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Arco Iris - Suite No. 1 CD (album) cover


Arco Iris

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Rainbow? No, Arco Iris!

Lately i´ve been digging more and more the exquisite music that comes from Argentina, which happens to be my favourite SouthAmerican country talking about progressive rock of course, the 70s especially was a decade that brough a lot of wonderful bands and the birht of promising musicians, some of those bands released one or two albums and dismembered, some others changed their musical style, in this case Arco Iris kept a similar line in that decade, a Jazz/Fusion style with a folkish touch, if im not wrong their self-titled album (first) was released in 1969, so we can say that Arco iris was one of the pioneers of progressive rock in Argentina, which is a relevant note in my opinion.

When i discovered the band i was surprised because i found that a man called Gustavo Santaolalla was a member of the band, in my country (México) he is a very known musician because he has done music for soundtracks of popular (and unpopular) movies, actually i think he has been nominated for the Oscar, yes do you recognize him? is the same guy who did the music of Babel last year, so that was actually something that caugh more my attention and wanted to listen to this band more.

This album Suite No 1 was the first of Arco Iris i listened and was released in 1971, they later released in 1974 their most succesful album in Argentina called Agitor Lucens V whch is highly recommendable, bu now i will talk about Suite No. 1, a rock fusion album which features 4 songs and a total time of 35 minutes of very nice music.

It kicks off with Suite No. 1 the longest song of the album and starts with a very soft sound of acoustic guitar and later on a delicate flute sound appears, after a short pause, the music begins again but this time with spoken words (in English), then the song presents some time changes but all in a nice soft line accompanied with vocals, the same Gustavo Santaolalla is the man who sings, at the final minutes of the song it becomes just a little bit stronger, but then it returns to the nice and soft flute - acoustic guitar music, in my opinion the song may have been shorter and the result would have been the same, you may get bored after 6 or 7 minutes.

Solo Tengo Amor shows a different face of the music, i dont know you but like in Italian prog scene, in the Argentinian in specific the 70s i find the vocals pretty alike with a characteristic style, you will hear it in this song, which may be considered as a poppish song due to the lyrics, but in the middle you will find a good guitar solo and nice harmonization, the song is kind of happy and the shorter of them all.

Una Tarde Mas continues with the style of the previous song, for me its a nice listening but actually i believe you may be bored with it, it is very calm and i think in the beginning it lacks of something, maybe lacks of strenght but then after a couple of minutes the show their jazzy influence and orientation that is very enjoyable, you will notice it when the drumming appears.

Y Yo Quiero is the last song of this album and the stronger, first of all you will hear a kind of dramatic starting, then the song itself becomes more and more interesting, keeping the jazz influences but in the lightier side of it (to give it a label), in the middle of the song the vocals appear again but stronger, then a sax and percussion along with bass appear and its what make this song different to the previous ones (and more interesting), then a killer guitar solo puts a different taste to the song

This album is by no means their best, it is just a regular album that i can enjoy if i listen to it once in a while, not that recommendable, but not bad either, i will give it 2 stars but i assure you that in this case a 2-star rating doesn´t mean the album is bad, i just think that fans and people who like to discover new bands may like it.

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Posted Thursday, February 21, 2008 | Review Permalink

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