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Crossover Prog • Argentina

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The Argentine band BAUER features four friends who knew each other from the highschool times: Gabriel Ardanaz (voice, electric guitar, 12-string acoustic guitar), Ezequiel Esposito (electric bass), Martin Mykietiw (Moog Prodigy, Kawai synthesizer 100F sampler, effects controller, Rhodes Piano, acoustic piano), Julian Paz (electric guitar, acoustic guitar, Roland Space Echo 201, E-bow) and Federico Perez Losada (drums and percussion). They started to play for fun until their recent drummer joined the band, then it became serious business and in 2002 Bauer released the EP "Klee" containing 6 songs. Two years later BAUER released their first CD entitled "Astronauta Olvidado" (12 songs). The group members mention SIGUR ROS, MOGWAI, AIR, PINK FLOYD, MASSIVE ATTACK, RADIOHEAD and THE BEATLES as their main influences. The CD has now been distributed in Argentina, Brazil and Spain, all Spanish-oriented countries because the vocals on the CD are Spanish. BAUER received a lot of positive critics, they have an increasing cult-following in Argentina and the border countries and at this moment the band has started to make new compositions.

The CD "Astronauta Olvidado" contains mainly songs that start slow, mellow, cosmic or hypnotizing and gradually the climate becomes more bombastic with accelerations and in the end often swelling eruptions. It sounds very compelling with beautiful build-ups and splendid grand finales, often featuring majestic Mellotron waves (great samples, directly taken from a genuine Mellotron by a close friend) and strong guitar play (great Gilmourian slide guitar solos and a log of howling licks). The Spanish vocals fits perfect to the often melancholic atmospheres. The most obvious influence is RADIOHEAD but also PINK FLOYD, PORCUPINE TREE and LANDBERK can be traced. In my opinion this album could have been the successor from RADIOHEAD's CD "OK computer"!

: : : Erik Neuteboom, The NETHERLANDS : : :
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BAUER discography

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3.69 | 17 ratings
Astronauta Olvidado
2.91 | 8 ratings
En Otra Cuidad

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BAUER Reviews

Showing last 10 reviews only
 Astronauta Olvidado by BAUER album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.69 | 17 ratings

Astronauta Olvidado
Bauer Crossover Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars People don't believe me when I tell them that I do not listen to radio anymore (haven't really for a decade or so), unless by pure accident. I just gave up on finding anything creative there, so I have little knowledge of Muse or Radiohead or the other allegedly popular "proggy" new bands. Makes me feel like a hermit living in a barrel ("The" Harold?) but I find I can only listen to prog whether complex or neo, experimental or electronic, old or new. Such penance! So when I landed on this Bauer album and read sinkadotentree's review stating the similarities with Radiohead in particular, I felt that I was sticking my toenail into the unknown pool for the first time (Madonna's like a virgin). "Astronauta Olvidado" translates as "Forgotten Astronaut" certainly is far removed from commercialism and definitely basks in the distant horizons of experimental fodder, once the realm of Ummagumma period Pink Floyd or even Italy's Sensation's Fix . They kickoff (they are from Argentina , hence the football and earlier Madonna reference) with an opener where the mood is very soporific, highly psychedelic, with tons of effects from a variety of clanging guitar arpeggios, electric piano awash in synthesized veneer, plodding drums à la Mason and dreamy echoed vocals in Spanish. The next track is ever more floating, with substantial amounts of string synths and assorted other massed keyboards, giving guitarist Julian Paz (yeah, Peace to you brother) the platform to send some slide howls swerving into the galaxy's deepest regions. The title track relies on some outright Floydian interpretations that swerve into an almost "Us & Them" universe, very convincing, as the crescendo spirals towards the heavens, with tons of assorted effects and samples. The riveting "Novelty" features singer Gabriel Ardanaz and his ability to convince with unabashed hypnotic zeal while the band showcases its capacity to suddenly push the piece into interstellar overdrive,in particular Martin Mykietiw's manic twirling of synth knobs that remind of Eno's work on Roxy Music's debut. "La Manana Verde" has a "Chicago- Colour My World" piano motif that goes in a completely different direction, more nostalgia and hopelessness than anything, with Ardanaz again supplying some heavy breathing vocals and a simple Moog Prodigy solo that just glides effortlessly. Drummer Losada gets busy here with loads of taps and fills, pushing the theme deeper into the brain. "Zurich queda en Paris" plods on innocuously for a while until it suddenly veers into a gigantic cascade of orchestral sound, resonating atmospherically and almost inducing a trance like hypnosis. Quite transfixing I must say. "Falla." is a more minimalist ditty with melancholic piano and exalted vocals slashed by an angry guitar blast (Careful with that Axe, Julian), full of sustain and harsh reverbs, more Manzanera than Gilmour (even though the two are old-time pals), showing off again the more researched aspects of their craft. Track 8 returns to gentler, loping lilts with the same relaxed style that induces dreams for some and strangely schizophrenic nightmares for others. This is almost an ionospheric lullaby, swerving in the solar wind with slow abandon, with Ardanaz's soft tongued touch and some studious keyboard experimentations. "Durmiendo..." remains clearly in the highly reflective musical zones of space, echoing bizarrely and providing more of those Eno-ish beeps and radio frequency burps. I must say that by now, the sameness can effect your enjoyment of this music as the mood stays very linear, as most of the compositions rely on the same tempo with perhaps different variations on nevertheless the same theme. Perhaps a little contrast would suit these lads better, at least within the scope of an entire album. But as a debut , this certainly worthy and would certainly qualify as a quirky alternative to other forms of contemplative prog. 4 gaucho space builders.
 En Otra Cuidad by BAUER album cover Studio Album, 2006
2.91 | 8 ratings

En Otra Cuidad
Bauer Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Erik's review is the only positive review I have read about this album. I read three others that really trashed this record.There is something about the sound this band creates though that just brings a smile to my face. Much like their first record it is a melancholic, dreamy and often slow moving brand of music with few outbreaks. Unfortunately though this one really does pale when compared to their amazing debut.These guys know how to create atmosphere much like latter TALK TALK and NO-MAN projects, but their sound is more like RADIOHEAD.

"Dock Surf" is an instrumental with atmospheric, western sounding guitar melodies and lots of moog. "Un Auto Para Lynn" is one of my favourites with a PORCUPINE TREE sound that is slower paced with lazy, dreamy guitar and Thom Yorke-like vocals. More moog as well as farsifa. I love the sound of this song. "Elmismo Lugar" has some good outbreak of drums and guitar 2 1/2 minutes in.

"El Hombre De Blanco" is a heavier tune with some good guitar and Rhodes piano melodies. "Camino A Oxiard" is slow paced with moog and mellotron. The next song "Un Dia,Todo El Verano" features some hammond organ in the background. Nice ! "La Entrevista" is an instrumental that has a jazzy feel at times. "Avanza" is a good dreamy, melodic tune with mellotron. The final song is another favourite of mine as the sound becomes so lush and full while the guitar is simply fantastic !

If your a RADIOHEAD fan and don't mind non-English vocals you have to check these guys out, but start with the debut.

 En Otra Cuidad by BAUER album cover Studio Album, 2006
2.91 | 8 ratings

En Otra Cuidad
Bauer Crossover Prog

Review by erik neuteboom
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Bauer their first album Astronauta Olvidado blew me away, what a wonderful and often very compelling musical experience (with hints from Radiohead, Porcupine Tree and early Pink Floyd), loaded with Mellotron and sensitive electric guitar along melancholical vocals. So high expectation towards this new album, does Bauer succeed to delight me again?

Well, to be honest, it is not at the same level because the music is a bit more subdued and the dynamics between the dreamy parts and bombastic pieces are less intense. But this doesn't mean En Otra Ciudad is a disappointing album because the compositions are still very tasteful like the compelling first song Dock Surf (propulsive with a psychedelic undertone like Hawkwind and Porcupine Tree with fiery guitar and spacey keyboards), El Hombre De Blanco (beautiful interplay between the omnipresent Fender Rhodes piano, howling guitar and fluent drums) and the mellow, very moving Avanza (majestic violin- Mellotron and melancholic vocals). Remarkable are the The Shadows (Hank B. Marvin)-like guitar runs in some tracks. The raw guitar parts are a captivating contrast with the dreamy vocals and soaring keyboards.

I have to say that this new album sounds less exciting than Bauer their first but it is still a pleasant new effort that deserves a listen, I recommend it to fans of Radiohead, Porcupine Tree and early Pink Floyd.

 Astronauta Olvidado by BAUER album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.69 | 17 ratings

Astronauta Olvidado
Bauer Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars I love this record.They have a real RADIOHEAD / SIGUR ROS sound with excellent vocals which are sung in Spanish.They have a dreamy almost hypnotic sound with lots of mellotron.

The first track has this spacey intro before keys with some good atmosphere take over. Guitar 1 1/2 minutes in and drums before 2 minutes. A fuller sound 3 minutes in then it calms back down. Contrasts continue. Great sound 4 1/2 minutes in and it kicks back in a minute later. Fantastic ! It's pretty intense 6 1/2 minutes in to the end. "El Vezano Del Cohete" is almost "The Sky Moves Sideways" spacey. Very cool sound. Dreamy vocals join in as the song drifts along. Guitar before 2 minutes then it settles back down even more. An outburst of power after 2 1/2 minutes then it calms down again with vocals. FLOYD-like 4 minutes in, very spacey. "Astronauta Olvidado" opens with samples before piano comes in slowly playing followed by vocals. This has a Post-Rock flavour to it. A fuller sound 2 minutes in as guitar and drums join in. It's more powerful late after the vocals stop. "Novelty" opens with guitar and spacey sounds as the vocals come in. A beat after a minute. This sounds so good. The tempo picks up before 3 minutes and it gets fuller sounding. Nice. It settles after 4 minutes before kicking back in at 5 1/2 minutes. This is great ! "La Manana Verde" opens with piano as guitar and drums join in. A Post-Rock flavour here. Vocals come in. It changes 2 minutes in as guitar is strummed and synths come in. Amazing sound.

"Zurich Queda An Paris" opens with samples as guitar and vocals come in. The melody here is so dreamy and moving. Very lush and spacey. Incredible ! "Falla En El Tranabordador" is spacey as heavy drums come in before a minute. Vocals and a calm follow. Heavy drums are back 2 1/2 minutes in as the contrast continues. "Vendran Iluvias Suaves" is beautiful with the keys and gentle guitar. Mellotron and vocals come in. Check out the guitar after 2 minutes when the vocals stop. I love the way it drifts on and on instrumentally until it ends. "Durmiando An La Niave De Gerry" is spacey as a relaxing beat comes in then guitar. Vocals a minute in are processed at times. Great sound. It kicks in after 5 minutes. Nice. Settles back 6 1/2 minutes but then starts to build again after 7 minutes. "Hamos Traido Muchas Rocas Lunares" opens with guitar, keys and drums. This is melancholic and oh so beautiful as vocals come in. This is an emotional tune .It settles after 3 minutes to the end. "Un Camino A Travas Airs" opens with spacey synths that sound like theremin. A beat comes in then processed vocals. Mellotron too. It's heavier with no vocals after 4 minutes. This excellent sound goes on and on for 4 minutes then it turns spacey the rest of the way.

This is simply a spacey trip to dreamland. It floats along so beautifully with just enough variety and outbreaks to make it work perfectly.

 Astronauta Olvidado by BAUER album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.69 | 17 ratings

Astronauta Olvidado
Bauer Crossover Prog

Review by hdfisch
Prog Reviewer

3 stars 3,5 STARS REALLY!

Though I've never been a great fan of popular British band Radiohead and these guys here from Argentina are wearing their influence on their sleeves I was immediately fascinated by their debut album "Astraunato Olvidado". So I was asking myself:Why is this the case, what can offer me their music that Radiohead's one obviously is not able to? I came to the conclusion that it must be the more symphonic approach and the much wider spectrum of instruments they're using. While RADIOHEAD mainly rely on the common rock threesome of guitar/bass/drums plus some electronic effects BAUER is adding up as well some acoustic piano for example and is using keyboards in a much more effective and sophisticated way to create a fully atmospheric and textured sound. Their songs are dreamy and melancholic with occasional break-outs of heavy guitar, very melodic and mostly quite memorable and catchy without being simplistic and poppy at all. Although one keeps reminded to the famous template all the time during listening of this record since even Gabriel Ardanaz' voice is not too far away from Thom Yorke's they are anything than just a rip-off in Spanish language.

I can just speak for myself but daring to put off all Radiohead fans I've got to say that they are clearly the better band compared to them. Certainly they won't win a prize for originality and innovation but their music might appeal even to Prog lovers who usually listen exclusively to highly intricate stuff. What is not the case with Radiohead's one sounding too minimalist and simplistic at least to my ears.So I would rather compare them to bands from Post-Rock genre like MOGWAI for example which I'm able to enjoy as well from time to time. Nevertheless and though I really love to listen to this record even repeatedly I'm not sure whether to call it an essential one in Prog generally. That's why I'm hesitating to give it the fourth star, but anyway an excellent and promising debut by this band and a very enjoyable listen. That's one hard to complain about no matter which preferred taste one has but on the other hand not special enough to be considered very important!

Highlights: Novelty, Zurich queda en París, Falla en el transbordado

 Astronauta Olvidado by BAUER album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.69 | 17 ratings

Astronauta Olvidado
Bauer Crossover Prog

Review by erik neuteboom
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Here's the Argentine answer to RADIOHEAD! Most of the songs on this album have a great build up: it starts cosmic, then gradually the music swells and finally BAUER features bombastic eruptions with howling electric guitars and floods of Mellotron. The Spanish vocals fit perfect to the often melancholic climates and the integration of organ, twanging electric guitar, acoustic rhythm guitar, piano and synthesizer is subtle and tasteful. This very compelling music is a mindblowing experience, for sure progrock has emotion! Although RADIOHEAD is the main influence, other obvious references are PINK FLOYD (Gilmourian slide guitar), PORCUPINE TREE (cosmic climates) and LANDBERK (fragile guitarplay and violin-Mellotron). The final composition "Un camino a traves del airs" is the highlight: lots of Mellotron, hypnotizing vocals, suddenly heavy guitarplay and an ominous, almost claustrofobic climate (evoking KING CRIMSON, "Red"-era) with splendid choir- Mellotron, I'm on cloud number nine!

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition.

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