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Bacamarte - Depois Do Fim CD (album) cover

DEPOIS DO FIM

Bacamarte

 

Symphonic Prog

4.33 | 595 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Incredible prog masterpiece from Brazil in a time in which the genre was, generally speaking, unstable and futile in the predominant countries - "Depois do Fim" is an example of how wonderfully can the Latin American sensibility instill excitement and colorfulness into the stadardized scheme of symphonic prog. Led by guitarist Mario Neto's vision, Bacamarte created a repertoire full of varied moods and evocative sounds within a solid instrumental frame, occasionally augmented by the vivid interventions of a female vocalist (Jane Duboc, by name). Main influences obviously are vintage Yes, Bardens-era Camel, PFM and, during the most syncopated passages, fellow band Terreno Baldio, but this is clearly not a clone band, but an ensemble that delivers their own treatment of prog. Well, the opener 'UFO', despite the extraterrestrial connotaions of its title, is driven by the classical guitar during the development of its melodies and harmonic variations: all in all, this piece feels quite energetic while remaining persistently in its inherent lyricism. More explicitly energetic are the two following tracks, with the rhythm section introducing some jazzy vibes in order to add some special dynamics in their playful intensity. 'Smog Alado' comprises vocal parts, while 'Miragem' is focused on the instrumentla factor. Of the two, the latter is the most powerful and complex, including a delicious pastoral interlude between the vibrating main themes. 'Pássaro de Luz' is a delicate brief ballad performed by the duet of acoustica guitar and vocals - it is your typical bucolic ballad, with a simple yet tender main motif and some academic adornments between the vocal interventions. 'Caño', on the other hand, brings back some of the exciting vibe of tracks 2 and 3, although regretably it's too brief. This is the only regret, since it's got the rarirty of the flute player switching to accordion, which gives the main motif a kind of Tango-fusion magic to it - indeed, a big regret that this track should be so brief. It is then compensated by the 9 minute long 'Último Atardecer', a majestic number in which Bacamarte focuses on the romantic side of symphonic prog with dominant keyboards for most of its duration: in spite of its slow tempo, it's a genuinely vibrating number. The classical guitar interlude helps to bring some introspective moods between the main passages. 'Controversia', not unlike 'Caño', feels so terribly short with its less-than-2-minutes span, since it comprises an excellent set of weird dissonant motifs within a jazz-prog frame (the Terreno Baldio similarities come to mind), and that allows the band to explore not only their jazzy aspect but also their tasteful skill for creating constrained aggressiveness. These two tracks are too short, but you just can't hate them because their are so progressively lovely. The namesake track is a long sung progressive ballad that sort of retakes the overall mood of 'Último Atardecer', although with a lesser degree of majesty and leaving more room for Mario Neto's guitar to assume a leading role. It also includes an unexpected twist with the emergence of a fast brief jazz-oriented interlude. Actually, what would have happened if they had been determined to expand this interlude is that this track would have surpassed the magic of 'Último Atardecer', but due to its short timespan, 'Depois do Fim' remains a prog ballad with a middle variation. This is where the LP's official repertoire ends. The CD edition includes 'Mirante das Estrelas', an instrumental that builds on an exploration into the very heart of vintage symph prog: any South American prog expert can notice a parallel with Quantum's first album, but this is just a reference for this review. This piece does not bear that special magic common in the many highlights of the album, bu it certainly serves as an exciting closure, well-constructed and full of tasteful virtuousity. The album, as a whole, stands out as a continuing tour-de-force that travels through various ambiences with consistency and conviction. Bacamarte is a master band.
Cesar Inca | 5/5 |

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