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Tracklist: 1. Zobeida 3:00 2. Rock & Rolle 2:22 3. Anos 3:52 4. Los Ritos 3:02 5. El Ermitano 5:38 6. Trio 2:41 7. Espectros 3:17 8. La Otra Cara 3:56 9. Evocacion 4:12 10. Parentesis 3:34 11. Chacales 4:13 12. La Trama 3:54 All tracks: by Luis Colucci. Line-up: Luis Colucci - bass guitars; synthesizers Julian De Ambrosio - drums Damian Lois - flute Ignacio Lois - electric & acoustic guitars With: Francisco Huici - saxophone (on 2 & 9) Produced by Tanger. Recorded & mixed by Mario Sabino at "Nuevo Mundo" studios.
Prologue. "La Otra Cara" is the follow-up album to Tanger's eponymous debut, which was released in 2000. This CD is the third release by the Argentinean Progressive Rock label "Viajero Inmovil", which was previously well known as one of the established distribution / mail order companies in South America. To read the reviews of the label's previous releases, both of which are, IMHO, masterpieces, click here and here.
The Album. This all-instrumental album is full of surprises! All twelve of the compositions that are presented on "La Otra Cara" are very original, tasteful, and intriguing. All of them are of a classic character, though the album's opening track, Zobeida, which is the only composition of a pure Symphonic Art-Rock on it, is the most accessible and melodious among them. However, the level of complexity rises with each following track, as well as grows the consistence of sound. While Zobeida and Rock & Rolle (2) are of a moderate complexity, Anos and Los Ritos (3 & 4) are just merely complex pieces. Beginning with El Ermitano (5), the music on the album becomes wonderfully eclectic and highly intricate. Furthermore, most of the pieces that are located in the second half of the CD (i.e. beginning with track 7) are both extremely complex and intricate, as there are too few repetitions on them. On the whole, the album consists of the mixed, symphonic and heavy, structures. Only two tracks on it, the aforementioned Zobeida and Evocacion (9), are completely free of a harsh metallic sound. Another piece, Chacales (11), features only one heavy episode, which, moreover, is quite short. Structurally (which does not mean "compositionally", of course), most of the songs on "La Otra Cara" are really similar among themselves. However, I would never say that these songs are of the same stylistic concept as well. Certainly, it's because of the changeable level of complexity. Musically, Rock & Rolle, Anos, and Los Ritos (tracks 2, 3, & 4) represent an original blend of Classic Symphonic Art-Rock and Prog-Metal. El Ermitano and Trio (5 & 6) are about the same blend yet with elements of (just) Academic Music. The harmonious, 'classical' forms, as well as the atonalities that are typical for Avant-garde Academic Music, are present on both of the said and most of the following tracks on the album. All four of the remaining tracks, the contents of which consist of the album's predominant textures, namely Espectros, La Otra Cara, Parentesis, and La Trama (7, 8, 10, & 12), are free (at least almost free) of any repetitions. In that way, stylistically, they represent nothing else but Academic Music, or, to say more correctly, a blend of both, Classical and Avant-garde, forms of Academic Music, which is just built of the structures that are typical for Classic Symphonic Art-Rock and Prog-Metal. The frequent alternation of heavy and soft arrangements and kaleidoscopic changes of tempo and mood, along with the continuous use of complex time signatures, are typical for all four of the said compositions. Especially wonderful are such episodes where the riffing solos of electric and bass guitar sound, for instance, in fifth, while solos of flute cross them by seemingly impossible curved lines of atonal music. The drum parts sound unusual with regard to the basic soloing parts rather often as well. The solos and riffs of electric and bass guitars and passages of flute play a prominent role on the majority of the album's tracks. The parts of synthesizers are notable on Trio, Chacales, and La Trama (6, 11, & 12), and the solos of sax on Rock & Rolle and Evocacion (2 & 9). Two of those three tracks that are either completely free or almost free of a heavy sound, Evocacion and Chacales (9 & 11), are, in my honest opinion, the best compositions on "La Otra Casa". The first of them features seemingly endlessly developing, very diverse, and truly symphonic interplay between the amazing solos of acoustic guitar and fretless bass and, later, between them and solos of flute, sax, and electric guitar. The arrangements that are present closer to the end of this piece flow to the accompaniment of delicate sound of rhythm-section. Honestly, Evocation is one of the most wonderful pieces of contemporary Classical Music I've ever heard. Chacales is close to the intricate beauty (yeah!) of Evocacion almost in every aspect, though stylistically, it represents a real Spanish blend of Classical Music and Symphonic Art-Rock with just a few of the elements of Prog-Metal.
Summary. In the CD press kit, the music of Tanger has been for some reason compared to that of King Crimson and Jethro Tull, which is an absolute nonsense in both of these cases. It may well be that the Tanger flautist's main inspiration is Ian Anderson's playing. However, the same words can be said (have been said, in fact) about the majority (if not all) of contemporary flautists. The music of this band is unique by all means and can hardly be compared to anyone's. IMHO, this album should be a real feast for all the open-minded and profound lovers of music.
VM. August 15, 2002
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