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Dracma A Fine Stormy Weather album cover
3.51 | 45 ratings | 5 reviews | 4% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1996

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Beating Life (7:04)
2. Portrait Of Falgars (1:48)
3. The Mask (8:36)
4. Inner Castle (10:04)
5. Arenys (2:57)
6. Hope (7:51)
7. Inside Out (11:06)
i) Silence
ii) Something Whispers

Total Time: 48:26

Line-up / Musicians

- Jordi Amela / keyboard, grand piano
- Rod Oliveira / drums
- Pedro Jimenez / lead voice
- Jordi Planas / bass, classical guitar
- Jordi Prats / electric, classical & twelve string acoustic guitars

Releases information

CD Musea Records FGBG 4188.AR (1996) France

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Grendelbox for the last updates
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DRACMA A Fine Stormy Weather ratings distribution

(45 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(4%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(49%)
Good, but non-essential (40%)
Collectors/fans only (7%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

DRACMA A Fine Stormy Weather reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Prog-jester

Being a Neo-Prog band to the core, DRACMA haven't managed to escape from some genre's cliches (for example, their album opens with the sounds of children laughing), but the result is very, very good! Pieces like 'Portrait Of Falgars" and "Arenys" are short instrumental pieces in best CAMEL traditions, while other tracks are 7-11 minutes long epics recalling Fish-era MARILLION (to compare with). And believe my Neo experience, this is REALLY that good! Not a clone-type (like RED SAND), DRACMA manages to balance on "making their own music"/"looking into past". The only reason why I gave them 4 stars instead of DESERVED 5 stars is vocalist's terrible accent - I make an enormous effort to bear it while listen (while the voice itself is very good).

Highly recommended - it's a rare Neo gem that won't disappoint neither fans of the genre nor any other open-minded progger

Review by Gerinski
4 stars Dracma's debut album "Limits" was already a very decent Neo-Prog product but it suffered of a weak drumming, improvable production and lack of originality, following the Neo-Prog cliches excessively. These three points were properly addressed in this their next album "A fine stormy weather", clearly a more mature, professional and distinctive record, already at a level to compete with the big international names of the genre.

Previous drummer Jose Luis Pacheco was replaced by Eduardo Camblor who delivers a much better playing, helped also by a much improved engineering. Incidentally the credits in PA as of today are wrong mentioning Rod Oliveira as the drummer (I believe he joined the band after this album had already been recorded). Everything sounds better and tighter, also the guitars and the vocals, although lead singer Pedro Jimenez retains a strong accent in the all-english lyrics. The keyboards and bass were already very good in "Limits" and they get also even better here. The music is still mainly keyboard driven but much more balanced, with all the instruments contributing with a strong performance.

At first we feel that the melodies and musical phrases are not as melodic and catchy as in "Limits", but after some spins we realise that this is in fact for good. The band does not stick so much to the Neo-by-the-book formula and, while this is still clearly typical Neo- Prog, the music is more distinctive and personal and less obviously derived from Fish-era Marillion, IQ, Pendragon etc.

The album contains 5 songs with lenghts between the 7 and 11 minutes plus 2 short instrumentals. The opener "Beating life" starts with a powerful intro of guitar and neo keyboard scales which quickly shifts to a soft 5/4 arpeggio and is then followed by many dynamic changes, a really good track.

"Portrait of Falgars" is the first short instrumental, a duet of acoustic and nylon guitars similar to some of Steve Howe's acoustic pieces.

"The Mask" is again very Neo in style, with many changes but well structured, not sounding like several fragments glued together, and very good playing by all the band members. The same comments are applicable to the next track "Inner Castle", this one more similar to Pendragon. Excellent bass here.

"Arenys" is the second instrumental, a beautiful song in classical style with piano and acoustic guitar and some cajon.

"Hope" has a very good instrumental intro followed by a soft guitar arpeggio, then developing into different moods, and the closer and longest track "Inside Out" starts softly with acoustic guitar and piano and develops once again into several good Neo-Prog sections.

If you like Neo this is highly recommendable. The possible criticism to this album is that except for the 2 instrumentals, all the other tracks are quite similar in style, all very good but not distinctive enough, even after some listens it is hard to distinguish which section belongs to which song. There is nothing really surprising or highly original, no masterpieces, but it is a very solid album and with really good musicianship.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars By the time of the ''Limits'' release Jose Luis Pacheco had already left Dracma and Eduardo Camblor had taken his place.In early 95' Mellow Records asked them to participate on the Genesis tribute album ''The river of constant change'' and the band did so, covering ''The Light dies down on Broadway''.As with the first album, the second one was already prepared at Jan Cadela Home Studio in early 96' with new drummer Rod Oliveira in the place of Camblor and bassist Jordi Planas also in the line-up, but never published on Mellow due to lack of communication.In search of a new label Dracma signed with Musea and the new work ''A fine stormy weather'' saw the light in June 96'.

The second album of Dracma offers longer and elaborate compositions of Neo/Symphonic Prog with mid-70's GENESIS vibes and still obvious MARILLION hints.The guitar texts are somewhere between STEVE ROTHERY and STEVE HACKETT with many interesting solos, while the keyboards have a nostalgic 70's feeling at moments with organ and pianos appearing here and there, while the synth parts remain a dominant force of Dracma's music.Highly atmospheric passages and melodious soundscapes remain among the band's preferences and there are also some uptempo runs with richer musicianship, based on angular synthesizer flights and sharper guitar runs.The pieces have also a fair dose of breaks, leading from more energetic themes to lyrical, laid-back textures with a sensitive edge.On the other hand everything in here seems unoriginal and recycled, while Jimenez'es voice remains highly accented, although his singing has a very moving touch overall.The most positive aspect though is that Dracma's compositions are definitely good, well-worked and often intricate with light symphonic movements and strong, memorable ideas.

''A fine stormy weather'' is a great listening for all fans of Neo/Symphonic Prog, who don't mind the lack of a strong personality in their menu.Extremely balanced album with few highlights but plenty of good moments.Recommended.

Latest members reviews

3 stars This is one of the most generic neo-prog albums I've listened to as there is nothing that stands out but it's far from a disaster, too. The band shows their neo-prog inclinations mainly in the instrumental playing and arrangements. This is an accessible not very complex music which reaches best ... (read more)

Report this review (#2857121) | Posted by sgtpepper | Friday, December 9, 2022 | Review Permanlink

3 stars One of the best Spanish Progressive Rock CD of the nineties. In view of the desert landscape at the time, not that it is extremely worthwhile. The truth is that delighted the ears of a generation hungry orphan of good national benchmarks. Remembering IQ, Marillion (early) or other groups Neo-Pr ... (read more)

Report this review (#367464) | Posted by David Saez | Wednesday, December 29, 2010 | Review Permanlink

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