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Experimental Quintet

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4 stars Experimental Quintet - under the name stands for one of the squandered opportunities for global career . The team was composed of professional musicians and worked at the Music Conservatory of Cluj. Their music based on free improvisation -based jazz -rock aesthetics. Unfortunately, the conditions in the home country not allowed to succeed at what they deserved.

In several places on the Internet you can find mp3-album released allegedly still in the 70 '- " Amintiri despre viitor " (literally . The memories of the future) . In fact, it is a conglomeration of radio recordings , never released as a regular album.

Thus, the presented plate is first recorded by the band in all of its activities . Gentlemen gathered after nearly 40 years of re- recorded old material plus a few new compositions . Without a doubt very interesting proposition for jazz-rock fan. The album which you can safely put next to the greatest works of Western European jazzrock .

Report this review (#1307558)
Posted Friday, November 14, 2014 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Formed in the city of Cluj in 1973 and originally named Experimental Quartet, this Romanian group consisted of Valentin Farcas on guitar, Nicolae Bucaciuc on bass, Eugen Tunaru on keyboards and Nicolae Delioran on drums, before adding flutist Gheorghe Marcovici to the line-up and becoming the Experimental Quartet.This formation lasted until 1977, when several members moved abroad.Farcas continued the legend of the band with a vastly different crew under the name of Experimental Q2, apparently until early-80's, when he emigrated to Germany.After several tracks surfaced in the net from a rumored, never released album around 1975 and a huge interest in this obscure group, in 2010 Nicolae Bucaciuc gathered Farcas, Tunaru and new drummer Dominic Csergo (original drummer Nicolae Delioran had passed away) to reform the band.Two years later reworkings on the band's old material along with a few new tracks were released as ''Atlantis'' on the Romanian label Soft Records.

An excellent and 100% progressive band, Experimental Quintet had to be among the best well-kept secrets of 70's East European Prog, fortunately this album would unleash the majesty and talent of this magnificent group.I challenge you to encounter any bands from the 70's to play diverse Prog Rock with symphonic, jazzy, spacey and folky vibes with a succesful result.Because Experimental Quintet did so and ''Atlantis'' is the best proof.An accomplished group of musicians, which could combine spacey keyboards with psychedelic and folky overtones and then suddenly perform Heavy/Romantic Symphonic Rock in the best Italian tradition or put up a fest of jazzy workouts in a Prog Rock package.Although the present material was more recently recorded, the 70's spices are all over the place, from the delicate, vintage flute parts to the Teutonic-sounding synthesizers and from the dominant presence of the organ to the careful and refined sound of the guitar.The arrangements are largely instrumental, passing from soft electric textures to powerful executions with keyboard and guitar interplays or from rural soundscapes with the flute in evidence to supertight Fusion exercises.I can also hear a certain psychedelic influence in most of the tracks, which is very well adapted by the stylistical flexibility.Tracks are quite long with beautiful thematic changes, a very strong jazzy content, big time Classical flavors with an Italian aura and some occasional breaks into Heavy Rock.

Releases like this one make me wonder how many bands have been sacrified in the name of commercial failure by record companies or get buried by their own, amateur profile during the 70's.Imagine that these tapes would propably remained dusted on a shelf if it wasn't for internet.Superb, technical and grandiose Prog Rock of an excellent quality.Highly recommended.

Report this review (#1361880)
Posted Wednesday, February 4, 2015 | Review Permalink

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