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Triana Triana (El Patio) album cover
4.25 | 256 ratings | 32 reviews | 44% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1975

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Abre la Puerta (9:53)
2. Luminosa Mañana (4:05)
3. Recuerdos de una Noche (4:42)
4. Sé de un Lugar (7:10)
5. Diálogo (4:32)
6. En el Lago (6:38)
7. Todo es de Color (2:09)

Total Time 39:09

Running order on some CD reissues:
Tracks 1-4-7-2-5-6-3

Bonus tracks on 2015 remaster:
8. Recuerdos de una Noche (live 1975)
9. En el Lago (live 1975)
10. Abre la Puerta (live 1975)

Line-up / Musicians

- Jesús De La Rosa / vocals, keyboards
- Eduardo Rodriguez / flamenco guitar
- Juan José Palacios / drums, percussion

- Antonio Perez / electric guitar
- Manolo Rosa / bass

Releases information

Artwork: Máximo Moreno

LP Movieplay 17.0678/7 (1975, Spain)

CD Fonomusic - CD 1032 (1988, Spain) Different cover and track running order from original LP
CD Fonomusic - CD 8090 (1997, Spain) Different track running order from original LP
CD Fonomusic - 5046617622 (2002, Europe) Different track running order from original LP
CD Fonomusic ‎- 5046617625 (2003, Spain) Remastered, original cover & track running order
CD Fonomusic ‎- 2564610376 (2015, Spain) Remastered w/ 3 bonus 1975 Live tracks

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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TRIANA Triana (El Patio) ratings distribution

(256 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(44%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
Good, but non-essential (13%)
Collectors/fans only (3%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

TRIANA Triana (El Patio) reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Cesar Inca
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Triana's debut album was not a commercial success at first, but it really helped the band to reinforce the cult status they managed to create from day one (all three members were already veterans in both the rock and flamenco fusion scenarios): it wouldn't be long before posterior re-releases came around and sold out in record stores, just in the late 70s when Triana was a properly popular band in the whole country. The relevance of "El Patio" was also significant since it opened the door to the latent irruption of many flamenco- tinged prog bands that were emerging in many cities of Southern Spain. How about the repertoire itself? Well, it's astoundingly beautiful, emotionally captivating, and full of that special mystique that only flamenco folk has; and yet, it's not plain folk, but a progressive reinvention of flamenco, a reinvention based on a permanent dialogue between Spanish guitar phrases and keyboard (organ, mellotron, synth, piano) orchestrations and solos, compactly sustained by Palacios' flamenco-jazz drumming. The Spanish singing (accentuated in a cante jondo manner with such amount of passion, that it makes it unnecessary for the listener to understand the language or to be familiar with flamenco to let themselves be carried away by that uncanny fire). A special mention goes to the guest on electric lead guitar, which serves as a stimulator of the main synth solos and a source of powerful, rocky pyrotechnics, well adjusted into the flamenco-tinged stuff. 'Abre la Puerta' kicks off the album setting these rules clearly, and so is it continued on the next track, 'Sé de un Lugar' (my fave track from this album). Another masterpiece is the compelling symphonic ballad 'El Lago', something that can only be described as Paco de Lucia-meets- Dark Side Pink Floyd, with added touches of Crimsonesque emotional somberness. These three numbers alone are impressive enough to make the whole album shine in itself; but of course, the less ambitious songs are also quite brilliant. 'Luminosa Mañana' and 'Diálogo' are sheer beauty, while 'Todo es de Color' takes us back to the acoustic simplicity of the most relaxed side of flamenco, and 'Recuerdos de una Noche' lifts up the mood with a sense of naïve joy. The only minor flaw I find in "El Patio" is the lack of a major consistency in some arrangements (that would be solved in their following album "Hijos del Agobio"), but this small thing won't keep this record from being what it certainly is: a splendorous work of Southern Spanish prog.
Review by erik neuteboom
5 stars TRIANA is the most legendary and pivotal progressive rock band in Spain. Their stunning debut-album "El Patio" (1975) was a seminal blend of flamenco and prog rock and paved the way to flamenco-inspired prog rock in Spain, culminating in bands like AZAHAR, CAI, ALAMEDA, QUALDAQUIVIR, MEZQUITA and MEDINA AZAHARA. The opener on "El Patio" is "Abre La Puerta" (almost 10 minutes), it starts with choir-Mellotron, piano and flamenco guitar (tremolo-technique). Then the typical sensitive and skill full flamenco guitar blends with piano and soft synthesizer chords. A fluent and tight rhythm-section carries the music to a powerful acceleration with the typical flamenco vocals, expressive and a bit wailing. The rest of this song contains lots of shifting moods that range from mellow with flamenco guitar and choir-Mellotron to propulsive with powerful drums and howling electric guitar, very moving. Most of the other six compositions are in the vein of "Abre La Puerta": beautiful shifting climates with typical flamenco elements like palmas (handclapping), rasgueado (quick downward strikes across all strings) and picados (quick runs on the guitar with two fingers), along with tasteful keyboards (organ, synthesizers, Mellotron and piano) and fine electric guitar play. The final two tracks are splendid compositions: beautiful interplay between the flamenco - and electric guitar and a bombastic finale with rasgueado, organ and electric guitar in "En El Lago" and powerful drums and a howling and biting electric guitar in "Recuerdos De Una Noche". If you are up to the typical flamenco mood or you want to discover this perfect marriage of folk and sympho, try this album. For me it's one of the few CD's that can compete with the Seventies prog rock from YES, ELP, KING CRIMSON and GENESIS!
Review by hdfisch
3 stars I never heard the name of this band before, probably they were mainly well-known in their country. So far I did not dive that deeply into the spanish 70's Prog, not that much as into the italian one. Although there were a few very good bands like ATILA, MEZQUITA , GOTIC or BLOQUE, I've got to say many are too much rooted in flamenco, which is not so much my type of music and the vocals sound often too passionate, sentimental and bombastic, at least for my taste. TRIANA is not really disproving this cliche, because for me the portion of progressive elements in their music is not very high and I'm rather seduced to call it flamenco with some touch of progressive rock. EL PATIO, their debut is still probably one of their better efforts. But even here there are not many progressive moments to find apart of the first song, which is very good and maybe the last one, having good electric guitar and nice organ sound. But the songs between these two are mainly flamenco-based ones with passionate moaning vocals, quite nice to listen probably for anyone liking such kinda music, but I wouldn't call it an essential record in progressive rock. So I think 3 stars is adequate for this album.
Review by Philrod
4 stars Triana is so refreshing. They included spanish,s own folk music, flamenco, into a rich mix of guitars, mellotron, and the carrying voice of Jesus de la Rosa. Opening with a spanish prog classic,''abre la puerta'' sets the base for this album. We hear the voice, the mellotron-infused textures, and a slow, taking rythm section. Full of emotion, the music leads you, transcends you, a makes you dream à la Yes or Pink Floyd. Electric guitars being mostly rythms ones, the flamenco-trained fingers of Eduardo Rodriguez takes you to the heart. Hints of their more crimsonesque second album are also left along the way.

The prominent prog figure in Spain does not deceive with this album.

Review by lor68
3 stars Well it's not Crack nor Gotic, just for mentioning a couple of Spanish bands: one being on the romantic progressive side of prog music and the second one being involved with the instrumental "Canterburian- fusion" genre, which settled the reference for the best music invention ( regarding of the Spanish scene in the seventies); but you can find interesting features within anyway!.Overall it's folk with elements of flamenco and interesting-even though sometimes a bit boring- vocal passages, however remarking a certain personality, suitable for the exploration of various styles, into a sort of contamination.In fact the opener and "En el Lago" represent the best side of the Spanish ensemble, apart from a few uneven moments and also the obtrusive keyboards, but the Mellotron is not bad and their creativity as well. Open your mind and regard this one as an experimental folk without any pretension!

A few prog moments and a lot of experimental good folk from Spain inside...check it out!!

Review by Sean Trane
4 stars It had been years since I had heard bit and pieces of Triana and had always wanted to investigate them since I knew of them. On a recent trip to Barcelona, I got this album and a few more that will also be reviewed. I thought I'd start with one of the best- known "prog" album from Spain: El Patio. If I say "prog", it is because many consider this heavily Flamenco-induced rock is definitely progressive to my ears, and will undoubtedly appeal to lovers of heavy melodramatics in their rock music and most likely if you are a Genesis fan, this will please you at least for a few songs. Whether you will be able to listen to the whole album in one session is another matter, because if you are only lukewarm to Flamenco, this can get tedious fairly fast. Such is not my case, but past the last four weeks of listening to it, I must say that it will now take a back seat and will probably not spin regularly in the following years on my deck, since I have now absorbed it, but feel that I have sucked out all of the juices out.

Beyond the impressive artwork sleeve partly responsible for our mood of the moment we choose to play this album, all of the tracks are heavily dramatized and do sound a bit similar (after a month rotation, I still can't tell exactly on which track I am listening in less than twenty second without looking at the counter) and of equal quality - there is not a weaker track on this album. The only slight remark I might have is that around the end of the first track there is a bass-drum break that could've been done without but this last less than a minute, so it is not intrusive. I still have a problem (if you can call THAT a problem) to pick my favourite. As I said earlier, this album is bound to please most progheads, but will the charm operate until the end of the album, since the formula is the same for all seven tracks.

I wonder what this album would've sounded like had it been recorded some years earlier with Mellotrons instead of the ARP Strings synthesisers, but please be assured that the latter one is gorgeously used here, and draws goose bumps almost at every use, but this is hardly the only time you will feel them, since there are many delicious moments. Actually, I would advise you to wear warm clothes for listening to El Patio so you do not suffer from colds after experiencing so many spine chills in a row.

Review by The Crow
5 stars This is probably the best and most emblematic prog album from my country, Spain...

Triana made an unique and very original mixture between prog and psychodelic rock with the folk music of the south of Spain, flamenco. The strong feelings, voices and spanish guitars of flamenco are very present in this album, but you will also find here most of the usual elements of the 70's prog rock. True original and inimitable sound here. Nevertheless, because of Triana appeared a lot of prog bands at the end of 70's trying to emulate their sound, but never reaching this great levels...

The lyrics are also very important in this band, because Jesús de la Rosa was able to write beautiful love songs and stories for this complex songs, giving a strong romantic aura to the music of Triana. The singing of this man is also fundamental, with all the passion of flamenco. But it's not pure flamenco singing, it's a little "contaminated", because the style of these songs is not to use pure flamenco voices... This man gave a great influence for later bands of flamenco-rock (like Medina Azahara) and flamenco-pop (like the fantastic band El Último de la Fila).

All songs here are really good, but Abre la Puerta, Sé de un Lugar y En El Lago are true classics of spanish music. Abre la Puerta opens the album in an awesome way, with a great mixture between spanish guitars and pure prog keybords. Sé de un Lugar is more psychodelic oriented, but not as much as later Triana's albums like "Sombra y Luz", and here are the best lyirics of the album... En El Lago is a romantic love story, and has a very special magical feeling. The instrumental ending is also very good... Luminosa Mañana and Diálogo are very good too.

Best Songs: every track included here is just great... But Abre la Puerta, Sé de un Lugar y En el Lago are my favourites.

Conclusion: an obligated record if you want to know the best spanish prog rock, and one of the most original and unique bands in the world... But warning, if you don't like the south Spain's flamenco music, maybe this album will be a little difficult to appreciate for you. If you are not afraid to hear some of this style, then you'll discover that "El Patio" is a true jewel.

My rating: *****

"Abre tu corazón, que hoy vengo a buscarte, amor..."

Review by Chus
4 stars Great Andaluz Prog recommendation.

This is what I expected to find: prog rock embellished with flamenco guitar strumming or "rasgueo" and tasteful "cante jondo" (deep singing) courtesy of Jesus De La Rosa; occasionally brushed with atmospheric keyboard layers and extended jamming sections. Although the song structures can be sometimes grating and some segments serve as simple "space filling" in between themes, I can't leave disgusted in the long run.

Another criticism lies in the overall mood. Where are the "Alegrias"?, where's the variety?; the mood is sometimes overdepressing and can leave you wanting to listen to some Tomatito or Paco De Lucia (even the Gypsy Kings, though they're not the first band on my list).

Musicianship is not an issue; every band member plays the part he is given, and the guitar for the most part is used as accompaniment for the rest of the instruments, including the vocals; In "Todo Es De Color" the guitar, for once, makes accompaniment only with the "cante" or vocals, displaying tasteful chord progressions in Phrygian mode and features nature sounds; I guess I could call it a "Soleá" since almost every other style is derivative.

I feel they could do better than this, but in all, it's a great addition to the prog rock collection. A 3.55 rounded to 4 (to avoid confusions with the rounding system)

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Possibly the strongest name of the 70's Spanish prog rock bands,TRIANA were the result behind an idea of keyboardist Jesus De La Rosa.De La Rosa was a well-known musician of the local scene of Sevilla,but tired of the flat music of the time he decided to form a progressive rock band with heavy roots in flamenco music.So,he formed TRIANA along with Juan Jose Palacios (drums/percussion) and Eduardo Rodriguez (guitars).The ''El Patio'' album was released in 1975 and it was a unique combination of progressive rock with flamenco atmospheres.The atmospheric keyboards (nice mellotron),the symphonic arrangements and the majestic voice of De La Rosa are amazingly engaged with Palacios' jazzy/ethnic-oriented drumming and Rodriguez's flamenco guitar-style.Unfortunately ''El Patio'' went widely unnoticed due to its poor promotion.However,you won't believe your ears,when you purchase this fantastic LP.A mid-70's gem of music,that can easily heal your heart and soul with its deep,atmospheric and emotional content!
Review by Andrea Cortese
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars I fear this record is a little bit overlooked by many prog lovers (unjustly).

Its andalusian strong accent represents one of the most intriguing contribution to the european prog scene. Not to speak about the fundamental importance for the development of the whole spanish prog scene.

Triana managed to create a distinctive and separate genre by themselves, based upon the mix between symphonic prog and flamenco. A hybrid experience that completely satisfies our exigent ears.

Triana don't offer you complex arrengements. They prefer to go deeper, to explore the roots of musical pleasure and tradition combining their pleasant folk attitude with the more usual symphonic territories.

Their debut, El Patio, is astonishing and can be easily put in the world prog top 10. Beautiful flamenco guitars, handsclapping, choir-mellotron, synth, pianos and sensitive drums playing. Above all, those distinctive southern spain vocals. No comparison for such a true classic without time.

Thanks to Erik Neuteboom for his knowledge and suggestions. We miss you here.

PROG-ANDALUZ for a new genre. It has to have its own place and dignity.

Review by ClemofNazareth
4 stars Triana is a name I have seen mentioned many times while reading reviews of bands like Alameda, Cai, Tarantula and Granada. They were apparently one of the innovators of the modern fusion of flamenco and classical sounds in a rock setting, and are still clearly a legendary band in Spain. This is their debut studio album and the music shows they definitely earned that reputation.

The first Triana album I ever heard was Llegó El Dia, and that was only on the strength of so many good things I had heard about the band. Suffice to say I was not impressed by the rather mainstream soft rock sound and occasional jazz noodling that made up most of that record, and it turns out that was not a good one to start with since the band had taken a decidedly pop turn by that point (hey, it was the eighties after all). This album is completely different, and infinitely better. The dominance of Eduardo Rodriguez on guitar totally makes the album work, layered as that is on top of Antonio Perez’ psych- inspired electric guitar licks and a persistent rock beat.

The opening “Abre la Puerta” is a striking introduction to the Andalusian prog sound with that flamenco/ psych one-two, pulsating guitar cadence and the obligatory Spanish percussion cruising along atop a persistent drum beat and some creative transitions. If the whole album were that good it would rate an unqualified five stars. “Recuerdos de una Noche” is in much the same vein, although a bit shorter. The Spanish tenor vocals of Jesus de la Rosa are passionate and almost spiritual at times, with that rich inflection that Latin singers all seem to innately have. “Sé de un Lugar” continues the album in the same manner.

“Dialogo” is a slower tune with less electric guitar, more flamenco, and considerably mellower keyboard passages. A solid tune as well, but not quite as gripping as what came before it. “En el lago” is closer to “Dialogo” but the keyboards once again take somewhat of a back seat to the guitars again. The vocal track seems to have changed a bit here – possibly a different microphone, not sure, but the richness of de la Rosa’s voice seems to have been flattened a bit.

The album closes too soon with the short and mostly acoustic “Todo es de Color”, a mellow folk-like piece that reinforces my opinion this band is more accurately classified as progressive folk than symphonic. In fact I’ve heard three of their albums now and still don’t know why some people refer to them as a symphonic rock band. Oh well.

This is an excellent album that just about any progressive music fan would be happy to have in their collection. Bands like Alameda put out similar music, but I have to believe their influences included Triana. A solid four star record that I’d recommend highly to just about anyone, and especially to fans of Latin music.


Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars A couple of years ago I heard about TRIANA for the first time, and the opinions were contradictory, most people recommended me "Triana (aka El Patio)" but I was only able to get "Hijos del Agobio" which is nothing but extraordinaire, so I let the time pass until this week when I was able to get "El Patio", so here I'm reviewing it.

The first impression is that the quality is there, but I feel they were still looking for their natural sound, if "Hijos del Agobio" blends perfectly the spirit of Andaluz music with Symphonic Prog without even being able to notice any patch, but in this case (and without being bad at all) the patches can be felt, but that's something they solved with experience.

"Abre la Puerta" begins with a Flamenco guitar, piano and Mellotron introduction which lead directly to a very dramatic passage of extreme beauty with Eduardo Rodriguez sharing his skills in the vein of Segovia. The vocals by Jesus de La Rosa are perfect for the music as always, but something is missing, the effect of the fusion of styles never gets completed, there's always an evident preeminence of Symphonic or Flamenco without reaching the perfect blend in such a natural as in their second album. Still it's a fantastic song.

"Se de un Lugar" starts with the classical "Cante Hondo" (Deep Singing) of Jesus de la Rosa, soon followed by an exquisite acoustic guitar that backups him perfectly, and then the variation starts, guitars and keys add a special Symphonic flavor without ever leaving completely the Spanish - Moorish atmosphere, with a Moog that gives a special taste

But when you believe everything will flow with normality and without any surprise, TRIANA hits us with all the heavy artillery, entering into Rock territory with some special effects that fades and resurrects in a some instants to allow the Flamenco guitar to come back again. From this point I believe they went a bit over the top, with radical changes that don't fully convince me, somehow lacks a bit of coherence, as if they tried to make too many things in a short period of time.

"Todo es de Color" is a short song in which guitar and voice blend perfectly, this is not Prog territory, we're talking about pure Ethnic music with some effects, still is impressive because it works as an Andaluz interlude to prepare us for the next track.

"Luminosa Mañana" starts very promising and at last I find a perfect fusion of styles, this time the Spanish atmosphere blends perfectly with some sort of Psychedelic organ riff which is extremely dramatic, this is what I expected of the band and not disappointed at all,

"Diálogo" has a weird intro that mixes a couple of simple keyboard chords with some acoustic guitar, but the band goes "in crescendo" rising not only in volume but also adding vocals and more instruments as if they were preparing us for a huge explosion..And the explosion starts with the Moog but fades again and incredibly they start all over until the ecstasies reaches at last, it took them some time, but hey achieved the goal.

"En el Lago" starts soft again with guitar and keyboards, almost instantly the drums and vocals join with a moody organ that creates a Psyche mood, but the arrangements lack of the coherence they only achieved in their next release, seems as they were not ready to create a full Prog - Ethnic creation, but it's clear they were in the right path, because the final section is simply outstanding.

TRIANA closes "El Patio" wit the FANTASTIC "Recuerdos de una Noche", if it was only for this track, the album would be already worth to buy, the mixture of genres, styles, moods and atmospheres is perfect, this is what I wanted to listen all along the album but only received short doses until now. "La Piece de Resistance"

Until this last track I was ready to give "El Patio" only three stars, but despite the minor flaws it's obvious that we are before an excellent album and "Recuerdos de una Noche" is the delicious cherry over the cake, so 4 stars for this excellent album and the need to modify my "Hijos del Agobio" review to 5 stars because that's the peak of the band without any doubt.

Would be recommended to start with this album and then get Hijos del Agobio being that it's the natural way to listen a band that was towards their highest artistic, creative and emotional moment.

Review by ZowieZiggy
4 stars This band is truly a legend in Spain. One can acknowledge this while viewing the DVD that gets along with Sé De Un Lugar. A very good compilation released recently. But this will be reviewed later.

This debut album is quite a daring project. Remember that in 74, Spain was not an open country to new ideas and rock music in general. The political context was rather difficult, and to have released such a record in those days is quite astonishing.

This Andalusia band is brilliantly mixing their own folklore with prog sounds. And the result sounds very attractive. The opening number is a fantastic journey into these roots. It is varied, melodic, well constructed and offers a beautiful and bombastic finale full of great electric guitar.

Sé De Un Lugar shows a more dramatic, theatrical Jesus de la Rosa (their leader and emblematic member). His vocals here are probably somewhat exaggerated but it doesn't harm too much. The guest's work on the electric guitar (the band is a trio and only features flamenco guitar) is again excellent.

I particularly like the middle and truly symphonic part of this very good track. The aerial keyboards are so smooth, so melodic. This is the second highlight of the album but Todo Es De Color is the only dispensable track (but also the shortest).

The bombastic aspects are not alien either during the emotional Luminosa Mañana. The keyboards sounds are invading your ears beautifully and the little acoustic guitar touches add such an originality!

After an ordinary Diálogo, the band reverts to his best inspiration when opening En El Lago. It is a more rock oriented song which breaks a bit the overall flamenco feeling (even if it is slightly present as well).

The closing Recuerdos De Una Noche is heavier and more electric, but the vocals are drawing you irresistibly back into the flamenco influence of the band. At the end of the album, it might seem a bit too much; but this is how Triana sounds like.

This album is very original, Triana sounds like no other band and therefore I rate this album with four stars (although seven out of ten would have been my real feeling). Arriba España!

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars There's no question that TRIANA are one of the greatest prog bands to come out of Spain. They became pretty huge in their own country and i'm sure the use of the flamenco guitar didn't hurt in that achievment. I really like how this band sounds, and I quite enjoy the vocals as well.

"Abre La Puetra" is my favourite track on here. It opens with a beautiful guitar / piano / mellotron soundscape before the sound gets fuller with drums and bass. The tempo picks up and what a great sound 2 1/2 minutes in. Sounds like mellotron before 4 minutes then we get an outburst of organ before 5 minutes followed by a calm a minute later. String synths join in then it kicks back in before 8 1/2 minutes. Amazing ! "Luminosa Manana" opens with organ, drums and guitar that come and go. Vocals after a minute as it settles in. Synths join in as well. "Recuerdo De Una Noche" has some cool sounding atmosphere to start out but it kicks in quickly with vocals. Great sound after 2 1/2 minutes. Organ joins in around 3 minutes. Vocals return later.

"Se De Un Luger" opens with some drama. It calms right down with reserved vocals. String synths around a minute. The guitar after 2 1/2 minutes sounds incredible. In fact this whole passage is gorgeous. The tempo continues to change. Excellent track. "Dialogo" is led by bass, guitar and organ early. Vocals before a minute. Big finish on this one. "En Al Lago" is interesting with the organ playing while the birds chirp. A full sound kicks in eventually. "Todos Es Del Color" opens with what sounds like birds, water and guitar. Vocals before a minute in this short 2 minute closing track.

I would highly recommend this album or their next one if you want to check out some of Spain's finest music.

Review by seventhsojourn
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Triana were at the forefront of the nascent Rock Andaluz of the mid-1970s with their particular blend of flamenco and progressive rock, characterised by multi-layered analogue keyboards, elaborate flamenco guitar and intense, at times tortured, vocals. Flamenco is of course a musical genus from Andalusia; the neighbourhood in Seville that gave this Spanish trio its name is generally considered to be the birthplace of flamenco. Triana, 'the gitano barrio', was home to a large population of Romani people who usually lived in communal homes, called corrales, which were organised around a patio. Many corrales have now disappeared due to housing pressure thus the patio is an important symbol of gitano culture and of the struggle between tradition and modernity. While Triana's 'El Patio' has similar cultural significance it differs in that it features the harmonious synthesis of tradition and modernity, represented respectively by flamenco and progressive rock.

During Francisco Franco's dictatorship flamenco was redefined as generically Spanish in order to prevent local allegiance within the ostensibly unified nation. The gitano experience of oppression was erased and, with the rise of tourism, flamenco was used as nationalist propaganda. While Franco's declining regime relaxed some of its regulations during the 1960s and early-1970s it was really the influx of foreign tourists and the return of Spanish workers from abroad that introduced democratic values to Spain: 'The trees had stories of other worlds' ('Luminosa Mañana ).

'El Patio' (1975) was released in the same year that Franco died but before democracy was established in Spain therefore political themes are not as obvious as on the follow-up album 'Hijos de Agobio' of two years later. Flamenco lyrics tend to have several different interpretations that rely on myth and metaphor and are able to speak to the marginalized without being overtly political in tone: 'I know a place where flowers bloom for you, where the river and the mountain love, where the child is born happy' ('Sé de un Lugar'). The child here may be a metaphor for the gitano's rights and status in society, and for the broader changing social values of the new Spanish nation.

The lyrics on 'Abre la Puerta' concern dreams and 'life and illusion' and these notions relate to metaphor and myth and the magical status of gitanos. Running water is symbolic of life itself and patios usually had a central fountain: 'There is a fountain, girl, they call it love'. This traditional view of gitano culture contrasts with the acid trip of 'En el Lago': 'Yesterday afternoon I went to the lake with the intention of meeting something new / We met there and everything started to emerge like a dream'. The use of recreational drugs was one of the transgressions that accompanied freedom of expression after Franco's death, but Triana's lyrics are typically couched in allegory.

The combination of poetic lyrics with plaintive melodies makes for bittersweet listening but there is a considerable history of collaboration between flamenco singers and poets such as Federico García Lorca. Although not a gitano himself, Lorca was killed along with many gitanos during the persecutions of the Franco regime. Lorca's 'Romancero Gitano' (Gypsy Ballads) features the familiar contrast of tradition and modernity, as well as repetition and typically gitano related themes such as water, the moon, love, etc. The same repetition and allusive imagery are prominent in Triana's lyrics: 'I asked the moon if it is love that shines in your smile' ('Diálogo'). This song exemplifies the personification of nature, with the protagonist asking the moon for motherly reassurance like a pagan calling to a female deity for guidance. The moon can be a symbol of death but here it represents the Cosmic Mother who will protect the protagonist. Nature is seen as active rather than passive throughout the album; mountains love, stars dance, and 'the moon bathes in the river' ('Recuerdos de una Noche').

'El Patio ' is a wonderful musical evocation of southern Spain but in my opinion the words are as important as the sounds, which is the reason the review focuses on the lyrics. This was one of my earliest 'discoveries' when I began visiting this site several years ago and it was this kind of eureka moment that drew me in. My one word of warning is that the ethnic and symphonic elements are on an equal footing so symphonic fans might want to tread carefully. However for me this is the yardstick against which all other Spanish progressive albums are measured.

Review by Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars El Patio is, as Latin-infused symphonic progressive rock goes, par for the course I'd say. It has the expected elements (a variety of keyboards, flamenco guitar, percussion, even exotic birds) and the compositions are respectable. The lead vocalist possesses a sense of urgency and sounds like a Spanish version of Sting from The Police. There just isn't much here that impresses me, nor is there anything that turns me off. This is, simply put, a good album.

"Abre la Puerta" The record opens with simple chord progression with acoustic guitar flashing over it. The verse picks up the pace with more basic chord progressions, but adds a feisty piano and garish synthesizer leads. The final three minutes begin quietly with choral Mellotron and weeping electric guitar before a bit of flamenco guitar and percussion take over completely, leading into the finale guitar solo.

"Sé de un Lugar" Heavy chords and an almost shouted vocal quickly taper off for light acoustic guitar and softer singing. Overall, this is initially a pleasant moderate rock song in a Spanish style, but nothing to write home about. The instrumental middle section, with its buzzing guitars and Spanish psychedelic atmosphere, is superior and creates a haunting mood.

"Todo es de Color" Exotic birds chirp as a guitarist strums and the singer croons.

"Luminosa Mañana" Organ and acoustic guitar begin this more ominous track. The vocalist and sleek synthesizer lead weave around each other.

"Dialogo" In terms of tone, this song could have fit on Yes' Tormato. That said, it is one of the best songs on the album.

"En el Lago" Melancholic organ begin this one, which morphs into an agreeable symphonic progressive rock song, very engaging and with several excellent guitar and keyboard moments. The ending with the delayed guitar trickling down like rain is fantastic.

"Recuerdos de una Noche" With a raging rhythm in 5/4, this song features gritty lead guitar, and soaring vocals.

Review by Warthur
4 stars Emerging in the waning years of the Franco regime, as the authoritarianism of the Spanish government scaled back sufficiently to permit a flowering of artistic expression ahead of the eventual transition to democracy, Triana played a distinctly Spanish style of progressive rock in which they took the intriguing step of introducing a hefty dose of flamenco into the mix. This adds a dramatic flair to the band's sound they make excellent use of, and they also take the opportunity to find interesting contrasts with the styles; there are some breathtaking moments as an acoustic flamenco guitar line from Eduardo Rodriguez melts into an electric guitar line from guest Antonio Perez.

The "Andalusian rock" of Triana and others represents a distinctly Spanish style of prog, just as Italy's prog scene had spawned its own distinctive style a little earlier, and I'd say that this album is a great way to start exploring it.

Review by siLLy puPPy
4 stars The Spanish transition to a liberal democratic state didn't take place until Franco's much celebrated death on 20 November 1975. It was his dictatorship that prevented the country from developing in the same ways as the rest of Western European and because of that very oppression, many artistic expressions were tamped down before they could take root. Such is the case with art and progressive rock but despite it all a few bands like Fusioon, Canarios, M'quina and Proyecto A managed to sneak in some highly developed rock albums under the radar. However it wouldn't be until 1975 when the prog movement found the freedom to develop and the country didn't waste any time catching up with the scene.

One of the first bands to ride the wave of this new reality was the Seville based TRIANA who were a little bit ahead of the curve. The band was formed in 1974 by vocalist / organist Jes's de la Rosa Luque, flamenco guitarist Eduardo Rodr'guez Rodway (formerly of Los Playos) and Juan Jos' Palacios aka Tele (formerly of Tabaca). Given that Spain is a Mediterranean country and Spanish a Latinate language with much in common with Italian, the band was responsible for launching the progressive rock movement in Spain with their own take on Italian symphonic prog only instead of the overtly classical leanings, TRIANA opted instead for the homegrown Andalusian sounds of flamenco. While the term Andalusian rock had been around for decades with bands Sabicas, TRIANA was the band responsible for taking the genre into the more progressive arenas.

The band's debut had originally emerged as a self-titled release but has been renamed EL PATIO ever since a 1984 reissue was released. Taking the symphonic prog of the Italian greats like PFM, Banco and Le Orme as the template upon which to build around, TIRANA adapted the sensual guitar style of flamenco to an overtly ambitious and energetic form of symphonic prog that implemented the classical compositional flare and passionate, romantic vocal style of the Italians alongside lushly laid out synth and Mellotron usage. The symphonic prog elements seamlessly trade off with beautiful guitar passages and the lyrics while all in the Spanish language describe the political realities of a nation in flux. Another interesting fact is that the album was released with the same seven tracks but in completely different order. My copy has an alternate CD reissue track order but personally i'm not sure it's important to the flow of the album since all the tracks are of equal quality.

While the symphonic and flamenco aspects are the dominant forces on EL PATIO, the less frequent heavier aspects clearly reflect a nod towards 60s bands like Vanilla Fudge and the more rocking aspects of early King Crimson. TRIANA would produce four excellent albums in the progressive rock style, each with different virtues before jumping on the 80s bandwagon and going the pure pop route and it's not too hard to hear how that could have been possible after hearing the sensual melodic developments on this debut. While Italian prog bands tended to have an angular edge to their musical approach, TRIANA is much more overtly melodic with easy to digest ear hooks that some may find a little too saccharine for their tastes but if one is not adverse to such easy to digest melodies dressed up with proggier clothing then this is surely one you will want to devour in delight.

While the band was technically a trio this album is fortified with sounds from the extra help of electric guitarist Antonio Perez and bassist Manolo Rosa. Basically this is symphonic flamenco music with rock extras. At moments EL PATIO displays unadulterated flamenco nuevo and at other times the flamenco is merely the backdrop and often not part of the equation at all. During the transition years when this was released it sold poorly but starting with the band's second album 'Hijos de Agobio,' TRIANA started to break big and has in the ensuing decades become one of Spain's most famous representatives of the 70s Andalusian progressive rock scene and perhaps one of the most known progressive rock bands period from the country. If you were to compare this to the Rock Progressivo Italiano scene, TRIANA was more akin to Metamorfosi than say Museo Rosenbach. This is easily accessible music even on the first listen and although it does come off a little sugary sweet, it's the good stuff embellished liberally with all kinds of yummy ingredients.

Review by Menswear
5 stars Original stuff.

Yes, who knew that flamenco and keyboards would make such a happy marriage? I am really surprised on how thick and rich Triana's sound is. Frankly, I thought at first that they were Italians because their approach is really original and intense. In fact, it's pretty much a gypsy-symphonic-Le Orme blend meaning grandiose moments of thick keyboard beauty, sexy classical guitar licks (oh so plenty) and talented espagnol por favor (not italian).

They did a splendid remastering for their 40th Anniversary and even without the super production, I was still sold at the very first listen. When 'Abre la Puerta' started, full mellotron ahead, grand piano and sizzling spanish guitar I thought 'Oh wow! How did I miss this in 15 years as a progger?!?' A record with the perfect atmosphere for dusk listenings, plunging you into a dynamic blend of flamenco swing and tempered progressive elements. It's just the right dose, not too much keys, not too much flamenco but still rocking in the Andalousian free world.

It's my only ecounter with this special formula and I must say that these guys knew what they were doing. Many times I shouted 'damn!' half smiling in awe, relishing on this well crafted record. If you missed it, take a few minutes to get around this great, great album and like me, raise your eyebrows in admiration.

A not-so-well-known-classic (it's so unusual!) but deserving more praise from the proggers.

Review by kenethlevine
5 stars Much like their Basque counterparts ITOIZ, TRIANA's classic output only exploded onto the Spanish rock scene after the death of Franco. Also like Itoiz, Triana attained their commercial summit some time later, but, as with itoiz, it's their early work that is most esteemed in the prog community. That's all I will say about Itoiz here because the two acts are otherwise dramatically different in a way that could only have materialized in Spain.

Classified as Rock Andaluz or Flamenco prog, "El Patio" confidently synthesizes their own style as an invigorating alchemy of flamenco with the symphonic prog and RPI of its day. I will add you don't need to have heard this in 1975 to wax nostalgic about it today, which is a rare gift indeed. The acoustic and electric guitars, mellotron choirs, string synthesizers and organ are all arranged in vintage permutations and, combined with the robust yet languid romantic vocals, set my spine a-shivering. The opening number "Abre la Puerta" is the longest and also the most accomplished, and, while it might be a mere love song, seems a call to arms for the entire movement, distilling the idealism that only comes naturally to youth. Even the drum solo that ushers in the instrumental reprise is note-perfect.

Not surprisingly, Arabic sounding motifs swirl about in tracks like "Recuerdos de Una Noche", while as power balladeers they flatten the tentative opposition on the penultimate "En El Lago" with a twin attack of shimmering organ and mostly acoustic or sweetly plucked lead guitar. Well, except for a 30 second passage towards the end that might be the heaviest moment of all. I can imagine that early TRIANA established the influence on numerous yet unformed Andalusian bands, MEDINA AZAHARA for one.

"El Patio" is one of the most fully realized inaugural prog releases of its day. It remains a milestone album for a sui generis prog offshoot, and is eminently listenable to boot.

Latest members reviews

5 stars So here we have what you call a masterpiece. Triana's debut album is the classic symphonic prog type, that you are used to listening to in Yes and Camel. With a minor tweak the heavy influences of Spanish tango. This element is inserted in two ways, first, there is an acoustic guitar which is ... (read more)

Report this review (#2573464) | Posted by koresea | Monday, June 21, 2021 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This album is a glorious piece of progressive rock that unfortunately seems to be a hidden gem outside of Spain. With crisp production, detailed and inspired instrumental passages and emotional vocals, this album checks all the right boxes. This Spanish/Andalusian prog sound that Triana delivers ... (read more)

Report this review (#2453220) | Posted by dougmcauliffe | Friday, October 2, 2020 | Review Permanlink

5 stars 'Triana = Rock Andaluz = An unique and exciting Spanish movement that blend skills and passion!' In the second half of the Seventies I became a proghead, visiting concerts from Yes, Pink Floyd, Camel, Rush and BJH. But in those years I also turned into an 'aficionado', a hu ... (read more)

Report this review (#2170793) | Posted by TenYearsAfter | Tuesday, April 2, 2019 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Having never even heard of Triana before, let alone the Andalusian prog scene, this definitely has to be one of the most pleasant surprises I've had in a while. This album is truly incredible, the mix of flamenco with classic emotionally charged symphonic prog, who knew this was what was missing ... (read more)

Report this review (#1954055) | Posted by Hrvat | Wednesday, August 1, 2018 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I really feel few have understood the album, not to blame no-one.........but the problem is Trianas "El Patio" is not "just" progressive mixed with flamenco, as Crimson debut is not just rock mixed with jazz and classical influences....this an average descriptions of what are new creations. I un ... (read more)

Report this review (#300577) | Posted by shockedjazz | Sunday, September 26, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars "Everything began to spring like a dream..." The best spanish album ever recorded. Pure magic progressive rock music from a band that broke in the 70's all the rules in flamenco-folk world. If you like albums albums like Elegant Gypsy (Al di Meola), Moonmadness (Camel), Storia di un Minuto (P ... (read more)

Report this review (#280935) | Posted by DTJesus | Saturday, May 8, 2010 | Review Permanlink

3 stars I have heard a lot of positive things about this band and I thought it was about time to invest some of money in this band. What I got was very different from what I am used to. This review is therefore done by a novice in Spanish prog rock. Please understand. Triana is described as a mix of fl ... (read more)

Report this review (#187442) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Thursday, October 30, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This is the best Spanish prog album!I think this Cd used to be classified as Folk-prog. If not, It should be there and not in symphonic prog. I think this is the first and the best example of flamenco and rock mixture. The group Triana combines properly flamenco, rock and prog sounds in this CD. T ... (read more)

Report this review (#129116) | Posted by Guilleguns | Wednesday, July 18, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Awesome Prog Andaluz I was recommended this band by Erik Neuteboom and I was intrigued by the prog-flamenco I had been told about. I spent most of the Christmas money I had left over on this album as I was very excited to hear this pivotal Spanish prog band. The music brought joy to my he ... (read more)

Report this review (#122620) | Posted by progismylife | Thursday, May 17, 2007 | Review Permanlink

5 stars one of the best folk porg records i have heard. the singersvoice and the guitar arer very well played. the music is a pleasent melodic style so it takes no long time to get into. i would recommend this album to erveryone who likes prog and folk with flamenco guitar mixed with electric guitar! ... (read more)

Report this review (#96404) | Posted by peeperkorn | Wednesday, November 1, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Absolutely excellent stuff! Pure genious compositions with a lot of emotion thrown in for good measure. the music is a unique blend of flamenco music and progressive rock a la King Crimson. Masterful musicianship... Very highly recommended! ... (read more)

Report this review (#44884) | Posted by | Tuesday, August 30, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars One of the best albums coming out of Spain in the 70s ! Yes there is flamenco influenced but less than the following ones ! If you don't know the spanish '70 prog, search for El Patio right now ! Albre La Puerta, the opening title is really powerful. You can't be wrong with El Patio, Hijos del A ... (read more)

Report this review (#40728) | Posted by Koenji | Thursday, July 28, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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