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El Tubo Elástico - En Directo CD (album) cover

EN DIRECTO

El Tubo Elástico

 

Post Rock/Math rock

4.00 | 3 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Steve Conrad
4 stars Intense, Intricate Space Jams

en directo

"en directo", meaning live, online, direct- is a riveting performance by Spanish band EL TUBO ELÁSTICO, in Spain, December 2015.

All but the first track, "Impala", are tracks from their debut, eponymous release (2015); the band explains that they used "Impala" as a warm-up track, that over time developed into the finale for their sophomore release in 2018.

Ironically

As I write this, the world is in the grip of a pandemic viral threat, and live performances are brought to a screeching halt. So this album, and the accompanying video capture on Youtube, are emblematic of the kind of "en directo" music available to us- through a video screen.

EL TUBO ELÁSTICO

This "Post-rock/Math-rock" band based in Jerez de la Frontera (Cádiz, Spain), has been a going concern since the late 1990's (which means the members may have discovered the fountain of youth, if you ask me!), on hiatus from 2006- 2012, and reinvigorated with the entry of new bassist Alfonso Romero, and sharpening their ensemble skills ever since.

No Superstar Showtime

For me, that's part of what makes this band great, and the release of this live album- plus the live capture available- worthwhile.

One can see the fruit of years of working together and the consequent welding into a solid ensemble- utilizing a bone- crushing, strong rhythm section of drummer Carlos Cabrera and bassist Alfonso Romero, plus the subtle, sophisticated interplay of guitarists Vizen Rivas and Dani Gonzalez- who both add textures and rhythms and tonalities that complement, work off of, and fill in for a full, complex band sound. There is judicious use of synthesizers as added soundscapes as well.

Watch the Video

It's instructive and enlightening to see how wankery is eschewed- each member shows up and is a vital part of the whole- and it's the whole that is the focus, not the flash and glamor of speed/dexterity/fret magic.

The Music

I wasn't particularly concerned with how these compared with the album versions; rather I was intrigued by how subtlety, intensity, starts, stops, fills, band communications, builds, and subsidings were coordinated.

They were coordinated! Well coordinated. Someone told me once that pros are people who make the complicated look easy- and this EL TUBO ELÁSTICO does, masterfully.

This is music that leans a great deal on repetition with variations that grow and develop into new realms, subside, change, and develop again. I hear a lot of psychedelic and space music in these tracks.

My conclusion

It's an excellent, recommended live album. I don't resonate as strongly with this particular type of progressive music as with some others, and will thus rate it on my respect for and affection of this band, as well as the strength of the live performances. 3.5 spacey stars rounded up to 4.0.

Steve Conrad | 4/5 |

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