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LUCIFER WAS

Eclectic Prog • Norway


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Lucifer Was biography
This early 70's Norwegian band played together for years without ever releasing an album; that is, until label Record Heaven heard about them in the late 90's and convinced them to re-record songs they had played live at the time. Thanks to RH, we can now enjoy a collection of highly energetic, raw and aggressive 70's power rock recorded with pristine modern technology. The band's material is reminiscent of BLACK SABBATH, URIAH HEEP, early SCORPIONS and JETHRO TULL, albeit a very manic TULL as the flutes battle it out savagely with pounding guitars. Their second album features no less than two flutes, two Mellotrons, electric and acoustic guitars, bass, drums and percussion as well as two vocalists. Their third also contains additional piano, cello, violin, viola, sax, trumpet, trombone and tuba contributed by various guest artists.

Quite impressive, their first effort "Underground and Beyond" (1997) was yet a mere hint at what the subsequent "In Anadi's Bower" and "Blues From Hellah" held in store. On these two, crunchy guitars, absolutely wild flute and tons of cascading mellotrons give way to meaner-than-snakes guitar riffs bound to send shivers up and down your spine. As for lead vocalist Jon Ruder, he is something of a cross between Ian Anderson and Klaus Meine (SCORPIONS). Of course, this music isn't all that innovative or adventurous, but it is delivered with such gusto it's hard not to love it.

Great stuff for fanatics of the bands mentioned above (SABBATH, HEEP, TULL).

: : : Lise (HIBOU), CANADA : : :

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Buy LUCIFER WAS Music


Blues From HellahBlues From Hellah
Import
Sound Pollution 2005
Audio CD$13.36
$19.99 (used)
In Anadi's BowerIn Anadi's Bower
2000
Audio CD$29.99
$16.52 (used)
Underground and BeyondUnderground and Beyond
Extra tracks · Import
Transubstans 2005
Audio CD$59.74
$39.99 (used)
In Anadi's Bower, Now She Is RestingIn Anadi's Bower, Now She Is Resting
Record Heaven
Audio CD$23.93
$33.37 (used)
Divine TreeDivine Tree
Transubstans 2007
Audio CD$57.29 (used)
DiesgrowsDiesgrows
Transubstans Sweden 2014
Audio CD$20.98
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LUCIFER WAS discography


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LUCIFER WAS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.27 | 31 ratings
Underground and Beyond
1997
3.30 | 26 ratings
In Anadi's Bower
2000
3.49 | 23 ratings
Blues from Hellah
2004
3.34 | 20 ratings
The Divine Tree
2007
3.62 | 71 ratings
The Crown Of Creation
2010
0.00 | 0 ratings
DiesGrows
2014

LUCIFER WAS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

LUCIFER WAS Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

LUCIFER WAS Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

LUCIFER WAS Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

LUCIFER WAS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Underground and Beyond  by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.27 | 31 ratings

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Underground and Beyond
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars Some dead holes in the history of this Norwegian group, as the sleeves of their debut refer to Thore Engen (guitar), Einar Bruu (bass), Dag Stenseng (vocals, flute), Anders Sevaldson (flute) and Kai Frilseth (drums) as the original crew.Sure thing is the band came from Klemetsrud near Oslo and was formed in 1969/1970 as Ezra West.However among the first members seem to be guitarist Tor Langbråten, bassist Arild Larsen and later keyboardist Jan Odegaard.Anyway, the band unfolded around 1974 after many concerts but no recordings and was reformed 20 years later with the first refered line-up.Their debut ''Underground and beyond'' was recorded in just 18 hours, just for fun, but it was good enough to earn them a contract with Swedish Record Heaven.27 years after their original formation, Lucifer Was eventually made their discography debut.

The album contains 11 tracks, that come from the 1970-72 period, now reworked by the group in the studio, however both the length and the production of the album recall the early-70's.Their sound was a powerful and very energetic blend of Hard Rock and JETHRO TULL-esque flute-led Heavy Prog with excellent English vocals and frenetic rhythmic parts, not to mention the hard driving guitar solos.The production of the album is clear, but the technology used maintains a true vintage feeling throughout.At moments the scratching guitars have a strong Proto-Metal vibe, but noone knows if this was the actual style the group performed back in the 70's.All tracks are memorable with a dominant sound, some superb choruses, fantastic flute work and series of tremendous guitar moves.A decent number of breaks and shifting tempos keeps up the progressive value of the album.The same album was re-released on Transubstans with two bonus tracks, performed by a slightly different line-up, but the sound remains more or less the same: Dynamic Hard Prog with angular guitar riffs and folky flute grooves all the way.

I am really pleased for this comeback.Lucifer Was' style seems sometime lost in the 70's, offering some really passionate Heavy/Hard Prog of high quality, respecting all the values of the old school.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

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 The Crown Of Creation by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.62 | 71 ratings

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The Crown Of Creation
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by BrufordFreak

3 stars I swear I reviewed this! the URIAH HEEP/BLACK SABBATH version of "Jesus Christ Superstar of the Opera." A very dramatic/operatic production with many patterns, riffs and sounds familiar from the ANDREW LLOYD-WEBER repertoire. This is one of those that is begging to have an opening night on Broadway--it would be a hit, I'm certain of it! Very entertaining! Piccolos, Yvonne Ellman, the Phantom, and a lot of arias supported by acoustic/classical instrumentation/structures. WHile not for all, this is very nicely put together and highly listenable, even enjoyable. A concept album in the truest sense for its operetta/Broadway structure. And not a bad lead male vocal!

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 Underground and Beyond  by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.27 | 31 ratings

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Underground and Beyond
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars This Norwegian band was founded in 1970 and Underground and Beyond is their debut album after 27 years of musicianship!Compositions included are solely songs from their 1970-72 repertoire.

Album sounds as great evidence of early 70-s era, end for those who isn't familiar with band's story this music is almost original sound from that time. Even sound mixing and producing is in the fashion of that time.

Stylistically music on this album is blues-rock based hard rock with strong prog-folk influences (flutes are pure Jethro Tull). Arrangements are quite progressive though, and in whole compositions sound (as many reviewers noticed yet) as crossover between Jethro Tull and dark and quite heavy hard rock. Songs are melodic and quite catchy, musicianship is competent,vocals are good enough. Really interesting album for fans of vintage prog rock, for all others possibly far not so interesting though: when in nostalgic moments it always better to listen to original great releases from early 70-s.

Positive moment is band are not a copy cat actually - they play their own music they wrote in early 70-s and got the possibility to release this debut only now!

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 The Crown Of Creation by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.62 | 71 ratings

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The Crown Of Creation
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by TheGazzardian
Prog Reviewer

4 stars I should preface this review with a warning that I am really biased towards this kind of music - that is, the operatic/symphonic/dramatic concept album - and I have been since before I got into progressive music. As such, when I read Windhawk's and Marty's review of this album, where they described it as such, I knew it was inevitable that I would hear this album, hopefully sooner rather than later.

The music included herein is really good and very strong. Although in the opening track, Wonder, you get the impression that this album is going to be carried mostly by the rock instruments, by the time that romantic Unformed and Void begins playing, there is no doubt in your mind that Lucifer Was have made great use of the Kristiansand Symphonic Orchestra.

Stylistically, Lucifer Was makes much more use of the orchestra than they do their own rock instruments on this album, and when the rock instruments do make an appearance, very rarely do they dominate the soundscape - I must say that this album, both due to the way it is mixed and the way it is composed, has perhaps the best integration of rock music into an orchestra I've heard (for sure it is not the other way around!). If anything, the string section is the dominant element of this music, which works great as far as I am concerned.

Be prepared to give this gem a few listens before it truly sinks in. I was a little disappointed on my first few listens but repeated listens have revealed depth and texture I missed at first. The music carefully and slowly builds up emotion with the orchestra (except in some of the more rocking sections, like Rising Sun and Into the Blue). The vocals are excellent and very dramatic as well, featuring both male and female singers, which is perfect for this type of music.

Overall, an excellent concept album, featuring great orchestration and drama.

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 The Divine Tree by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.34 | 20 ratings

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The Divine Tree
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars It's not very easy to play vintage hard rock with prog flavour in year 2007! Especially if your music is heavy keyboards-based and reminds early Uriah Heep and Deep Purple. OK, you can add plenty of flute's sound there, than beside of two bands, mentioned above, your music will remind Jethro Tull ("Catfish Rising" anyone?).

And you must believe that your music is not just a copy of old great bands legacy, you even must love it! If you can do it, than you're a member of Norwegian band Lucifer Was.

To be honest, situation is not so simple. Guys play both together from early 70-s (even if their first album was released in 1994), so they are far not a new generation of hard rock clones. They grew up with this music, possibly it's a reason why it sounds so natural. Even when they play that early 70-s music in 2007 without making changes at all!

Guitars sound great, vocals is really competent, songs are melodic. In fact , weakest point of this recording date of release: it should be released in year 1972. But - we have what we have. If you are early Uriah Heep or Deep Purple maniac, have all possible their albums, and are interested in similar music ( scented with Jethro Tull-like flute), you wouldn't be disappointed with this album.

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 The Crown Of Creation by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.62 | 71 ratings

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The Crown Of Creation
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by Marty McFly
Special Collaborator Errors and Omissions Team

3 stars What a crazy turn of events I discovered from their biography. It's like Ayreon's work has been put into Symphonic heaven (dual vocals - man/woman type of songs). Not that I hate Rock Operas, but maybe this is way too bit shifted to "opera" side, rather than being more "rock". Nevermind it, this album has a lot to offer for those who like this kind of music (I find it weird that "The Crown of Creation" is too symphonic for me, I never thought that something is able to be). Except strings, main leading instrument is whistle (or some kind of similar instrument), reminding good old Jethro (clean version of Tull's whistler).

4(-), little improved.

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 The Crown Of Creation by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.62 | 71 ratings

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The Crown Of Creation
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by Windhawk
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars If you enjoy listening to rock operas, and appreciate albums blending the rich textures of the classical symphonic orchestra with the rougher edges of a rock band, then take heed. Because this fifth effort from Norwegian outfit Lucifer Was has your name written all over it.

Abandoning the more distinct blend of Black Sabbath and Deep Purple explored on their previous album, this time around Lucifer Was brings a symphonic orchestra with them in the studio. And not to add symphonic textures to their rock tunes. Indeed, this whole album comes across as written for the orchestra, with careful interplay from the rock band as additional textures to enhance the compositions.

Multilayered string textures is the dominant feature from start to finish, but on a select few occasions the guitars are given dominant spots as well. Those are few and far between though, and the band opts for a careful interplay most of the time. Drums and bass are the main constants from the rock part of this mix, at least as far as instrumentation goes, adding a dimension to the classical territories explored. At times stunning flute and violin soloing further enhance these efforts.

From the slow and mournful ballads featuring male and female lead vocals to raunchier instrumental efforts with more of an emphasis on drive and atmosphere, "The Crown of Creation" certainly lives up to the expectations one might get from a disc with this title. Lucifer Was have made a challenge for themselves in following up on this enchanting venture, and in a fair world this is a CD that deserves sales by the truckloads.

A highly accomplished and sophisticated creation, and one that should appeal to a wide audience. A very strong contender for album of the year as well, at least in my personal opinion.

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 Underground and Beyond  by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.27 | 31 ratings

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Underground and Beyond
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by Kiwi1

2 stars Although, in principle, I fully welcome the 're-discovery' of bands playing in that classic 70s Hard Rock style - which is surely one of the greatest but least appreciated contributions to popoular music of that decade - I can't help thinking that there were surely many other bands better deserving this treatment. The guitar contributions are reasonably good although nothing spectacular and some of the riffs are catchy. But too often these riffs sound simply like repeats of Bad Company's 'Feel Like Making Love' . This, in itself, is no bad thing but there is perhaps an over-reliance on the duh-duh dah riff on this album with no great elaboration or development. The other contributions are, alas, fairly perfunctory. And two flutes! You can hardly tell from the contribution they make. The Grieg adaptation is dull and the 'Spanish' musical references only half-hearted. Now, I have only heard snatches of this band's more recent albums but it seems that the music has become fuller and better thought out. I shall, therefore, probably hope to listen to some of these albums soon. But I'm left wondering why this band rather than the thousands of other unsung, unsigned and unrecorded hard rock, heavy progressive bands of the 70s were not chosen before them.

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 The Divine Tree by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.34 | 20 ratings

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The Divine Tree
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by Windhawk
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars This long-running Norwegian band have come up with an interesting musical mix on their 2007 release.

Musically they explore a highly melodic mix of Deep Purple and Black Sabbath; with organ, melodic guitar riffs and guitar overlays very much in the Deep Purple vein; and some instances of riff patterns and sounds more similar to Black Sabbath. But when that is said; in style the music seldom or never ventures into heavy metal territories. The band has a more distinct light and melodic feel overall; only rarely adding metal grit to the soundscape. Some folk influences can be heard throughout the album too; but on this release at least it is not a dominating feature.

Recommended for fans of retro hard rock; fans of Deep Purple's lighter tunes in particular.

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 Underground and Beyond  by LUCIFER WAS album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.27 | 31 ratings

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Underground and Beyond
Lucifer Was Eclectic Prog

Review by Hejkal

4 stars The first album of Lucifer Was is great. This is probably the best mixture of Black Sabbarth- meets-Jethro Tull album of all time. Although the band didn't release a regular album in 70's, this re-recording shows, that it's a pity.

Opening track brings us wonderful heavy sound of Sabbath combined with great flutes. The singer isn't extraordinary, but his voice perfectly fits to this heavy prog-related band. My favourite songs are The meaning of life and Light my cigarette (together with the opening track), but all of them are very good.

The sound of this recording is close to 70's, but it obtains some modern fashion, so I think, nowadays listeners could be affected by this album too.

This recording is a must-have for all who likes heavier bands and Jethro Tull. It's a pity that there is no more recordings like this recently.

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