Ragnar Kvaran – “Wrecked on Love”

While I’ve lamented about the closing of the Queen Anne location of Seattle’s Easy Street Records, fortunately its sister shop remains open in funky West Seattle, so Holly and I stopped by there the other day so I could view the vinyl while she hit some of the neighborhood boutiques. I ran across this record by Ragnar Kvaran in the New Arrivals bin and didn’t know what to make of it…. but that’s what smart phones are for, and while I found very little about the band one word stuck out: Iceland.

Now, any regular reader of this blog as well as anyone who has talked to me about music for more than five minutes knows I have a fondness (some might say obsession, others might say irrational fixation, though music retailers in Reykjavik would surely say deep appreciation…) for Icelandic bands, almost regardless of the genre. So this was an automatic purchase for me, especially since the photos seemed to indicate Ragnar and the boys played rock.

Wrecked on Love is described as an album on various websites and databases, but it’s more like an EP – there are only six songs on this 12″ (though it does play at 33 rpm). Released in 1981, the music is basically similar to the regular run of the mill pop rock of the early 1980s – a hint of new wave, songs about chicks, and the occasional saxophone.

 

Betty Ann let me get this straight,
Did you mean what that look just said?
‘Cause if I move and you refuse,
I’m sure that it would kill me dead.
— “Betty Ann”

Ragnar Kvaran reminds me of a slightly more rock version of Huey Lewis and the News from roughly the same time period. It’s not bad, and these would probably make for some enjoyable songs if played by a bar band, but there isn’t anything here that’s going to make you sit up and take notice.

Wrecked on Love is decent, workmanlike rock ‘n’ roll. And there’s not a damn thing wrong with that.

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