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Violeta De Outono - Espectro CD (album) cover

ESPECTRO

Violeta De Outono

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.98 | 127 ratings

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tszirmay
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This recommendation by a few qualified reviewers caught me a bit off guard, needing to have a few spin throughs and in different environments as it didn't quite click right away. As many prog fans know, there are some albums out there that like to play the coy and shy routine, like some dollied up vamp, seductive but distant. When I cranked up the volume and went for a long drive, the true nature simply appeared and seduced me. There is a few quirks that needed getting used to, such as the very typical Brazilian melodicism and the suave rhythmic softness their music is famous for. So I followed my tried and tested method of just concentrating on the delicious bass lines, here provided by the slick Gabriel Costa and let the soloists sort of groove over the arrangements. That's when I noticed that keyboard man Fernando Cardoso is a big Hammond fan who literally abuses the churning keys throughout, much to our agonizing delight. Leader Fabio Golfetti sings and plays the electric guitar in a very lyrical, breezy style that gives their brand of space psychedelia a warm tropical feel, while drumming in Brazil is the second national pastime after the 'jogo bonito' and Jose Luiz Dinola does not disappoint.

'Formas-Pensamento' starts the voyage with a vivacious 8 minute+ romp that exposes all the above mentioned endowments. A highlight track that stamps the disc with immediate credentials, you just know this is going to be fun ride. Nothing fancy-shmantzy or over produced, just plain old brilliant music by four qualified musical talents, nothing more nothing less. Probably my favorite track here, but it serves just perfectly the vibe that permeates this unsuspecting and unassuming disc. 'Montanhas da Mente' has a massive melody close to McDonald-Giles' 'Is she Waiting?' , some sublime guitar picking in that airy style with Senhor Hammond in tow, like a prog version of the Allman Bros, a shorter but to the point piece that is most agreeable melodically and leaves a feelgood sentiment. 'Dia Azul' is equally succinct but is loaded with stunning little details, such as a lush bass passage, some effects on the vocals and usage of electric piano. Nice indeed. The swirling axe solos sting with sunny delight, squealing like gulls in the ocean air, the bass washing the undercurrent and enough mood changes to keep one guessing. 'Ondas Leves' is another extended piece in the 7 and a half range, typically sprawling and languorous, showing a seductive form of space prog that has a very feminine appeal, I must say it because it's really true, very sensual and sexy music . The rippling e-piano gets me in the mood every time, the main melody is invasive and cuddling. Again, I find myself fixated on the fluid bass that fuels my obsession as it takes the instrumental mid-section into symphonic overdrive, hinting at Sebastian Hardie/early Camel classics, Golfetti showing off some deft skills on the guitar. 'Claro Oscuro' rages surprisingly, with manic bass and frolicking drums, churning organ and rhythm axe phrasings counterbalanced by fragrant vocals. This juxtaposition of soft and suave with flexible and passionate is what makes this music click, yet it takes time to seep into the soul. Check out the rifling organ solo, its brief but to the point. The instrumental section is simple superlative. 'Algum Lugar' has another divine bass driveshaft, a rather obvious vocal line, lavish piano stepping into play, more liquid guitar playing, nothing bruising or harsh but very much a team spirit that exudes the charm. The serene 'Anos-Luz' serves almost as a companion piece with wah-wah pickings giving the piece some spice, while still maintaining the leisurely pace that characterizes the style of this group. It may seem fluffy but it's not really, a subtlety that is only achieved with a cranked volume and focusing on that darn bass. The title track is a minute and 11 seconds long, deranged cymbals amid odd sonics and supple drum rolls, only in existence so as to introduce the indolent 'Solsticio', a dreamy exercise in experiencing the sunset of a set list, incorporating some very fiery soloing from the e-guitar and some dazzling electric piano (I am a sucker!) which is to pant over repeatedly. The sound is warm and non-fussy with very little artifices, preferring sizzle over dazzle, perhaps a tad too laid back for the hard-core fan but hey, its beautiful music whichever way you look at it.

There is a nearly 10 minute bonus track , recorded in 2010 with drummer Fred Barley and sung in English ,'News from Heaven' stays true to the style regardless of the idiom, wallowing sounds that reach for the skies, orchestral and splendorous recalling a simpler time when laptop computers were still drug-inspired daydreams. It starts out flowery like an early 70s west coast tune, only to evolve into a large guitar blowout with Golfetti bending, screaming, shrieking like a man possessed. The nimble bass work escorts in a stretched Hammond foray that would make Rollie or Lord drool with envy. When the two soloists combine we are brought back to that wonderful Allman feel again, the finale symphonic bliss at its best. A surprise that took me a while but I got there, a lovely disc , ideal for any breezy occasion.

4.5 Samba ghosts

tszirmay | 4/5 |

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