Ragnarok Profile

Gary Steel
22 Jul 2014

If somebody wrote a book on the history of progressive rock in New Zealand, it would be a very slim volume indeed. One group instantly springs to mind when you throw both New Zealand and progressive rock into a witch’s cauldron: Ragnarok.

Formed in 1974, the group’s short story consists of two marvellous albums – their self-titled debut Ragnarok (1975) and follow-up Nooks (1976) – together with a lot of touring and pub residencies. They were gone by 1978, having barely scratched the public consciousness.

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Ragnarok in the studio, with Mark Jayet looking over the gear
The poster for Granny's in Auckland's Durham Lane West. Ragnarok became a resident act at the club in the mid-70s, playing four nights a week.
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Sunday 5 June, 1977, at the Munical Theatre, Napier
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Ragnarok live on Grunt Machine (1976)
Ragnarok in Auckland's 1ZM studio, 1976
Ragnarok Mk.2 without Lea Maalfrid - Mark Jayet, Andre Jayet, Ross Muir and Ramon York
Ragnarok with their live PA
An advert for Perraux Sound, the Napier company that provided Ragnarok with their massive sound rigs
Ragnarok Mk.1: From left, clockwise - Lea Maalfrid, Ross Muir, Andre Jayet, Ramon York, with Mark Jayet in the centre
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Five New Years
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Don’t get confused with the other bands of the same name. There’s a death metal Ragnarok from Norway, and another progressive rock Ragnarok from Sweden, whose early albums are also rather good.

Nooks was produced by Rick White (with the band). Rick was a member of Tom Thumb whose 1970 Ludgate Hill EP on HMV is regarded as one of New Zealand's first prog releases

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Lea Maalfrid - vocals

Ramon York - vocals, guitar, synthesiser

Ross Muir - bass

Mark Jayet - drums

Andre Jayet - Mellotron, synthesiser, keyboards, drums

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