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Ardo Dombec - Ardo Dombec CD (album) cover


Ardo Dombec


Eclectic Prog

3.53 | 30 ratings

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3 stars Infectious early prog rock grooves

You gotta hand it to the Garden of Delights label. These guys have rescued a fair deal of obscurities through the years, and this self-titled sole album from Ardo Dombec is indeed one of those lovable bastards. People with a penchant for the early years, and those of you who can muster an entire release without the omnipresent prog rock squire - also known as the synth, - you my dears are in for a real treat!

This is essentially young prog rock with emphasis on saxophone and flute driven melodies with a charismatic rhythm section blasting away in the back. Part of this rhythm thang is also the clean jazzy guitar that sounds like it was snipped off a Coltrane album from the preceding decade - albeit with a crunchier and more attacking touch to it.

No prog rock record without the odd solo, and whilst you do encounter some - either relegated by some inspiring electric guitar that breaks away from the jazzy mould - or perhaps a tooting saxophone akin to the lands of Canterbury and early British act Raw Material - the focus is still kept on the charismatic and deeply moving interplay between the different musicians here - keeping the feel democratic and tight as a rooster's poop-shute.

The moods of this record range from strangely alluring flute lead atmospheres that will have you dreaming of orangy Woodstock mornings with naked hippie chicks boogying float-some along to the breezy nature of the music - to muscular hard hitting rocking sections with turns and twists that pop and crackle like popcorn gone rhythmic.

Even the English vocals are of high quality - and here I am using the Germanic yardstick on which hundreds of similar artists have fallen on their respective backsides with a clumsy and archaic intonation well worthy of a guest appearance in 'Allo 'Allo. Here they back up the flow of the band without removing the focus from the impeccable music surrounding them. They're no match for the Gabriels, Stratoses and Hammills, but then again who really are?

Other musical flourishes that guest on this charming release are harmonica and though not an instrument per se, the infectious groove of this thing is indeed a musical proponent that needs accolade and attention, because what this album maybe lacks in progressive tendencies - it delivers in full force and quite deliberately through booty shakin' and head bumping grooves. 3.5 stars.

Guldbamsen | 3/5 |


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