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IRRGARTEN

Crossover Prog • Canada


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Irrgarten biography
Canadian band in the vein of early IQ, mixing the heavy GENESIS-like slant of that band with a somewhat CAMEL-esque softness that some fans will find very appealing. Imagine merging IQ's "The Wake" with MARILLION's "Misplaced Childhood" and CAMEL's "Moonmadness" and you get the idea. This band delivers a interesting blend of prog with guitar driven hard rock. Some additional instruments like flute, sax, cello among others give the music a special feel.

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IRRGARTEN discography


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

3.23 | 14 ratings
Home and Sanctuary
1997

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IRRGARTEN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Home and Sanctuary by IRRGARTEN album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.23 | 14 ratings

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Home and Sanctuary
Irrgarten Crossover Prog

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

3 stars 3.5 for sure

Irregarten is another trio from famous Quebec region, and also they play a combination of neo prog from early period, not far from Marillion (minus the voice) and some symphonic passages taken influences from Genesis or some parts remind me of Rush here and there. The album was released in 1996 by obscure canadian label Editions Dedales (nice logo) and didn't get the prais that every band needs when it comes of first release, unfortunately their swansong. The music is ok, with nice guitar parts and in places some very good sax or cello arrangements. The keybords doesn't have an important role, but brings a special atmosphere of the pieces when needed. The album has 6 pieces, each one ofer 6 min, two of them above 12, so enough room for the musicians to show us what they are capable of. The release stars very strong with Look at this world, to me the best pieces from here, good musicianship and very smooth guitar lines, great track. Another worthy pieces from here is Into the maze, again top notch instrumental passages, the voice of Michel Dek in some parts is not what I've expected, is little not on par with the rest of the musicians, and brings the album down, IMO. The main attraction of the album is the almost perfect combination of traditional progressive rock with some crossover elements, that made this band quite intristing but not over the top. Very unnoticed, looking by the ratings from here, Irregarten never made it in prog circles, not because they had a masterpiece and no one observe that album, but because they play an intristing prog music with good musicianship all over, who still, today after almost 15 years of first release is still forgotten and with each year they fone deeply into oblivion. 3.5 , a good album, but not quite an excellent release, worth some spins from time to time.

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 Home and Sanctuary by IRRGARTEN album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.23 | 14 ratings

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Home and Sanctuary
Irrgarten Crossover Prog

Review by toroddfuglesteg

2 stars I was full of hope...

But they were soon dashed. Irrgarten does a somber blend of Genesis, IQ, Marillion and indie-rock. Add some hard rock too and you get Irrgarten. The main problem is the annoying bad vocals. They are a mix of overcooked crying and screams. The vocalist has a very limited range and that is an understatement. The guitarist also has his limitations. The bass and the drums are pretty standard fare. Nothing to be excited about. The sound is pretty bad too and on the demo-tape level.

The only good thing is the sometimes Soft Machine esque saxophones. There are a couple of good tunes too. The opening track for example and Shattered Melody with the above mentioned saxophones. But the rest is pretty substandard neo-prog. It is always a shame when a band only release one album and then disappear from the face of the earth. But in this case, I can to a certain degree understand why. This is not a recommended album.

2 stars

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 Home and Sanctuary by IRRGARTEN album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.23 | 14 ratings

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Home and Sanctuary
Irrgarten Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Tough to find out anything about this band except for Greg Walker saying they sound like Marillion and IQ. All I know is that this is one special album. Very meaningful lyrics with English vocals. Seems to be a concept album or maybe it just has this theme running through it. Anyway it appears to deal with people (or a person) who are (is) lonely and lost in this world. Some emotional lyrics here. This band is a three-piece consisting of guitar, drums and vocals / flute.They do have guests adding keyboards, cello, bass and sax. There is a three piece choir too.

"Look At This World" opens with lots of people talking then the music kicks in quickly.The guitar is prominant. It settles as vocals join in.Great sound when the vocals and sound get more passionate. Contrasts continue. Check out the guitar after 4 minutes. Just a fantstic song. "Quiet Room" opens with organ and features some excellent guitar as the drums pound. This guy can play a melodic guitar. It settles then vocals come in at 2 1/2 minutes in a reserved manner. Spoken words 4 1/2 minutes in as the music gets tense.The drums and guitar sound so good. Great sound before 6 minutes then it settles again with some beautiful guitar. "Into The Maze" is my favourite. Check out the bass and cello in this song. There's just so much passion. Killer guitar 7 minutes in.This song is so uplifting and emotional.

"Summer Afternoon" has samples of children playing throughout, and it gets more intense towards the end. The lyrics here are about children and they say: "You can see in their eyes they don't need no disguise, look at them play, so innocently finding life's meaning in their games. I wish I could be one of them". The rest of the lyrics here are just as good. "Shattered Melody" has lots of mood shifts and is a darker song than the previous ones.There is some amazing guitar and drum interplay followed by an awesome guitar solo. Synths and drums lead the way late.The final tune "Closed Garden" has a piano intro followed by vocals. We get a fuller sound before 2 minutes. A calm before 4 1/2 minutes with sad vocals and piano. Even the guitar that comes in is melancholic. It turns powerful 7 minutes in as the sax joins in and the tempo picks up.This is so emotional as the sax leads the way.

Highly recommended to MARILLION fans and fans of meaningful and emotional music. I wish this band was more known, they deserve to be.

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