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PÄR LINDH PROJECT

Symphonic Prog • Sweden


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Pär Lindh Project picture
Pär Lindh Project biography
After the Symphonic debacle of the late 70's and a bit more than a decade of a different approach to Progressive Rock called Neo Prog, Symphonic movement started to resurrect but this time not in UK or in the most faithful country to the classical sound as Italy, it was in Scandinavia and more specifically in the cold Sweden.

Bands like ANGLAGARD and THE FLOWER KINGS re-created the original spirit of the early 70's with great perfection and extreme care but people rarely mention PÄR LINDH PROJECT, not only one of the main re-creators of the early style but a band that went back in history for the search of their roots, most precisely to the late Gothic Religious music of the XII and XIV Centuries with his dark haunting organ solos without forgetting the sober influence of the Baroque period.

But that's not enough, the natural leader of the band is also one of the main responsible of this new Symphonic Renaissance, being that in 1991, before the re-birth of Symphonic Prog sub-genre, a group of friends formed The Art Rock Society with the virtuoso multi instrumentalist Pär Lindh as chairman who presented the first Festival with ANEKDOTEN, LANDBERK and ANGLAGARD.

The personal musical career of Par Lindh goes way back to 1977 when he formed the Heavy/Hard Rock band ANTENNA BAROQUE and later in 1979 the Symphonic Trio VINCEBUS EREPTUM, but it was obvious that the peak of the genre was behind so he spent the next years as church organist, classical pianist, harpsichordist, drummer, Hammond organist, and even jazz musician with extreme success but leaving oin Par a great nostalgia for his beloved Prog.

In 1989 he returns to Sweden decided to resurrect the Symphonic early spirit and joins a band called MANTICORE, after a while he builds his own studio CRIMSONIAN LABEL and in 1994 with a Swedish dream team of ANGLAGARD, FLOWER KINGS, BJORN JOHANSON and other talented musicians, he releases the first PÄR LINDH PROJECT masterpiece called "Gothic Impressions" in 1994.

This album is really revolutionary not only for the impressive lineup but also because the music was deepest, darker and even more pompous than in the early years of Prog, not only a return to the roots but a total re-creation of the genre, the 20 minutes epic "The Cathedral" is one of the most amazing musical pieces I ever had the luck to listen and still find something new each time I give a new listen.

PÄR LINDH PROJECT has released 5 albums until 2002 with "L...
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PÄR LINDH PROJECT discography


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

PÄR LINDH PROJECT top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.08 | 121 ratings
Gothic Impressions
1994
4.15 | 105 ratings
Mundus Incompertus
1997
3.99 | 63 ratings
Veni Vidi Vici
2001
3.69 | 76 ratings
Time Mirror
2011

PÄR LINDH PROJECT Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.24 | 27 ratings
Live In America
1999
3.58 | 15 ratings
Live In Iceland
2002

PÄR LINDH PROJECT Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.91 | 17 ratings
In Concert, Live in Poland
2008

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

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

2.74 | 19 ratings
Rondo
1995

PÄR LINDH PROJECT Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Mundus Incompertus by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Studio Album, 1997
4.15 | 105 ratings

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Mundus Incompertus
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by sgtpepper

5 stars If you want to hear one of the best marriages between art rock and baroque classical music then you must reach to this album. As close to genuine classical musical as loud art-rock with metallic touches, this album is far from cliches and lifeless cover music. The soul, Pär Lindh, is a Swedish state-of-the-art keyboard virtuoso mastering virtual anything with keyboards on it but sticking mainly to art rock classic and classical instruments (so don't expect cheese synths). Tastefullness, grandiosity and elegance mark the music well. Drums, vocals and keyboards are of the highest quality. Hammond organ, harpsichord and church organ are a must-hear for any fan of classical music and rock music likewise. It's not about how to play it complex but also how to keep style and stateliness and not overwhelm the listener.

The first track may be the most famous one by Pär Lindh because it's the celebration of baroque classical music augmened by metallic rhythm section without sounding cheesy or cheap. Explosive drums, church organ runs, flute+harpsichord 100% classical music, violin. This piece is masterfully balanced between pure classical music and symphonic art rock. Excellently well developed. The guitar solo is quite heavy metal oriented but switches to acoustic guitar soon. The combination of guitar solo and church baroque melody is irresistable.

"The crimson shield" is a completely different chapter. The great female vocal, flute and harpsichord create a comfortable cosy atmosphere, maybe a bit similar to Blackmore's night but with harpsichord instead of acoustic guitar.

The title track is a suite full of keyboard driven passages more or less rock oriented. It is quite reminiscent of ELP stuff with more 70's keyboards like synths/moog, You can hear that organ is the most popular Lindh's instrument, be it Hammond or church organ. I think that this piece is not as well developed as the first track but has a plethora of beautiful symphonic moments and is a very pompeous track.

A must for traditional symphonic prog fans.

 Gothic Impressions by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Studio Album, 1994
4.08 | 121 ratings

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Gothic Impressions
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars The debut album from Pär Lindh and his co-conspirators, their brand of Neo Prog is quite refreshing in that their aim is definitely to recreate a kind of ecclesiastical epoch of music with their church organs and choir banks of voices. The participation of three of the Änglagård crew (Anna, Johan, and Mattias) make this more interesting.

1. "Dresden Lamentation" (2:06) a fitting tribute to the victims of the 1945 firebombing. (4.5/5)

2. "The Iconoclast" (7:04) I like the beginning and chamber/choral end of this but not so much the middle (don't really like the lead male singer's sound or style). (12.5/15)

3. "Green Meadow Lands" (7:24) flute and harpsichord open this. Quite lovely. Nice male vocal with tubular bells and rock ensemble. In fact, the Änglagård trio have quite a big presence on this one. A litttle nod to King Crimson in the fifth and sixth minutes despite the Mike Oldfield-like lead guitar. (14/15)

4. "The Cathedral" (19:33) one of my ten favorite long-playing epics of the 1990s. (38/40)

5. "Gunnlev's Round" (2:50) a delightful little pastoral piece done in a baroque style. (5/5)

6. "Night on Bare Mountain" (13:50) never a big fan of this piece by Mussorgsky, this version is performed stylishly but does nothing for me. (26/30)

A-/five stars; a minor masterpiece of progressive rock music. Quite an impressive debut!

 Gothic Impressions by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Studio Album, 1994
4.08 | 121 ratings

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Gothic Impressions
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This debut album finds Pär Lindh and his collaborators taking the ELP sound down a road less travelled. Whilst in their 1970s career ELP ended up finding their music becoming increasingly crowded with incongruous novelty elements and a general lack of thematic focus as a result of the infamous creative struggles within the band, you don't go into a group called "Pär Lindh Project" unless you're comfortable with the idea of Pär Lindh himself having the final say; perhaps that's why I find this album more cohesive than any ELP release with the possible exception of their debut.

In particular, imagine a version of ELP where, on reviewing the dark, brooding atmosphere of "The Barbarian" on their debut album, decided "Yeah, that's what we need to be going for", and where their subsequent original prog compositions and classical adaptations alike were adapted in the service of evoking that very specific atmosphere; they might have ended up somewhere in the vicinity of Gothic Impressions. Make sure to get the CD version; the lone LP release from 1997 cuts "Night On Bald Mountain" from the running order, which I consider to be a real shame.

 Gothic Impressions by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Studio Album, 1994
4.08 | 121 ratings

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Gothic Impressions
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by Progfan97402
Prog Reviewer

4 stars I was a bit late to discover there was a bit of a prog revival in the 1990s, not knowing about Änglagård, Landberk and Anekdoten until 1996. I did have my suspicions as early as 1993. Sure none of these groups had the giant mainstream commercial success of their 1970s counterparts, but they did help pick up where the scene left off by 1978 (the neo-prog scene kept prog alive in the '80s, but not everyone was happy about that and apparently neither were these Swedish bands). Many progheads appreciated that. Pär Lindh Project was another one of these acts, I can't call them a band as, like the Alan Parsons Project, it was Pär Lindh and a loose assortment of musicians and singers, most notably Magdalena Hagberg, who sadly passed away in 2007.

It's 2018 and the big shocker: I never owned anything by the PLP! I've known of him/them for ages. Anyways, my reviews of Gothic Impressions is regarding the original 1994 Crimsonic CD, rather than the 1997 LP on Record Heaven (which omits their cover of Mussorgsky's "A Night on Bare Mountain") or the 2004 Crimsonic CD reissue that was remixed and added on some additional vocals and choir. As I don't have that version, I can't make comparisons. So glad to have this! Here you have several Änglagård members (Mattias Olsson, Jonas Engdegård, Johan Högberg, Anna Holmgren), Roine Stolt engineering the album and playing guitar on "Green Meadow Lands", and some low-key vocals from Magdalena Hagberg (who mainly did some backing vocals on "The Iconoclast" and wordless vocals on "Gunnlev's Round"). Many people tend to dislike the Ralf Glasz's vocals, sounding rather restrained, like a conservatory trained singer more suited to singing medieval church hymns than someone like Greg Lake. His vocals don't bother me, but some are. There is no doubt that Lindh's idol is Emerson, so no surprise his Hammond organ playing is similar, but unlike Emerson, he has no trouble with the Mellotron. Also lots of pipe organ is used, making me think of the old Italian band Jacula if they were more of a standard symphonic prog band. "Green Meadow Lands" is a wonderful melodic piece reminding me of Islands-era King Crimson, Moody Blues, and Cressida. Nice Mellotron too. "Gunnlev's Round" has a more medieval flair, which is a precursor, in style, to the more folk influenced Bilbo, which Lindh recorded alongside Björn Johansson in 1996. "The Cathedral" clocks in at 19 minutes and shows that Lindh and Co. can certainly pull it off. Popular opinion is we could have lived without the cover of Mussorgsky's "A Night on Bare Mountain". Not bad, but it seems pretty straightforward, compared to what Fireballet or New Trolls Atomic System had done. Still, a nice gem of '90s prog that, after all these years, I finally get to own, and I can see why this album gets its share of praise. Well worth having.

 Mundus Incompertus by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Studio Album, 1997
4.15 | 105 ratings

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Mundus Incompertus
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars Three years after the debut, a whole new lineup offers some fresh, exciting, and highly polished "gothic prog."

1. "Baroque Impression No. 1" (9:13) more rockin' than Pär Lindh's previous music (except for the heavy parts of "The Iconoclast" and "Green Meadow Lands") it feels as if GRYPHON had chosen to become more rock-oriented. (19/20)

2. "The Crimson Shield (6:38) one of the most gorgeous pastoral prog pieces since Anthony Phillips' "The Geese and The Ghost." Harpsichord and soprano female vocalist Magdalena Hagberg make this sound like something much older than the 20th Century. (10/10)

3. "Mundus Incompertus" (26:43) in my Top 15 favorite long-playing epics of the 1990s. (45.5/50)

Total Time: 42:34

A/five stars; a masterpiece of progressive rock music.

 Mundus Incompertus by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Studio Album, 1997
4.15 | 105 ratings

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Mundus Incompertus
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Par Lindh's contribution to the renaissance of Progressive Rock has finally taken shape in mid-90's after he set the seeds a few years back.More dedicated to his own composing material he released the EP ''Rondo'' in 1995 and the idea of forming a more stable line-up started circulating in his head.Inbetween he found time to collaborate with Björn Johansson in the Tolkien-inspired album ''Bilbo'', released in 1996.About the same time he established a solid core for a new release under the Par Lindh Project moniker.Singer Magdalena Hagberg and guitarist Jocke Ramsell were upgraded to this formation, which also included bassist Marcus Jaederholm and drummer Nisse Bielfeld.The second work by the group was again recorded at the Crimsonic Studios and published in 1997 under the title ''Mundus Incompertus''.

The whole thing is about three long tracks of keyboard-driven Symphonic Rock, however the first kicker ''Baroque Impression No. 1'' with its succesful title showcases Lindh's strong Baroque influences with an updated heavy electric guitar sound at moments, but always twisting around the group's leader's fiery, cinematic and orchestral arrangements.Filled with nostalgic harsichord, grandiose church organ and powerful Hammond organ fanfares, it displays Lindh's impressive Classical background.''The Crimson Shield'' is a completely different story.Smooth, Medieval-styled music, led almost exclusively by Lindh's mellow work on piano and harsichord and featuring Hagberg's angelic vocals all the way.Hagberg and her dreamy vocal colors will also kick off the 21-min. title-track, which comes as a combination of the two previous styles, mixing Medieval soundscapes with powerful, keyboard-drenched Symphonic Rock and Baroque influences.Bands like E.L.P., LE ORME and TRIUMVIRAT are the obvious inspirations here and Lindh often appears as if putting up a personal show with emphatic organ and synth acrobatics, based on plenty of virtuosic solos.The music is still very compentent with great drums and some cool electric guitars around.The atmosphere ranges from romantic to cinematic to extremely self-indulgent with long, technical deliveries, haunting chants, romantic soundscapes and rapid tempo changes but unfortunately the lovely melodies from their debut have been left aside.The grandiose passages with the Mellotron and the moments the group works as a balanced team seem to be the most interesting ones, although Lindh's personal keyboard offerings contain also plenty of challenging textures.

Solid Symphonic Rock of the old school, headed by E.L.P., with everlasting keyboard lines and solos.Not as great as the group's debut, but still a very nice album, especially considering the transitional period of its release.Recommended to all fans of Symphonic/Classical-styled Rock and Retro Prog.

 Gothic Impressions by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Studio Album, 1994
4.08 | 121 ratings

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Gothic Impressions
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by Sinusoid
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Never have I heard so much classical bombast in a rock album in my life, and I've heard a few ELP albums. If there's any part of the prog music that Par Lindh nailed perfectly other than drowning the album in keyboards is go for the jugular and create one of the most unapologetically bombastic albums known to mankind.

I swear that not even the Vatican uses those particular organ sounds as often as this album does. Those church organs like the one you heard on ''Awaken'' are practically flaunted throughout the album even if we get a touch of Emersonian keys on the occasion. You could get away calling this power metal with almost all keyboards (funny enough, I found this in the metal section of a used CD store).

GOTHIC IMPRESSIONS is easy to gobble up if you're already a fan of symphonic prog, but most others will find it overkill about halfway through ''The Iconoclast''. Surprisingly, as memorable as some melodies are and as bombastic as it is, compositionally it didn't move me too much. The vocals are also a complete lull. I will give them credit for the good adaptation of Mussorgsky's ''Night on Bare Mountain'' as well as the first half of ''The Cathedral''. However, the second half of that epic was better when it was called ''Karn Evil 9''.

I would normally have qualms over something like this, but the bombasticism is actually what makes GOTHIC IMPRESSION so enjoyable. Not in the upper echelon of prog, but if you can find it, I'd check it out.

 Time Mirror by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.69 | 76 ratings

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Time Mirror
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
Special Collaborator Symphonic Prog Specialist

4 stars An acquired taste

A decade after Veni Vidi Vici the release of Time Mirror took me by surprise, mostly because this is no longer the wonderful mini orchestra called PÄR LINDH PROJECT but a power trio headed by Par Lindh and William Kopecy plus four different drummers (Al Lewis who also takes the role of lead vocalist, Svetlan Råket from the DVD In Concert - Live in Poland, Stefan Bergman and Pär himself), one for each tack.

I don't have any problem with the new band because Pär is exceptional as usual, William Kopecy is an outstanding bass player,. the four drummers are capable and Al Lewis does a great job in the vocals (Sounds like a not annoying Jon Anderson) but something is missing, maybe the lack of guitars, or the magic of a real band instead of a keyboard driven trio, the point is that they are technically flawless but part of the magic is gone..

Until now I always disagreed wit the people who said that PLP was strongly influenced by ELP, as a fact I always considered that Pär is cleaner with more classic approach, surely less spectacular, but technically superb, now I have to agree with them, because in his new role as a one man orchestra he borrows a lot from Emerson, mainly in the first two songs..

The first track Time Mirror is chance for Pär to demonstrate his skills, with church organ solos as usual, and Jazz fugues, but seems that he has too much work covering the instruments he usually added, yes it's pompous and brilliant, but as I said before there's something missing.

The first half of Waltz Street seems like a comedy relief track in the vein of "Jeremy Bender" or "The Sheriff", but a few organ solos in the instrumental break make the difference, a good song but not in the level of previous material.

With Death Unreconciled reminds me more of the old PÄR LINDH PROJECT, the piano and organ work are simply delightful and Pär Lindh allows himself to be the keyboardist we all admire again, much more original and imaginative, even the vocals and percussion remind me of Gothic Impressions, all the Keith Emerson references are left behind, the magic is back, at least for one song.

The album ends with Sky Door, a very interesting instrumental, because represents a change in the bands sound, even when doesn't remind of previous albums, they keep a healthy distance from ELP and again Par Lindh sounds as Par Lindh, they sound lighter than the rest of the album but must recognize that the sound is absolutely original.

The header of this review, says "An acquired taste", because used to fall in love with every PLP release at the first listen, but Time Mirror took me several attempts, as a fact I felt that I wasn't before PÄR LINDH PROJECT except for With Dead Unreconciled, but once I got used to the new atmosphere and sound, discovered an excellent album that deserves no less than four stars.

 Live In America by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Live, 1999
4.24 | 27 ratings

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Live In America
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams

3 stars This double live CD has the characteristics of showing at the same time both the goods and the limitation of Pär Lindh as player and composer, other than giving the band the possibility to show an excellent skill.

First of all the presence of a version of Jerusalem that's almost the same arrangement as ELP on Picture at an Exhibition on CD1 and of a cover of 21st Century Schizoid Man on CD2 which can give a clear idea of who the main influencers are, but listening better, specially to the long medley entitled "Rondo" on CD 2 you can hear more than one reference to Bo Hansson and his Lord of the Rings, and considering that the band has released an album entitled "Bilbo" inspired to the first chapter of Tolkien's trilogy it appears clearly that Bo Hansson is another point of reference for Lindh.

All the goods and the limitations I was saying...the already mentioned Rondo is enough to show them all. There is an impressive drumming throughout the over 10 minutes of the medley, and effectively Nisse Biedfeld is a very resistant drummer, able to play very fast for a long time, really impressive. It's fun trying to recognize all the excerpts from rock, classical music, traditionals and anthems which are part of it, and here is where we see the limitations: Pär Lindh plays very fast but on the classical parts is sometimes too approximative. Lovers of classical music would surely be disappointed, not only by the arrangements but even by the keyboards' execution.

On his original parts, like the Bilbo Medley but across the whole CD1 the band plays at its best and it makes this double CD a worth buying.

The fact that it's sometimes an ELP clone, plus the mentioned not great performance in the classical parts make me decrease the rating to 3 stars, even if a mention has to go to the rest of the band, not only the drummer which is able to cover the mistakes and to the great soprano voice of Magdalena Hagberg.

One last note: Par Lindh is an excellent keyboardist it's only when he plays Bach or Mozart or tries to make an anthem fit into chords that aren't its domain that I quite dislike him.

3 stars

 Live In Iceland by LINDH PROJECT, PÄR album cover Live, 2002
3.58 | 15 ratings

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Live In Iceland
Pär Lindh Project Symphonic Prog

Review by elpprogster

4 stars What do we have here? Really tight songs and above all a truly tight perfomance. As a previous reviewer said this is basically Vini Vidi Vici played live, and although the songs remain original to the studio versions, one can feel there is something special in here. The Emerson Lake & Palmer influences are still very clear, be in the hammond organ playing be in the synths runnings, but anyway, there´s also a couple of leanings that don´t allow us to say that PLP are merely ELP copycats. So all in all this is a truly satisfactory album for the devoted keyboard prog afficionado!
Thanks to Ivan_Melgar_M for the artist addition.

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