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Congreso - Terra Incógnita CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

3.47 | 32 ratings

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3 stars An old folk band from Chile!

This South- American country has a lot to offer musically speaking, they have several iconic bands from the seventies that have inspired so many newer acts from the same country, and from other countries, especially the ones who speak Spanish. When someone says "a progressive rock band from the seventies and from Chile" it is kind of mandatory to think about Los Jaivas, that's normal due to its brilliance and legacy; but there was another huge band called Congreso whose importance was big in the Chilean scene.

Congreso was formed in the late 60s and despite it is mainly a folk band, they also took some psychedelic elements that were combined in some albums with those folk and traditional elements. The music is mostly acoustic and I bet some people may doubt about their progressiveness, and it is understandable due to its evident folk and native sound. They released a debut album in 1971 and two years later in 1973 they created "Terra Incógnita" the album I will review.

The album features fourteen compositions, all of them are short (3-4 minutes) making a total time of 45 worth listening minutes. The opener track "Dónde estarán" is an excellent song which in my opinion works as a perfect example of the music of Congreso. Those folk elements, acoustic guitar, flute, etc., and the sweet vocals are actually part of that Chilean sound of the 70s, that was also used by other non-progressive acts such as Inti Illimani or Quilapayun.

A thing I like about this album is that despite its fourteen tracks, you don't feel tired because all of them are short and consistent, there is not a fracture on the music, no highs and lows, in a few words, I believe you like it or not, I mean you will not say "I liked two or three tracks" no, those songs comprehend a body and this time you either like the complete body or simply dislike.

In music, personally speaking, I don't pay much attention to the words and lyrics, however I like Congreso's lyrics, they are beautiful and disarming at the same time, representing the life in Chile and the personal thoughts of the band. "Tus ojitos" is a track I love singing, one of my favorite also because of the flute sound.

"Juego" is another beautiful track, one of the proggiest ones without a doubt, the bass, flute and other string instruments compose a wonderful atmosphere in where you can close your eyes and enjoy what is happening inside your mind. At half the song there is a cello who adds a dramatic sound, later drums enters and there is also a guitar solo. "Quenita y violin" is a short instrumental track, but sometimes you just need a minute to show what your music is about, and yeah, this is another example of the traditional folk sound of Congreso and Chilean folk in general.

My favorite tracks besides the previously mentioned are: "En Río perdí la voz", "Los maldadosos" and "Canción de reposo". There are in my opinion no fillers in this album, and actually no weak tracks, though of course there are a couple I enjoy less, but anyway remember that body structure I mentioned, well I like it.

Terra Incognita is an album I like and really enjoy when I listen to it, the thing is that I don't use to listen to it frequently because it is not my favorite type of music. If you are a folk lover then you should totally listen to Congreso, if you are familiar with Los Jaivas and traditional Chilean music then you know what I am talking about, if not, I invite you to explore this side of music, no matter its prog content, which in my opinion exists, but does not predominates here. My personal grade would be four stars, but for PA I believe 3 is more accurate.

Enjoy it!

memowakeman | 3/5 |


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