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Triumvirat - Mediterranean Tales CD (album) cover

MEDITERRANEAN TALES

Triumvirat

 

Symphonic Prog

3.62 | 163 ratings

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AtomicCrimsonRush
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
3 stars Triumvirat stamp their authority on the prog scene of the 70s.

Triumvirat's debut "Mediterranean Tales" launches with an epic multimovement suite Across The Waters that took up one side of vinyl in it's day. This track has its moments but not as good as some of the other works to come on subsequent albums. I like the Hammond solos by Jürgen Fritz as usual, but the missing factor is the vocalist Hans Pape is not as good as Helmut who joins later. Parts sound very dated though I love the psychedelic nuances on the opening track, with wind effects and trippy wah wah guitars. There is a rather exuberant melody throughout and it twists and turns enough to satisfy the average prog addict. It repeats motifs at the end previously heard but familiarity can breed contempt and I would rather it just spiralled into another direction rather than revisit old ground.

Eleven Kids is a pop track with quite weak vocals and one that you may want to skip. Next track of note on side 2 is a sombre piece with a strange beginning, and hyper pulsating keyboards making the atmosphere quite dark, E Minor 5/9 Minor/5. The instrumental works exceptionally well as all Triumvirat instrumentals do, and this music is rather bleak in comparison to the uplifting music of other albums. I like that motif on keyboard that comes in at about 2:30, very innovative and sounds so distinct, not at all like that other threesome everyone seems prone to mention in these reviews. The Hammond solo is absolutely terrific, so well executed and precise, making this one of the best tracks on the album. The end is sublime with minimalist piano. This is a very atmospheric piece, and it bursts out again towards the end when you think it is over returning back to the disturbing pulse metrical pattern again.

Another track worthy of mention is Broken Mirror, beginning with a piano, and then more layered keyboards. Hans Bathelt's drums are great especially the cymbal work. The song is as usual a work of virtuosity. The emphasis is on Fritz's keyboards. The time sig change after 2 minutes is delightful, the melody really takes off with a hypnotic riff, and amazing finger work on shimmering Hammond organ. Eventually lyrics are sung, with a fair amount of passion by Hans Pape. He is better here but still a bit raspy and off the note.

Overall the debut is a solid opening statement from one of the most innovative virtuoso German prog bands of the 70s.

AtomicCrimsonRush | 3/5 |

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