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(51 min, Viajero Inmovil Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Bazar des los Milagros 7:52 2. El Nuevo Testamento 3:40 3. Bituca 4:31 4. Para Daniel 4:27 5. Transeuntes 3:00 6. La Muerte y la Mirada 6:32 7. La Caida 7:48 8. Reflectiones Sobre la Soledad 3:43 9. Tema de Amor 2:17 10. Tema de los Titulos 2:23 11. Tema de Amor-II 1:24 12. Tema de Final 3:22 LINEUP: Litto Nebbia - keyboards; drums; vocals Daniel Homer - guitars, bass Jorge Gonzales - contrabass Nestor Astarita - drums With: Mirtha Defilpo - female vocals Gustavo Moretto - trumpet
Prolusion. The second LITTO NEBBIA LP, "Bazar des los Milagros", is finally reissued on CD - three years after the group's other two albums became available in digital format.
Analysis. While listening to "Bazar des los Milagros", I find myself sometimes comparing this album to Manfred Mann's Earth Band's mid-'70s work or, to be more precise, their vocal-based creations from that period. Above all, there is a certain stylistic similarity, as the music is something halfway between symphonic Art-Rock and quasi Jazz-Fusion, with organ, mini-Moog and electric piano playing an important role almost throughout. For another thing, while most of the music is centered round vocals, the tunes show good thematic development, their instrumental backgrounds being never monochromatic. The principal distinctions include the absence of a vivid rock component (taking a poke at Daniel Homer who pays too much attention to his acoustic guitar - for sure, often to the detriment of its electric counterpart), the vocals (Litto's singing has always stood out for its identity), and the emotional palette (which is in this particular case painted exclusively with light, optimistic colors). No, I don't mean the over-flat emotional line as such is a shortcoming. What really disturbs me is that there is generally a distinct lack of mood changes on "Bazar des los Milagros". Whether for good or bad, I've just sketched the substance of all the tracks from the original LP, though of course, to a greater degree these observations concern the ones featuring lyrical content. As to the songs' peculiarities, I won't be slow in pointing these out to you. El Nuevo Testamento, Para Daniel and Reflectiones Sobre la Soledad, while being not without transitions, all come across as complicated ballads - perhaps because their speed is either slow or moderately slow, and also due to the extremely transient character of their instrumental interludes. The latter is a piano-laden tune, in places reminding me of the title track of Genesis's "A Trick of the Tail". La Caida, Transeuntes and La Muerte y la Mirada, each varies in pace, though only the former of these three can boast:-) of possessing some more or less truly large-scaled instrumental maneuvers, thus noticeably surpassing the ballad-like tunes. The two instrumental cuts from the original LP, the title track and Bituca, both feature female choir vocalizations whose ethnic Latin American nature imparts some additional colorations to the style. The latter begins with acoustic guitar passages bringing to mind the name of Steve Hackett, but the resemblance disappears as soon as the other instruments join. This CD reissue includes five previously unavailable tracks, all being instrumentals, ranging from one-and-half to three-and-a-half minutes. Kind of benefit performances for Litto, Tema de Amor-I and -II, are both symphonic keyboard pieces with nice string arrangements, whilst the remaining two, Tema de los Titulos and Tema de Final, are much in the same style as the 'vinyl' tunes and are among the highlights of the CD. Nonetheless it is the longest two tracks, the title number and La Caida that are of the greatest progressive value.
Conclusion. Now, the way of this Argentinean ensemble is almost like an open book for me: A very strong debut album, "Fuera del Cielo", followed by one that moves in more commercial direction, and then a final release, "El Venderor de Promesas", on which the group have restored all the positive qualities of their first recording, therefore having also re-established their reputation as one of the best bands that came out from South America in the '70s. A certainly less successful effort than any of the others by Litto Nebbia, "Bazar des los Milagros" is nevertheless a decent album and can be sincerely recommended at least to those vintage prog lovers who have no inclination to dive into the depths of the genre's researches.
VM: March 5, 2007
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