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Poços & Nuvens - Clouds On The Road CD (album) cover

CLOUDS ON THE ROAD

Poços & Nuvens

 

Symphonic Prog

4.02 | 10 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Poços & Nuvens (wells & clouds in portuguese) is a prog band form Santa Maria, state of Rio Grande Do Sul, at the extreme south of Brazil. The people in there have their very own culture and history, with much influence of their spanish speaking neighbors of argentina, uruguay and paraguay. This group in particular does a great job unifying symphonic prog rock with popular music from their region. That is more evident when concerning their acoustic stuff, but not only. I had never heard of them before I got this live album recommended by a friend. It was one of 2013´s best surprises so far.

For a live album I found the recording quality to be nothing short of excellent, with every instrument and voice very well mixed and balanced, you can hear everything. The musicians are outstanding, showing great musicanship and versatility through the whole 73 minutes CD running time. Among the members we have a girl who plays some mean violin and one of the guitarrist also doubles on very good flute, providing the basic sound of guitar/keyboards/bass/drums with fantastic dynamics and variations. Most of the songs are also excellent stuff, much in the vein of the classic bands fo the 70´s (Yes, Jethro Tull, Kansas and ELP comes to mind while listening). That latter feature extends even into the lyrics, with much "hippie idealism" onto them. The only thing that really bugs me are the vocals: not bad, but just too plain and weak, miles away from their stunning instrumental prowness. That something seems to plague almost every prog band in Brazil: they probably think that anyone who can carry a tune can be a singer. On the folky, acoustic parts, maybe they can, but with the more elaborated, electric parts, where the demands of a technical vocalist with a wider range is evident, this is sorely missing. But that´s about the only glinch I could find and it doesn´t spoil the overall greatness of their work at any moment.

There are no real highlight here, all the tracks work very well. Some are better than the others, dependending on your personal taste, but none is weak. Personally I loved the longer tracks like Incenso E Chuva and Poços E Nuvens where tha band could exercise their obvious virtuosity with more freedom, but without causing any boredom to the listener.

All in all I found Clouds On the Road to be an excellent album: a tight band playing excellent music with a perfect production and astonishing perfomances. Their mix of symphonic prog rock and brazilian southern folk made their music sound both original and familiar at the same time. A very nice surprise that deserves a full 4 star rating (it would be 5 stars, if they had a better singer). Highly recommended!

Tarcisio Moura | 4/5 |

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