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NEKTAR

Psychedelic/Space Rock • United Kingdom


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Nektar biography
Founded in Hamburg, Germany in 1969 - Disbanded in 1982 - Regrouped from 2000-2016 - Reformed in 2018

NEKTAR is probably the most German-like of the Seventies British bands, a fame that owes a lot to the town in which this band was founded (Hamburg) and to their stylistic approach (Assimilated to Krautrock). NEKTAR was formed in 1969 by Allan FREEMAN (keyboards & vocals), Roye ALBRIGHTON (guitars & vocals), Derek MOORE (bass, Mellotron & vocals) and Ron HOWDEN (drums).

Their earliest albums were hard rock that drew heavily from the space-rock and PINK FLOYD styles of the same period. The 70's gave them the occasion to issue some masterpieces, like for example "Remember the Future" (1973) and "Recycled" (1975). Each is a conceptual album that is a nice blend of melodic guitar and keyboards with a vocal story. "Journey To The Centre Of The Eye" is a mindblowing epic with lots of echoplex guitar and dual Mellotrons which is quite in tune with the Krautrock stuff going on around them, yet is definitely British. "Tab in the Ocean" and "Magic is a Child" had shorter songs and were less less satisfying. Fortunately there is a compilation album just called NEKTAR (1976) which has all the best bits of the albums and is highly recommended.

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NEKTAR discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

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

3.77 | 377 ratings
Journey to the Centre of the Eye
1971
4.09 | 644 ratings
A Tab in the Ocean
1972
3.36 | 210 ratings
...Sounds Like This
1973
3.95 | 532 ratings
Remember The Future
1973
3.50 | 218 ratings
Down To Earth
1974
3.82 | 357 ratings
Recycled
1975
2.96 | 137 ratings
Magic Is a Child
1977
3.26 | 101 ratings
Man In The Moon
1980
2.95 | 79 ratings
The Prodigal Son
2001
3.43 | 107 ratings
Evolution
2004
3.27 | 84 ratings
Book Of Days
2008
2.77 | 87 ratings
A Spoonful Of Time
2012
2.97 | 82 ratings
Time Machine
2013
3.19 | 26 ratings
New Nektar: Megalomania
2018
3.76 | 107 ratings
The Other Side
2020

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

2.75 | 36 ratings
Sunday Night at London Roundhouse
1974
3.41 | 33 ratings
Nektar - Live in New York
1977
2.56 | 21 ratings
More Live Nektar in New York
1978
3.13 | 20 ratings
Unidentified Flying Abstract - Live At Chipping Norton 1974
2002
2.60 | 5 ratings
Nearfest 2002 (Studio M Recording)
2002
2.85 | 15 ratings
Greatest Hits Live
2002
3.77 | 25 ratings
Sunday Night At The London Roundhouse (1974)
2002
2.31 | 14 ratings
Door To The Future
2005
3.80 | 5 ratings
2004 Tour Live
2005
3.03 | 21 ratings
Fortyfied
2009
3.89 | 9 ratings
Sunday Night At London Roundhouse
2011
3.44 | 9 ratings
Live At The Patriots Theater
2014
3.80 | 5 ratings
Live in Bremen
2017
4.25 | 4 ratings
Live Anthology 1974-1976
2019
4.50 | 2 ratings
Space Rock Invasion Live
2019
3.00 | 1 ratings
Live from the Wildey Theatre
2020

NEKTAR Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.00 | 20 ratings
Live
2002
4.01 | 22 ratings
Pure: Live In Germany 2005 (DVD)
2005

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

3.38 | 17 ratings
Nektar
1976
4.00 | 3 ratings
Best of Nektar
1978
4.70 | 11 ratings
Thru The Ears
1978
3.57 | 7 ratings
Highlights - The Best Of Nektar
1994
2.44 | 8 ratings
The Dream Nebula: The Best Of 1971-1975
1998
4.63 | 8 ratings
Retrospektive
2011

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

4.00 | 5 ratings
Do You Believe In Magic
1972
3.75 | 4 ratings
Astral Man / Early Morning Clown
1974
3.00 | 5 ratings
Astral Man
1974
3.33 | 3 ratings
Fidgety Queen / Little Boy
1974
3.08 | 4 ratings
Flight to Reality / It's All Over
1975
4.00 | 2 ratings
Too Young To Die
1980
4.00 | 4 ratings
Always
2005

NEKTAR Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Remember The Future by NEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.95 | 532 ratings

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Remember The Future
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Cboi Sandlin

5 stars This is honestly one of the best prog rock albums I have heard in a long time. The whole thing is pure gold, 35 minutes of prog rock perfection. The album is basically one song, cut up into 2 parts, each nearly twenty minutes in length. The first half, remember the future part one, starts out with some of the coolest funky guitars I have ever heard, and carries on just as good, fleeing from one section to another, effortlessly changing keys an themes like a fluid. Somehow, even with the songs large length, it still kept me captivated the whole way through. The second half, remember the future part two, is slightly weaker than the previous but still truly amazing, creating beautiful melodies, full harmonies, and powerful grooves the whole way through. All in all this album is amazing, comparable to Close To The Edge or any of the other prog rock classics. I would recommend this to literally any prog rock fan, this is a must hear album.
 ...Sounds Like This by NEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.36 | 210 ratings

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...Sounds Like This
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by prog_traveller!!

3 stars "... Sounds like this" is, in contrast to the conceptual works "A tab in the ocean" (1972) and of course the successor "Remember the future" (1973), less excessive and playful. Rather, all songs were played and recorded live and without overdubs in the studio, so they breathe pure rock'n'roll power. The band rocks earthy, slightly psychedelic and, above all, in a good mood thanks to their material. The main focus is on Roye Albrighton's guitar and his extensive solo excursions, while the occasional but unfortunately very rare organ attacks by Allan Freeman provide further instrumental loosening up.

The music is more reminiscent of various British mainstream (hard) rockers of the early 70s, such as Humble Pie, Wishbone Ash and Uriah Heep or the West Coast band Grateful Dead, than of classic prog. In particular, Allan Freeman's keyboard playing is quite underrepresented on this disc and is mostly limited to accompanying organs and strumming.

Rocky and with a good portion of blues rock the numbers pop out of the groove. The jam-prog blues rocker "A Day In The Life Of A Preacher" is rougher, however, and there is often a heaviness à la bands like Vanilla Fudge or Iron Butterfly in the pieces. Roye throws his wild and in places aloof guitar parts into the room and on the other hand knows how to inspire with impulsive wah wah attacks. Forced blues rock ("What Ya Gonna Do?") turns amicably next to melodic songs like "Do You Believe In Magic". Yes, this album is rockier than what we have known from Nektar so far. More guitar accentuated, rougher and harder. But the music is beautiful.

Viewed through progressive glasses, "... Sounds like this" is far more rooted in 70s hard and blues rock than the symphonic bombast or classic 70s prog sound. Due to the very jammy and instrumentally completely detached basic character, this album undeniably has its own fascinating charm.

 Journey to the Centre of the Eye by NEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.77 | 377 ratings

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Journey to the Centre of the Eye
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by prog_traveller!!

4 stars In 1971, Psychedelic and space rock are still booming, at the same time the symphonic prog begins to develop more and more. "Concept albums" reinforce the idea that the long-playing record and not the single is the appropriate medium for rock music. Elaborate cover designs and bombastic-naive stage shows try to add a visual artistic component to rock.

The debut LP of Nektar, recorded in 1971 and released the following year, lies exactly at the intersection of all these elements, the "German" rock band that consisted exclusively of British musicians, but operated from Germany. "Journey to the Center Of the Eye" captures many rock music developments of the time like in a mirror, and the influencing factors can be identified without great difficulty.

It starts with the narrative on which the whole thing is based - a typical science fiction story that is about an astronaut's wandering flight into the vastness of space. There are very experimental parts that drift into the psychedelic corner, as well as rocky insertions and very melodic sections. The title says it all here, because listening to the record makes you feel a bit like traveling, even if more towards the "center of the ear". The music on "Journey To The Center Of The Eye" is extremely exciting and varied. Something new "happens" all the time, you hear something surprising, unforeseen or "unprecedented".

There are wonderful melodic and harmonic melodies to be discovered on the album, as well as very driving sections, then again you feel weightlessly transported into the vastness of space and float towards an unknown galaxy. And finally there are also these short passages in which everything presents itself like a single cacophony, only to flow over again in beauty.

 A Tab in the Ocean by NEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.09 | 644 ratings

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A Tab in the Ocean
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by prog_traveller!!

5 stars Active since the early 70s, this band proposed from the first album, "Journey to the center eye", a type of melodic and refined prog rock where some clichés typical of jazz rock also found space. The combo continued in the stylistic- instrumental research with the following "A tab in the ocean", a record here under review, where we can find an evident maturation of the group's sound and a brilliant work in songwriting.

The title track opens the album, a sumptuous song lasting just over sixteen minutes. The length of the piece is due precisely to the majestic instrumental intro to the piece, which gives the listener a valuable organ performance supported by a rhythm section that precisely underlines the various atmospheric passages of the piece. The encounter between melody and technical instrumental refinement is well tested here and the guitar work that accompanies the keyboard adds a note of color essential for the success of the piece. The vocals are also interesting, which entertain the listener with an almost "off-screen narrator" setting of a filmic imaginary. Ultimately a piece of excellent workmanship that will delight the listener for the complexity of its articulation, but also for the ability to fascinate for the fine harmony that implies it.

- The epic starts, and within a few minutes the initial symphony is abruptly broken by an almost tribal rhythm, to arrive at the verse on which the electronically modulated voice of Roye Albrighton stands out, but during the sixteen minutes of the track the change of atmospheres is often sudden, without for this to be out of place. A great taste for melody and rock / bluesy inserts accompanies the listener on this journey, so to speak, oceanic, from which to let oneself be carried away without hesitation.

A dramatic introduction where bass and drums play an important role in supporting a hammond in plain sight, starts the following "Desolation Valley". With an intro that closely resembles Deep Purple's Child In Time, topped with a fine clean solo then flanked by an interesting bass line, the bridge between late seventies hard and prog is beautifully interpreted. .Two reverberated riffs intersect at the beginning of Crying in the Dark, up tempo marked by the dynamism of the rhythm section and a remarkable interlude of "twin guitars" towards the finale.

"A Tab In The Ocean" is a wonderful piece of music history, full of sweeping solo passages for Hammond organ and electric guitar and brilliant sound. Anyone who appreciates well-made, early seventies prog and hard rock with psychedelic, jazz and light blues influences should definitely get this album.

 A Spoonful Of Time by NEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 2012
2.77 | 87 ratings

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A Spoonful Of Time
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Ericake

2 stars I saw the album cover and I thought "Sick art! This is going to be a cool album, I know it". I started listening and realized it was a cover album. "Oh cool. I wonder what kind of twists they'll add to these classics". Not much unfortunately. Some of the covers are creative, but most are very faithful to the originals and don't add anything new. It may have been better if they didn't choose to cover such popular songs that have already been covered countless times. It was fun to listen to the first time, but I have no interest in listening to it again.
 Down To Earth by NEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.50 | 218 ratings

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Down To Earth
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Cboi Sandlin

4 stars Nektar's fifth album, "Down To Earth", is in my opinion, a true example of prog rock perfection. Moore's bass has that nice crunchy Chris Squire sound, and Ron Howden honestly played really well on this album, dishing out complex rhythms like nobody's business. Freeman's keyboards are spot on, sounding just as good as any of the greats. I will say that I find the vocals and the lyrics at times quite lacking though (which is my reason for putting 4 stars instead of 5). At times the singing can be quite repetitive, and I found that the lyrics lack the more deep meaning that a lot of progressive music has. Still, in spite of that, this is an excellent album, one I would recommend to anyone who enjoys progressive rock.
 Remember The Future by NEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.95 | 532 ratings

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Remember The Future
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by prog_traveller!!

5 stars REMEMBER THE FUTURE by Nektar represents one of the most original albums and one of the most revolutionary achievements in progressive rock. It can also be said that this is one of the most underatted accomplishments and that it deserves much more attention in the world of progressive rock and rock in general.

The important thing for this album and for the band itself is that on this release they paid more attention to the heavy sound than on the previous releases, but that does not diminish the importance and it only shows what form this band had.

A classic conceptual album consisting of two songs that are in fact one whole, the whole composition has a beautiful flow and gives the listener the sounds of spacey, laid back, softer sections, to moments when the band charges into pounding hard and heavy rock mode, making for a dramatic and "edge of your seat" listening experience. Heavy guitar and organ driven riffs, memorable melodies accompanied by some space-oriented sounds make this album one of the most important performances not only of this band but also of the genre it represents.

 Sunday Night At London Roundhouse by NEKTAR album cover Live, 2011
3.89 | 9 ratings

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Sunday Night At London Roundhouse
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Heart of the Matter

4 stars Classic seventies prog with the main ingredients to be recognized as such: Tremendously propulsive bass line going far beyond the call of duty, to the point of assuming the leading instrumental role on certain moments. Assertive vocals founded on strong raw power of the lead, and solid harmonies. Muscular drumming keeping tempo without recurse to any metrognomic aid. Those charming vintage synths from the era pouring tasty solos everywhere (you know, it's never too much). And the marvellous electric guitar of the great Roye Albrighton, with an ear for dissonance, and the other for melody, rarifying for moments, but always conducting the proceedings.
 Live from the Wildey Theatre by NEKTAR album cover Live, 2020
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Live from the Wildey Theatre
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

— First review of this album —
3 stars This album was recorded on Nektar's 'Up Close and Intimate' Tour of North America and focuses on new and classic Nektar tracks spanning their 50-year career. Recorded at their sell-out show on March 7th , 2020, it was also filmed, and both versions are available to download from their website. Drummer Ron Howden (bass, vocals) and Mick Brockett (special effects) were all in the band for the most important part of their career (1969-1977) while Ryche Chlanda (guitars, vocals) was in the band in the late Seventies, Randy Dembo (bass, 12-string guitar) was in the band in the early 2000's and it is only keyboard player Kendall Scott who is the 'new boy'. There is another version of Nektar touring Germany, based around keyboard player Klaus Henatsch, but to my mind this is the genuine article. Of course, can it ever be Nektar without Roye Albrighton who died in 2016? Well this certainly sounds pretty good to me.

Ah, sounds, there is the only problem with this album, which is nearly 140 minutes long and covers the band's complete career although with a heavier focus on the early years and the latest album. This just does not sound like a professionally recorded modern release, but much more like a high-quality audience bootleg. There are times in the quieter sections when some members of the audience can be heard talking over the music, and the overall sound is much more muddied which tends to happen when there has been no separation of the microphones/inputs. This is a real shame as the actual performance is that of a band really tight having already played more than 20 shows in tight succession prior to this one. Yes, there are times when the vocals do not quite hit right, but I would much rather hear that then a 'cleaned up' version which has been modified to sort all mistakes.

This is very much an album which fans of the band will want to have in their collection, but certainly is not the best introduction to those who have not come across them prior to that. The new album 'The Other Side' is well worth investigating, while 'A Tab In The Ocean' will always be their classic to me, but while this is not something for a newcomer, for people like me this is still a very solid release indeed although it does feel like an opportunity missed.

 Evolution by NEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.43 | 107 ratings

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Evolution
Nektar Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Squire Jaco

4 stars Sounds like a bunch of us found this English "Kraut" band back in our college days of yore. What a spectacular treat to be swept away again by new music from this fine band decades later!

On "Evolution", Nektar has truly rediscovered the magic of their unique progressive rock music. Some really tasty guitar licks/riffs on many songs - kind of belies the age of Mr. Albrighton (and his woes with liver disease at the time). His voice sounds great too.

The album starts with "Camouflage to White", which is a good song, but probably my least favorite on the album. The rest of the album varies between acoustic and standard rock (hard, but not heavy) and progressive, with typically thoughtful lyrics and inspiring, original melodies. No weak songs, and really very exciting to listen to.

Highly recommended for prog rock fans, and certainly for fans of Nektar - they were a special "discovery" for us 40 or so years ago, and they can still unearth new gems for us to delight in today!

Great prog compositions, exceptionally well-played, with crystal clear production. Sweet as....what's the word I'm looking for?...

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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