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Serú Girán - Serú Girán CD (album) cover

SERÚ GIRÁN

Serú Girán

 

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3.92 | 64 ratings

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Tycho
4 stars The first album of Serú Girán came after the band spent a whole year in Brazil preparing their new project - the ''brazilian feel'' can be heard in some tracks. The band arrived back in Argentina with their new album full of innovation (yes, even having a full backing orchestra was an innovation then, but they also wanted to have a tie in video released, telling the -perhaps surreal- story the songs narrated). Unfortunately, both the public and the specialized press had a hard time accepting the music, and it wouldn't be until their second album that they got consecrated as the 'Argentine Beatles'.

'Eiti Leda': This is certainly the highlight of the album, without a doubt, one of Charly García's top compositions. A symphonic rock masterpiece, which had already been heard - then named 'Nena' ('Baby') - during the 'Adiós Sui Generis' era. It starts with a really mellow intro showcasing a beautiful melody superbly delivered by García (''I want to see your face / Shining like a black slave / Smiling profusely / Far, far away from home / I don't have anybody to come with me / To see the morning / Nor to give me the injection on time / Before my heart rots off/away / Nor to warm these cold bones, baby'') who's joined by Lebón for the second verse. The song then changes tempo relaying a very colorful landscape of sounds, after which Aznar's bass kicks in, leading the song back to its mellow beginnings. The track ends with a bombastic synth-led instrumental showcasing an excellent orchestra arrangement. (The song really shined when played live - like most of Serú Girán's repertoire - as recorded for example, in the live album 'No Llores Por Mí, Argentina').

'El Mendigo en el Andén' ('The Beggar in the Platform') starts as a slow-paced guitar ballad with Lebón singing to us how ''I will always be / The beggar in the platform / Of the ghost town / Where the train never passes by''. But towards the end the orchestra kicks in accompanying our four musicians and prompting Lebón to change his stance and now shout ''I know you can love me!'' amid the fast paced instrumentation.

'Separata' is a short melancholic song, with a pinch of melodrama (''Something odd was happening to me at the hotel / I was alone, as alone a man sometimes has/needs to be / I knew that home, my home was far, far away from everything / And it would soon be time to get upstage to play / And perhaps / I didn't feel like seeing them / Like being with you all / And I stayed / Alone in my room / Reading about a bird / That flies and doesn't die''). Nevertheless it's beautifully delivered and has very nice melody.

'Autos, Jets, Aviones, Barcos' ('Cars, Jets, Planes, Boats'): This, an up-tempo track, sees García again relating the current situation he and the whole country was living: ''Cars, jets, planes, boats / Everybody's leaving'' sang Lebón, in clear allusion to all the people who were either forcefully- or auto-exiled due to the military regimen. This track shines as a real fusion song, and I'm not talking merely about Jazz-fusion (which is there) but one can't help but find brazilian rhythms - and even some candombe - in this drum-led song.

'Serú Girán': García wrote this song using senseless (nonsense) words... which would go on to shield not only the name of several songs but of the band itself. The song itself is masterfully orchestrated (even has some catchy passages), with many dynamic changes, specially when the nonsense lyrics start and stop. Another highlight of symphonic prog music.

'Seminare' is a pop ballad, perhaps the best known song by the band. García wrote it specifically thinking in Lebón's voice, and it shows. Despite its pop feel, it's a beautiful song with a nice piano/synth base, with the guitar and drums filling out their places perfectly. Its essentially telling the story of a guy trying to convince his girl to accept his humility and/or leave her pretensions behind. (''I give you bread, you want salt / Baby, I'm never gonna give you / What you are asking for/of me / I give you God, you want more / Is it that you will never understand / A poor guy?'').

'Voy a Mil' ('I'm Speeding'): As the title suggests this one is a rocker, which, much like 'Autos, Jets, Aviones, Barcos' ends with a fusion of candombe/brazilian rythms.

'Cosmigonón' is an interesting pure synthesized short instrumental which translates rather well the song's title to music (while not an actual spanish word, 'Cosmigonón' does remind one of the word 'cosmos'), thereby wonderfully closing an amazing album.

I rate this masterpiece 4.5 stars. It's really an excellent addition to anyone's rock collection, specially perhaps for symphonic rock fans.

Tycho | 4/5 |

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