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SPINETTA JADE

Jazz Rock/Fusion • Argentina


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Spinetta Jade biography
After the split of his band Invisible in 1977, Luis Alberto Spinetta formed the band
SPINETTA JADE, which focused on a more complex sound compositionally, yet used aspects of Invisible and Almendra (Spinetta's first band).

They released their debut album on 3 May 1980, called Alma de Diamante, an album that set a precedence in Argentina at the time. They later participated in a legendary concert on 12/13 September 1980 with the iconic Argentinean band Serú Girán, led by the national rock legend and national patrimony Charly Garcia, which many people believe was the best rock on stage performance in Argentinean history. It also calmed fans who thought Spinetta and Garcia had musically differing tastes and did not especially appreciate each other; this was not the case.

In 1980, Spinetta briefly reformed Almendra, released an album and then split up again. Spinetta continued on with Spinetta Jade as well, and both bands performed at the Festival de La Falda February 1981.

In December 1981, Spinetta Jade released their second album Los Niños Que Escriben En El Cielo; Spinetta then decided to release a couple of solo albums, so the band went into a temporary hiatus until 1983, when they released Bajo Belgrano.

In 1984, the band released their fourth and final album Madre en Años Luz. The band played material from this album in concerts arranged by the Municipalidad de Buenos Aires and performed their last concert for 20,000 fans at Luna Park (with Pedro Aznar, formally of Serú Girán guesting) in May 1985

The prolific musician later formed Spinetta y los Socios del Desierto, who released four albums from 1996 to 1998, this band also became another legend in the austral country.

Spinetta has disolved the band to focus in his solo career, having released a total of 16 albums since 1971.

James R. Yeowell (Geck0)



Discography:

Alma de Diamante (1980)
Los Niños Que Escriben En El Cielo (1981)
Bajo Belgrano (1983)
Madre en Años Luz (1984)

Spinetta Jade official website

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SPINETTA JADE discography


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SPINETTA JADE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.22 | 66 ratings
Alma de Diamante
1980
3.75 | 32 ratings
Los Niños que Escriben en el Cielo
1982
3.47 | 29 ratings
Bajo Belgrano
1983
3.09 | 21 ratings
Madre en Años Luz
1984

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SPINETTA JADE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Alma de Diamante by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1980
4.22 | 66 ratings

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Alma de Diamante
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Emiliano

3 stars Kids, only few artists can reach the legendary status of Spinetta. Think for a second of Mark Hammill, then translate him into Spanish and give him rock-star/legend status. Well, somewhere over there you might find Spinetta, who once was one of the most prolific musicians in the Argentine scene. In fact, he once gave a 6 hour concert gathering all the bands he participated in to play his repertoire. I remember missing that gig thinking it was a solo concert, so imagine how stupid I felt when I found out what that gig was about.

Spinetta Jade is the most proggy band of Spinetta's career. This album is all about letting synthetizers and keys take the centre so as to create a jazzy sound pallete. In previous bands, guitar-centered rock compositions were the rule. An exception I would like to point out is Pescado Rabioso's Madreselva. That is a hell of a relaxing song which I can relate to Porcupine Tree's Dark Matter, though they are two completely different songs. It's just a matter of ambient and feel.

The album sets off with a jazzy instrumental, Amenabar, which sets the tone of the album and leads to the title song. Alma de Diamante is just one of those beautiful tunes that will end up sticking in your head, especially the solo, which is what I most recall from the album. Lyrics are standard Spinetta lyrics, which display a vast array of poetry-craft a la Artaud, after whom Spinetta named a Pescado Rabioso album. I cannot but urge you to listen to Cantata de Puentes Amarillos from Artaud, as it is Spinetta's masterpiece.

Rest is well... history. I don't think first listeners like to be spoiled on all songs of an album. So, roll in and enjoy a true gem of Argentine music as Spinetta Jade, its jazzy feel and lyrics that any poet would envy. The album has always been a three-star to me, but that's just a matter of feel. This album is a perfect sample of the Argentine prog-rock scene (is there still one?) so don't feel scared by the ratings: listen to it!

 Alma de Diamante by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1980
4.22 | 66 ratings

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Alma de Diamante
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by marcobrusa

4 stars Since 2012 (the year of his death) Spinetta started becoming very very popular among the young music lovers of Argentina (like me). This led to lots of hippie-snobs sharing and listening his music specially Pescado Rabioso's ARTAUD which i recommend (band that should be in this site in the "prog related" category i think). Many of those people who haven't listen to all of Spinetta's work are effectively missing this one (or not, since "the most popular video website of the world" has the "related videos" section on our right). It's not one of his famous albums like ARTAUD o ALMENDRA. This album is the result of an intelligent compilation of relaxing, introspective fusion tunes and most of them have Spinetta's poetic lyrics. His approach is very personal but i must admit this kind of compositions seem to me hugely inspired in, at that time, already existing artists from other countries (Weather Report for example). So maybe it's not an innovative album but it sure is perfect in it's own way. I give it 3.9/5.
 Alma de Diamante by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1980
4.22 | 66 ratings

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Alma de Diamante
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Spinetta Jade provided a haven for the classic jazz-rock sounds of the 1970s on this 1980 release. Whilst other fusion artists - including pioneers of the genre - struggled to adapt to 1980s production aesthetics and then-modern synthesisers, here Luis Spinetta and his comrades (particularly synthesiser and keyboard wizards Juan del Barrio and Diego Rapoport) do a brilliant job of producing an album which sounds fresh and clear and new and packed with novel synthesiser and keyboard textures on the one hand whilst still providing a fusion sound which will appeal to a broad range of fans of the genre, whether your cup of tea is the breezy textures of Weather Report, the volcanic tempestuousness of the Mahavishnu Orchestra, or the whimsy and unpredictability of Frank Zappa or the Canterbury scene.
 Los Niños que Escriben en el Cielo by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1982
3.75 | 32 ratings

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Los Niños que Escriben en el Cielo
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars This 1982 release from SPINETTA JADE certainly has it's moments but for my tastes this comes off sounding a little too commercial. I feel like i've reviewed several albums of late that would fit the 3.5 star rating perfectly including this one.

"Moviola" is a catchy vocal track with some energy. Synths come and go including a minute in, after 2 1/2 minutes and then at 3 minutes to end it. "La Herida De Paris" has a good intro then it settles with reserved vocals and some tasty bass that growls. "El Hombre Dirigente" is uptempo with vocals coming in before a minute. Good song. "Sexo" must mean sexy right ? Anyway it's laid back with wanting (haha) vocals. Yikes ! "Siguiendo Los Pasos Del Maestro" is my favourite. Love the growly bass and it's a somewhat intense instrumental.

"Contra Todos Los Males De Este Mundo" is uptempo with guitar and more. Vocals are prominant too in this catchy tune. "Un Viento Celeste" is synth led to start then reserved vocals take over in this mellow sounding tune. Not a fan. "Note Busques Ya En El Umbral" has relaxed vocals with acoustic guitar and more. It's okay. "Influjo Estelar" is an instrumental with lots of drums and synths. "Nunca Me Oiste En Tiempo" ends the album with a catchy beat, vocals and more.

I like this record but it's a little too soft and catchy for my tastes. Check out their debut though.

 Bajo Belgrano by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1983
3.47 | 29 ratings

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Bajo Belgrano
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by crimson87
Prog Reviewer

2 stars This is the third release from Spinetta Jade and here we can recognize a slight change in sound ending up in more radio oriented songs tan their previous albums and a more lyrical approach as well. The record contains shorter songs and while the performance from the musicians is still good, is not up to the previous albums standards. The only standout track from a musical perspective being the instrumental Ping Pong.

That being said, the record still shows some fine singing by Luis Alberto Spinetta and if you have some understanding of Spanish you should check the lyrics in songs like "Resumen Porteño" or "Vida Siempre" since those are some of the best L.A Spinetta has ever written.

In the end, that's some of the few things that can be appreciated on this record since it's less exiting than the previous records while keeping the same pop jazz style found on "Los Niños que escriben en el cielo". I can only recommend this record to Spinetta's completionists, but if this is your first record from this artist you will feel very disappointed.

 Madre en Años Luz by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1984
3.09 | 21 ratings

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Madre en Años Luz
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by crimson87
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The last record by Spinetta Jade it's really different from the first two albums of the band. The Lineup of the band had some changes like the inclusion of "Mono" Fontana in keyboards and Spinetta itself played some synths on the album. Now , the overall sound and approach of the record is VERY 80's so expect some drum machines , cheesy keyboards and more.

That being said , this record is far from bad , even if it has very few aspects of interest for prog rock aficionados since it's basically a pop album. But a good one indeed! The highlights of this record are "Entonces es como dar amor" and the ballad "Ludmila". With the exception of "Este es el hombre de Hielo" in my opinion there are no weak tracks on this album , but none of them has the quality shown on the first two records by the band. That being said , it's a far stronger release than the previous "Bajo Belgrano".

A good record but without the level of excellence of the first two albums of the band. Recommended only if you are a Spinetta Jade fan like myself but don't expect to hear jazz ? fusion on this one.

 Los Niños que Escriben en el Cielo by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1982
3.75 | 32 ratings

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Los Niños que Escriben en el Cielo
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by crimson87
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Los niños que escriben en el cielo is Spinetta Jade sophomore effort and while it's more mainstream oriented it still features the same characteristics that made the previous álbum Alma de Diamante a really strong release: Odd time signatures , great bass lines and ethereal keyboards , this time with a more rock approach in some of the songs and a stronger 80's sound if you know what I mean , but in this record it's still tolerable.

Out of the records 10 tracks , the standouts are some Spinetta's classics like "La Herida de Paris" or "Un viento celeste" still being performed today in live concerts. There are some other particular songs that are really remarkable like "Nunca me oiste en tiempo" or "Influjo estelar". However , the record is less consistent than the previous album having some weak songs in the middle.

In the end , this record is still a good blend of jazz fusion and poppier songs like "Contra todos los males de este mundo" or "Moviola". The quality of the musicians involved is still top notch and the repertoire is more varied than Alma de Diamante but a somewhat weaker.

3.6 stars for me rounded up to 4. A very enjoyable record for the ones looking for accessible jazz fusion stuff.

 Alma de Diamante by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1980
4.22 | 66 ratings

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Alma de Diamante
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by crimson87
Prog Reviewer

5 stars The first record made by Spinetta Jade is one of the highlights of South American Jazz ? Fusion scene. To make a summary description of this album , it's a very accessible jazz rock record including passionate vocals by Spinetta. All members of the band are masters of their respective instrument , but they don't overplay or have many solo spots making the record very friendly for newcomers to the jazz ? fusion genre.

The record is the most consistent of the Spinetta Jade releases including seven really strong tracks. Among those tracks you will find two instrumental tracks (Amenabar and Digital Ayatollah) and the other 5 tracks include stellar performances by all the band members and the most important factor of this album are the lovely vocals by the band leader Luis Alberto Spinetta.

Instrumentally , this record has predominant bass and keyboard sounds but is far from being a keyboard driven album , the guitar is classy played by Spinetta on the whole record and the record it's very balanced. I strongly recommend this album to those who want to get either into jazz fusion since it's much more accessible than the records from the "Big Three" of the genre meaning Weather Report , Mahavishnu Orchestra and Return To Forever.

This record is one of those hidden gems that can be found among the site and hope that this review will help you in raising your interest in South American prog and Jazz Fusion in general

IMPORTANT: If you want to check an even stronger jazz fusion album by Spinetta get A 18' del Sol. At the time this record is not included on the site.

 Alma de Diamante by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1980
4.22 | 66 ratings

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Alma de Diamante
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by The Quiet One
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Fusion proveniente del Alma (Fusion from the Soul)

After the disbandment of Invisible, lead singer and songwriter, L.A. Spinetta released a solo album in 1978 entitled A 18' Del Sol, one of his most acclaimed solo efforts evoking the future jazz fusion spirit of his later 80s band, Spinetta Jade.

In 1980 the debut of Spinetta's jazziest group was finally released, called Alma de Diamante ("Diamond's Soul"), and damn, what a debut! Of course, it's not a real debut in the sense that it is the first time they compose and play in studio, Spinettta & Co. were already professionals by that time, so expect a very polished debut without the usual flaws of typical debuts.

First, let's state what type of fusion this band delivered. It's a smooth and very melodic fusion, with floating and chilling keyboards, an entertaining and diverse (but not technical-kind) rhythm section, good emotional soloing from the guitar and synths (not dated!) and finally, soulful vocals that is the band's most unique feature. Comparisons? Well, it reminds me a bit of Holdsworth's 80s solo stuff, the melody department specifically. So no, it's not really a clone or a derivative fusion band that resembles either Return to Forever or Mahavishnu Orchestra or Weather Report.

But what's so good of this fusion? Ah, the whole mixture of the previously stated elements. There are instrumentals, 'Amenaber' and 'Digital Ayatollah', which show the band in a more technical way, still very melodic. And then, there's the rest of tracks that have the lovely vocals of Luis Alberto, but they're not simple tunes either, still a lot going on from the band, powerful melodies, excellent solos, great instrumental parts, all in all making very pleasant and entertaining melodic fusion.

In last place, I'll say why this is in my opinion the band's greatest album. Mainly because this is purely consistent in great material and there's simply no filler or unmemorable parts. But mind you, the remaining three albums of the band are all quite different and worth of listening (with the exception of the last album), Los Niños Que Escriben En El Cielo "plays" a lot with varied time signatures and Bajo Belgrano is a very soulful record with greater pop sensibilities that don't harm.

5 stars: masterpiece of Spinetta Jade and of Argentinian music. Unique album in this country that I highly recommend if you want to hear what Argentina can offer musically alongside stuff by Invisible and Seru Giran. If you're a fan of the lighter, more melodic fusion, this is a must, however if you are more into the avant-side of fusion like the Mwandishi albums by Hancock and the like, well this album might not be such a necessary record for you to get.

 Los Niños que Escriben en el Cielo by SPINETTA JADE album cover Studio Album, 1982
3.75 | 32 ratings

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Los Niños que Escriben en el Cielo
Spinetta Jade Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by The Quiet One
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The Kids that Write in the Sky...

The sophomore effort of the ever so enjoyable Spinetta's fusion group, Spinetta Jade, is a great, though slightly different, successor to the stunning jazzy debut. Los Niños Que Escriben en el Cielo shows Spinetta moving to a catchier affair, yet not as accessible as Bajo Belgrano would be.

Spinetta's guitar and voice are clear and are augmented by Leo's characteristical synths, Diego's piano and a solid rhythm section with some funk inclinations.

The first four songs are all excellent with catchy rhythms, but if you pay attention they're not any simple rhythms, rather complex ones but done accessible somehow. They're all jazzy some way or another due to the bass or to the keys, but don't expect complex fusion, some how you could compare it to the jazz rock style of Steely Dan in the sense that both are jazzy and accessible, yet they have their moments of musical brilliance.

There are two oddities in this album however. First one is the short instrumental called 'Siguiendo los Pasos del Maestro' which translates to 'Following the Master's Footsteps', although I haven't read anything about it, it sounds to me as a tribute to John McLaughlin, just listen to it, those are the same guitar lines that John is famous of. Not bad, but nothing brilliant. The second oddity would be 'No Te Busques Ya en el Umbral' which Spinetta plays acoustic guitar for the first time in his Jade career, it's a soft emotional tune dedicated to John Lennon.

The rest of the album is similar to the first four songs, pleasant with good synths and interesting rhythms. Highlights of this second would be 'Contra Todos los Males de este Mundo' with its addictive riff and powerful vocals, and 'Un Viento Celeste' that features a splendid two minute electric piano solo.

Though mainly simplistic in terms of instrumental complexity, you really can't get bored of this easily. Luis Albert Spinetta managed to compose rather accessible yet entertaining and original pieces of fusion-inspired music that are definitely overlooked gems from the despised decade, the 80s.

4 stars: excellent compositions with a touch of originality. If you're into the more friendly side of fusion, this is a must-have, otherwise you might consider this rather poppy jazz, true or not that, this album is superb at what it offers. Highly recommended Argentine album after you've got Alma de Diamante first.

Thanks to Symphonic Team for the artist addition. and to NotAProghead for the last updates

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