tracked LP (I got both LP and the CD 2000 - 2003 especial edition with the bonus single "Gånglåt från Knapptibble") is incomparable to anything that you've ever listened to before; sure you might as well think of Andy LATIMER to compare the work of Anna, but you simply don't know what you're saying. Harmonious mellotron and stylophone playing, conjugated with moody bass and guitar executions; "Hybris" is the most representative piece of Scandinavian prog rock work ever, all along the way with "Epilog" of course. Bands such as PÄR LINDH PROJECT (PLP) and ANEKDOTEN are surely impregnated with ÄNGLAGÅRD's essence and project it on every suite, up on the stage, on every single piece contained on their very own productions and just cannot deny their origins. Superb album, reliable under recommendation, I would've rated it 10 starts if I could, you have to have it.

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars As some old progheads, I usually pay more attention to classic bands from the 70's than to the later ones, so I really never cared too much about ÄNGLAGÅRD until this Thursday when another reviewer of this page invited me to a musical clinic dedicated to this magnificent band, and my perspective changed in 180 degrees, really I haven't been so impressed with any other group since I heard Gabriel Genesis for the first time.

ÄNGLAGÅRD means Garden of Angels, and never a name of a band has been so perfectly chosen, their music is almost celestial, even when they belong to the 90's the members avoid the use of instruments that weren't used in the 70's by their predecessors. Plethoric of magnificent Keyboards and Mellotrons, is hard not to place ÄNGLAGARD CD's in the same section of the old dinosaurs as Yes, Genesis and King Crimson.

"Hybris" is everything that progressive genre represents, is simply brilliant and I will take the risk to affirm is absolutely original, even if some progheads believe they are too influenced by early bands.

It's clear that "Hybris" has strong influence from Yes, Genesis but specially from King Crimson and even from Focus, but ÄNGLAGÅRD took this influence and worked with it in their own unique way, avoiding to do simpler works as the Neo Prog Bands or cloning some great tracks. You can notice the influence of the mentioned bands but is almost impossible to affirm they are copying a determined song, they did their own original stuff, inspired in classic prog' bands.

The first track Jördrok (Earthsmoke) starts with an unbelievably beautiful piano section, somehow dark and melancholic as the winter season in Sweden but also haunting and scary, almost as announcing the Crimsonian explosion that will follow, precise flute touches, lots of Mellotron and baroque Organ sections by the excellent Thomas Johnson (Who was born long after the invention of the Mellotron but plays it with great ability) complete this incredible opener hard to describe in modest words, 11:10 minutes of pure and pristine progressive rock.

"Vandringar I Vilsenhet" (Wanderings in Confusion) is another almost 12 minutes epic that starts with a soft flute followed by a dark organ reminiscent of Bach, again hard passages softened by the sweet flute of Anna Holmgren. This is the first song with lyrics in Swedish, which of course are impossible for me to understand, but who cares about lyrics and words when music talks so loud and clear, Tord Lindman's voice is delicate and acute but absolutely unique and appropriate for the music. Another perfect track.

"Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet" (From Strength to Strength) starts with a circus like music the first and only section I really don't like, but so short that really doesn't matters at all, again followed by a shocking crimsonian section and Tord Lindman's voice, this time lower and less feminine than in "Vandringar I Vilsenhet". For the first time I can listen a passage clearly inspired in early Genesis with a flute that sounds almost as in Musical Box, great versatility of Anna Anna Holmgren who has a style closer to This Van Leer than to Peter Gabriel, but easily adapts her style according to the needs of the song also must mention Johan Högberg who does a terrific job with his bass.

"Kung Bore" (King Winter) is the closer of the album, starts with an a acoustic guitar section followed by keyboards and the whole band using a derivative style that I can hardly identify with any main ÄNGLAGÅRD influence, has a bit of Crimson, Focus, Yes and Gabriel Genesis but nothing specific of anyone in particular, and that IMHO is what influence should be, only inspiration but not a simple and cheap copy. In this track Tord Lindman proves he's a versatile vocalist using different ranges, the whole band is again perfect and I won't try to describe all this track because it's an impossible task, I can only say is that it's less dark but more nostalgic than all the previous and almost perfect.

I can't end this review without mentioning Mattias Olsson who plays drums with the skill of Bill Bruford but wasn't even born when Yes Album and Larks Tongues in Aspic where released, a real talent.

If there is an album that deserves 5 stars without any doubt is Hybris, the first chapter of the short but brilliant saga of ÄNGLAGÅRD.

Review by diddy
5 stars Anglagard, one of those bands EVERY proghead should have heard about. Lately I tried to get around reviewing the two Anglagard albums because I try to concentrate on bands without a general echo like Anglagard. But now it's time to write a little bit about this great band. I woun't tell you new things, just take a look on how many times Anglagard got reviewed here but I may help to proof that Anglagard is a band no proghead should leave out. I got to know Anglagard due to a german prog site. The two albums are rated as the two best prog albums of all time, at least refering to the rating and amount of reviews. And what can I say? I don't think that you will find a better prog band. I consider Anglagard's music to be perfect, nothing is missing, nothing bothers me, just perfect. I really love the fine mellotron-work, truly awesome. The mixture between beautiful, mellow parts and weird, crazy almost wild sections. Unlike "Epilog", their debut "Hybris" features vocals. Some consider the vocals to be bothering but I don't think so. The vocals don't make such a big difference. (Sorry for the same introduction...)

"Jordrök" is an instrumental and for me, one of the best songs on the big, wide world. The awesome piano intro leads into the main part of the song. I really like the melody and mixture of mellow and loud parts. One thing is conspicuous, no instrument seems to be dominating, all of them contribute to the general sound. "Vandringar i Vilsenhet" features swedish vocals. I don't understand them, unfortunately but they don't bother, far from it, I even like them. But the instrumental work wich envolves from mellow to wild and quite weird, is the main part of Anglagard's music. "Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet" begins with a muted crazy circus like music and directly changes to a heavier crazy part with lightly dominating guitar. The middle part is quite calm but rises in the end. The last two minutes feature a some melodies wich never got out of my mind, awesome. "Kung Bure" is another highlight, ok nothing but highlights on Anglagard albums. But "Kung Bure" features some great melodies and up and downs. I love the instrumental part in the middle of the song. I am a lucky owner of a remastered digipack edition so I can tell you something about the bonus track "Gånglåt från knapptibble". It was written for a music magazine dealing with our common passion prog. It features some parts wich also appear on Epilog. It sounds very weird and crazy in the beginning, features some vocals and lesds into a calm and mellow part. In the end the vocals appear again.

Like I said in my review for "Epilog", Anglagard is the best prog band there is, or was. All other bands are not fit to hold a candle to this great band from sweden. Genesis, King Crimson, ELP or Gentle Giant, nobody of them really moved me like Anglagard does. I can listen to "Hybris" and "Epilog" again and again, it never gets boring, you always discover new things because it is so varied. So if you don't know this band you definitely missed something. If you read this review because you want to inform about Anglagard and don't know what to thing about them, don't think, get their albums as fast as possible, you woun't regret it. Highly recommended isn't the right term here, we have to invent something new for Anglagard albums.

Review by penguindf12
3 stars [Note that this review was originally written in 2004, when I was 14 years old. I am now 22, and this album doesn't really hold up. I'm moving my star rating down, but keeping the review intact as a testament to being young and naive.]

Now then, the premiere album of ANGLAGARD is better than "Epilog" in my opinion. This album features a band which does not seem to be multiple instruments, but a single instrument created from many. The only standout instruments here are the ones that play in the quieter parts, and even these intruments will switch. Then the music will spring to life as a single, colorful and purely symphonic instrument. Very nice stuff here.

The first track, "Jordrok" is possibly my favorite of all ANGLAGARD's songs. An 11 minute instrumental, it rises and falls with mere whim. If I ever get a band together and we master "Stairway to Heaven" by Led Zepellin, this song will be next on our list of covering. If a band can play this song, the band can play anything. Very complex and synchronized, with a specific pattern which runs throughout all of ANGLAGARD's music: loud, then soft, then loud, then soft, and so on.

The second track is very flute oriented during the softer parts, and sounds like GENESIS' "Apocalypse in 9/8" performed in reverse with more modern instruments in the faster, louder parts. This track has Swedish lyrics sprinkled here and there sparsly, and in my opinion it makes the song better.

Track three begins with an odd music box/ carnival sound, which springs into their louder, fervent section. In this track, the bass is the most noticeable instrument. It is odd that it does not fade into the rest of the music like most of their songs, instead seeming to accompany the rest of the band's instrumental fusion. But by no means does this detract from the song.

The final track, "King Winter" I think is the translation, is another great track with a more wintery feeling. Overall, the album is very hard to find and expensive to import, but worth an effort. It is not essential, however, because of its ambiguity and the fact that it fails to hit my disc player as much as say, GENESIS or YES. But still, very, very good.

Review by frenchie
5 stars After downloading the "Jordrok" mp3 to see what all the fuss was about, i was completely blown away. I couldn't believe how good an instrumental it was. Anglagard have found a near perfedt logic when creating their signature sound on "hybris", to make an album that sounds like one of the great prog masterpieces of the 70s, dont use instruments that weren't around in the 70s! This album definetly sounds like something that would have been made around the late 60s/early 70s and that is what makes it so unique and extraordinary to listen to.

"Hybris" is a pure symphonic rock album which definetly takes influence from YES and GENESIS. This is apparent in the excellent guitar work as well as the choice of instruments and how they have been arranged to give that pure symphonic prog sound. Anglagard have pulled it off incredibly well. What's more astounding is that they managed to get it right on their first outing, and they were only aroun 19 when they made this album!

"Jordrok" is an excellent blend of synth, organ solos, emotional guitar solos, mellotrons and drums. I love the way the piano intro just pulls you in and instantly tells the listner that they are in for something really different and amazing. The mulitlayered instruments continue to build up and progress into a wonderful melee of sketchy guitar pieces that lead into the wonderful emotional piece (around 1:35). The bass and drums are so apparent on the album and stand out really well. The song manages to find its way into a rather random organ solo which reminds me of Rick Wakeman in the centrepiece of "Close to the Edge" or "And You And I". It is absoluetly magical to hear, because nothing else like that has ever been done since the 70s. Angalagard nail symphonic prog surprisingly well and show off all their inspirations and musical roots.

The second track enters with a soft flute that leads into mellow guitar picking in the background, this song builds up so much atmosphere just like the track that proceeded it. This track builds up into some excellent keyboard work but the bass seems to be a star for most of this track. There is some amazing guitar work throughout. It is hard to pinpoint any significant areas because it all just flows so well and is a brilliant listen. The vocals can be a little hard to accept. I think their stronger points are the instrumental work and their arrangements. The vocals are not bad but i think they take some getting used to. The lyrics are obviously in swedish as are the titles so its can be hard to dig out the emotion in the vocals unless you speak fluent Swedish. Still the emotional guitar and flute work makes up for this.

the last two tracks show off their own amazing areas and are brilliant to listen to. The vocals sound a lot better on track 4, which uses darker and more menacing instrumental work. Track 3 is pretty insane with the intro, a quiet "music box" style sound which explodes into chaos! This is a more energetic piece that reminds me of "dance on a volcano" style music by Genesis or some frantic Yes songs, maybe even some King Crimon influence. The vocals on track 3 are tolerable but track 4 is the best track for vocals.

"Hybris" is a very special album by a very unique band. Its a shame they had such a short existance with only 3 albums to fill their discography. Personally i think Hybris deserves the "suggestion" under its name because it is much more original and i found it easier to listen to and generally better musically. "Epilog" is amazing too, but just sounds like more of the same, although it does have lot of expanded areas. "Hyrbis" grips me more because it is the start of this unique sound. An excellent piece to listen to if you can manage to track it down.

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This album is very famous, and I understand the appreciation it has attracted. However this enthusiastic artifact from the 1990's Swedish Mellotron renaissance did not please me as much as the records of Anekdoten and Landberk for example. I heard this album's music been compared to King Crimson's "Fracture" somewhere, making my expectations rise high. But I felt personally the record resembling more music of Genesis, if searching comparisons to classic progressive rock bands sound. There isn't in my opinion similar power and strength of feeling on these songs as on the divine composition from "Starless and Bible Black" album. Maybe one other reason to my personal disappointment lies also documented on the words printed to CD sleeve: "This music is built on a very human base through conflict..", and "We don't seek a well-balanced or predictable entity". I guess these facts wouldn't matter so much when doing avantgardistic recordings for example, but when aiming to symphonic structured music, I fear there should have been more work done in arrangements. But I consider this album is very important in the prog scene genre, and there are some very touching parts included on this carefully produced album, thus I agree with its importance in the progressive rock scene. Also the descriptions and the qualities of music most hopefully reflect the true insights of the musicians; A factor which I respect more than artistic creation's capability to satisfy my own personal whims.

There are lots of beautiful themes and feelings which are presented neatly and evolved, but they don't seem to lead to logical climaxes in my opinion. Also the music doesn't sound so "vintage" as I expected, though the instruments are mostly from old school selections. I especially liked the quotations of classical music, which appear at least on the "Vandringar I Vilsenhet" track, which I adored quite much. The best track for me is still "Kung Bore", which is the most compact composition of all of these mini epics, and has the best melodic ideas in my opinion. The album cover art is also so nice, resembling the symbol familiar from "Larks' Tongues in Aspic" album, and the booklet is full of beautiful pictures, consolidating the fine production quality of the record. It's also nice that the few vocal parts are sung in Swedish.

So if you see this somewhere it is very recommendable to give a listen, as you might like it much more than me. The bonus track on re-mastered CD released by Mellotronen is an early version of the song "Skogsranden" from their next album "Epilog". I don't think that this is a very essential feature, but interesting anecdote if one is especially interested about the song creation progress of this group.

Review by erik neuteboom
5 stars From the early Nineties Sweden delivered a lot of fine Mellotron-drenched progrock bands like Anekdoten, Landberk, Atlas, Catweazle and Par Lindh Project. But the the first known band in that period was Anglagard with their splendid debut-album Hybris. I was stunned after my first session with this album: four wonderful, vareid and moving compositions containing obvious influences from King Crimson, Yes and Genesis but also a typical Skandinavian touch, especially because of the Swedish vocals and the melancholical undertone. The final track "Kung Bore" is one of the highlights in the last ten years of progressive rock: what a tension between the folky parts and the bombastic eruptions! The 'epic' starts with a twanging acoustic guitar, followed by many quick switches from dreamy climates with acoustic guitar and flute and sumptuous outbursts with powerful organ, fiery electric guitar and a strong and propulsive rhythm-section. Some majestic waves of the 'Mighty Tron' evoke goose bumps and the intense Swedish vocals sound very moving. Halfway the atmosphere with church organ and all kind of sounds strongly evokes "Close to the edge"-Yes but soon the vocals and the use of the Mellotron showcase Anglagard's unique own blend of the 'sympho-dino's'. A slow crescendo leads to a long and emotional 'grand finale' with some mindblowing waves of the Mellotron. After another short mellow piece a menacing part with distorted vocals and propulsive violin-Mellotron turns into lots of bombastic eruptions with great interplay between the organ, electric guitar and Mellotron (imagine a blend of the early Genesis, Yes and The Moody Blues with Fripp as guest musician!). The afterglow on this magnificent track is from the unsurpassed Mellotron with some moving notes (choir, violin and flute), what a way to say goodbey!! ONE OF THE FUTURE CLASSICS!!
Review by Heptade
2 stars I have to add my voice to those of the few people who don't seem to get the greatness of this group. They obviously play well, and sure, there are lot of vintage keyboard sounds, and the compositions are "complex", but having listened to the album a couple of times, nothing is sticking out as particularly impressive at all. I don't see how it's better than anything the underrated (and under-reviewed) Djam Karet, the more melodic Anekdoten, or the more aggressive Guapo have done. People say there are strong melodies on this album, but I can't hear 'em. The production is also lacking, sounding very early 90s low budget. The whole record seems more of an excuse to show how virtuosically proggy the band could be. I guess we can't all like everything- the Wobbler album everyone's going crazy about had the same effect on me. Definitely worth hearing, since everyone likes it so much, but I don't think it's the classic it's made out to be.
Review by Trotsky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars What a wonder it must have seemed to hear Anglagard for the first time back in the early 90s. As far as I'm concerned this group is quite clearly the best prog rock group to emerge over the last 25 years ... at least it beats out the hundred odd "newer" bands that I've given a chance to. Now, a word of caution ... if like me, you came to Anglagard having heard all kinds of hype about the band's brilliance, you might be a little disappointed at first ... give the discs a few spins, and as Anglagard's unique voice makes itself heard, your doubts will slip away.

Having said that, the opener Jordrök is an instantly gripping, absolutely majestic statement that is still my favourite Anglagard piece (although Höstsejd on the second album runs it close). Thomas Johnson's keyboard and Anna Holmgren's flute are but two of the spectacular most elements that go towards this combustive Nordic brew. Whether it's during melancholy, pastoral moments or fult tilt heavy attacks, Anglagard's music is always emotional and dark. It's hard to even wade through the numerous beautiful shifts that this single piece goes through, let alone provide a blow by blow account of Anglagard's compositions

Second track Vandringar i Vilsenhet starts off another brooding, gothic affair, with Holmgren taking the lead on flute, over some acoustic guitar backing in. It too soon bursts into life in absolutely spectacular fashion ... a bit of a "formula" that was to serve the band well over the course of Hybris and its successor Epilog. When they come, Tord Lindman's vocals are almost a surprise as Anglagard is largely an instrumental band. While the vocals aren't strong in a technical sense, they add to the overall intensity of the piece. The conclusion with echoing bells and deep ominous bass is superb. I have to say that the other "vocal piece", Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet is actually the least strong of the tracks here, but after a poor beginning, it too has some fine moments that recall Trespass-era Genesis. Kung Bore is yet another fully functional epic work. The vocals threaten to diffuse the intense momentum brought to the song by the rest of the album, but one needn't worry, because Anglagard are simply too good to let that happen. Rapid-fire runs, jarring attacks, delicate sombre flute passages ... they all return with double the intensity.

Amazingly, Anglagard would go on to make another equally superb album before imploding. ... 80% on the MPV scale

Review by Mellotron Storm
5 stars What can I say that hasn't already been said ? This is one of those very rare, post mid-seventies albums that actually doesn't take a back seat to the very best that the golden era of Prog had to offer. A bold but true statement. You can place this along side of "Thick As A Brick" , "Selling England By The Pound" and "Close To The Edge" and it sounds like it belongs. It wasn't uncommon for the band to have three mellotrons on stage when they performed live. And they also boast one of the best rhythm sections I have ever heard. Jonas playing his Rickenbacker bass, and Mattias the classically trained drummer are both all over this one. I have heard Mattias play on other projects, but nothing comes close to his performance on "Hybris". Everything about this band and this record are first class. By the way they thank ANEKDOTEN and LANDBERK in the liner notes.

"Jordrok" opens with a minute of dark piano melodies that are joined late by mellotron, followed by angular guitar sounds, and pounding drums. Dramatic ! Then back to the serene, with acoustic sounds and flute, just thrilling music. Love the complex and intricate sounds that follow before the guitar returns with mellotron.Themes are repeated until we get some gentle guitar 3 1/2 minutes in then flute. Some powerful church organ before 5 minutes, and check out the drumming a minute later. Some great Hammond organ after 7 minutes. A dead calm before 8 1/2 minutes before it kicks back in. Flute ends the ride. Lets do it again ! "Vandringar I Vilsenhet" also starts softly with beautiful flute. It's building 2 1/2 minutes in to a fantastic but all too brief section that includes angular guitar, bass and some outstanding drumming. It calms down with flute again leading the way as vocals arrive for the first time before 4 minutes. The rest of this song is pure joy for me as again themes are repeated and changed. Brilliant ! A calm before 10 minutes as marching style drums build. Mellotron comes in gloriously and continues right to the end of the song. Nice.

"Ifan Klarhet Till Klarhet" is a beautiful mellow track that reminds me a lot of ANEKDOTEN when the vocals come in. As usual loads of mellotron and some beautiful gentle guitar leads. Flute comes in before 4 minutes as drums continue.The full sound 5 minutes in is increble but it settles again quickly. It kicks back in as guitar, mellotron and chunky bass lead the way. It's settled again, now it's building. You get the picture. I'm thinking ANEKDOTEN again 7 minutes in. What a song ! Mellotron and bass end it. "Kung Bore" is an amazing song, but then they all are. It begins with a nice piano intro then builds. The bass and drums really shine bright on this one. A calm after 2 minutes with fragile vocals before 3 minutes joining in. The deep bass is back before 4 1/2 minutes as it kicks into a higher gear. It settles again before becoming full again 7 minutes in. The bass and drumming are killer ! Check out the mellotron 9 1/2 minutes in. Flute follows. Angular guitar arrives 11 minutes in. The song ends in a pastoral manner.

All I can say is "God bless Sweden" for all the amazing music they've given us. It doesn't get much better than this.

Review by OpethGuitarist
4 stars For too long has this band and their pair of albums been overlooked, often cast over due to the language differences and the time period. Know this. Had Anglagard been a band which was formed and emerged during the 70's, producing this kind of work, I have no qualms comparing it on the same grounds as those works so acclaimed from the period. And even finding this album better than many of the masterpieces many of us proclaim as such from that era.

Fittingly, as the time is almost near, the album opens with a haunting and eerie piano lead that would fit appropriately with Halloween. We are led into beautiful floating keys serving as background for a rocking riff. Jordrok presses on, with perhaps one of my favorite lines halfway through, a wonderful band combination pulsating with energy. The most noticeable thing to me, when comparing this to other 70's albums, is how much fuller and richer the bass sounds, really bringing the record to life. Mellotron lovers will not be dissapointed in this either, as it is really the primary instrument of choice throughout much of the work.

To me this is all very unfortunate. Lucky for people like you and I, who have had the good graces to discover such a gem, but unfortunate for the band, who appears to have been born about two decades too late. Highly reccommended for those in search of a modern symphonic great.

Review by Tony Fisher
5 stars I guess I'm a bit of an old cynic when I hear claims that a band is the reincarnation of the great days of the 70s or that they have somehow reinvented the genre. Most of it is overoptimistic poppycock.

But not in this case. This album is brilliant with a capital B. It's clearly influenced by the great bands of the 70s but in no way is it copied or cloned. This is great original prog with memorable melodies, great instrumental solos from the guitars, keyboards and flute, including some fine interplay, and some dramatic mood changes. I love the crisp drum sound and the tone of the Rickenbacker bass, too.

Many have described the tracks individually; all I will add that Jordrock is near the top of my all-time favourite tracks and the others aren't far behind.

It is a tragedy that this briillant album was one of only two studio albums they recorded. What a loss they were.

Review by NJprogfan
5 stars One of a handful of classic symphonic prog to be recorded in the 90's. Actually, when you think about the time this album came out it was a pretty low point musically, (unless you were into grunge, or shoegaze...which I enjoyed) for prog. Had I known there was something of this caliber, I would have been first in line to purchase it. If you're a fan of the mighty Mellotron, great guitar playing coupled with multiple chord changes you'll love this album. Mostly instrumental with minimal vocals, (not exactly the greatest singing, btw) it reminds me of early King Crimson mood wise, dark and sad at the same time. Johnson's keys and Endgegard'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 14 years ago. So, for me, it's very easy to say 'Hybris' is a modern masterpiece and should be high on your list of best ofs of the 90's. It is for me and rightly so!
Review by ClemofNazareth
5 stars Well, there are those progressive music fans who feel the real masters were the early pioneers: King Crimson, Yes, Genesis, Camel, Jethro Tull, and the like. Many of those fans would pan newer groups as ‘derivative’ for simply learning from those bands and adding their own musical ‘voices’ to the mix. I think that’s unfortunate, and particularly so in the case of a band like Änglagård. This album is a stunning piece of art in every sense. I can hear influences of every one of the bands listed above in this music, and I think that is great!

This band was a brief and shining example of what can happen when a group of dedicated and talented musicians lend their skills, and their new ideas, to the progressive music. Each of the four tracks is full of complex and intoxicating sounds, most of it swirling and rising above Baroque-inspired mellotron and organ. The guitar work is in the finest tradition of a generation of great Swedish guitarists, passionate and melancholic but at the same time full of life. The tempo changes and occasional Swedish vocals serve to extend the mood of each track even beyond their substantial lengths. Anna Holmgren’s finesse as a flautist is every bit as interesting and artistic as the power of Ian Anderson’s, perhaps more so due to the great range she shows throughout. The first few times I listened to this album I found myself engrossed from start to finish, ignoring everything else going on around me as I drank in the beauty of it.

I won’t bother to expand on the tracks individually, as I’m listening to the album right now and having trouble focusing on putting down words to describe it. Suffice to say that this music reaffirms for me that symphonic rock was not an aberration of the seventies – it lived again in the nineties with Änglagård and bands like them, and it lives today with bands like the Tangent, Transatlantic, and Wobbler, among others.

This album is a must-have for just about any fan of prog music, and particularly for those who value symphonic rock. Highly recommended. Five stars.


Review by FruMp
5 stars Incredible symphonic prog album harking back to the glory days of the genre. If you like Yes, King Crimson, 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. The musicianship is top notch too, the drumming is a standout performance, the flute provides some of the most memorable parts of the album and the keyboard basically holds the thing together and gives it all direction.

It shouldn't take another 5 star review to convince you to get this album you should have it already, and if you don't then cast aside any prejudices you have and grab a copy, it's a terrific listen.

Review by 1800iareyay
4 stars It's a shame Anglagard only lasted as long as it did, since they truly could have been giants in the prog genre. With only two studio albums before break up, they almost single handedly gave hope back to the progressive community. I'm personally a fan of neo prog, but that movement resulted in bands with absolutely no originality. There are those who argue that even Marillion, the forerunners of the sub-genre, were Genesis knock-offs. However, Anglagard managed to pay homage to King Crimson, Yes, and Genesis in a way that allowed them to create original, inventive music. The lyrics are in Swedish, so I ca;t understand them but, much like Italian symphonic, the instrumentality speaks louder than the words. Olsson's drumming is incredible and he joins the ranks of underrated prog drummers like Mark Zonder of Fates Warning with his astonishing kit work.

The band itself sounds like it was a prog supergroup; the bass reminds me of Chris Squire, the guitars have a Frippian element to them, the flute unwillingly conjures images of Jethro Tull, the keys have the aggression of prog metal, and the drums sound like many drum gods combined.

My favorite track is the opening instrumental Jordok, though all tracks are prog gold. Despite sounding like an amalgam of 70s prog heroes, Anglagard is one of the most original prog groups of the 90s. The non-English lyrics might put off some, but those who can look past it will find some of the best instrumentality ever heard.

Review by russellk
4 stars A delightful album with a great deal of depth, which seems to have been a thinly veiled attack on the state of progressive music at the time. It occupies a pivotal place in the history of progressive rock, signaling the renaissance of the genre.

Or, at least, it ought to have.

But because it was from an unheralded part of the world (at that time), and the lyrics were not in English, it was not promoted and distributed as it ought to have been. So other albums, such as DREAM THEATER'S 'Images and Words', shaped the progressive rock scene in the early-mid 1990s.

Musically, the album is incredibly strong. The musicians are skilled, and what they play is meaningful and well-composed. 'Jordrok', in particular, stays long in the memory even after a first listen, and will please even casual fans of the symphonic prog sub-genre.

I wish this band had continued. With such strong musicianship and compositional skills, I can't help wondering what they might have become when they found their own voice. Because, for all its strengths, this album has one weakness: it is an echo of other voices. Those looking for innovation, for a new voice, will not find it here. But you will find something enchanting.

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This is my 1000th review posted at May 7, 2007 20:17 Jakarta Time. ENJOY!!


Well crafted composition, flawless performance!

Anglagard was formed as a venture to reinvent music with the basis of early senties sounds. It started with Tord Lindman and Johan Högberg join forces until this album "Hybris" was created. As stated in the opening sleeve Introduction: "This music is built on a very human base . through conflict. It's created with the thought of each person's momentary feelings, with a lot of variations as a starting point." It's a quite impressive introduction even before I listened to the CD.

When I spun the CD at the first time, it caught my attention as my first feeling told me that this music was definitely created with perfection. Why did I say that? Oh yes.. I can feel it right from the opening track "Jordrök" (11:10) where the band performs the tune flawlessly with accurate precision. There are many surprises throughout the song combining multi instruments like guitars, keyboard / Hammond / mellotron, dynamic bass lines and powerful drumming. The tempo moves dynamically from high to low and comes back to high with great melody. What surprises me is that with this relatively long duration I don't get any sense of getting bored at all from intro right to the end.

"Vandringar i Vilsenhet" (11:53) starts mellow with a combination of smooth flutework and keyboard, augmented beautifully with acoustic guitar and deep bass lines. Oh man .. the opening melody is really melodic and catchy. It's damn hard for not remembering this part because it's really nice. The music moves into complex arrangement with great combination of guitar, flute and dazzling drum work. Wow! It's really a terrific arrangements! Unlike the opening track which is instrumental, this one has unique vocal line and it's so energetic. Listening to this track, I feel like being dragged ups and downs with great enjoyment of rich textures of the music. The structure is complex but it does not harm the overall music flow. All of the segments are connected smoothly with great transition pieces which in most part are augmented with flute or vocal.

"Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet" (8:04) kicks with an ambient style followed with a blast of music that sounds relatively complex, combining guitar, mellotron, bass lines and powerful drumming. The song moves into lyrical part through the bridge of mellotron sound. During this lyrical part the music turns into mellow style with catchy melody. The non-English lyrical part enriches the music and brings it to the next level. The slient break combining acoustic guitar and mellotron / keyboard after first lyrical part is really stunning and enjoyable.

"Kung Bore" (12:57) starts off with a classical guitar work augmented with soft piano work. It's quite interesting intro, especially when the music flows into complex part using Hammond as main rhythm section - reminds me to Keith Emerson of ELP. Like the other three tracks, this is a wonderful one!

My CD includes a bonus track "Gånglåt från Knapptibble" which was recorded in August 1993 for the English magazine Ptolemaic Terrascope who wanted to release a single to come with the magazine. It's another great track even though it's a bonus track. This reconfirms the music of Anglagard as a combination of Genesis (expecially the melody), ELP (especially on how keyboard is played) ,Yes (especially on complex structure) and Gentle Giant (complex structure and some vocal line).


It's definitely a masterpiece of prog album. You might reckon that the music presented in "Hybris" is not truly original in styles because the band combines all elements of early seventies music into composition. But, I have to admit that the band has written great composition in this debut album. Highly Recommended! Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Review by Prog Leviathan
4 stars A textured and dynamic album played in a very classic style featuring well-composed songs showcasing the instrumental dexterity of the young group. "Hybris" is a gem of the prog- revival and holds up today.

Largely instrumental, "Hybris" abounds with complex melodies which never disappoint; they are played with razor precision and energy (blonde, Swedish energy). Each member has their moments, and all are on top of their game. The song writing is epic in sound, and gives the listener a variety of themes and textures to enjoy, as well as varied instrumentation to mix things up. The lyrics are exclusively Swedish, which in my opinion makes the album all the more enjoyable, and sung with a nice inflection and soulfulness.

There really isn't a weak spot on this album, and complaints about it will likely come down to a matter of taste; however, for those who enjoy symphonic rock or the prog-giants of the '70's will not be disappointed.

Songwriting: 4 Instrumental Performances: 4 Lyrics/Vocals: 3 Style/Emotion/Replay: 3

Review by Melomaniac
5 stars 1995. I was working in a record store. Was a lot into prog, metal and prog metal. A client asked me to introduce him to the modern day prog bands I was enjoying. He left with a copy of Images and Words. He came back the very next day saying he liked it but it wasn't the style of prog he wanted. But, in exchange for my suggestion, he gave me a tape, and said "This is a copy of a new prog band from Sweden. If you're into old Yes, Genesis, King Crimson and Gentle Giant, you should dig this". He had just named most of my favorite bands in the same sentence, so I immediately looked at the tape : Anglagard - Hybris. After work I went home and put the tape in the cassette player... and from the opening notes, I knew I had something very, very special.

Vintage prog, I thought, played on vintage instruments (mellotron, Rickenbacker bass, Hammond B-3, etc...). I remember thinking how much Anglagard sounded like a side project of members from the bands mentionned above, only recorded and mixed using modern technology (modern in the 92). And the musicianship only helped me think that way : what great musicians these guys are (were). Not only is their playing extremely good, but the songwriting is even better. Every note is carefully placed and played, with the proper intensity for each. Very melancholic, moody, contemplative, dark, delicate at times and rocking in others, and... even though it sounds like vintage prog, there is something fresh and exotic about Anglagard. Very northern. The vocals may sound strange at first, but once you focus on the melodies rather the sound of the words, everything falls into place.

So, to me, this album is a definitive classic, every song perfect as is the running order. As much a tribute to the symphonic prog bands of old as it is a breath of fresh air for the genre. 12 years after that stranger gave me the tape (never saw him again, so if you're out there, THANK YOU SO MUCH), I bought the CD twice (was once stolen from me) and I enjoy it as much as I did back then, if not even more.

Without a doubt, five superb shining stars. Mandatory purchase.

Review by clarke2001
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars A masterpiece of proghead's frustration.

This is a nice little record, but a few issues need to be addressed. First of all - - this is NOT the album that sounds like it was recorded in the seventies, as many tend to claim. Nor played, nor composed. It's certainly got some of a 70's charm, but that's about it.

What about the sound?

The album is sort of a mixed bag - utilizing wide spectrum of progressive rock influences from late sixties to mid-late seventies, all that spiced up with the nineties productions. Organ sound of Hammond is polished with crystal clear production. Moods produced by Mellotron vary from hilarious to magnificent - unfortunately band inclines towards the "choir" sound, which always sounds unnatural if played on keyboard - it simply sounds like "oohs" and "aahs" played on a 8-bit sampler. Those sounds were not unknown in the seventies (RENAISSANCE springs to mind), but the presentation here is bearing a reflection of an extra decennium in history of pop music. Korg Mono/Poly, certainly, failed in a role of a Moog-like soloing synth. Other keyboard instruments are fine, more or less. I would rather prefer to hear those instruments at their best: Mellotron for the organic pads (not only string ones) and Korg for arpeggiated bouncy oscillator sequences. Guitar stands out as an instrument (along with the drums) because it's played very beefy and with emotions, both dirty and clean when necessary, in a good tradition of Gilmour and Latimer. Bass sounds everything but the seventies, but it's decent enough. Flute too; perhaps a bit too mellow and without harsh edge. Please note I'm only talking about a sound here, rather than about melodies. More about that later. Perhaps the instrument that stands out the most is the drum kit - drums are played well, precisely, energetically and ...modern. A bit formulaic at the moments (from symphonic prog standpoint) but I just love the monstrous dynamics provided on "Vandringar i Vilsenhet", where reverb applied to a dry snare created an outstanding atmosphere - the ultimate goosebumps moment of this band.

Vocals are not outstanding, bet they're not annoying neither, and in my opinion they fit in an overall picture quite nicely. A few verses (sung in Swedish) are scattered here and there, but tracks are mostly instrument-oriented.

What about the structure?

All the songs are longish, multi-part compositions, often combining lovely, mellow flute melodies accompanied with acoustic guitar with electric monsters of furious phrases containing the wall of guitar sounds and keyboards sounds, underlined by drumming, often repeating the almost-similar pattern in slightly different time signature, sometimes playing the same pattern through different major or minor scales (if you're looking for a blues scales, look elsewhere.). Sometimes a melody is going into a slow crescendo surrounded by a non-conventional rhythmic pattern, mutilating itself into something else but not entirely different, changing the textures and making a musical journey more vivid and interesting. There are hints of similar themes played in foreground, just to be found on some absolutely different place in background, like a hint or a reference of band's musical expression. Which is a great thing and a characteristic of a good songwriting.

So, what's wrong with the picture and why?

Let's start with my most subjective impression. High expectations. I always wanted to hear, buy, possess, listen and enjoy some new band, with their hearts on a right place, playing uncompromising progressive rock in a good old seventies style. My expectations were even higher after all these positive reactions by people all over the world - the people that, it seemed, have a musical taste very similar to mine.

And after discovering ÄNGLAGÅRD, a disappointment occurred. Hey, they don't sound very 70's! OK, that is not relevant because the music is what counts.

What about approach?

Well, most of time is lovely, sometimes beautiful. Arrangements are very intelligent. But my overall impression is that album sounds very hermetic. Like these guy were forced to play symphonic progressive rock. I'm sure they all loved it, but it seems that they forced the values of today's definition of prog rock - rather than enjoying the era of art-rock when it was young and fresh. Don't ask me what these values exactly are - because I'm not sure myself, and I'm talking about my gut feeling here - simply put, all the elements are here, but album lacks the zeitgeist. I would be much happier if only band dared to jump over that artificial restriction that they gave to themselves.

How that reflects the music?

After ÄNGLAGÅRD, I never wished to hear retro-prog band again. But not for a good reason. The band is obviously influenced by giants of progressive symphonic rock - I don't need to name them here - and I had found traces of PFM, other prog bands from Scandinavia, and by Jove, that flute melody that starts in 04:44 on "Kung Bore" sound like the essence of ex-Yugoslavian prog rock scene. I would really like to know the detailed influences of this band. Here's an example: "Gånglåt från Knapptibble" starts with mad xylophone sections, breaking into exploding unison riff in x/y time measure, a little bit later everything is calming down until the band reached acoustic passage resembling the B-side of CAMEL's "The Snow Goose". After a short organ idea, the band strikes again with BOOOM! the craziest mixture of VAN DER GRAAF GENERATOR and KING CRIMSON and it sounds like madness. Powerful, grotesque, you name it. What I hear from that is SMACK! SMACK! blood pouring from the nose, the guys (and girls) from the band beating with instruments the hell out of an average pop iconoclast, there you go SMACK! this is for all the years of torturing us with your cheesy pop music SMACK! now take this!! while music is rolling in a distorted picture, penetrating into brains...

Yes, I know it's silly, but that's how I feel - like this album is a labour of frustration and a canalized energy of (bad) vibrations rather than labour of love. Furthermore, I don't have an impression AT ALL that band had a great time recording this - I guess they are (or were) close friends, but despite the numerous lovely melodies, there is not much seconds that sound like the band members were enjoying while playing this, let alone having fun. This album could really be compared to a birth; it's a debut and it's tedious.

This is an album that could be recommended to the fans of symphonic progressive rock who won't mind cold atmospheres and difficult-to-swallow music and attitude.

Review by Prog-jester
5 stars Usually I try to avoid reviewing well-known albums. I concentrate on lesser known bands, on post-Soviet bands, on one-shot bands etc. This review is made mainly by a silent request from Erik “The Dutch Rocket“ Neuteboom ;)

I got both “Hybris” and “Epilog” on 90-min CD-R two years ago along with some ANEKDOTEN, LANDBERK, SINKADUS and other CDs. Funny enough, I’ve already written reviews on most of them, but this is my first ANGLAGARD review. I put the CD on and it has blown me away with opening “Jordrok”, one of the most captivating pieces of music ever written. I think thousands of progheads know opening tune by heart and can tell it from hundreds of others. Lame are attempts of contemporary bands that try to make anything “Jordrok”-related, usually getting together 50-60 tunes at once and receiving cacophony as a result. “Jordrok” is one of my favouritest instrumentals ever, complex, melodic, awesome!!! Very dark and moody, with best elements from almost any Prog band ever existed – KING CRIMSON, GENESIS, CAMEL, GENTLE GIANT, ELP…

Unfortunately, any other piece written by ANGLAGARD fails in comparison to that one. I know there’s little sense in comparison here, but I can’t help myself. Other tracks are long, well-structured and complex, they feature singing (rather average but very fitting) in Swedish, but I can’t make myself LOVE them. I respect them, I listen to them (pretty rarely though), I know that they have made immense impact and influence on the whole Scandinavian Prog scene…and beyond! I appreciate their manner and usually seek for something related. My searches once were satisfied with SINKADUS – I found them to be more folky, less technical but with more SOUL and EMOTIONS in their music.

I like ANGLAGARD a lot. I would like to get reissued CDs of both “Hybris” and “Epilog”. But I won’t call them my favourite Scandinavian band even taking into account everything they have done. Tastes are different y’know ;) Highly recommended nevertheless…if you’ll manage to find it!

Review by progrules
4 stars A few years ago I learned about the song Jordrok (thanks to progarchives) which I downloaded (possible then) in a same period as many other songs mainly to get to know a lot of progressive bands I never heard of till then. My conclusion after several listenings to all those songs was that Jordrok was absolutely one of the best, so Anglagard could not really be a poor band. When I started finding out more about the bands and the albums behind the songs I discovered that Hybris was one of the great classics in progressive music. I was astonished because it was a not very well known band with just a few albums in a short history. And they also sang in their native language, I mean who knows Swedish apart from the Swedes themselves and maybe a few other Scandinavians ? So the next step was to try to get the album, I absolutely had to find it caused by a huge curiosity. It was hardly to be found somewhere in The Netherlands but finally I succeeded. Again I had to listen quite a few times to get familiair with the other songs, but the ultimate conclusion was it was all very interesting. Actually it was more that than very good. One thing must anyhow be said: it is a very special album. After all I still like Jordrok best, although Kung Bore is a very good second, lots of variation, terrific composition !

The special element in Anglagard is no doubt the flute and it helps for the special atmosphere you find in every song.

Though the overall judgement of this work is realy positiv, I am not ecstatic about it. It's a solid 4 stars.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Really unique band who's excellent prog style can only be compared with the gods KING CRIMSON.There are long compositions in the album,allowing the band to show their orchestration and synthesis great ability.I could say that most of the album is instrumental with other themes reminding me of the dark sound of KING CRIMSON and other ones coming straight out of the special Scandinavian prog rock scene of the 70's.A gem which should be in everyone's collection!PROG RULES...
Review by Fight Club
5 stars <Nearly Flawless

Hybris has been a really odd album for me ever since I was first introduced to it about a year ago (actually I think it was Thanksgiving day of last year!) Back then I was instantly turned off. It was too random, not melodic enough, too meandering, far too proggy for my current tastes. Those were a couple of the things I recall thinking at the time, a couple of my excuses for why I just couldn't handle it. Oh I couldn't have been more wrong. How I ever came to any of those conclusions (except yes, it is very proggy!), I'm really not quite sure. In the genre of progressive rock, Hybris is everything one could hope to find and so much more.

I gave Anglagard numerous chances, each of which ultimately led to failure. It wasn't until I decided to give it a spin in my car that it hit me for the masterpiece it was. It all began with the melancholic piano intro of "Jordok". There was just something about it that instantly hooked me, something beautiful and mysterious. Then the mellotron choir came in and I knew I had come across something fantastic, some measure of elation that so many seek and few rarely ever find. After a minute or so the song catapulted into a ridiculous 7/4 frenzy that just ruptures my insides to point of near eruption. It's one of those experiences that's just so exhilarating that I almost lose control and feel like I'm going to crash my car every time I hear it. It's that good.

At this point I realize, "my God, and this is still the beginning?" Only a few minutes through the first track and I already don't see how the band could go any further. But they do. The album moves from one section to another, seamlessly covering every inch of ground traveled by the classic prog acts of old. All out time and key changing prog destruction, beautiful flute work, soaring guitar solos, and a rhythm section that just leaves the listener breathless in the end. The final notes leave the listener begging to find out what the band next has in store for them.

After the sensational "Jordok", which may take its place as my favorite instrumental track of all time, we get another incredible piece of art, "Vandringar I Vilsenhet". The song starts off slowly, building it's way up ever so slowly. A sense of impending doom fills the air as the tension rises, like a time-bomb that could go off at any second. Suddenly everything breaks out into another breathtaking section that once again takes control of my appendages. It's always a miracle I make it home in one piece after a full listening of this album.

Musically, this track is again, Flawless. Besides the climactic levels reaching Olympic proportions, the level of instrumental interplay between each member is enough to make even the most prestigious musicians jealous. Did I mention how ridiculous the changing time signatures are? Only about 19 bars into the first track we get some 5/4, 11/8, 7/8, 6/8, and 7/4, all of which lie within a few measures of each other. As if things aren't complicated enough, each instrument continuously plays in its own independent rhythm. Pay close attention to each alone, barely between them are the same melodies and timings repeated, yet it all somehow works. Not only does it work, but it manages to sound beautiful, melodic, and intense. An awe-inspiring feat in my eyes if I've ever witnessed one.

After all that raving you must be wondering if there are actually any weak points on this disc. Well, for one thing I'll tell you this is not your average joe's cup of tea. Play it in the presence of your roommate or your work acquaintance and they'll probably think you're out of your mind (trust me I know). But hey, we're all pretty used to that aren't we? So no big deal. If you're only just touching upon the progressive genre (ie. Dream Theater) this might be a difficult listen at first, but if you've been a long time fan then you need to witness this ASAP.

Honestly, the album is a bit weird. Yes, weird. Compared to Sleepytime Gorilla Museum or Koenjihyakkei they're the most normal band on the planet, but like I said, for someone just getting into prog they might seem pretty obscure. The intense sections are a little difficult to follow for an untrained ear. Persistence is the key though, as I learned myself. Fail once, listen again. Fail twice, don't give it up, it'll come to you I promise. I can hardly come up with the words to describe how rewarding it is in the end. Overall, I highly recommend this to anyone seeking anything different. For a progger, it's essential.

5 stars without hesitation.

Review by Certif1ed
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Bored Rock

Having felt rather bitten by Epilog, a less than amazing album, I decided to give Anglagard another try - and Hybris certainly starts out sounding a lot better than its successor.

Despite its overall proggy feel, however, it's rather over-crammed with repetition that puts it well in the shadow of bands such as Genesis, and ultimately is a Prog wannabe, with plenty of precise and well- practised execution skills, but a severe shortage of clues in the composition department.

Indeed, the first thing you notice about Jordrok is the extremely close similarities with Genesis in timbre and style. The composition is somewhat weaker though, erring more towards the improvised than the composed, with a lack of overall feel for where the piece is going and an emphasis on creating different sections that sound nice individually, but collectively tend to lose the sense of purpose, and have a proggy feel for the sake of sounding and feeling proggy rather than actually progressing. By 6 minutes I've really lost interest in where the piece is going, and am having severe deja vu on all the musical ideas that are presented.

A quick analysis of the multiplicity of sections (as this is clearly composed in sections rather than as a free-flowing piece) should indicate why I feel this is weak as a composition;

We start with a piano ostinato - essentially a 4 note motif with a high pedal G, giving an 8 note loop in the right hand. The left hand then plays a rather simple noodly improv underneath this, with no strong feeling of melody, but reasonable success in finding dark and moody tones - albeit with too many harmony-weakening open octaves for my taste. This stops completely, then a transposed variant of the intro takes over, and these two ideas are then interspersed and layered with 'tron, and noodled about with before the band join in with a repetitive Yes-like riff. A guitar solo kicks in - but is based around arpeggios and lacks any kind of melodic sensibility, as does everything that follows.

A welcome break to something quieter is dropped to around 2:50 - which builds and drops back again. There are some nice guitar tones here and tinkly bells... then, despite the building feel, it's all dropped back even more, which I find structurally irritating. Open octaves from the bass weaken the underlying harmony and remove all drive from this section - which incidentally sounds like a cheap Genesis imitation almost all the way through.

Then an organ thunders in with an idea completely unrelated to anything that's gone before, and drops back yet again to a quieter idea. The percussion and guitar join in for yet another build-up to another Marillion-alike solo with more irritating open octaves from the bass.

And so it goes on.

Obviously we could analyse in more depth - but there will be no surprises. The sections all feel like they were written in separate sections then tacked together, and the perpetual build-ups and breakdowns just smack highly of lack of creativity in composition.

The huge perfect cadence at 8:14 should have marked the end - that's what perfect cadences, especially drawn out ones like this are for. But no. There's more stuff created in another session that's unrelated to the previous material. The quiet ending is a coplete anti-climax.

Kudos to the band for having (and borrowing) a lot of musical ideas, but no kudos for creating a sprawling mess of the over-indulgent kind that gives Prog a bad name, that would have worked better as several much shorter tracks.

The other 3 pieces are more of the same - there are plenty of good ideas mixed in with the bad ones, but not a single piece that comes across as a cohorent whole. The material itself is strongly rooted in Genesis and Yes, and ideas from 1970s Prog Rock generally - and, as with Epilog, I do not hear a Progressive Rock band as much as a band playing music in a quasi-Classic Prog style.

But it's all unconnected ideas that run into each other either via build-ups (that usually feel a complete let-down when you discover that the end result is a rather uninspired and highly repetitive riff) or the occasional tangent -ie stopping dead, then playing something else.

King Boring

The production is probably the highlight of this album - each instrument is very clear in its part of the sound stage and there are some really great tones - the bass is rich and fat, the Stratocaster-clear guitar tones ring out, the percussion packs a wallop when it needs to and has the right level of sizzle and tinkle for the quiter moments, and the keyboard lines are satisfying and analog sounding.

But the music is dull, boring, and a welcome omission to anyone's Prog Rock collection.

Review by ZowieZiggy
4 stars With no doubt, this Swedish band has had a lot of influence on other of their fellow countrymen. I'm instantly thinking of "Anekdoten" of course. But before being a source of inspiration, it is obvious that they borrowed a lot to Crimson and Genesis. Equally, I would say.

For sure, their music is probably not love at first sight for the majority of listeners. But when I listened to "Jordrok New", I was really impressed. It sounds as if Tony (Banks of course), is behind the scene; while the first part has the complexity of any Crimson track.

They sound at times very melodic, while at others the music is hardly accessible. But it is really worth an effort. Some sections are of the masterpiece calibre (the closing section of Kung Bore for instance).

Each of the composition ranges to the long format and as you might know, I can't really complain about that. The intro of "Vandringar I Vilsenhet" is very much "Trespass" oriented, featuring some enjoyable fluting and peaceful music. The song will then evolve to a more upbeat and symphonic piece.

Still, the key plays is bringing us back to Tony again and again. Some might say this is regressive prog, but I don't consider it as such. On the contrary, there are lots of reasons to fall in love with this album. Some might argue that this is pure nostalgia, but there is more than that.

The only minus point here being that some tracks are maybe too long. But this is not too damaging to the global quality of this album.

But don't expect fine melodies or catchy chorus. The music is almost all instrumental and while sung, it is in Swedish (which is rather unusual and completely incomprehensible unless you are Swedish of course).

Änglagård was sadly short lived, so you have to take advantage of their music while listening to Hybris. This album is highly recommendable to any Crimson and Genesis fan (but not only). I rate Hybris with four stars.

Review by DamoXt7942
FORUM & SITE ADMIN GROUP Avant/Cross/Neo/Post Teams
5 stars This is a masterpiece of heavily symphonic progressive rock. Whatever anyone says... :-)

Look here, I've wondered why ÄNGLAGARD could not re-release their brilliant portraits till they did recently. Now I suggest their thought was the same as David Bowie. That is, they might not want to be tied to their past. (Well also David did not try to sing his old hit songs at all on the stage.) Now could they wipe the feeling out? Whatever happened, thanks ÄNGLAGARD and Alvarsdotter Records for re-releasing it.

Their music style or characteristic is definitely the mixture of heavy riff by a bass, drums, a guitar, and classic sound and phrase. Especially Anna Holmgren's flute is very lyrical, free and easy, and graceful. Indeed in other progressive rock bands are some flute players, but believe me, I feel nobody else can play such a graceful play.

The very start...Jordrök. Exact an explosion of an emotional and excited keyboard solo. How impressive! After that, fast and fluently, drums and percussions, and loud guitar sounds knock us out. Our heart rate may be faster and faster. In a middle part, as above mentioned, a flute solo may let us weep. Also sound of a pipe organ is wonderful. Scrambled with aggressiveness and gentleness, this song should be a killer one. On the next track Vandringar i Vilsenhet please weep again with a floating flute solo. And suddenly your tears are blown away by the loud and dark bullets. In general this song is so plaintive that you may not feel the heaviness. Yes, you bet, all this album has such an atmosphere. Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet has a fantastic voice by Tord Lindman, not only a spice. He must not be beaten by other heavy instruments. Why can they make such a well-balanced work? In the beginning of Kung Bore is a melancholic and complex guitar solo. And more complex percussions and a flute sound follows that. the middle part the fighting with a flute solo and an acoustic guitar one is very very amazing, and terrific voice, key & synth... At last all instruments attack you completely'll fly away from here. :-)

Enjoy it. Again thanks ÄNGLAGARD for your great masterpiece.

Review by Nightfly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Essential nineties symphonic masterpiece.

Anglagard were part of the early nineties Sweedish prog scene but unfortunately only released 2 albums. This, Hybris is the first. The album is not particularly long and consists of only 4 tracks, 5 if you have the remastered version.

Anglagard play complex and hauntingly beautiful melodic symphonic prog very much influenced by the seventies prog scene; you'll hear parts that remind you of most of the seventies giants but with a bit of themselves added to the mix it doesn't come across as contrived. The music is largely instrumental which to be honest is no bad thing as on the few occasions Tord Lindman does sing his vocals are never more than adequate. Anglagard produce a very dynamic sound with much light and shade ranging from a pastoral feel to more bombastic moments dominated by searing lead guitar, Hammond organ and a dextrous rhythm section . Like their fellow countrymen Anekdoten they also use mellotron to great effect. Anna Holmgren's flute is also an integral part of the bands sound which features heavily and she plays beautifully.

It's to Anglagard's credit that despite only releasing 2 studio albums they have come to be regarded as such an important and highly regarded band in the prog scene post seventies. Anyone with a love of seventies prog will almost certainly enjoy this album which is an absolute masterpiece of the symphonic genre to equal that or any decade.

Review by Negoba
5 stars Classic Masterpiece Album of Symphonic Revival

Anglagard's Hybris is a classic album that many have heard and the reviews tend to fall into either a "Flawless Masterpiece" or "meh" camp. I happen to be in the first group, but I recognize that this music represents one of my favorite subgenres of complex, truly symphonic prog. Certainly, Anglagard's sound reminds of Genesis and Lark's Tongues-era King Crimson, but the aesthetic is more akin to some of the RPI bands or pastoral faves Harmonium. However, what Anglagard has over all these bands (even KC) is a monster command of the use of dissonance. This is often harmonically difficult music, and those whose ears need a certain standard structure may not enjoy this album. It's certainly not for everyone.

But for those with a taste for massive amounts of tension and release, wide swings of mood and color, and a love of serious experimentation, this is one of the best albums ever made. There is NOT anything like it available in the classic era, though certainly the band is heavily influenced by the classic giants. Predominantly instrumental, the album's occasional vocals serve more as an additional texture than a lead, especially for non-Swedish speakers. The pastoral sections lie somewhere between Harmonium and Damnation-style Opeth, but the heavy sections are bludgeoning. The bass tone is especially overwhelming, and it often sounds as if the player were trying to beat the instrument within an inch of its life. The guitar distortion is light and full, but the lines played are very interesting, exploring melodic territory far beyond expected notes. The rhythm section is tight but organic, and the music sounds very much as if was composed to be played live. Overdubs are for mere accent, and seemingly at a minimum.

Again, the mastery of this album is that the band has created something that is very individual and unique using fairly classic prog sounds. This is in no way a rehash of old material. Absolutely essential despite its (only relative) obscurity compared to its companions at the top of the PA charts.

Review by The T
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars ANGLAGARD's Hybris for me is not the masterpiece others have claimed it to be precisely because it goes too deep into that territory that marks the border between the land of complexity and the land of incoherence, between great musicianship and overindulgence.

As others have said, the band takes inspiration in the prog classics of the 70's but the sound is modern, it doesn't really feel like retro. There's a good amount of jazz in this symphonic progressive rock project, and some psychedelia too. While the band's influences are clear, the music never sounds derivative or unoriginal. i can give them that.

The musicians in ANGLAGARD had lots of talent. Rarely have I heard such a display of skills in such a short-lived group. This fact is made even clearer by the outstanding production of the album: all the instruments sound crystal clear.

Is in the composition part of the deal when Hybris comes out short in my view. The 4 long songs in these collection all contain excellent bits and sections of music, but they all feel like a random collage of ideas more than like the result of a long process of creating songs. For the sake of progresiveness, the bands fails to create coherent short epics that flow from beginning to end and that reveal themselves in their magic after repeated listens. No matter how many times I listen to this album, I still can't find the logic that is so evident just after a few session with songs by GENESIS ("Musical Box") or even YES.

Among the bands that helped reignite tghe passion for symphonic prog in Sweden, ANGLAGARD has a special place, but I feel their best works were still ahead of them. Sadly, we may never find out what they could've accomplished. The talent, as made evident in the best track in the album, the opener, was there, and in truck loads.

Review by snobb
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars It, s a quite rare album, which likes almost everyone progrock fan. Is it good or bad?

Album is really very strong, classic in melodies and instrumentation. For me it reminds some King Crimson and sometimes ELP sound, but I am sure any fan will have some citates from his beloved classical prog band.

So ,in fact we have there important event: this album accumulates all the best from classic prog albums from 70-th, and at the same time build a base for new prog generation ( at least - in scandinavian progresive, which is very important in first years of XXI century).

It's difficult to find, what is weak points of that album. Very balanced mix of best symphonic rock of it's predescesors. So, if you are not a big fan of innovations, this album is perfectly for you.

I can note at least two weak points there: first, I don't like vocal at all ( happily this album is mainly instrumental), and second - there are nothing new at all. Perfect musicianship without searching of new horizons.

So, very strong and important classic prog album of it's period, but not too innovative one. Strong 4!

Review by Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars I know that people talk a lot about this album. I also am aware that a lot of things has been said here and I believe that they're true. But I don't want to read them, I want to make my own opinion.

Just listen to this music, let it grow on me (already accomplished), or let it disappoint me (weird, it also happened). And if there's rock equivalent of classical music, it's Änglagård. Complex composition isn't descriptive enough. It's also interesting, you can clearly hear melody here, but also it's nothing "just-for-fans", everyone who's able to track 10 minutes song is capable of enjoying it. Well, it's not so hot with being melodic here, it's taken here more as side-effect, than real purpose and I keep being lost in this music from time to time, but one thing is for sure. This music is intriguing a lot and really have a lot to offer.

5(+), Absolute opposite to some endless copies, dull tunes about nothing and recycling of ideas. And proof that you don't have to be melodic to be interesting.

One of the most unique albums I've ever heard. And that's not nostalgia speaking, I know this one for just a year.

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars If I may start with a bit of criticism, I find that, while Anekdoten and Landberk always aimed to assimilate their 70's influences with a personal artistic view, Änglagard never went beyond revisiting Genesis. So if a well-executed Nursery-Knife-Cryme-Foxtrot with a touch of Crimson is your cup of tea, then you will enjoy this album a lot. Luckily, I like that era an awful lot as well.

A remarkable thing is that Änglagard doesn't sound very much like that other band that revisited Genesis 10 years earlier. I'd say that while Änglagard picked up the 71-72 sound, Marillion focussed more on the 73-78 phase. For me it's just another proof of how versatile and truly remarkable Genesis was. I'm tempted to say that Hybris pales a bit by that dazzling perspective.

If I may continue with another bit of criticism, I think the vocals are slightly disappointing. In that respect they are nothing like Genesis at all. I'd say it's a bit ironic that the only aspect where they really differ from their idols turns out to be so unfulfilling. They must have felt the same as their next album would be entirely instrumental. Luckily, also here they don't sing all that much.

Looking at it from 2009, there's one big redeeming factor for their lack of originality. I can see the impact this must have had at the time of its release. Unlike neo-prog that took in too much of the 80's glossiness; this 'retro-prog' sprouted a new wave of bands that really re-connected with the musicality, the rich ambience and the feel for melody of the original symphonic prog bands. 4.5 stars for the instrumental tracks. 4 stars on the whole.

Review by Atavachron
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars The reputation that precedes this release and almost savior-like following Anglagard receives in the Prog community is intimidating. And for progoholics still virgins to these Swedes, the feeling of anticipation leading up to the first hearing is enough to make the most grizzled, jaded listener transform into a giddy schoolgirl completely disarmed and flushed with carnal desires. Few albums could live up to the legendary praise Hybris has enjoyed, and under such conditions stakes are indeed high for the unexposed who just dropped 25 bucks on this beautiful repackaging from the band in a 3-section gatefold. I mean, it better be good, capishe?

Among other things, Anglagard distinguished themselves as one of the bands active during the early 1990s that began a serious effort to revive and restore golden age progressive rock. The impact and ripples caused by that alchemical summoning of the classic period began showing up for years to come in other outfits - as Wobbler, the Tangent, Anekdoten - and in retrospect this six-piece deserves much credit for showing that rock 'n roll backed-up by real skills and big ambition can still be a good thing.

I must say, describing the predominantly instrumental music is a bear of a job, and I can't blame those who have (or will) thrown their hands up unable to write much more than, "It's great, with a lot of stuff going on and, well, you'll love it!" Indeed, and you probably will. That is if you appreciate the utterly high-class playing of pianist Thomas Johnson and flautist Anna Holmgren in support of founders Tord Lindman [voice/guitar] and Johan Högberg [bass]. 'Jordrök' establishes the sophisticated if grimly serious tone, the long winters to the north reflected in the chill and dark beauty of Johnson's piano, the band breaks open and the exploratory surgery begins-- one compounded theme interrupted gracefully by another; songs within songs; light folk met with anchor-heavy church organ; Malmsteenian guitar campaigns; a solo cello. Pastorale 'Vandringar i vilsenhet' moves slowly but picks-up, shuffling the genre deck between bass-heavy rock, sly keyboard flurries, and a Mexican guitar all interconnected by delicious little pieces of tissue, cartilage, fat and nasty bits. A sad trio of horns whimsically opens 'Ifran klarhet till klarhet', a perfectly alright if somewhat blah number, 'Kung Bore', this writer's favorite, unfolds with Passion Play-era Tull and more strings from south of the equator, and terrific bonus cut 'Gånglåt från Knapptibble' wraps things perfectly and would've made a fine closer on the original issue.

Surely deserving of 5 big ones if only for the amount of high quality material here that will leave most reading this quivering with delight as they devour measure after measure of some of the richest, most authentic stuff around with relish, the juice dribbling down their chins as they slurp up every last chunk of meat, tidepool of grease, and bit of marrow. Bon appétit !

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Austere darkness, fuming mists floating upon the frozen lake and out of the dense woods, raging dissonance purveyed by some kind of Nordic insolence, talented and taciturn musicians from Sverige (Sweden for those who don't know) who exude their national characteristics with gusto. The entire atmosphere is angrily phosphorescent as if some distant firework display was motivated to shock the silence. The sheer contrast between smooth mellotron/flute intermezzos and the booming Rickenbacker, brief church organ, slippery guitar and monster drum onslaught is the defining quality that makes Anglagard so endearing. They write in their booklet introduction some rather fateful words, illuminating the sensory process that went into creating such a concise piece of music. "This music is built on a very human base?through conflict. It's created with the thought of each person's momentary feelings, with a lot of variations as a starting point. Personal feelings and the impulsiveness has been the hardest adversary in our struggle to put the tunes together. We don't seek a well-balanced or predictable entirety. This pot is cooked by six fanatic cooks, each one a victim of hybris". Fine fighting words and it dawned on me quite quickly that only true proggers could get into this bizarre concoction, as the soundtrack to a hot date and sweaty tryst this is definitely not!

The music requires not only effort but patience as well; the clashing rhythms and tempos rival the extreme improvs of veteran jazz fusion outfits, with an obviously grittier prog style. The polyrhythmics abound, dense sonic jungles that shudder all over the scales, complex structures with simple note selections. Bassist Jonas Hogberg is a tremendous figure, craving solid lanes for Mattias Olsson's Brufordesque drums, a powerful combo that slams with the best of them (like compatriots Anekdoten and Landberk = the 3 founders of prog Renaissance in Scandinavia), while two guitarists weave some serious tapestries and keyboardman Tomas Jonsson colours the entire palette with blitzing runs on a variety of vintage instruments. The 4 tracks form an entity that makes it difficult for me to slice and dice track by track or pick out some specific solo or other. This is a perfect example of team play where the whole means so much more than the parts, also why they disappeared rather quickly after only 2 studio albums and a live job. Rumours abound though! As for influences, it's not as clear cut, though one can detect overt Genesis moments, with Anna Holmgren's flute one can smell the KC bouquet and the mad rhythms can amuse the Gentle Giant. Throw in some ELP runs (the Hammond B- 3 /drum play in particular), a heady dose of Nordic folk and we really start cookin'! Truth is that this is very unique and original, at times demented melancholia to the point of paranoia, or should I say desperation, yet somehow also peaceful and contrite. The unending time signature changes are defiantly boggling the mind and the excitement from the constant unknown is utterly compelling.

As a few fans and critics have mentioned , Anglagard is to be lauded for reigniting the phoenixed torch in 1992, a time that still seemed bleak for the progfan and for exhorting by example thousands of unknown musicians to instill some music into their music (if you know what I mean! And you do). Others have nicely dissected this masterstroke nicely and it would be hard for me to not pin five asteroids on this one but with the added notation that this ain't an easy listen by any stretch.

As an essay on obscure virtuosity, this earns the bottle of akvavit, a jar of lingonberries and 5 golden crowns.

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars The infamous legendary prog album "Hybris" from Swedish proggers Anglagard marked an indelible place in prog territory in an era that was deprived of the prog brillaince of the 70s. Anglagard sound like they are from the 70s and are comparable to early Genesis, ELP and King Crimson.

It begins with 'Jordrök'; the opening is dark chilling piano and male choral voices. The time sig is strange and off beat. The music is tight and definitely prog, and there is an excellent catchy melody on guitars by Engdegård. This instrumental continues as an acoustic treatment is given with bells and ambient keyboard pads from Johnson. A sublime flute chimes in from Holmgren; a very gentle lulling sound that is dreamy and surreal. A huge pipe organ cathedral sound blasts forth. The time sig changes completely as keyboards and guitars crash in. The shimmering Hammond is wonderful and a real feature. The track changes pace again, the flourishes of keys and drums are fascinating from Olsson. The whimsical flute returns, followed by a dark heavy section. A silent passage with minimalist woodwind begins. Then melodious blasts of organ riffs with a scorching guitar take hold of the track. An absolutely essential piece of prog music.

'Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet' begins with an off kilter quirky amusement park effect then it goes in to fill swing with a prog time sig and Engdegård's very cool guitar riffs that are incessant and relentless. It builds and locks into a strange time sig with irregular drum patterns. The Swedish vocals of Lindman are very clean and follow the strange rhythm, with nice organ chord changes, jazz fills on guitar and jazz drumming. The acoustic interlude is gentle and played with feeling. It finishes on a powerful instrumental focussing on shimmering Hammond organ and guitar sweeps.

'Kung Bore' is another highlight with Engdegård's guitar picking introduction, a heavy bass and drum patterns fade up and a strange time sig locks in. The music is complex and compelling. It is an uplifting sound, with light and dark shades utilising many instruments to create a delightful atmosphere. Lindman's vocals are gentle sung in Swedish language. The sound is often like Pink Floyd with huge mellotron keyboard chords from Johnson and space guitar passages. Holmgren's flute sections are divine throughout. Time sigs change towards the end gaining in pace. Then a wall of symphonic washes take the tune to its conclusion. A single flute is heard bookending the piece. A quintessential progressive album.

Review by EatThatPhonebook
5 stars 9/10

"Hybris" is perfect, beautiful, mysterious, epic, legendary.

It's very hard nowadays to find and album this beautiful. It took me about seven listens before I could really appreciate it, so you can imagine how complex "Hybris" is.

The album is full of dark and memorable moments, thanks mainly to the large use of the mellotron; all musicians are extremely virtuous and are really technical, besides extremely talented in songwriting and performing (half of the band at the time was younger than twenty years old). Impressive are also the many times the band changes the moods and rhythm, without losing themselves in musical technique or excessive instrumentation.

Other than the great technical performances, Hybris is even full of nice, pleasant folkish moods that are very frequent in each of the four songs of this album, usually being put there as a sort of interlude, pause, before the song re explodes with another strange and clomplex melody, which always manages to be utterly original and haunting at the same time.

Another interesting thing is that the few vocals in the album are sung in Swedish, which is very rare thing in rock music. Usually you can find vocals during interludes, or some other mellow moments, but generally they aren't many moments.

An incredible album, perfect, beautiful, mysterious, epic, legendary. Essential for every prog fan.

Review by Flucktrot
4 stars Like a windy day on the water, Hybris continuously, predictably, rises and falls with intensity. Sometimes they play soft, then they swell--but never to tsunami-level--and then they die back down again. Also like the waves, it is all too easy to become accustomed, after a while failing to notice the space between crests, with the certainty that nothing too unexpected or different is coming.

So is this a bad thing? When the musicianship and composition is this tight, certainly not, because this album really does sound fantastic: I love the clear and bouncy bass, the mellotron swells, the delicate flute, and the deceivingly natural ebbs and flows in the songs. Unlike others, I only hear traces of relations to classic prog--Anglagard function more as a chamber group than a rock band. If you've always wanted a set-up like this--as I have--then Hybris really will do it for you.

I'm certainly glad that Anglagard came around when they did, but I'm not going to let that induce me to rate this as a masterpiece when I really think it is simply an hour of wonderfully played and produced music. As an important caveat, I believe if I saw this performed live, I would be much more impressed, due to the variety of instrumentation and attention to detail.

Classically influenced progressive rock played on vintage instruments. Nothing revolutionary, nothing groundbreaking, and by extension, not a masterpiece...but most definitely worth owning.

Review by lazland
4 stars I'll be brutally honest. I had never heard of this band prior to joining Prog Archives, but I am so glad I have. This is one of many new albums I have recently bought as a direct result of ratings and reviews on the site, and the fact is that this one is worth all of the praise that has been heaped upon it.

Scandanavian prog represents to me a very important part of the third wave of prog, coming on the back of the initial classic era, followed by the 1980's neo wave led by bands such as Marillion & IQ.

Hybris, in common with many others of this last wave of prog, takes its influences very much from classic prog such as Genesis, Yes, and King Crimson, but, as with class bands such as The Flower Kings and offshoots, makes it all into its own glorious symphonic sound.

Jordrok is a fine example, the album's opener. It's lovely to hear a modern take with flute, Hammond, complex rhythm section backing, the track simply roars along, and there is also some lovely, but delicately understated, guitar work, that reminds one of Fripp in his pomp.

Anna Holmgran, playing the flute, is at the forefront of this album, and no more so than at the start of the second track, Vardrigar I Vilserhet. Her flute playing really is exquisite and delicate. But, crucially, in order to satisfy ourselves as to the true symphonic nature of the album, it is as part of an ensemble, creating an orchestra of almost majestic proportions throughout. I really do think that in decades to come, music such as this will come to be regarded as the classical music of its time.

I would here make a point to people reading this who are put off by lyrics sung in foreign tongues - don't be. I don't speak a word of Swedish, but, to these ears, the rare vocal moments on the album are absolutely complemented by the tongue in which they are sung, in much the same way as the best Italian prog bands. I would also address some of the criticisms that previous reviewers have stated about the vocals, that they sound nothing like Genesis. Well, good. I think that this is one of the joys of this album, making a clear homage to the classic bands, but in their own unique way.

I cannot praise this album highly enough. For those reading this who still love the old, classic, bands, but are looking to expand their horizons into something that is clearly retro in nature, but in a clever, modern sense, and also looking to move beyond the UK, start here.

In closing...Flute, mellotron, complex signatures, delicate, yet intense, playing , dark, symphonic in the classic sense. Need I say more?

I have done over 90 reviews on the site now, and I have learned to be a little bit more conservative in awarding 5 stars, because these should be reserved for true masterpieces.

So, when I award this 4 stars, I would state it is 4.5 stars really, and meaning every single word of that phrase, an excellent addition to any prog rock music collection.

Do as I have done. Expand your horizons. Get this album.

Review by Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Änglagård is one of the many Swedish bands that I knew nothing about before reading about them on Prog Archives. It's not that I'm bad at tracking my country's popular acts but rather the weird fact that bands like Änglagård, A.C.T, Pain Of Salvation and even the Flower Kings aren't as commonly recognized here as they seem to be outside of Sweden. Therefore my discovery of the band came almost a decade after they had already broken up, but to be honest, I doubt that I that listening to Änglagård at the age of 7 would have actually benefited me too much.

There is really no doubt that this release has great instrumental arrangements all throughout these four lengthy compositions. The melodic hooks are great and all the band members show a great passion in their performances. My only real complaint is targeted towards the lyrical context of these songs. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against Lindman's vocal performance, instead it's the lyrics themselves that sound completely hideous to my ears. This is one of the few occasions where I actually wish that I wouldn't have know the spoken language since it really drags down the overall experience of this release for me. Having said that, I don't exactly consider the band's all instrumental followup album Epilog to be any better, but I'll leave the reasons undisclosed until my next review.

There's no denying that Hybris has won the heart of our prog community and I can definitely appreciate its appeal. Still, I wouldn't call myself a hardcore fan of this release or Änglagård in general. This album is simply an excellent addition to any prog rock music collection and I'll leave it at that.

***** star songs: Jordrök (11:10) Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet (8:04)

**** star songs: Vandringar I Vilsenhet (11:53) Kung Bore (12:57)

Review by poslednijat_colobar
5 stars Classic symphonic prog enters into the dark 90s

Many words have been said about this remarkable release from the beginning of the 90s. I firstly would say this is the most recent symphonic prog album with classic statute. That means very much. Moreover, Hybris contains unique distinctive style. It doesn't looks like any of 90s' albums. It's like transferred album 20 years forward with time. That typical distinctive style of Anglagard is strongly inspired by 70s cult bands, but reveal genuine ideas and comprehension of songwriting. Some of the main reasons for that are saturated, balanced and very,very dark melancholic sound; profound and elaborated songwriting, combined with perfect musicianship. All compositions are inimitable and very memorable. Except that, Hybris consists of much heavier tunes all over itself, than the usual symphonic album. All that makes Anglagard a landmark and Hybris a must for all symphonic fans! 5 stars

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Having finally procured this album about a month ago, it has been on my playlist ever since--not necessarily because I love it but more because I'm trying to let it grow on me--trying to figure out what I'm missing, what's wrong that I'm not loving this album. I could immediately hear all of the comparisons and possible influences, (Crimson, ELP, Hackett, Genesis, Yes, Tull, VDGG, Camel, Rush, Nektar, Ant, etc.) I recognize the high level of compositional skill and musicianship, but something is missing--something just isn't drawing me in. I have concluded that it is a deficiency of heart, soul, and emotion that leaves me feeling cold and unattached-- impressed but unattached. I am very much reminded of my similar reaction to most Steve Hackett albums: I recongize and appreciate the genius, the experimentalism, the skill, but it leaves me cold and unattached. (Mostly.) I cannot in good conscience rate this collection of masterfully constructed and performed songs anything less than 4 stars, but I am equally unable to rate it as a masterpiece. It may deserve its standing in the PA Top 100 but not in mine.
Review by Warthur
5 stars Anglagard's debut album is a remarkably confident fusion of symphonic prog influences - the pastoralism of Genesis, the wildness of King Crimson, the tranquility of Camel - into an original and unique sound which provided a much-needed shot in the arm for symphonic prog. Though the band wore their influences on their sleeves, they still had sufficient tricks unique to them to make them a worthwhile listen for any fan of classic, 70s-style prog rock - the flute work of Anna Holmgren, for instance, sounds nothing like Ian Anderson (the usual go-to guy for unoriginal prog bands looking for someone's flute technique to rip off), and doesn't even resemble Andy Latimer's flute playing on, say, Camel's The Snow Goose.

Everyone knows how this album, among others from around the same time, electrified the online prog audience and paved the way for the prog renaissance since then - unlike some albums that become "internet darlings", however, Hybris has the meat to match the hype. It's an unabashed nostalgia exercise, of course - but when the nostalgia's this good I can overlook that.

Review by Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Each composition on this Änglagård album is a Frankenstein's monster: Individually, most parts may be aesthetically pleasing or gripping, but sewn together, they make up something unsightly and ungainly. I must stress that these are incredibly talented musicians, and the production is remarkable (this album has one of the greatest bass tones). However, the methodology behind their compositions is that of stopping one section to bring in an apparently unrelated section, stringing them together piecemeal with precious little regard for flow or context. The pieces may build to what could be a satisfying conclusion, but no- another section is tacked on, and the tracks carry on in this rambling manner. The instrumentation should make this just about everything I love about symphonic progressive rock, but I cannot get past the compositions themselves.

"Jordrök" Following an anticipatory piano, expect punchy bass, Mellotron, and an ominous lead guitar. Light guitar, Mellotron, and flute ease in thereafter, but are abruptly cut off by a churlish church organ out of nowhere. No matter how many times I try, I simply cannot follow this piece, even though there are a few exceptional passages.

"Vandringar i Vilsenhet" Solo flute offers a pleasant melody that is gradually joined by other soft instruments. A shadowy organ that rises up and brings a section that is like Yes and Genesis thundering together on the same stage- "Close to the Edge" and "Firth of Fifth" at the same time. The bass riff is particularly derivative of Chris Squire's work on the former. Unfortunately, the vocals spoil it; in my opinion they do not fit the music, not in tone nor melody nor context. The ominous, almost haunting conclusion is powerful and well-executed, with a marching snare to lead us out.

"Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet" Don't turn up the speakers on account of the quiet, outlandish little twenty-second bit that sounds like circus music, because the band explodes into a brain-rattling jam, which quickly gives way to soft music and more substandard singing.

"Kung Bore" Classical guitar and piano double up for the quiet beginning, and the rest of the band eases in until erupting into a solid theme. The vocals return on this one, and aren't as awful as they were on the other song. Predictably, the action suddenly tapers off, leaving behind a quiet, minimalistic passage, followed by a more explosive one, which is in turn followed by a quiet one, this time with some spoken word, and so forth. The conclusion sounds almost borrowed from Yes's Tales from Topographic Oceans, especially "The Ancient."

"Gånglåt från Knapptibble" This bonus track opens with some disharmonious, jingly percussion, and in bursts the loudness of the band, organ and bass leading the way. The vocals are not very appealing. The second half involves distant tones with an eventual flute, very similar to Genesis. It eventually turns into a mess of instruments.

Review by octopus-4
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.

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
5 stars Anglagard appeared on the scene at just the right time. Without the Internet to bring us together, the search for good progressive music after 1980 was often fruitless. Old favorites, like Yes, Genesis, Rush, and even the mighty King Crimson had removed much of what was interesting about their music in order to continue their major label contracts. There was an inkling of new prog on these labels, but most of these were heavily arena rock oriented, or Genesis wannabes. The only reprieve we had was through independent suppliers, like Wayside Music, where we had to take a chance on an artist we had never heard of before.

But by the early 90's the foundation of the Internet was gaining popularity, and it was on one of those text based discussion groups someone informed me of this new fantastic band from Sweden that would restore my faith in the prog scene. And looking back, it signalled the emergence of Scandinavia as the up and coming center of the new prog universe.

The opening of Jordrök gives the impressing that Anglagard is going to be a dark chamber rock band, in the vein of Univers Zero. But once the full band joins in, the music becomes a fabulous blend of the classic seventies era prog masters. There is the darkness of King Crimson (and the Mellotrons), the soaring vocals and complex virtuosity of Yes, some nods to Genesis in keyboard and vocal passages, and even (as shown in the bonus track on later editions) the intricate arrangements of Gentle Giant.

Aside from the fact that this album refreshed my enthusiasm for progressive rock, it is a nearly perfect endeavor.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars "Hybris" is the debut full-length studio album by Swedish progressive rock act 'nglag'rd. The album was originally released on CD through the Mellotronen label in late 1992 and on vinyl through the Norwegian Colours label. "Hybris" has since seen several reissues. The original version of the album featured 4 tracks while later reissues feature a 5th bonus track in "G'ngl't fr'n Knapptibble"

The relatively inactive 80s progressive rock scene in Sweden, which had been pretty active in the 70s, made a major comeback in the early 90s with acts like The Flower Kings, Anekdoten, Ritual and Landberk. Few artists have been met with almost universal praise as 'nglag'rd have though. They didn't exist for long the first time around and only released two studio albums before they disbanded, but especially "Hybris" is widely considered a "classic" Swedish progressive rock album.

...and it's apparent why that is when listening to the album.

The first thing you notice when listening to "Hybris" is the high level musicianship. These guys (and girl) are outstanding on their instruments. They successfully balance their playing between organic dynamic playing and precision interplay. Flute is the dominant lead instrument in the mellow folky sections, while the busy drumming, keyboards/synths, guitars and bass form the basis on the more energetic parts of the album. Vocals are sparse, mellow and delivered in the Swedish language.

The music is heavily rooted in 70s progressive rock and while a combination of Kaipa and King Crimson is a much too simplified description of 'nglag'rd's sound, I think it'll give people a general idea of how the music sounds (I heard a few nods toward Genesis too). The lush and occasionally folky symphonic progressive rock of Kaipa (the sparse Swedish language lyrics also point in that direction), the dissonant darkness of mid-70s King Crimson and the beautiful and mellow acoustic guitar sections of Genesis (as heard in "Ifr'n Klarhet Till Klarhet"). It's a great combination of mellow and heavy elements that make "Hybris" a very dynamic listen.

The tracks range from 8 to almost 13 minutes in length, and there is a lot going on in each track. This is not an easy listen and even seasoned progressive rock listeners might find themselves challenged quite a bit. But that's of course also part of the appeal of the album and it certainly ensures longivity. This is the kind of album where you'll find new details every time you give it a spin. Initially I found the compositions a bit disjointed and I struggled to understand them as full compositions and not a bunch of great ideas thrown together to form tracks. The more I've listened to the album though, the more all the pieces seem to form a coherent puzzle.

But it's not only the musicianship and the songwriting that are top notch. Add to those two important elements the fact that "Hybris" features an organic, detailed and powerful sound production and we have a high quality product on our hands. The only flaw/issue, if you can call it that, is that the music isn't particularly original sounding (it's still highly adventurous though). Most elements on the album have been used before by various 70s progressive rock acts, but I guess it's the combination of elements, that makes "Hybris" such a strong release. To my ears this one deserves it's "classic" status and a 5 star (100%) rating is deserved.

Review by FragileKings
5 stars When I first began my voyage across the prog continent two years ago, Anglagard was one of the names that soon attracted my attention. The CDs were expensive to order (like $40 expensive) and I was bothered by the fact that such highly rated music would be so costly to acquire. But then I listened to some samples and I experienced the "Emperor's New Clothes" feeling for the first time. This is the term I have given to music that many progheads rave about as being extraordinary and masterpieces which to me sound like musicians trying too hard to do something "different". "Where is the music?" I ask myself. I have felt this many times when first listening to Van Der Graaf Generator, King Crimson, The Soft Machine, and even old Pink Floyd. It seems to me that sometimes a deliberate attempt to eschew all formality of melody and harmony results in a cacophonous juxtaposition of sounds which may or may not be created by musical instruments. Of course, over time I have come to understand and even enjoy most of these artists' attempts at being avant guard, progressive, or "different". And what I first thought was a band trying to do everything possible in a single song now strikes me as a genius effort in writing complex music that can be enjoyed given time to appreciate it.

Anglagard, however, would have eluded my collection entirely were it not for Wobbler, whose first and second albums are equally complex and require time to digest little by little. It was Wobbler's third album "Rites at Dawn" that was such a magical concoction of complex retro-symphonic prog that brought me to their previous releases, and ultimately back to Anglagard, this time with an expanded mind for music. Sometimes, in order to climb one mountain you are better off having experienced climbing another first.

The band formed in the early 90's with the purpose of creating highly complex and complicated music in the vein of the 70's prog masters. Their debut in 1992, "Hybris" includes just four tracks (the reissue which was mercifully cheaper but still expensive includes a bonus track) running between 8 and 13 minutes. I find it difficult to describe each song individually without writing a novella; however, the basic ingredients are guitars (clean electric, distorted electric, and acoustic), keyboards (organ, synthesizer, piano, and Mellotrone), flute, bass, drums and percussion, and perhaps some additional string instruments. Vocals are featured on some of the tracks but sparsely and in Swedish. The choice of language is by no means detrimental to the music but the quality of the vocals is wanting. Like many prog bands, there is no gifted vocalist, only gifted musicians.

Each track is unique though on any of them you can expect to hear aggressive music in odd meter, subtle parts and melancholic beauty, building suspense and abrupt stops, and generally a wondrous interplay of sounds. Some parts are truly sublime while others are transitions in between. I only wonder how the band members can remember what to play when during each song. In the Rush documentary, "Beyond the Lighted Stage", Terry Brown, former producer for Rush, said that "La Villa Strangiatto" was so complex that you'd need a computer to keep track of where you were in the song. Anglagard's music goes beyond that in complexity. As such, it is not everyone's cup of prog. If you enjoy songs with more focus on melody then you'll likely be disappointed. Some prog bands take a slow scenic drive through the countryside with their songs. Anglagard is more like a express train at times, with musical motifs almost flying by the window in comparison.

It's taken time to get a feel for the music and identify my favourite parts but I'd say at least three of the tracks are now familiar to me and I quite enjoy them. It's remarkable that a band put this kind of album together while the grunge movement was in bloom. It would seem it was almost a direct backlash to the end of the 80's and grunge.

Review by Tarcisio Moura
3 stars Debut album by this much praised swedish band. Hybris show taht the band is deeply rooted to the classic symphonic prog music of the 70´s. Obviously their biggest influence is King Crimson (around the time of Starless and Bible Black to be preciser), but there are also echoes of Yes, Gentle Giant and Genesis in several parts. This is mostly a instrumental album with a few vocals thrown in (all in their native language). Hybris is regarded as a classic by many ProgArchives colleagues, but I really don´t agree much with them. Maybe because I only recently heard it and it did not have the same impact on me as it may had if I had it in 1992. Who knows?

It is clear that the band has excellent musicians and their mix of retro and (then) modern sounds is quite refreshing. However, composition wise, they did not come up with very strong tunes. Ok, several parts are excellent, but unlike their heroes, rarely the melodies stick and most of the tunes seem like several pieces and bits put together without much care for a coherent whole or even flowing. The second part of King Bore is specially good, but again they failed to produce an epic stuff that is really convincing from start to finish. Which is really a shame, since it is clear they had all the chops and the right influences. The excellent production should have helped too. Vocals are only average, but fitting anyway, on the few occasions they do appear.

All in all I felt that Hybris is a pleasant album, but I can not rate it as high as several others did. To me is good album overall with very good parts on it, but that´s it. I´m going to listen to their latter material to see if they did fulfill the promise Hybris surely is.

Rating: something between 3 and 3.5 stars.

Review by VianaProghead
5 stars Review Nº 217

"Hybris" is the debut studio album of the Swedish symphonic progressive rock band Anglagard and was released in 1992. It became as one of the most influential progressive rock albums in the 90's, when many new bands, some of them Scandinavian bands especially Swedish, began to revive the style of progressive rock called the third prog wave.

Anglagard got itself noticed in the small international community of prog fans due to the quality, originality and complexity of their music. Both of their two studio albums which were released in the 90's, this one and "Epilog" released two years latter in 1994, were voted albums of the year on the internet progressive newsgroups, and that put Anglagard as a cult band. This is one of those rare cases of obscurity combined with reverence. Many like to compare Anglagard with the American progressive rock band of Detroit, Discipline. Both are two bands that become legendary.

Anglagard's music is quite similar to the sound of the progressive rock bands from the 70's, because their music was strongly influenced by bands like Genesis, Yes, King Crimson, Gentle Giant and Van Der Graaf Generator. However, Anglagard's music is much more than that. Their music is also deeply influenced by the Swedish folklore music. The final result was the creation of a style with a well defined personality, within the recognizable Scandinavian melancholy.

The line up of the album is Tord Lindman (vocals, Gibson 335, nylon and steel acoustic guitars), Jonas Engdegard (Stratocaster, Gibson 335, nylon and steel acoustic guitars), Thomas Johnson (mellotron, Hannond organ B-3 & L- 100, solina, clavinet, pianet, Korg mono/poly, piano & church organ on electronic version), Anna Holmgren (flute), Johan Hogberg (Rickenbacker bass, bass pedals and mellotron effects) and Mattias Olsson (Sonor drumset, concert bass drum, Zildjian Cymbals, tambourines, vibraslap, po-chung, gong, castanets, line bells, cow bell, wood block, tubular bells, glockenspiel, bongos, bells, ice-bell, finger cymbals, waterfall, A-gogo bells, cabasa, claves, French cowbell, African drum and Effect-flute).

"Hybris" has four tracks. All music was written and arranged by Anglagard and all lyrics were written by Tord Lindman. The first track "Jordrok (Earth Smoke)" is a dark and melancholic instrumental song that reminds me the long and cold winter season in Sweden. It's a very complex and a totally progressive track with constant musical changes and where all the musical instruments have its function and where no one dominates. This is an incredible track to open this fantastic and unique album from a very special and unique band. The second track "Vadringar I Vilsenhet (Wonderings In Confusion)" is another extremely complex progressive track with great rhythm changes. It's the first track with lyrics in Swedish. However, unfortunately, it's impossible to me to understand what is said on the track. Tord Lindman's voice is nice and delicate and, for me, it improves the song. There are on this song some amazing individual performances by all band's members. This is another brilliant track. The third track "Ifran Klarhet Till Klarhet (From Clarity To Clarity)" has a surrealist begin with a kind of a carnival circus music sound. The music on this track sounds relatively complex, combining the great versatility of Anna Holmgren on flute, good guitar work, great mellotron sound, nice bass line and powerful drumming. This is another excellent catchy track. The fourth track "Kung Bore (King Winter)" is the highest musical moment on the album and is, in my opinion, one of the best songs composed by them, and it's also, probably, my favourite Anglagard's track. It's also a very complex song very nostalgic, with great vocals, some classical parts, good keyboards and an interesting rhythm section. This is a perfect way to close this very special and unique album.

My remastered CD version has a fifth bonus track, "Ganglat Fran Knapptibble (Marching Tune From Knapptibble)", which was recorded in 1993 for the English magazine Ptolemaic Terrascope who wanted to release a single to come with the magazine. This track features some music parts which also appear on "Epilog". As usual, I don't review bonus tracks. But, I must confess this is also a great song that doesn't compromise the high quality level of the entire album.

Conclusion: In my humble opinion, "Hybris" is one of the most innovative, surprising and original progressive rock albums ever made. Its music is completely progressive with a lengthy format, very complex and creative, and with abrupt passages and constant change of rhythms. However, it's at the same time very melodic. All of this makes of it a perfectly unforgettable work. As I said before, on "Hybris" we can discover so many varied and diversified influences on its music. They pass by influences from several progressive rock bands from the 70's such as Genesis, Yes, King Crimson, Gentle Giant and Van Der Graaf Generator, for instance. However, in my humble opinion, the main musical influences are clearly Genesis and King Crimson. Those influences are perfectly married with the influences of the Swedish folklore and the traditional Scandinavian melancholy. That makes of it a unique, original and surprising album.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

Review by jamesbaldwin
2 stars Swedish group Anglagard stunned everyone in 1992 with their debut album Hybris, which marked the resurgence of prog and the success of Scandinavian prog. Much of the best symphonic prog has since come from Scandinavia. I have never listened carefully to the Scandinavian prog, and only recently have I tried to evaluate it, in particular this record which is in the top 30 in the Progarchives chart, the only one from the 90s to have such an advanced position.

Side A

1. Jordrök (Smoke of the Earth) (11:10) After a classical and very beautiful beginning with the piano, the music becomes hard-rock and syncopated, very sustained, with the rhythm section in the foreground (Mattias Olsson on drums and Johan Högberg on bass). The band is produced in changes of tempo and atmosphere, slavishly tracing the initial theme of the piano. Around 3 and a half minutes it is the turn of the acoustic guitar and then the flute which, together, paint an almost folk and pastoral atmosphere. Until now, great use in the production phase to arrange the same melodic theme in the most diverse ways. At about 5 minutes we can hear Thomas Johnson's church organ which then deepens into a Bach- style "aria" but, after a few seconds, the initial frenzied rhythm restarts. There are too many stop and go, too much display of technicalities, it is not so much the virtuosities that tire because the sound is of the whole group, but there is an exasperation of rhythm changes and arrangements, such exasperation that in the end the nucleous of the melody is missing. Already we can clearly see the strengths and weaknesses of this group: among the strengths the ability to arrange and the sound, among the defects the prolixity and the exasperated and redundant exhibitionism. This long and contort instrumental piece has a melody that the Anglagards doesnt develop in his potential beauty. At about 8 minutes and 15 seconds the music stops, yet another twist arrives, for a few moments there is a slow symphonic piece, but it is a bluff: immediately after the frenzied rhythm starts again: these changes of rhythm and atmosphere that last few seconds are pure cerebral masturbation. This piece makes me angry for how the Anglagards want to exceed in everything, they want to amaze (as true exhibitionists) without giving us time to get excited. Wasted talent. Rating 6.5 / 7.

2. Vandringar I Vilsenhet (Wanderers in confusion) (11:53) Anna Holmgren's flute gives a lot of serenity to the second song that goes on for two minutes, until a prog progression begins which then stops, then starts again, then the vocals of Tord Lindman arrive, and continues with a syncopated math rock a la EL&P but characterized by the rhythm section, which produced a flamenco arrangement for a few moments; but it isnt long enough to enjoy, it is difficult to understand where the composition wants to go. The vocals return and finally something like a verse is heard, then the syncopated rhythm returns, then again the folk piece with the flute. Everything happens with an American film montage: superfast. Towards 10 minutes the music stops, but I already know that a supersonic rhythm will soon start again and in fact it happens after a march rhythm. Like in the first song, after a brilliant start, the track got lost behind the endless changes in rhythm and arrangements. Rating 6.5.

Side B 3. Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet (From clarity to clarity) (8:04) It starts with a folk accordion from street music that soon gives way to the electric guitar. The music immediately becomes very sustained. After less than two minutes we can hear the vocals by Tord Lindman: glamorous, elegant way of singing, with an acoustic guitar in the background, but then the music returns to being thunderous. Song shorter than the others, which does not find its center. Rating 6.5.

4. Kung Bore (Winter King) (12:57) A dazzling start in the name of a symphonic power-pop a la Yes (with a contribution from EL&P and Gentle Giant). The stop-and-go as always exceeds, and the music is heard only when the atmosphere relaxes, the arrangements become sober and the flute comes out. The vocals this time are very expressive and represent the best of the whole album (together with the piano of the first song) because then the usual forced stop and go guided by the guitar return, and that pieces are bad, until the return of the vocals, sung with a completely different tone, I would say expressionistic: another beautiful moment, but then Anglagard return to the bombastic sound to end up with the flute. Rating 7+.

This Swedish prog record, epigonal of EL&P, Yes and Gentle Giant (and perhaps also Genesis) represents everything that should not be done in prog: continuous changes of rhythm and forced arrangement, aimed at showing off originality, unpredictability, technical ability, with the result of preventing the musical theme from settling, leaving its mark, hitting on an emotional level. It seems to witness a fireworks competition of a music acrobat. The best moments are those where the arrangements are leaner and there are the vocals, unfortunately they are few. In most cases, this group has wasted its melodies, its musical ideas by exaggerating in the arrangements, exasperating the composition with endless stops and go and changes of rhythm. Art is not exhibition, art is judged on the basis of "BEAUTY": Anglagard have a beautiful sound, indisputably, and the ability to produce interesting arrangements, but they have not been able, in this record, to put their talents at the service of the beauty, they preferred to put them at the service of exhibitionism, they want to hear: "Wow, how good you are, original, full of ideas and technically skilled". They should try to focus only on the music and the emotions they want to convey to get much better results. They got the talent to reach this goal.

Rating 7. Two and a half stars.

Review by Dapper~Blueberries
5 stars In the 90s, more retro and symphonic styles of progressive rock was taking a turn. Bands such as The Flower Kings, Spock's Beard, and Echolyn were garnering some big buzz, and high praises across the board. Their styles and ways of creating new and exciting music really helped them stand on their own way. Unlike those bands, there are more obscure and darker sounding bands from around that time that looked at the more bright and celebratory Prog rock music that was going around a lot and thought to themselves, 'Nah, let's get a little dark and gothic'. There were two signature bands that had this mentality, our darlings from the USA, Discipline, and their Swedish brothers over with 'nglag'rd.

'nglag'rd is one of those bands that sort of just appeared, disappeared for an eternity, and came back just to disappear all over again. Their three album run is all around very positive with the only one that could be considered their worst still could be considered a great if not an excellent album. Their influences vary from the more jazzy side of King Crimson and Van Der Graaf Generator and the symphonic and artistically charged Yes and Gentle Giant, however even with these influences they clearly have their own sound and style, combining more gothic classical stylization with their rock output while also cleverly sneaking in some folk elements as well. All of this creates a steaming pot of a great and cryptic sound that can be best described as gothic. I have expressed in the past that this style is a guilty pleasure of mine and will most likely stay as one for years to come. So you bet that with all these attributes this band soon became one I grew an attachment too, and you are absolutely right.

This uncanny valley can be entered through with the first song, Jordr'k. This instrumental track really sets the stage pretty much instantly with the beginning piano melody. The song pretty much builds off of that into guitar and organ driven riffs that just go into this hauntingly rich chord progression. This song just plays off of the first two minutes and they do it so well by showcasing true progression in the music. Even though it all sounds complex and even a little chaotic, it feels so fine tuned to where even the most complex of riffs feel very easy to get a hold of. Added onto this is the very great guitar work. I know most people would draw into the organ, but I think the guitar is the best instrument here. It strangely feels less like a guitar and more like an instrument that doesn't exist and I just love when a band can just make an instrument sound completely different from what we are used to. You can hear the European influence this has screaming all around it. The almost Beethoven-like structure and the old dark age feel this has really let's this song stick to me like glue. First impressions can really make or break an album for me, and this song really made me want more of this style.

We still continue the same style, but in a different light. Vandringar I Vilsenhet adds vocals into the mix. This adds a new layer to their uncanny style of music. The harmonies the vocals provide really make this song feel so much more enriching without it muddying up the instrumentation. In fact I think the vocals really add to it all. You can really feel the music with the singing a lot more now, almost as if the vocal work done here is in itself an instrument the band uses to move the music forward. I know they aren't Zeuhl but I do get some vibes from Magma's Stella Vander's operatic vocal works from pretty much all of their albums. I do not know if Magma did give this band some kind of influence, but I wouldn't be surprised if they did. I should also talk about the bass here, because it is pretty nice. It has this funk to it, but still be in line with the music presented here. It just shows you how well this band can adopt and convert a wide range of styles and fit them in line with their music.

Even with their shortest song, Infr'n Klarhet till Klarhet, we still get a strong use of progression in the music. While the style mostly remains unaltered, how the band conveys it feels all too different. These subtle yet noticeable changes truly makes this album so excellent. I would like to point my attention to the more bucolic parts. Not everything in these songs are all chaos of course, there are moments here that are a lot more laxed. These more laxed segments really do add a level of thought and care into the music. I am an avid supporter that not every progressive act should just be nothing but insanity. Progressive rock isn't and has always not been about creating chaos in music, but rather utilizing more obtuse elements in ways to advance the music forward into different directions, and sometimes those directions can be a lot quieter and introspective. Even in the quietest moments they find a way to entice me with their amazing sound.

Everything comes to a close with the last track, Kung Bore. As a finale to this album, I think it pays off in gold. It continues what the last songs have done, refines the aspects they introduced a little bit more, and really settles the album down with a nice finale piece. Really what I had to say about the last 3 songs apply to this one as well. This album doesn't end on a giant crescendo or something that is big and grandiose, instead it ends on how the album began, a cryptic yet beautiful melody. They really wanted to end this album off on their own terms, going against the already norm bending fragments of progressive rock by not going big and huge but instead ending things off how they would want to be ended off. Their hubris really is a testament to why I love this genre of music so much. It can branch out and grow and evolve into so much to where every band of Prog rock has a little something special to them, and this album shows why.

This album is a good showcase on what progressive rock truly means to me. It is a style that can evolve to whoever bends its will, and by doing so can create something amazing. This gothic album is a clear cut masterpiece through and through. If you love Prog rock and you haven't heard it already, 100% check it out. It is not that long, being only 44 minutes, yet it has so much to unpack that the album really does feel like an experience. It really is one the best out there.

Review by Hector Enrique
4 stars Although bands like Marillion, IQ and Pendragon flowed like a fresh breeze to revitalise the progressive movement in the early 80's, by the end of that decade the genre was showing signs of exhaustion once again. On the other hand, the legends of the 70's were also struggling to cope with the devastating force of the grunge wave and alternative trends, forcing them to reinvent themselves and rethink their proposals in order to maintain their relevance or be left out of the game.

And it is in the midst of this complex scenario that, from the cold Scandinavian lands and their bands focused on terrifying the audience with creepy stories full of demonic riffs and guttural voices coming from the darkest side of metal, emerges an exceptional work that could well have been developed in the early and flourishing 70's for the progressive universe: "Hybris", by the Swedish debutants Anglagard. An album that gives new airs to the genre, gathering and condensing elements and sound structures of Yes, Genesis and King Crimson, to mention some of their influences, in four long and solid pieces, performed with an uncommon maturity considering the youth of its members (three of them were around 18 years old...).

The tracks unfold with a remarkable fluidity and level of production, from "Jordrök (Earth Smoke)" and its initial gentle piano, to the voluble and intricate "Vandringar I Vilsenhet (Wanderings in Confusion)" and "Ifrån Klarhet Till Klarhet (From Clarity to Clarity)", supported at all times by the unusual solvency of the very young percussionist Mattias Olsson, the hazy mellotrons of Thomas Johnson, the arpeggiated and electric guitars of Lindman and Jonas Engdegård, and the harmonious and recurring flute of Anna Holmgren, contrasting with the intensity of Johnson's synthesizers (especially the Hammonds), to define the melancholic style of "Hybris", the highlight of which is the beautiful and medieval "Kung Bore (King Winter)".

The few sung passages seem almost dispensable, given the instrumental quality of the compositions, however, having presented the album in some alternative version from Swedish to English, would probably have generated a ripple effect of much greater international repercussion.


4/4.5 stars

Latest members reviews

5 stars For me one of the great things in the burgeoning Skandinavian prog in the early Nineties is the blend of Classic 70s prog and the intense Skandinavian folky atmospheres, Landberk, Anekdoten, and Anglagard are still my favorites. This review is about the latter band, from Sweden, with their highl ... (read more)

Report this review (#2991692) | Posted by TenYearsAfter | Thursday, February 15, 2024 | Review Permanlink

2 stars I absolute love Swedish Prog. I absolutely love the Hammond Organ and the Mellotron, and despite giving this album a generous go over the past 3 years I've just never gotten into it. There are a few good rhythms in parts, but the rest just sounds like poorly pieced together pretentious loops overlay ... (read more)

Report this review (#2991449) | Posted by hugo1995 | Wednesday, February 14, 2024 | Review Permanlink

3 stars 3 Stars - 67/100 I consider this to be one of the most overrated albums according this website, as I'm reminded of something that was written in the CD notebook. The band wrote something along the lines of "We do not seek to make music that sounds stable or has a consistent direction," and therei ... (read more)

Report this review (#2841617) | Posted by ProgRockPrincess | Thursday, September 22, 2022 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Magnificent. I just heard it for the first time, because it was an album that I had pending for a long time (my main territory is Spotify and this gem is not there). It has a sound as mature as it is precise that induces you gradually in the firmness of the record. It starts so perfectly that one ca ... (read more)

Report this review (#2600043) | Posted by Argentinfonico | Thursday, October 7, 2021 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Music is such an enigma. Anglagard is a band that popped practically out of nowhere, none of the members were known from other projects and they were also considerably young. But somehow, their first release is still one of the greatest records of its genre. I discovered this album and band from ... (read more)

Report this review (#2589378) | Posted by King Brimstone | Thursday, August 26, 2021 | Review Permanlink

4 stars 1992 was not the most remarkable year for modern progressive musics, but that year was at least blessed by the release of Dream Theater's 'Images and Words' and of course this album. This Änglagård debut album is a stunning work of art. All four tracks (each lasts between 8 to 13 minutes) are so met ... (read more)

Report this review (#2405186) | Posted by Mark-P | Saturday, May 23, 2020 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Änglagård's first album comes from another planet; it is a shower filled with refreshment after relative still waters at the and of 80's and beginning of 90's. It took the progressive rock music by storm, find new admirers, revived the old ones and surprised even those active ones. The alb ... (read more)

Report this review (#2241665) | Posted by sgtpepper | Saturday, August 3, 2019 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This one has really grown on me recently, and I felt the need to correct my former rating to the new confident 4 stars. Have to say only discovered the band and this album here on PA just a couple of years ago and didn't imediately overcome the initial strangeness the arrangements caused on me. Af ... (read more)

Report this review (#1559309) | Posted by Quinino | Thursday, May 5, 2016 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Usually I'm very sceptic to progressive rock with the main goal to recreate the music of the 70s with todays sound quality, the result is more than often horrific and annoying. �nglagård is one of the few exceptions I know of bands succeeding to create "classic" prog with a modern touch (not ... (read more)

Report this review (#1161362) | Posted by BatBacon | Monday, April 14, 2014 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Hybris is a whole, Hybris is perfection, Hybris is the first album of these Scandinavian masters... five excellent tracks (including the BONUS) and a group of excellent musicians, plus a nice cover make of this album one of the best in progressive rock. Simply impressive... piano, mellotron, ha ... (read more)

Report this review (#1017276) | Posted by Memo_anathemo | Monday, August 12, 2013 | Review Permanlink

3 stars As "Formentera Lady" said, the whole album is just copies of old prog rock acts with quite little variation (albeit great production). "Hybris" is not really in the spirit of progressive rock for me, and doesn't feel risky and outgoing enough for a high rating from me, even though on paper the music ... (read more)

Report this review (#987936) | Posted by Xonty | Friday, June 28, 2013 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Hybris by Änglagård (not Anglagard!) is one of those records that sure draws people to the world of progressive music. I had just heard Viljans öga before, and it amused me much. But this was even better. I presume it's a matter of taste and that others would consider the third record as the b ... (read more)

Report this review (#977872) | Posted by DrömmarenAdrian | Friday, June 14, 2013 | Review Permanlink

1 stars Anglagard, I would say, most overrated prog rock group ever. Yes, they were important as a band who dared to play prog after the prog rock crash of the end of 70s. So, they were very important as an example, of, you coud say, a cosmic revival of progressive music. They were young and could talk to a ... (read more)

Report this review (#880296) | Posted by justaguy | Saturday, December 22, 2012 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I have done myself a great disservice ... instead of embracing Änglagård gradually, I jumped into their ultimate chef d'oeuvre Viljans Öga as soon as it had been released last summer. The impression was extremely positive, so we bought Hybris a few weeks later to serve as a sort of prequel to VÖ ... (read more)

Report this review (#841043) | Posted by Argonaught | Saturday, October 20, 2012 | Review Permanlink

5 stars For those who think prog died at the end of the 70's look no further than this album. Hybris borrows from all the originals, like Yes and Genesis, but sounds as original as if it were released in their time period. Musically, this is some very complex stuff, with tons of odd time signatures and temp ... (read more)

Report this review (#811846) | Posted by Mr. Mustard | Wednesday, August 29, 2012 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This band pretty much nailed the 70's English Symphonic Progressive style to a tee, although to be fair they mix in a bit of a Swedish folk music influence here and there. It's been a while since I really listened to a lot of Symphonic prog rock, but I'd say this album is relatively unique - i ... (read more)

Report this review (#800875) | Posted by Lord Anon | Sunday, August 5, 2012 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Tunes recycled. Many bands are influenced by Genesis and Yes. There is nothing wrong with it as such. But there is a difference if bands sound as if Genesis/Yes made another album, which would be great. Or if well known sounds are simply reused, which is bad. For me the latter is the case with ... (read more)

Report this review (#505390) | Posted by Formentera Lady | Thursday, August 18, 2011 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This album is regarded as something of a masterpiece in the progressive rock community, as shown by its high rating here on this site, and while it's by no means bad I must confess I've never understood its reputation in the upper echelon of modern progressive rock. I suppose the best way to ... (read more)

Report this review (#502705) | Posted by 40footwolf | Saturday, August 13, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Anglagard - Hybris This is a largely, though not entirely, instrumental album resplendent with all kinds of instruments and odd noises and things twinkle and chime and toot and crash; essentially, we are in the traditional realms of symphonic prog, fuelled by pomp, circumstance, and bombast ... (read more)

Report this review (#461231) | Posted by stranded_starfish | Tuesday, June 14, 2011 | Review Permanlink

5 stars They come from the land of the ice and snow, from the midnight sun, where the hot springs blow ... and, last but not least, they play great prog! After a long wait I finally managed to find this work so well reviewed. I must admit that the quality of the album has surpassed all my expectation ... (read more)

Report this review (#460653) | Posted by Dark Nazgul | Monday, June 13, 2011 | Review Permanlink

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