The Encyclopedia of Swedish Progressive Music 1967-1979

From Psychedelic Experiments to Political Propaganda

Tobias Petterson



Jazz trumpeter Ulf Adåker formed Egba in 1971 and has led the band through numerous line-up changes ever since. The above members played on the 70's albums. Besides the ever present Ulf Andersson, the main 70's members were Jarr, Roupé and Lagerberg, who played on four albums each. Wang, Tolf and Svensson left after the first album to form Resa, with the latter two moving on to Häxmjölk. Lars Jansson came from Mount Everest. Göran Lagerberg had previously been in Tages, Blond, Heta Linjen and Kebnekajse. Åke Eriksson would form Wasa Express, while Peter Sundell was also in Made In Sweden and De Gladas Kapell. Egba experimented with jazz-fusion, African rhythms, progressive rock and funk grooves.

1974EgbaGrammofonverket EFG-5015113★★★★★5
1976Jungle-JamSonet SLP-2579★★2
1976Egba (Reissue of 1st album)Sonet SLP-2589★★★3
1977Live At MontmartreSonet SLP-2595★★2
1978Amigos LatinosSonet SLP-2616★★2
1979Bryter Upp!MNW 95P★★2
Titles up to 1979


This singer and guitarist started his career as a bass player with 60's band Germs Group from Växjö. For his debut Så häftigt!! he hooked up with Ljungby band Attila: Tony Albertoft (percussion, harmonica), Anders Ehn (guitar), Nils Johansson (bass) and Ulf Göransson (drums). Like his other albums it mixes mainstream rock with progressive pieces featuring Ekberg's prominent guitar. The Swedish language lyrics are political at times, but not overtly so. The second album was recorded in Dallas with American musicians. In 1979 he formed the band Peter O Ekbergs System, which featured Kerstin Wretmark (vocals), Pierre Sward (keyboards, vocals), Mackan Englund (bass) and Christer Vikingsson (drums). Swärd was previously in Soffgruppen, while Ekberg and Englund also played with Raj Montana Band. Peter O Ekberg then turned to session work, both as a guitarist and producer.

1976Så häftigt!!Polydor 2379108★★2
1976Peter O EkbergTor TORS 209★1
1978Så länge vi har ossTor TORS 240★1
1979Till livet och natten / Good Time Blues (S)EMI 006-35679★1
1979Det känns som att va' på en fest...EMI 062-35680★1



Poet Claes Ekenstam's Swedish-language lyrics maintain diversity. His album includes four short spoken-word pieces as well as the nine-minute political epic "Några randanmärkningar angående krisen under senkapitalismen". Sista Bandet uses a variety of musical styles and some members also played with the band Hausswolff.

1979Sista tåget till TajskentSista Bussen SB301★★2


See also Compiltaions

Lena Ekman appeared on albums by Tjejclown and Bella Ciao before teaming up with Turid and Jan Hammarlund for the LP Igår, idag, imorgon. Her first solo album features a stellar cast including Hammarlund, Kjell Westling (Blå Tåget, Arbete & Fritid), Staffan Hellstrand (Dimmornas Bro), Ola Backström (Stockholm Norra, Dag Vag), Carin Kjellman (Folk & Rackare) and Fred Lane (Låt & Trail). It contains political and feminist lyrics in Swedish and are musically similar to Turid, who covered "Om snällhet" on her Tredje dagen album. Lena Ekman made two more solo albums in the 80's.

1976Igår, idag, imorgon *Silence SRS 4638★★★3
1977HjulspårSilence SRS 4641★★★3
Titles up to 1979
* with Jan Hammarlund & Turid


Roger Ekman recorded an album about health care bureaucracy and distributed it independently. Since he could not afford to print record sleeves he turned some old sleeves by other artists inside out, covered them with white paint and stamped his name on them. His music is that of a traditional protest singer, resembling Ronny Åström, with some tracks showing some influence from jazz. Among the musicians playing on the album is renowned guitarist Mats Bergström.

1978ÅngestÅngest 7700★★★★★5



This group was formed by workers at the Volvo factory in Umeå in 1975. The album features Swedish-language political folk songs. Musicians included saxophonist Ulf Andersson (Egba) and early 60's guitar hero Hasse Rosén.

1978Mot LjusetA-Disc BS780317★★2



Leif Nylén (Gunder Hägg / Blå Tåget) picked up this band from Falun and secured a record deal for them with MNW. The album cover showed a box of matches and was banned for copyright reasons after complaints from Swedish Match. It had to be re-released with a new logotype affixed, to the original sleeve. The music is horn driven rock with prominent Hammond organ and Swedish-language political lyrics. Elda Med Höns earned their reputation as a live band.

1975Elda Med HönsMNW 56P★★★★4
1975Elda Med Höns (censored sleeve)MNW 56P★★★★★5



See also Compilations

Katzeff, Sjögren and Söderlund were previously members of Ruben Storspov and backed Jan Hammarlund on his När bandet slutar spela album. For this project they hooked up with people like TV-personality Anders Linder (Kapten Zoom), Carl-Johan de Geer (Blå Tåget), Mats Hellquist, (Archimedes Badkar) and Pierre Ström. The band's only album contains political vocals in Swedish and music that is jazz-oriented with some progressive moves. It's quiet and mellow on the A-side and more rocky on the B-side. The title of the album translates Torbjörn's Dance Academy and features a picture of Sweden's then prime ministrer, Thorbjörn Fälldin, on the cover. An early version of the band, including Leif Nylén (Blå Tåget) and Torbjörn Abelli (Träd, Gräs Och Stenar), appeared on the Vi kan leva utan kärnkraft and also backcd Turid on one track on her 1975 album Tredje dagen. Several members of Elektriska Linden were also in some of the ever-changing loose line-ups of Gudibrallan. After being a long-time peripheral member, Mikael Katzeff joined Gudibrallan proper in 1984 and leads that band to this day.

1978Torbjörns dansskolaAvanti AVLP 03★★★3


Sam Elison started his career as guitarist for 60's band Episode Five from Nybro. He then Americanized his last name with an extra "L" and hooked up with Hawkey Franzen and Björn J:son Lindh for "Jag vill ha en lessen häst". The trio evolved into Jason's Fleece and the band re-recorded both sides of the single in English for their eponymous album. After the break up of Jason's Fleece, Ellison made a further single with Franzén before releasing his solo album featuring a stellar cast including Göran Lagerberg (Tages, Kebnekajse), Björn Linder (Blond, Marsfolket), Anders Henriksson (Baltik) as well as former Jason's Fleece bandmates J:son Lindh and Janne Bandel. The album contains progressive pop with reflective lyrics in both Swedish and English. In the years 1971-72 Ellison was busy as a side man on albums by Hoola Bandoola Band, Tillsammans, Göran Persson and Narren as well as contributing to the projects Sånger Om Kvinnor and Kåklåtar, but has since kept a low profile.

1970Jag vill ha en lessen häst / Axelsson* (S)Mercury 6062 008★★★3
1970I dag sköt jag ihjäl en okänd man / Gotta Get Away** (S)Zoom Z1113★★★3
1971Sam EllisonMetronome MLP15.413★★★★4
* as Sam-Hawkey-J:son
** as Sam & Hawkey



Formed in 1976 as a Movement blues band, they toned down the blues influence for their records. Their debut, "Måns i Vasastan", was a hit in Stockholm thanks to the local topic of the Swedish lyrics. After releasing two more records Elvärket evolved into popular club act Mr Soul & His Marshmallows. Early member Lennart Holmberg was previosly with Solen Skiner and Eldkvarn's Claes Carlsson guested on the single.

1978Måns i Vasastan / Direktörerna (S)Slick 06★★2
Titles up to 1979



This folk band's first album consisted of songs about Swedish emigrants who moved to America at the beginning of the 20th century. They made two more albums, including Rårivet from 1983, where they used home-made instruments and supplied instructions on how to build them yourself.

1978Nu packar vi bagagetOktober OSLP524★★2
Titles up to 1979


Originally named Allrite, Stockholm band Energy released its only album on EMI's progressive label Harvest, which also released Panta Rei. All five songs on the album are complex affairs that demonstrate progressive rock with jazz influences. The mostly instrumental album displays some great musicianship and has English-language vocals on one track. Drummer Björn Inge had previously played with November, whose guitarist Richard Rolf was earlier one of Nicoletti's guitar pupils.

1974EnergyHarvest 062-34983★★★★★★★7


Lasse Englund used to jam with fellow hippie Mikael Ramel before recording his first solo album, Drakväder. The album was released by Kjell Höglund's label Alternativ and contains thirteen instrumental tracks. Musically it is built around his acoustic guitar and leans toward traditional folk music but some songs display a more experimental touch. Among the musicians playing on the album were Thomas Almqvist, Kjell Westling (Blå Tåget, Arbete & Fritid) and Theo Greyerz (Handgjort). Englund's subsequent solo albums are less experimental with more traditional song structure. His most visible work has been with long-time partner Marie Bergman, although he has also contributed to numerous albums by the likes of Greg FitzPatrick, Ola Magnell, Jan Hammarlund and the above mentioned Höglund and Ramel.

1974DrakväderAlternativ ALP-6★★★3
1977Den andra depressionenAlternativ ALP-9★1
Titles up to 1979



After disbanding Risken Finns, Gunnar Danielsson discovered a much more serious tone with Gothenburg band Ensamma Hjärtan. The band released three quite mature rock albums with political Swedish-language lyrics as well as a live album recorded in Oslo. Danielsson would move on to become host for music show "Guldslipsen" on Swedish TV. He then scored a massive hit in 1982 with "Ishockey ochfotboll" as part of duo Danielsson & Pekkanini, with old band mate Pekka Lunde hiding behind the Pekkanini moniker.

1978Ensamma HjärtanMNW 83P★★★3
1979Hon är fin / Djävla skit (S)Nacksving 45-5★★2
1979En massa hjärtanNacksving 031-24★★2
Titles up to 1979


Envoys was formed in 1964 in Stockholm as a pop act briefly featuring future TV personality Robert Aschberg as lead singer. They were one of the first bands to sign with MNW and came into the public's eye with their second single, "Almarna åt folket", a cover of John Lennon's "Power To The People", which featured Charlie & Esdor on backing vocals. The Swedish lyrics are in protest of elm trees to be cut down in central Stockholm and became a huge hit. They enjoyed a second protest hit with their last single, "Kräv bryggeriet kvar", about the impending tearing down of the Münchenbryggeriet brewery in Stockholm. Unusually for such efforts, Envoys were very successful in their protests and both the elm trees and the brewery are still standing. The band also made some noise outside Sweden and were actually invited to perform on an Italian TV show.

1969I Saw Her Standing There / Berry Rides Again (S)MNW 02S★★★★4
1971Almarna åt folket / I kvällssol och morgondis (S)Mash Mas-1★★2
1974Starman / Älskogskrank (S)Env 101★★2
1976Kräv bryggeriet kvar / Så svårt (S)Marilla Mas 200★★2


This obscure and short-lived band from Gothenburg recorded one album and released it independently in 1976. The songs are sung in English but if they had been sung in Swedish the album would probably have been released by the likes of Silence or MNW. What the album lacks in production is more than compensated for by the music and the sheer energy of the performance. It delivers some really nice fuzz guitar and delightfully complex song structures with a basement feel to it. The inclusion of flutes and synthesizers give the production a psychedelic flair. Sometimes the band veers toward acid rock but its sound also owes just as much to 70's hard rock. Ericson and Fischer would later move on to heavy metal pioneers EF Band.

1976DaybreakFejl 0176★★★★★★★★★9


See also Compilations

Guitarist Tomas Ernvik, originally from Kristinehamn, released these two progressive albums featuring Christian lyrics in Swedish. Among the musicians on the second album were trumpeter Lars Folkerman (Röda Lacket) and bassist Thomas Lindbjer, who joined Ernvik in the power trio Vatten. In 1980 Ernvik recorded the album När regnet dragit förbi together with noted session singer Agneta Gillstig.

1971Små låtar med och avCymbal LPM 732★★★3
1972Rockoriatoriet brinnandeProphone PROP7751★★★3