Hansson, Bo

Band members               Related acts

- Gunnar Bergsten - sax

- Stan Begerman - flute

- Rune Carlsson - drums

- Bo Hansson - vocals, keyboards, guitar, bass



- Hansson and Karlsson

- The Merrymen (Bo Hansson)




Genre: progressive

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Music Inspired By Lord of the Rings

Company: Charisma

Catalog: CAS-1069

Year: 19

Country/State: Sweden

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: UK pressing; JEM import sticker on cover (not shown in picture above)

Available: 1

GEMM catalog ID: 4539

Price: $20.00

Cost: $66.00


First off, let me admit that I just don't know that mush about Scandinavia rock and progressive genres.  For the most part my knowledge and familiarity with Swedish keyboardist Bo Hansson is limited to a pair of his mid-1970s LPs.


Hansson's initial fame came as a member of 'Hansson and Karlsson'.  Together with drummer Jan Karlsson, the Swedish duo released a series of three jazz and progressive oriented studio sets throughout the mid and late 1960s.  Personal issues between the pair and their management saw the group call it quits in 1969 (though they briefly reunited in 2000).


Hansson's solo debut came with the release of 1971's "Sagen Om Ringen".  1972 saw the album retitled "Music Inspired By Lord of the Rings" and released in the States and England by PVC and Tony Stratton-Smith's Charisma Records respectively.  A true solo effort, Hansson was credited with production (along with Anders Lind), arranging, as well as writing all of the material and handling most of the instrumentation.  According to the album liner notes, the set was recorded in a rented home on an island outside of Stockholm, with Hansson and company using a portable eight track recorder.  Inspired by J.R. Tolken's famed book, the album featured a series of twelve atmospheric instrumentals.  It's kind of interesting to note that heard some three decades after it was originally written and recorded, tracks such as 'Leaving Shire', 'The Old Forest/Tom Bombadil' and '' all boast strong melodies.  By the same token, from a technical standpoint, much of the same material sounds a little dated.  Most of that dated sound has to do with Hansson's then groundbreaking use of synthesizers.  Something like 'Fog On the Barrow-Downs' sounds like it was lifted from an old Atari game.  That said, the set's stark and understated sound remains groundbreaking, impressive and enjoyable today.   Even if you're not familiar with the Tolken material the material stands up on its own - while this comparison will piss off some fans, imagine some of Mike Oldfield's earlier catalog and you'll get a feel for it.  While I haven't heard Hansson's entire catalog, this one's widely regarded as his finest hour.  

"Music Inspired By Lord of the Rings" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Leaving Shire   (Bo Hansson) - 3:28

2.) The Old Forest/Tom Bombadil   (Bo Hansson) - 3:43

3.) Fog On the Barrow-Downs   (Bo Hansson) - 2:29

4.) The Black Riders/Flight To the Ford   (Bo Hansson) - 4:07

5.) At the House of Elroud & the Ring Goes South   (Bo Hansson) - 4:40


(side 2)
1.) A Journey In the Dark   (Bo Hansson) -1:10

2.) Lothlorien   (Bo Hansson) - 4:01

3.) Shadowfax   (Bo Hansson) - 0:51

4.) The Horns of Rogan/The Battle of the Pelennor Fields   (Bo Hansson) - 3:57

5.) Dreams In the House of Healing   (Bo Hansson) - 1:56

6.) Homeward Bound/The Scouring of the Shire   (Bo Hansson) - 2:54

7.) The Grey Havens   (Bo Hansson) - 4:57




Back to Bad Cat homepage/search