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Baba Yaga - Baba Yaga CD (album) cover


Baba Yaga



3.47 | 15 ratings

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3 stars Named after the a fantasy, supernatural, rural female character, Baba Yaga should be considered as a solo project of German keyboardist Ingo Werner, after he left My Solid Ground.Actually his first production features widely unknown musicians such as Bernd Weidmann on vocals/bass, Jürgen Dyrani and Winfried Schreiber on guitars and Joska Fledermutz on drums, while Werner plays all possible kind of keyboards as well as the bassoon and the gongs.The first self-titled production of the group was captured as one of the endless recordings at Dierks Studio near Cologne and it was released in 1974 on the obscure Phonola label.

The first three tracks show a surprising laid-back British-styled Progressive Rock akin to CRESSIDA, FANTASY and GREENSLADE with romantic vocals, light pych influences and Werner's piano, organ and Mellotron in evidence in an attempt to offer a more melodic 70's Art Rock with an atmospheric lyrical content, very far from his previous work with My Solid Ground.With ''High spy'' a change of style occurs, this one being a mix of complex Prog Rock and Avant Folk with dense and complicated music full of electric piano and synths being followed by massive percussions and archaic flutes.''Rebekka'' is closer to smooth Psych/Prog with haunting Mellotron, soft electric themes and choirs leading the way in an atmospheric enviroment.With ''Turdus Merula'' another asset of Werner's musical background comes in evidence, a kind of cimenatic Electronic/Prog with gongs, Mellotron and electric piano, followed by the almost Canterbury-like ''Powerful Hand'' with its complex structure, the British-styled vocals and the sudden breaks.As the album unfolds, its jazzy nature becomes more and more obvious, highlighted by the instrumental ''Hommage a...'', combining the improvised electric piano with the psychedelic rhythm section and a few Mellotron flashes in a typical Kraut/Jazz Rock track.''Intoxication'' kicks off as a furious Heavy/Psych Rock-er with scratching electric guitars, before Werner dominant piano lines produce somekind of Avant-Garde atmosphere.The closing ''La Tombeau'' shows a return to the flipside's opening mood, an instrumental piece entirely built around piano, synthesizers, Mellotron and gongs, creating a cosmic and spacey soundimage.

Ingo Werner's ''Baba Yaga'' may be a confusing and not 100% conveincing album with too many things going on in a very short time, but noone can accuse this man of not being a talented and flexible composer with some great ideas.This is diverse Progressive Rock with sights and sounds from almost the whole range of the movement, highlighted by its nice keyboard work.Chances are, every prog fan will find something to like in here.Rare, but recommended album.

apps79 | 3/5 |


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