Asgaerd - In The Realm Of Asgaerd

Asgaerd – In The Realm Of Asgaerd

86 / 100

Asgaerd is very American with a Wooden Nickel-era Styx vibe landing between prog and pomp.

Written by: Eric

ARTIST: Asgaerd
ALBUM: In The Realm Of Asgaerd
LABEL: Threshold
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List

LINEUP: Rodney Harrison – guitar, vocals * Dave Cook – bass * Ian Snow – drums * James Smith, Ted Barlett – vocals * Peter Orgill – violin

TRACK LISTING: 01 In The Realm Of Asgaerd * 02 Friends * 03 Town Crier * 04 Austin Osmanspare * 05 Children Of A New Born Age * 06 Time * 07 Lorraine * 08 Starquest


Much more interested in making music than dealing with the drudgery and day to day workings of a record company, The Moody Blues boutique label Threshold would eventually become a Moodies only imprint. But not before releasing several quality albums by Trapeze, American band Providence and this, the only record from Asgaerd.

Formed by guitarist Rodney Harrison who could previously be heard in the pop psych band Bulldog Breed, ‘In the Realm Of Asgaerd’ sold next to nothing at the time of its release, but in the ensuing years became a big buck collectible among prog and Moody Blues collectors.

The Songs

The surprise for many who forked over a small fortune for the original LP and now the recent and by far cheaper Esoteric reissue is how very un-British Asgaerd sound. Indeed if I didn’t know better I would have imagined the band holed up in an isolated and dusty sun baked storefront studio somewhere between Chicago and Topeka.

The vibe is very American with an inescapable Wooden Nickel-era Styx vibe landing square between prog and pomp. Extensive use of violin and complex compositions will impress Kansas fans longing for the glory daze of ‘Masque’ as well as the classic and hopelessly obscure Strongbow long player.

With a tractor-trailer load of power chord riffing and high end vocals, it’s a signed sealed guarantee vintage Styx followers will find ‘Children Of A New Born Age’, the mighty fine ‘Lorraine’ and the entire album is quite impossible to resist. It’s enough for me to want to pull out my dog-eared copy of ‘Man Of Miracles’ I tell yah?

In Summary

Not a lot of info on Asgaerd live dates, but I’m sure they played out at some point although what happened to Rodney Harrison and band after the album is a mystery. The Esoteric reissue is up to the label’s usual high quality standards and while there are no bonus tracks, ‘In The Realm Of Asgaerd’ as an oddball moment of Brit prog gone Yankee, it’s definitely worth a listen.

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