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Haddad - Ars Longa Vita Brevis CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.59 | 20 ratings

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Prog-Folk Team
3 stars The title of this album is an expression credited to Hippocrates loosely meaning "art is long, life is short". Life may be short but the Haddad family knows that music can span and link generations. Here the group has attained a level of maturity and comfort with their broad influences, from 30s swing to 60s pop to modern progressive, combined into a palatable deliverable. If their output could only reflect the excitement inherent in their cultural fusion, they might be better known. Well, this is prog after all, so perhaps not.

One of the weaknesses here is the use of not one references to American cultural and political phenomena in "Roma Atomica", which is otherwise an intriguing cross of MOODY BLUES, CHICAGO, and ALAN PARSONS. Contrast this to the radio ready "Reddish Bonfire" which eclipses any sell out inferences with its melancholy air and yet uplifting melody. The best of the ambitious long pieces is the album closer "Dança Das Águas", which is also the most overtly symphonic piece, even as it includes Zezito's lovely sax and plaintive guitars from Leandro Haddad. CAMEL and QUIDAM are conjured in some of the best passages. In general, Haddad slavish attachment to somewhat tacky detrimental to any claim to excellence, but they are clearly working on it. Also, they don't have a lot of tracks where the vocal and instrumental prowess are on display simultaneously.

An improvement on earlier efforts, "Ars Longa Vita Brevis" takes the long view of its art and music, gently unfurling a pleasant if only moderately engaging legacy that nonetheless aims to outlive a lot of what we hear today.

kenethlevine | 3/5 |


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