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ALMÔNDEGAS

Prog Folk • Brazil


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Almôndegas biography
ALMÔNDEGAS (English translation 'spicy meatballs') was an early incarnation of the successful rock/pop Brazilian Ramil brothers duo KLEITON & KLEDIR. The group formed in 1972, found success thanks to a regional television special featuring them in 1973, and would record four albums and issue a compilation before disbanding at the end of the seventies. The band would score five hit singles in their native country, while the subsequent KLEITON & KLEDIR combination would find greater success on an international level with a considerably more commercial style.

>>Bio by ClemofNazareth (Bob Moore)<<

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ALMÔNDEGAS discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

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

3.00 | 1 ratings
Almôndegas
1974
2.50 | 4 ratings
Aqui
1975
2.05 | 3 ratings
Alhos com Bugalhos
1977
3.10 | 2 ratings
Circo de Marionetes
1978

ALMÔNDEGAS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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ALMÔNDEGAS Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.10 | 2 ratings
Gaudêncio Sete Luas
1977

ALMÔNDEGAS Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

ALMÔNDEGAS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Aqui by ALMÔNDEGAS album cover Studio Album, 1975
2.50 | 4 ratings

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Aqui
Almôndegas Prog Folk

Review by kenethlevine
Special Collaborator Prog-Folk Team

2 stars Our beloved sub genre of prog folk occasionally flirts with the loosely defined "campfire song" style, that is, innocent or even naive sounding songs that might be best enjoyed when something flammable is burning. Whether that something is a bundle of hardwood logs or a thin rolled indulgence to be passed around largely determines the age of the target audience. "Aqui" was campfire music for mid 20s Brazilians in 1975, that is, those who tried most of the decade to recapture the spirit of Woodstock from thousands of kilometers away.

Very little here is poor, but even less is remarkably good or progressive in any real sense. Melodies are rather unmemorable, which renders the harmonies quaint but ephemeral. Similar instrumental and vocal approaches were taken at the time by Argentinian groups like PASTORAL and MELIMELUM, but those were marked by superior compositions and an appreciation for the timeless aspects of their craft. It's a shame, because with a little tweak here and there, "Em Meio Aos Campos", "Canção Da Meia Noite", and "Mi Triste Santiago" could have been so much more than mere pleasantries. If I had to name a highlight, it would be "Gaudencio Sete Luas", thanks largely to its flutes and romantic hot summer evening ambiance, with "Barca De Caronte" coming in second thanks to its moody sense of purpose. The low point might be "Coisa Miuda", in which the vocals are more irritating than nondescript, but lack of familiarity with the language prevents me from pronouncing any further judgment.

Without a strong background in Brazilian folk, I nonetheless believe that such a populous and musically rich country must have produced far better examples for us to discover, whether progressive or otherwise. This repast is neither spicy nor meaty, making ALMONDEGAS a nut not worth cracking.

 Gaudêncio Sete Luas by ALMÔNDEGAS album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1977
3.10 | 2 ratings

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Gaudêncio Sete Luas
Almôndegas Prog Folk

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The only known compliation of songs from this important folk from the deep south of Brazil. The group was the first act from Rio Grande Do Sul to actually won over the country´s mainstream audience with their mix of traditional folk of that region and rock. Playing mostly acoustic instruments those young musicians helped to give the south some national atention for their unique, rich sound and tradition.

Gaudêncio Sete Luas was released in 1977, so it is no surprise it does not include any tracks from their fourth and final album Circo De Marionetes, which was released two years later (but that should be fixed when they re-released it on CD). What surprises me a lot is the fact that Canção Da Meia Noite, their only sizeable national hit, was not featured here. there is no explanation for its absence on any compliation, much less the only one available. On the other side it contains a pretty decent collection of songs that represent well the sound of this interesting band. The title track is one of the most appealing, being a remake of a traditional south folk song telling about the life of the country man. Another highlight is Haragana, one of their most popular songs ever. Mi Triste Santiago with words sung in portuguese and spanish is their homage to the late chilean poet Pablo Neruda.

If you want to know about this folk group, this is a good starting point, even if it lacks some important tunes as mentioned above.

 Circo de Marionetes by ALMÔNDEGAS album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.10 | 2 ratings

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Circo de Marionetes
Almôndegas Prog Folk

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars For their fourth (and final) LP, the band decided to shed the elaborated arrangements and production of the the previous album and trade it for a more straightforward folk rock sound. So the presence fo an electric guitar on some tracks was no surprise. The resulting colection of songs was charming, but failed to gain them a new audience and clearly did not won back the former fans of their earlier trademark souhern folk.

The sound was simpler, poppier and much more accessible to the mainstream market. And still it did not meant any bigger sales, even if Androginismo did atract some airplay. Which was a pity, since it was clear their talent was intact. But at the time a folk rock band was not as popular as it was a few years before (the end of the 70´s also meant the end of a lot of rock acts, even in Brazil). Of all the songs in the LP the title track showed their dissatisfaction with the overall state of the country, including its political side. It was covered by MPB-4, one of the most prestigious vocal groups in Brazil, but it was not enough to save the band from breaking up soon after this record was out.

Eventually the brothers Ramil would very soon start a duo of their own, Kleiton & Kledir, a highly successful act that had all the hits and national exposure denied to their former group. It was only sad that htis CD disappeared from the stores very soon, got almost no promotion and it is so hard to find. nowadays. Not the most representative of their sound, but still a good release of this obscure folk band of the 70´s. Rating: something betweeen 2,5 and 3 stars.

 Alhos com Bugalhos by ALMÔNDEGAS album cover Studio Album, 1977
2.05 | 3 ratings

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Alhos com Bugalhos
Almôndegas Prog Folk

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Almondegas third album came tuwo years after the successful Aqui. Alhos Com Bugalhos shows the band expanding their instrumentation even more (now bass and drums are almost integral part of their sound), while the songwriting and playing is more varied and mature than ever. The production is too more sophisticated (some would say too safe and slick) than on previous CDs. The backing vocals are quite elaborated, but somehow they were also missing some of their early appeal as a southern folk act, with proper musical language and style. More than half of the CD sounds like a lot of traditional brazilian artists of that era.

Still the band was able to leave their mark with songs like Palpos De Aranha and Gaucho do Passo Fundo (Gaucho is someone born in Rio Grande Do Sul, their state, and Passo Fundo is a small town there famous for its conservative ways). They also show they lost none of their humor with the rock´n roll parody of Ri Do Rock (laugh at rock). While Almondegas kept the faith in the acoustic format, their musical tapestry is now adornated with other instruments depending on the style they were now playing (strings, accordion, trumpet, etc). Unfortunatly they were hardly the only ones doing that kind of stuff.

Although very good, and getting some nice reviews in the musical press, this work was not a hit. It was largely ignored by the public and the general feeling was that the band has become just another generic folk outfit of the time, a faceless group in a sea of other equally talented but undistinguished acts.

Rating: 2,5 stars.

 Aqui by ALMÔNDEGAS album cover Studio Album, 1975
2.50 | 4 ratings

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Aqui
Almôndegas Prog Folk

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Almondegas sophmore release became their most popular and bestselling album of their entire discography, thanks to their first (and only) national hit with Canção da Meio Noite (Midnight Song), which was inlcuded in the soundtrack of a Saramandaia, a successful soap opera. It also yielded one aof their best known songs, Haragana.

When compared with their debut, Aqui (here, in portuguese) shows the band much more confident and confortable at the studio. Their instrumentation also grew, with a more elaborated use of percussion instruments and the introduction of new ones (flute, violin, even bass and drums on a couple of tracks, but still no electric guitar). The musical style remains more or less the same as before, but the band has matured both as songwriters and players. Although there is little or no prog in here - or even much rock - it is obvious that they were expanding their folk boundaries to new grounds. The inclusion of themes, slangs and singing from their region set them apart from most folk-rock groups of the time.

Some tracks are exceptional like the beautiful southern folk of Gaudencio Sete Luas (Guadencio seven moons), while the mix of portuguese and spanish lyrics and styles of Mi Triste Santiago clearly offers an interesting hybrid resulting of people who lives on the border, closer to another country than to Rio de Janeiro or São Paulo.

To many this was their finest hour. But they would eventually release two more albums before desbanded by the end of the 70´s. Again I recommend this one for the ones who like to explore regional folk music with a sophisticated approach and subtle arrangements. 3,5 stars.

 Almôndegas by ALMÔNDEGAS album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Almôndegas
Almôndegas Prog Folk

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

— First review of this album —
3 stars Almondegas was a folk-rock group from Rio Grande Do Sul, a state in the very deep south of Brazil, a region that differs a lot from others, since they were basically colonized by immigrants from europe, with a very distinctive culture and habits. The band was one of the first southern acts to actually break into the national charts in the mid seventies. Today they are more known for including among their members the brothers Kledir and Kleiton Ramil, a duo that made it big in the early 80´s with several hits in the whole country, after the break up of Almondegas.

Their first , self titled album, is very much a folkish affair, with guitars (classical and 12 strings), percussion and the particular vocal delivery from the south. There is very little prog here per se. It is mostly filled with brazilian popular music and rhythms, like toada, samba, balada, etc. but don´t expect anything fleshy. Almost everything here has simple, acoustic accompaniment, with very subtle arrangements. The rock parts are more towards their attitude and approach to the traditional folk music from their region. The lyrics (all sung in portuguese) are very clever and often humorous.

The recording was well done for its time. all tracks are short, good and the instrumental is simple, but well crafted. Vento Negro (black wind) is my favorite song here, with its beautiful melody line and great folksy guitars arrangement. That songs reminds me of the biggest prog folk act from Brazil in the 70´s, the great Secos & Molhados.

In all, a very interesting release if you´re into acoustic prog folk with fine melodies and varied regional rhythms. If PA was a folk site this would be a four star affair, but since there is no prog at all in terms of instrumental music, I can only give it 3. Good, and for folk lovers, very good.

Thanks to ClemofNazareth for the artist addition.

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