Exposé Online banner

Zaragon — No Return
(Ad Perpetuam Memoriam 9405, 1984/1994, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1995-07-01

No Return Cover art

At some point in the past I had heard this obscure Danish five-piece compared with IQ. In fact, after finally hearing it, that assessment seems to be quite inaccurate. Yes, there are some neo-progressive elements here, but Zaragon has little in common with their British counterparts of the same period. Their sound and instrumentation – dominated by the ever-present organ, harkens back to an earlier time. Vocalist Martin Nielsen delivers the English lyrics in a style that sometimes reminds of Steve Walsh of Kansas or Machiavel's Marc Ysaye; yet it's all solo, and with no harmonizing, the vocal arrangements tend to be a bit shallow and unimaginative. This in fact seems to be Zaragon's weakest card. Their strength, however, lies in their powerful instrumental forays led by guitarist Finn Jansen, his incisive tone reminding of Dave Gilmour in the early 70s, yet Jansen's solos quickly jump into high gear, pulling the rest of the band forward. Overall, I'm most often reminded of the excellent Norwegian band Utopian Fields, who had a sound very close to that of Zaragon. A bonus track, "Fear to Fight" – recorded by a reformed Zaragon in 1994, is an old song from the early days that somehow never got the studio treatment. I suppose that also means we might be hearing something new from this band in the future.


Filed under: Reissues, Issue 7, 1994 releases, 1984 recordings

Related artist(s): Zaragon

Latest news

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Novalis - Novalis – Novalis was a Krautrock band from Hamburg, Germany and their self-titled second album is part of Revisited Records’ reissuance of the Brain back catalog. This album is an amazing mixture of folk...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues