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Govea Danza Urbana album cover
3.50 | 22 ratings | 6 reviews | 14% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2009

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Danza Urbana (6:19)
2. Continuum (3:39)
3. Claroscuro (7:44)
4. Convergentes (6:48)
5. Falsa Dicotomía (5:03)
6. Intersecciones (4:02)
7. Concertino * (6:59)

Total time 40:34

* Arrangement of 1st Movement of Concertino for Organ & Orchestra by Miguel Bernal Jiménez

Line-up / Musicians

- Salvador Govea / keyboards, co-producer
- Luis Arturo Guerrero / bass
- Victor Baldovinos / drums

- Luis Octavio Cervantes / guitar (4)
- David Sánchez / bass (1)
- Jorge Velasco / bass (7)

Releases information

CD self-released (2009, Mexico)

Thanks to Ivan Melgar M for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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GOVEA Danza Urbana ratings distribution

(22 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(14%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(32%)
Good, but non-essential (45%)
Collectors/fans only (9%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

GOVEA Danza Urbana reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Cesar Inca
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I've been a Little late at discovering this contemporary symphonic prog gem from Mexico, but how glad I am currently at having enjoyed listening to this album three times in a row during the evening of the day that the corresponding package arrived at my home. Govea's "Danza Urbana" is a lovely album that combines moderately robust sonorities and fluidly complex arrangements through which the inspired musical ideas benefit from a splendorous framework. Keeping in mind that Govea is a keyboard-based power-trio (named after the keyboardist's last name), the progressive collector's mind is tempted to assume that the band to be discovered must be heavily influenced by ELP and/or Triumvirat and/or Le Orme. The idea gets stronger as we find out that the band actually plays a Triumvirat cover in concerts? But no, Salvador Govea's composing style is more consistently leaning toward stylish melodic elaborations (a-la Wakeman) and gentle dissonant developments (a-la Minnear), plus a very evident sensibility for jazz and fusion cadences that reveal influences from Corea and piano-driven Emerson (early ELP). All in all, Salvador's own personal style remains precisely personal after years of academic training and nurturing eclectic musical loves, and that is crucial for the whole trio's sonic nucleus. Veteran drumming expert Víctor Baldovinos is the keyboardist's perfect partner (as a member of Iconoclasta, he got acquainted with Salvador during the latter's 5-year tenure in this band). His rhythmic creativity and Salvador's melodic richness state the two poles for the trio's scheme, while bassist Luis Arturo Guerrero fills the middle spaces with his dynamic playing. "Danza Urbana" took around a year to record and produce, which explains the presence of a couple of different bassists in the album's first and last tracks: eventually, as an actual physical item, "Danza Urbana" happens to be a very consistent symphonic album - further details from now on. The namesake opener starts with cymbals stating an agile 5/4 tempo that the whole ensemble soon follows in an excellent exposure of musical colorfulness. The agitation of melodic textures and clever counterpoints on the keyboards' busy developments is just brilliant, even when the swing gets a bit more straightforward. After a brief spacey interlude, the main theme is reprised for the exquisite finale. This exciting spirit is conveniently perpetuated by tracks 2 and 3, both having a dominating 7/8 tempo. 'Continuum' is a symphonic gift that has the band increasing the sonic warmth for the epic 'Claroscuro': this piece has to be an undisputed highlight of the present album, situated in an ordained place where complexity and energy are dealt with in benefit of the melodic development's inherent scheme. The psychedelic coda in the last 50 minutes is just great. The next track is also a highlight - 'Convergentes' lets go of the symphonic trend and moves towards prog-oriented fusion, with a rhythmic structure based on Mexican folk. The occasional presence of a lead guitarist allows the integral framework to gain certain aggressiveness, a very useful thing to enhance the musical expression on the run. For the last section, an eerie synth solo leads the way for a symphonic closure. 'Falsa Dicotomía' is more deeply rooted in the jazzy area: Baldovinos particularly shines on this one like the virtuosos drummer that he is. 'Intersecciones' is a piano solo that serves as a genuine Salvador Govea manifesto: chamber airs and jazzy flairs intertwine in this lovely, mostly relaxing piece. The album ends with 'Concertino', a progressive adaptation of an academic piece originally written by Miguel Bernal Jiménez (himself a revolutionary of Mexican religious music during the first half of the XX century): for once, you can notice the influence of the ELP pattern in Govea, but there is no cloning here but a lesson in epic atmospheres learned and assumed in an original way. My personal balance for the whole "Danza Urbana" experience is very positive; Govea is a real reference of the enthusiastic progressive imagination that has been and continues to be generated from Latin American countries.
Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Prog Specialist
4 stars A few months ago a friend and Prog Archives Collaborator suggested the Mexican band GOVEA to the Symphonic team of which I'm a member. After listening some samples we found that even when their music has huge Neo-Classical elements and for that reason could be in Symphonic, the jazzy and Mexican ethnic influences that made them so unique, needed to be considered, so we sent the band to the Eclectic Prog Team because of the versatility.

After a few days we all agreed that the best place for GOVEA was Symphonic Prog, so we added them and almost immediately the classically trained keyboardist and new friend "Salvador Govea" contacted me trough Facebook and offered a copy of "Danza Urbana", their instrumental debut, which I accepted with interest and curiosity.

The album reached Lima yesterday and since then I haven't been able to retire the CD from my car and house stereos. As I expected when I saw the formation of Keyboards (Salvador Govea), Bass (Luis Arturo Guerrero) and drums (Victor Baldovinos), the name ELP came to my mind, and as a fact they owe some of their sound to the famous trio, but GOVEA is much more. Even when the Modern Classical influences make them as powerful as the most famous Power Trios, the ethnic influence is perfect to create extremely beautiful melodies and the Jazz elements makes their music flow gently from start to end in an ocean of dissonances and complexity, but too much chit chat, so lets go to the album.

"Danza Urbana" (Urban Dance) is opened with the title song, and after a short drums and bass intro, Salvador Govea attacks us with a huge doze of Moog and electric piano, this guys don't save anything for the end they give their audience all what they have from the first second.

The complex Synth sections are perfectly supported by an extremely accurate "rhythm section" where Victor Baldovinos as a human metronome keeps a perfect timing while Luis Arturo Guerrero adds excellent sounds that cover the absence of guitar perfectly,excellent opener.

"Continuum" starts with a bass solo that soon is joined by the electric piano and the jazzy drumming of "Baldovinos", of course ELP comes again to the mind when the Moog is added, but GOVEA takes more risks, blending the past with the present in an allegory of sounds and radical changes.

Again I'm surprised by the capacity of the Mexican band to be extremely complex and elaborate but never loose the sense of melody, which allows them not to be complex foe the sake of complexity exclusively. Another wonderful track with an outstanding bass performance.

"Claroscuro" (Light-and-shades) begins with a keyboard and bass intro that soon is complemented by subtle percussion and leads to a mysterious passage with KING CRIMSON and influences, the piano performance is simply delightful, gives an impression of Neo Classical and Avant Garde blended with Progressive Rock of the best kind.

But as usual the band keeps changing and jumping from one genre to another, but always keeping the dark atmosphere intact, and to crown the song, an ethnic closing with synthesised flutes, again GOVEA hits the nail precisely in the head.

"Convergentes" (Converging) is a gem, GOVEA blends with delicacy the strong Neo Classical sound with Mexican Folk overtones and Fusion. Again the piano performance is simply breathtaking and God knows how this guys are able to mix this three different genres that honouring the name of the track, converge in a perfect fusion of moods that flows naturally and never sounds forced.

"Falsa Dicotomia" (False Dichotomy) is a piano based Jazz Fusion piece where apart from Salvador's excellent performance on the keys, Victor Baldovinos and Luis Arturo Guerrero really shine, incredibly not because an extravagant or pompous performances, but because the delicacy and subtle support of the piano , GOVEA works as a perfectly oiled machine but also show their individual dexterity when drums and piano create a delightful contrapuntal section while the bass remains unchanged, maintaining the main atmosphere.

"Intersecciones" (Intersections) is another piano based track that reminds me of ELP, specially of "Endless Enigma" but with a jazzy approach that makes it absolutely unique and hard to compare with almost any other band, after each song I like the album more.

The last track of "Danza Urbana" is the impressive "Concertino", based in the first movement of "Concertino for Organ and Orchestra" from the Mexican composer "Miguel Bernal Jimenez" who wrote a tribute to Baroque and Classical epoch musicians from a Mexican perspective. GOVEA manages to respect the original mood and atmosphere but provide a Progressive Rock new sound to the sober composition, the album is crowned with his track.

Normally I don't rate a debut album with 5 stars, because I always expect something even better for a second release, and this time I won't make an exception, so will go with 4 stars.......This is one of the occasions in which I wish we could rate an album with 4.5 stars, because "Danza Urbana" is not a perfect masterpiece, but incredibly close to that status.

I strongly recommend "Danza Urbana".

Review by memowakeman
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Excellent prog from Mexico!

It is always a pleasure to me when I review albums from my country, because I feel proud of the bands that are willing to create original and good music, and of course, willing to gain recognition here and all over the world, that is why the least I can do to help them is reviewing their music. This time the turn is for Govea, a trio composed by Salvador Govea on keyboards, Luis Arturo Guerrero on bass and Victor Valdovinos on drums (who sadly has left the band). So they gathered together a couple of years ago and created this first album entitled "Danza Urbana".

The first thing that caught my attention was precisely the name of Valdovinos, which is one of the best drummers I have ever known, he is the leader of Iconoclasta, an iconic Mexican prog band. Well, so then I decided to get this album and now I am happy with it. So "Danza Urbana" features seven compositions and a total time of 40 minutes.

It kicks off with "Danza Urbana", drums and bass first and seconds later keyboards appear and put the mood and the colours; worth mentioning that this band does not features guitars, so go figure. The communication between the instruments is wonderful, they start talking to each other until they create an intimate relationship that can be listened almost every moment.

"Continuum" is the shortest composition here. It starts with some bass lines and then keyboards appear, later drums join and the three of them begin to build up a structure. This song has very nice short passages, and the mixture of diverse keyboards make it good.

"Claroscuro" has a dark sound, atmospheric keyboards and bass for the first minute. Later changes, the dark feeling is still there but now the keyboards add new elements and textures, so there are different moods and emotions in a single song. Here you can fully appreciate the band's compositional skills that will make the listener enjoy what is listening to. I love that this is an instrumental band, first class symphonic prog with some avant-garde hints.

"Convergentes" is a happy song, full of sympathy that may put a smile on you. There are classical elements here, but later the band surprises us with a rockier sound, thanks to the apparition of a guest electric guitar played by Luis Octavio Cervantes. After four minutes there is a new change in the song, keyboards appear but now with a fusion style, bass and drums accompanying it, all create a calm but delicious sound.

"Falsa Dicotomía" follows a little bit that fusion style implemented in the previous track. The track is composed very intelligently, I mean, things are not that easy, but they manage to create a sound in which it seems to be easy, but well, the three of them are trained and talented musicians, so three prodigy minds together can't help but creating wonderful things.

"Intersecciones" is like the Salvador Govea solo track. Piano-based song with nice figures and textures that willmake you have a nice time. Though I honestly prefer the three-piece songs, this solo track has its great moments.

And finally "Concertino", which is an extraordinary arrangement of the "1st movement of concertino for organ and orchestra" composed by Miguel Angel Bernal Jiménez. The sound here reminds me of ELP and also some Italian symphonic bands of the 70s. Govea uses those old elements and translate it to the actual scene, so we can appreciate some kind of new-retro-prog.

What a great debut of Govea, a new reason for me to be proud about Mexican progressive rock. I strongly recommend it especially for those who like symphonic instrumental prog. My final grade will be four stars.

Enjoy it!

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
3 stars To begin with, the cover artwork of Govea's `Danza Urbana' is terrific! Guys in the band, please consider putting this album out on vinyl!

A very lazy comparison of this band would an occasionally spacier sounding E.L.P with added fusion elements, but that would be underselling them a lot. It lacks the truly bombastic elements of the above mentioned band, and there's a jazzy looseness to parts of the playing that makes it stand on it's own. It also reminds me in a few places of the Pierre Moerlin's Gong too.

I'll get my slight grumbles out of the way first! The album production is perhaps a little too pristine and clean sounding, as to me it highlights how average some of the digital keyboards/synths that band uses sound. I found this quite distracting on some parts of this album, but not enough to dismiss it altogether. There's also a few brief sections that are a little underwritten or underdeveloped, leading to a bit too much repetition of some themes. This again is only a minor complaint, because the majority of the album is of a high quality.

Looking over the contents, the title track has some addictive spacey solos, but a truly horrible cheesy middle section that sounds like a fair/circus ride that makes me cringe. It's probably meant to me amusing and comical, but to me it really almost ruins the good stuff on the rest of the track.

`Continiuum' has similar spacey solos in amongst the electric piano sections, and the Mellotron sound that shows up sounds much better than many of the others synth sounds on this album. Great varied drum patterns that speeds up and slows down the music is another highlight of this one. Short little number at just over three minutes, but not too bad at all.

`Clarosecuro' is a slightly darker track, though some of the keyboard themes repeat a little too often. Very mysterious second half that builds nicely before those repeated keyboard sections again. This reminds me most of Gong, no bad things at all.

Fourth track `Convergentes', a wonderful piano-dominated track with some very fusion- heavy sounding electric guitar solos. A floating synth solo near the end reminds me slightly of the more restrained Ozric Tentacles moments. Probably my favourite on the album!

Very laid back and jazzy piano on `Falsa Dictomia', this track slowly builds in urgency throughout the second half. Great track, and gets your head nodding along very quickly!

`Intersections' is another joyful sounding piano-led track, if a little simplistic and repetitive. Has a few frantic E.L.P style moments in the second half.

`Concertino' is severely let down once again by those average, hollow sounding digital keyboards/synths, that make the grander moments the track aims for sound very weak and thin. Some great ideas though.

`Danza Urbana' gets better with every listen. The three band members are all very proficient players, and show so much potential. I truly hope this won't be their only album, the prog field has numerous `one hit wonder' bands that made only one album and vanished. These guys are too good for that to happen. They also have a live DVD that I'm very keen to check out and see them in action!

Perfect undemanding late-night prog played with skill and passion!

I had to give it a 3 star rating, but it's really 3 and a half!

Review by b_olariu
3 stars actualy 3.5

Govea is a young symphonic prog band from Mexico taken the name from the main composer and the master of the band keyboardist Salvador Govea. They put so far 2 albums, first named Danza Urbana releasesd in 2009. This trio who plays some very intreguing instrumental symphonic prog with jazzy overtones, sometimes very similar with ELP from Tarkus period specialy in Concertino. (Arrangement of the First Movement of Concertino for Organ and Orchestra by Miguel Bernal Jiménez). The album is quite intresting from the cover art to the music, Govea really manage to come with some refreshing arrangements in prog music. Specially the great amount of diversity in keyboards arrangements make them so unique, really almsot original in places, that is something for today prog rock music. The pieces flows from more up tempo to slow space symphonic prog combined with jazzy elements here and there. The title track, Falsa dicotomía and Concertino are the best, the rest are ok too. Salvador Govea is a great keyboard player who have a big contribution on this album, the most important, even the drumer has some share to, and put Govea on the map of prog rock in a very good manner. I definetly like this first album, thay know to play and aswell to compose intresting passages that worth to be investigated by any prog rock listner. 3.5 actualy, not quite a 4 because of couple of pieces who were little boring but not band, specially Claroscuro. A band to keep an eye on for the future.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Salvador Govea is the mastermind behind this Mexican band.Govea had played with prog bands Similares y Conexos and Metaconciencia during mid- to late-90's and also had a short career as a member of veterans Iconoclasta at the dawn of the millenium.After leaving Iconoclasta he studied composition and in 2007 he formed this project with Iconoclasta/Muros De Agua drummer Victor Baldovinos and bassist Ernesto Mendoza.Mendoza left after the first gig to be replaced by Luis Arturo Guerrero and this new trio recorded and released indepedently Govea's debut ''Danza urbana'' in 2009.

Quite reasonably the compositions are led by Salvador Govea's keyboard ideas, drawing influences from Classical Music, Jazz and Rock.So the listener will be captured in the storm of these influences, which have a strong E.L.P. vibe and often they remind of Brazilian band DIAPASAO.The compositions of Govea are interesting and very versatile, far from boring keyboard/bass/drums trios.Plenty of piano passages, either having a jazzy approach or Classical inspiration, bearing down the rhythm section of Baldovinos and Guerrero, strong symphonic tracks with lots of sudden breaks, intricate melodies and bombastic moments, even some hypnotic Avant Garde soundscapes can be found in this release.Salvador Govea's performance is more than satisfying, this is a man with talent, delivering strong piano improvisations, grandiose organ solos and atmospheric synthesizer lines.A couple of tracks though do not work very well among the better ones, ''Claroscuro'' is too long and monotonous with atmospheric synths which fail to impress and both ''Falsa dicotomía'' and ''Intersecciones'' are heavily depended on Govea's piano with little else going on.

Interesting debut with a couple of flaws, but the majority of this album is nicely inspired keyboard-based Progressive Rock with a diverse sound and well-accepted virtuosic solos.Recommended.

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