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Kotebel - Ouroboros CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.97 | 123 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars I had luck to get this album quite close to the release date. Thanks to the archives I saw it on the new album list, clicked into the band site, and realized that the band previous album, 'Omphalos' is now pressed on (limited addition) vinyl! I grabbed it immediately, and added the new one into the shipment. And how I glad I didn't wait too much before purchasing and listening, (what unfortunately does not occur very often, because of reasons such as lack of time, money, and endless wishlist).

The album deals with ancient, mythological creatures. Each track is dedicated to one creature. The album art work contains clear paint of every animal, with a short explanation. It is really rewarding to realize how well they manage to describe each creature, in composition and execution, in an all-instrumental album, without any lyrics or vocals to emphasize.

The best example and the prominent composition may be the title track 'Ouroboros'. To describe this ancient cycle snake, the musical form of theme and variations have been chosen. The variations spread between many styles and moods, from jazz to funky/disco, from quite to stormy, and the theme is worth repeating on. This track alone is worth purchasing the album. BTW anyone who wish to get to know this musical form of theme and variations in the prog neighborhood, recommended to listen to Andrew Lloyd Webber's variations on the famous Paganini theme.

Another composition, and a very atmospheric one is 'Behemoth', featuring heavy mellotron- like, acoustic guitars and wonderful guitar soloing, in slow, heavy mood. Personally I would like to have more drums presence in the mix and probably also in playing. And I'm not a person who would normally complain about lack of drums.

Most of the compositions are written by Carlos Plaza, the keyboardist of this band, (along with his wife Adriana). One exception is 'Satyrs', written by guitarist César García Forero. While Forero's compositions does not stand on the same league as Plaza's ones, nevertheless I can't reject too much to the excellent heavy bass and guitar riffs, the amusing tango in the middle, or the funny d-tuned organ in the background.

Kotebel does not feature in this album flutiest and female vocalist, as in the previous albums. While they manage very well to make an excellent instrumental album, still I missed the flute here, especially when played by very skilful flutist Omar Acosta. There is some flute - like sounds performed on the synths, but definitely it's not the same.

But this absence does not disturb too much to the final results, especially for those who don't know (yet?) the entire discography of this band. The overall execution, sound and production is better than before, the keyboards work is tighter, and guitarist César García Forero gets a larger room and utilize it very well. Overall this album is much more groovy and rockier than the previous. So in addition to everyone else, I would recommend it particular for those of you who did not feel comfortable with the classical attitude of the previous albums, as reflected from some Omphalos reviews here.

In my opinion, Kotebel is one of the few who manage to deliver a fresh, up-to-date, original progressive rock.

ShW1 | 4/5 |


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