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Medina Azahara - XX CD (album) cover


Medina Azahara

Symphonic Prog

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3 stars After a rather weak album (Tanger) which featured no less than five syrupy ballads, Medina Azahara came back with another type of music.

This album starts on the hard-rocking mood. Even heavy when Todos Necesitamos A Alguien starts. This must be a kind of tribute to the Heep: powerful organ and a beat which immediately reminds of Easy Livin. It must have been ages that this band didn't release such a good song.

But actually, the first four songs are on the good side; but they are 100% in the Spanish hard-rock vein (similar to Ñu). The next is another rock ballad like they have recorded quite a few. Not very intelligent lyrics as usual, but the melody is not too bad and the trade mark of the band is also included in here: I mean a great guitar solo. The song (over six minutes) could have been cut down IMO.

The band sounds rather prog metal in the intro of Mundo Loco which also features a wild beat. As you can see, the treat is very much on the rhythmic side, but I wouldn't complain. I prefer this wall of sound instead of those useless love songs. Neo type synths and of course fine work from Paco Ventura (guitar).

Some songs are less appealing, like the AOR Campeones but to be honest, there weren't any of those so far. In comparison with some of their previous works, I have to admit that this album is far much better even if the love affair is back in business with Siempre Estarás En Mí (you will always be in me). Only to read the title is self explicit.

Here and there, the band is also flirting with the pop-rock genre which has been guiding their steps for quite a while by now, but they have the intelligence to add some upbeat rhythm and often displayed so catchy guitar riffs (El Umbral De Mi Locura and En La Noche De San Juán).

The synthetic sounds of some of their previous albums has disappeared as well and what we discover here is actually a good Spanish hard-rock album, even metal at times (El Día Que Yo Soñé). Knowing this, it is up to you to decide if you want to give this album a chance. But be aware that this has very little to do with prog.

To be fully honest I would say that this album is average (five out of ten), but I will upgrade it to three stars. Vamos!

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Posted Saturday, November 15, 2008 | Review Permalink

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