Bergendy's early albums were a mixture of beat, progressive rock and pop - variable in quality but with a fair number of interesting tracks. Jazz marked a change in that particular direction. The group continued to exist into the 80's but had by then switched to pure entertainment music.
|1||BEAT||1971||PEPITA SLPX 17432|
|2||BERGENDY||1971||PEPITA SLPX 17434|
|3||HÉTFŐ (2LP)||1973||PEPITA SLPX 17453-54 2|
|4||ÖTÖDIK SEBESSÉG||1974||PEPITA SLPX 17477|
|5||FAGYPONT FÖLÖTT MIÉNK A VILÁG||1976||PEPITA SLPX 17502|
|6||JAZZ||1976||PEPITA SLPX 17514|
|7||A RENDÍTHETETLEN ÓLOMKATONA||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17622|
|S1||ARANYALBUM (BEST OF)||1981||PEPITA SLPX 17608|
|A1||BERGENDY||1973||AMIGA 8 55 321|
A group playing soft symphonic rock with some progressive elements.
|1||COLOR I||1978||PEPITA SLPX 17567|
|2||ÚJ SZÍNEK||1982||PEPITA SLPX 17674|
The group recorded their first album in Bratislava, which explains its Czechoslovak release on the Opus-label. They used English lyrics and played 3-4 minute soft rock songs bordering on both progressive and 70's pop music (even jazz-rock and good time music). Some melodies are memorable with good use of slight vocal harmonies and an instrumental triumvirat of electric guitar, flute and synthesizers.
Utak Előtt marked an improvement with Hungarian lyrics and broader musical scope, including heavier influences from Omega circa 1970-71 and effective siring arrangements on other tracks. This is certainly worthy of your attention.
|1||CORVINA I||1974||PEPITA SLPX 17458|
|2||UTAK ELŐTT||1976||PEPITA SLPX 17485|
|3||C.C.C.||1977||PEPITA SLPX 17530|
|S1||ARANYALBUM (BEST OF)||1989||RÁKÓCZI 004|
|1||CORVINA (FIRST)||1975||OPUS 9116 0445|
As you might have guessed, their name means Dynamite. A more appropriate name would have been "Wet Dynamite", as their musical style was limp heavy rock based on electric guitar, organ and turgid vocals. Their were one of several bands to follow the heels of Omega.
|1||DINAMIT||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17628|
|2||A HID||1981||PEPITA SLPX 17685|
East were in almost the same class as Solaris and with a much more prolific output. At the start of their career, East played melodious symphonic rock fronted by synthesizers and guitars, similar to Pink Floyd, Camel, Yes and Genesis. Many groups attempted to copy these British groups, but East (on Játékok) luckily had sufficient personality to warrant interest. Regretably they became increasingly commercial afterwards, but at least the three first albums are good purchases.
|1||JÁTÉKOK (GAMES)||1981||START SLPX 17679|
|2||HÜSÉG (FAITH)||1982||START SLPX 17733|
|3||RESEK A FALON||1983||START SLPM 17815|
|4||AZ ÁLDOZAT||1984||KRÉM SLPX 17880|
|5||1986||1985||START SLPM 17972|
|6||A SZERELEM SIVATAGA||1988||RING RLP 2003|
|A1||GAMES||1983||PEPITA INT. SLPR 713|
Their style was melodious mainstream heavy rock centered around electric guitar, organ and vocals. Attila Pataki sings in a style similar to János Kóbor of Omega. The Müvek ("works") albums are all reasonably good, and arguably better than the records from their colleagues Karthago, V'moto Rock and P. Box. The third was the most dynamic and included some good synthesizer arrangements. Viszlát! (1984) was a live album, recorded at their last ever concert in 1983.
|1||MÜVEK 1||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17631|
|2||MÜVEK 2||1981||PEPITA SLPX 17664|
|3||MÜVEK 3||1982||PEPITA SLPM 17773|
|4||VISZLÁT!||1984||BRAVO SLPM 17849|
|.||1.2.3... START LIVE 1982||?||START SLPX 17711|
Hungária played beat music from 1967 onwards. Their two early albums arc enjoyable, with a mixture of beat, heavy rock, pop and even rock'n'roll. They featured short tracks, not really classifiable as "progressive rock". From 1975 to 1979 they played retro Beatles material. Then, in the 80's, dreadful fake 50's rock'n'roll a la Shakin' Stevens.
|1||KONCERT A MARSON||1970||QUALITON SLPX 17408|
|2||HUHGÁRIA (TŰZVESZÉLYES)||1970||PEPITA SLPX 17424|
|S1||RÉG VOLT, ÍGY VOLT (1967-71)||1985||BRAVO SLPM 17889|
|S2||BEATLES-LÁZ||1997||GOHG HCD 37425|
Illés (from Budapest) formed in 1965 as the Hungarian answer to The Beatles. Some members had a jazz circuit background. Not long after Sgt. Pepper, Illés performed in strongly coloured uniforms almost identical to those of The Beatles.
Their first three albums are full of period charm - euphonious and inventive beat music with instant Eastern trips, snippets of conversation, well conceived harmony pop, exotic instruments and occasional orchestration. These would be internationally acclaimed among collectors, if only more people had been able to understand the language.
In 1970 Illés were banned from performing in Budapest for almost a year, after critizising the official Hungarian politics toward rock in a BBC interview. The 1971 album came in a white sleeve (a reference both to censorship and a certain Beatles album) and was a "beat oratorium" dealing with human rights and dedicated to the black American activist Angela Davis. The music was more mature (not really "beat" music but 12 examples of melodic, song-based progressive rock) and less whimsical, usually with twin guitars and organ. Subsequent albums were quite similar, but couldn't improve on the 1971 effort. After their first split, some members played in the group Fonograf. The 1980 re-union album is, as is often the case, a disappointment.
|1||EZEK A FIATALOK||1967||QUALITON LPX 17370|
|2||NEHÉZ AZ ÚT||1968||QUALITON SLPX 17391|
|3||ILLESEK ES POFONOK||1969||QUALITON SLPX 17398|
|4||ILLÉS (HUMAN RIGHTS)||1971||PEPITA SLPX 17410|
|5||ADD A KEZED||1972||PEPITA SLPX 17437|
|6||NE SÍRJATOK, LÁNYOK||1973||PEPITA SLPX 17455|
|7||EXPRESS IMAGE||1980||OPUS 9116 0979 (CZE)|
|S1||LEGENDÁS KISLEMEZEK||1983||KRÉM SLPX 17757|
|A1||ILLÉS||1973||AMIGA 8 55 308|
|B1||1 UZAZÁS||1974||PEPITA SLPX 17459|
|B2||HAZATÉRÉS||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17641|
|.||AZ ILLÉS ÖSSZES KISLEMEZE||1993||GONG HCD 37706-07|
|.||AZ ILLÉS MÁSIK OLDALÁN||1996||GONG HCD 37846|
Most Hungarian heavy rock groups had quite a similar sound, but Karthago (along with Pandora's Box) represented both the most powerful style, but also a terrible lack of originality. Their music (and stage costumes) was originally influenced by Omega.
|1||KARTHAGO||1981||PEPITA SLPX 17657|
|2||EZREDFORDULÓ||1982||START SLPX 17712|
|3||REQUIEM||1983||MUSICA OK AS 76.23568|
|4||SENKI FÖLDJÉN||1984||START SLPX 17813|
|5||ORIENTAL DREAMS||1984||MUSICA OK KR 1103|
|S1||ARANYALBUM||1990||PROTON PR 0067|
Undoubtedly, Kolinda are among the best Hungarian artists of the 70's (regardless of genre), cultivating their unique type of complex folk music with strong mediaeval and Eastern influences. The group lived in France at the time and was possibly influenced by some of the skillful French folk music players. Kolinda's Ágnes Zsigmondi was indeed as good as Emmanuelle Parrenin and their music brings back strong images from a long forgotten past. Anyone interested in adventurous folk music should check out all three albums released on Hexagone. Two later albums were only released in The Netherlands.
|1||KOLINDA 1||1976||HEXAGONE 883010 (F)|
|2||KOLINDA 2||1977||HEXAGONE 883013 (F)|
|3||1514||1978||HEXAGONE 883017 (F)|
|4||MAKÁM ÉS KOLINDA||1982||MUNICH (NL)|
Koral play symphonic heavy rock similar to Journey and Styx (but not that slick). It's worth listening to their first album in particular, which had the strongest melodic content. Very conventional music but still fairly enjoyable.
|1||KORÁL I||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17633|
|2||A TÚLSÓ PART||1982||PEPITA SLPX 17683|
|3||AZ ÓCEÁN||1984||PEPITA SLPM 17809|
|4||KORÁL IV. (1975-85)||1985||PEPITA SLPM 17926|
Locomotive GT sold more than 1.5 million albums in their homeland. They toured the eastern bloc, as well as Great Britain and the USA (the latter on a major tour with Grand Funk Railroad). The band was formed in 1971 by, amongst others, Gábor Presser and Jószef Laux, previous members of Omega.
Their first album maintained a good standard throughout, mostly centered around jazzy progressive rock in the style of Traffic (2nd album), Family, Joe Cocker, Blood, Sweat & Tears and Chicago, but also including a great blues instrumental (full of stinging guitars), a less convincing gospel ballad and a bluegrass parody. Gábor Presser's keyboards (mainly organ) have a prominent rote on most tracks. After hearing Locomotive GT in 1971, a critic with New Musical Express wrote: "the next rock sensation could come from the Rast, not West".
Their next albums mixed pop-rock and jazz-rock in a similar way, but also saw a decline of original ideas. However, their performance of Gábor Presser and Anna Adams's musical Imaginary Report From An American Pop Festival brought them more critical acclaim. This was the first East European rock opera, based on the 1971 novel of the same name by Hungarian writer Tibor Déry. This dealt with the Altamont festival and the experiences of a Hungarian who fled his country in 1956.
Twenty years later, in 1976, Locomotive GT's drummer Jószef Laux also fled Hungary, causing their fifth album to be banned after only some months in circulation. After a few years in limbo, the group resumed but played just commercial pop-rock.
Good starring points for those unfamiliar with their music would be their first album, the live album recorded in Poland or the 1992 collection.
ALBUMS (UP TO 1976):
|1||LOCOMOTIV GT||1971||PHPITA SLPX 17449|
|2||RINGASD EL MAGAD||1972||PEPITA SLPX 174??|
|3||III - BUMMM!||1973||PEPITA SLPX 17467|
|4||MINDIG MAGASABBRA||1974||PEPITA SLPX 17490|
|5||V (ARANYTALLÉROK) 2LP||1976||PEPITA SLPX 17515-16|
|S1||ARANYALBUM (2LP BEST OF)||1978||PEPITA SLPX 17551-52|
|S2||AZ LGT ÖSSZES KISLEMEZE||1992||FAVORIT SLPM 37618-19|
|A1||LOCOMOTIV GT||1974||ABC ABCX 811 (USA)|
|A2||IN WARSAW||1975||MUZA SX 1384|
|A3||LOCOMOTIV GT||1976||SUPRAPHON 1 13 1920|
|A4||LOCOMOTIV GT '74 USA||1988||FAVORIT SLPM 37138|
|A1||IMAGINARY REPORT FROM AN AMERICAN TOP FESTIVAL||1973||QUALITON SLPX 16579|
|A2||I'M THIRTY YEARS OLD||1976||PEPITA SLPX 17494|
|A3||ELECTROMANTIC||1982||PEPITA SLPX 17715|
A little known group whose sound seemed to be modelled on Illés (but with added sound effects between the tracks), although occasionally a few steps closer to melodic progressive rock (a la early Procol Harum). Their albums are variable, with trite jazz-pop and good heavy Magyar beat-psych being the opposite extremes. The second album was a live recording.
|1||METRO I||1969||QUALITON SLPX 17397|
|2||EGY ESTE A METRO KLUBBAN||1970||QUALITON SLPX 17417|
Mini played jazzy progressive rock.
|1||VISSZA A VÁROSBA||1978||PEPITA SLPX 17543|
|2||ÚTON A FÖLD FELÉ||1979||PEPITA SLPX 17616|
|3||KONCERT (LIVE)||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17647|
|4||DZSUNGEL||1983||PEPITA SLPX 17755|
|1||VISSZA A VÁROSBA (1972-83)||1993||GONG HCD 37678|
The listed album contained beat-psychedelic music similar to lllés. The band split up in late 1971, but reformed to record a light pop-rock album in 1976. Subsequently they recorded disco albums!
|1||BOLOND VÁROS||1971||QUALITON SLPX 17422|
Omega is probably the most famous rock group from the whole of Eastern Europe with a career now spanning four decades of formidable popularity in their homeland. Through the years they have explored beat, psychedelia, vintage heavy progressive, symphonic glitter rock and heavy stadium rock. Readers of this book will probably find the early Hungarian albums most valuable. From Trombitás Fredi Esa Rettenettes Emberek to Éjszakai Országút Omega gradually changed from beat music and psychedelia to heavy progressive rock. They used a lot of the available studio effects of the time, most notably the Leslie cabinet, flanging effects and strange echoes. Their sound was strongly influenced by contemporary British rock (Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Jethro Tull, The Beatles). "Ahol A Boldogságot Osztották" on Éjszakai Országút (1970), perhaps their best album, paraphrased Jimmy Page's solo guitar from "Heartbreaker".
Their first international album was produced by Peter Hauke in the Dierks Studio (near Cologne) in 1973. It was a more polished effort with considerable commercial appeal. In addition to the heavy glitter rock of "Everytime She Steps In", Omega also attempted to keep a more serious progressive profile with "After A Hard Year" (resembling Moody Blues, Procol Harum and King Crimson circa 1969). 200 Years After The Last War and Omega III stayed close to this formula and had some decent long tracks.
Fans of symphonic rock might want to check out Hall Of Floaters In The Sky (1975) and Time Robber (1976), which are generally agreed to be Omega's best attempts within this genre. Their later albums arc quite dire.
|1||TROMBITÁS FRÉDI ÉS A RETTENETES EMBEREK||1968||QUALITON SLPX 17390|
|2||10.000 LEPES||1969||QUALITON SIPX 17400|
|3||EJSZAKAI ORSZAGUT||1970||QUALITON SLPX 17414|
|4||ELO '72 (LIVE)||1972||PEPITA SLPX 17443|
|5||OMEGA 5||1973||PEPITA SLPX 17457|
|6||NEM TU DOMA NEVED||1975||PEPITA SLPX 17483|
|7||IDORABLO||1977||PEPITA SLPX 17523|
|8||CSILLAGOK ÚTJÁN||1978||PEPITA SLPX 17570|
|9||GAMMAPOLIS||1979||PEPITA SLPX 17579|
|10||ELO KISSTADION '79 (2LP)||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17619/20|
|11||X - AZ ARC (FACE)||1981||PEPITA SLPX 17690|
|12||XI||1982||PEPITA SLPX 17747|
|13||JUBILEUMI KONCERT (2LP)||1983||PEPITA SLPM 17777-78 - LIVE|
|S1||ARANYALBUM (1968-70)||1979||PEPITA SLPX 17579|
|S2||LEGENDÁS KISLEMEZEK||1984||KRÉM SLPX 17820|
|.||KISSTADION'80||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17655|
|1||OMEGA||1973||BACILLUS BLPS 19147|
|2||200 YEARS AFTER THE LAST WAR||1974||BACILLUS BLPS 19175|
|3||OMEGA III||1974||BACILLUS BLPS 19191|
|S1||OMEGA||1975||BELLAPHON BBS 2521|
|4||THE HALL OF FLOATERS IN THE SKY||1975||BACILLUS BLPS 19218|
|5||TIME ROBBER||1976||BACILLUS BAC 2037|
|6||ON TOUR||1977||BACILLUS BAC 2045|
|7||SKYROVER||1978||BACILLUS BAC 2052|
|8||GAMMAPOLIS||1978||BACILLUS BAC 2061|
|9||LIVE AT THE KISSTADION||1979||BACILLUS BAC|
|.||OMEGA RED STAR||1968||DECCA SKLR 4974 (UK)|
|.||OMEGA||1972||AMIGA 8 55 282 (DDR)|
The group was also known as just P. Box. Their music was archetypical heavy rock. Their second album came out in 1983 and the third one in 1985 (with some line-up changes). Quite good attempts within the genre, really.
|1||PANDORA'S BOX I||1982||START SLPX 17688|
Panta Rhei played progressive rock similar to Emerson, Lake & Palmer according to some.
|.||PANTA RHEI I||1981||PEPITA SLPX 17662|
Piramis (in English: Pyramid) played heavy rock with some slightly progressive tendencies. Their early albums contained some interesting tracks. One of these, "In The Shadow Of The Sparkling Pyramids" (1977) was a long instrumental with jazzy keyboards and guitar interplay. However, their shorter songs lacked originality and were strongly influenced by Deep Purple and Uriah Heep and local band Omega.
|1||PlRAMIS I||1977||PEPITA SLPX 17528|
|2||PlRAMIS II||1978||PEPITA SLPX 17555|
|3||PlRAMIS III||1979||PEPITA SLPX 17589|
|4||A NAGY BULI (LIVE)||1979||PEPITA SLPX 17621|
|5||EROTIKA||1981||PEPITA SLPX 17663|
|6||PLUSZ||1982||PEPITA SLPX 17704|
|A1||PIRAMIS (ENGLISH VERSIONS)||1980||PEPITA INT. SLPR 703|
Another Hungarian heavy rock group who utilized some progressive elements.
|1||A ROHANÁS||1974||PEPITA SLPX 17470|
|2||ÜNNEPNAP||1976||PEPITA SLPX 17498|
|3||KELJ FEL!||1977||PEPITA SLPX 17512|
|4||GYERE VELEM||1978||PEPITA SLPX 17575|
|5||THE RUN||1978||HABIMA HSLP 7819|
|S1||ARANYALBUM||1983||PEPITA SLPX 17765|
|7||BEST OF SKORPIÓ||1993||GONG HCD 37689|
Solaris was without doubt the best symphonic rock group from Hungary (and are mentioned here even though they didn't record in the 70's). Their first album Martian Chronicles comprised a carefully constructed instrumental rock, not unlike Camel and Focus, but with parts resembling Mike Oldfield, Eloy and Pink Floyd. The title track is a 23 minute tour de force of inspired musical themes featuring synthesizers, electric guitar and flute.
The recent double album 7990 was even belter (but definitely far beyond the time scale for this book).
|1||MARSBELI KRONIAK||1984||START SLPM 17819|
|2||1990 (2LP)||1990||PEPITA SLPM 3731011|
The group's legendary first album merged Bartok with experimental, jazzy progressive rock. At this point, the music: of Syrius was very ambitious, combining fragments of Jcthro Tull, Blood. Sweat & Tears, Family, The Nice, Moving Gelatine Plates and Soft Machine into a complex tapestry with countless broken rhythms. Their music was demanding but also rewarding for the attentive listener. The album was first released in Austrialia, but later licensed to Pepita. The Hungarian release is the very same English language recording. The album is one of the most interesting Hungarian albums and a must for the adventurous listener.
Broken Dreams (1976) was a much more accessible album, moving closer to the pedestrian jazz-rock of Locomotive GT (or Creative Rock and Emergency).
|1||DEVIL'S MASQUERADE||1971||FESTIVAL SPIN SEL 934377|
|1||AZ ÖRDÖG ÁLARCOSBÁLJA||1972||PEPITA LPX 17439|
|2||SZETTORT ALMOK||1976||PEPITA SLPX 17491|
|1||MOST, MÚLT, LESZ||1994||GONG HCD 37733|
A "soft hard-rock" (or "stadium rock") group who played between 1977 and 1987. They were similar to Karthago, Piramis and Edda. None of their albums were essential, that's for certain!
|1||I.||1978||PEPITA SLPX 17562|
|2||II.||1980||PEPITA SLPX 17627|
|3||GYERTYÁK||1982||PEPITA SLPX 17696|
|S1||BEST OF||1984||FAVORIT SLPR 711|