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SPEKTAR

Crossover Prog • Yugoslavia


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Spektar biography
SPEKTAR was formed in early 1974 Zagreb, Croatia (former Yugoslavia) by keyboardist and composer Enco Lesić who had just left INDEXI leaving behind his song "Sve ove godine" which earned them a smash hit in 1972.

The band was named after the success of Billy Cobham's ''Spectrum'' LP. The members included: Davor Rocco on bass, Dragan Brčić on drums, Neven Franges on piano and Lesić on assorted keyboards. Franges soon dropped due to his academic and jazz career but continued to collaborate with the band on stage. After only a few live gigs in Zagreb the band were given opportunity to record a debut album in Ljubljana studios while the newly formed Suzy label from Zagreb was ready to invest in the release. Virtually unknown outside of Zagreb scene, SPEKTAR disbanded following the lack of success of the LP.

In this period percussionist Berislav Puhlovski joined as a short-term member of the band. Upon the demise of the group Franges, Rocco and Brčić joined singer/songwriter Drago MLINAREC and contributed as session players on his acclaimed albums "Rođenje", "Negdje postoji netko" and "Sve je u redu".

SPEKTAR played progressive rock with elements of jazz, funk and classical music. Due to guitar-less sound and heavy use of keyboards, they might be compared to ELP, ATOMIC ROOSTER, TRAFFIC, SOFT MACHINE or OPUS (Belgrade).

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2.35 | 3 ratings
Spektar
1974

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SPEKTAR Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Spektar by SPEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 1974
2.35 | 3 ratings

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Spektar
Spektar Crossover Prog

Review by Seyo
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

2 stars An obscure short-lived band SPEKTAR from Zagreb had a rare opportunity in former Yugoslavia ? to release an LP record out of the blue, almost without a noticeable live gig or considerable radio broadcast.

Newly formed record label Suzy, otherwise known for rich license catalog of international rock stars (labels such as CBS and WEA) which they released in Yugoslavia, obviously wanted to promote a domestic rock band without much selection criteria. Enco Lesic, who had earlier left INDEXI after penning their first mainstream hit single "Sve ove godine", was probably hanging around and was deemed suitable with his new band so the album was recorded and released in 1974 in modest circulation, hence its rarity nature among the nowadays collectors. Unfortunately, all interesting facts about this album end here.

Enco Lesic (vocals, keyboards), Davor Rocco (bass) and Dragan Brcic (drums) tried to demonstrate their instrumental capacities and as long as there are no vocals involved, the results are fairly good, like in the groovy jazz-funk tinged two-part title track that bookends the album. Unfortunately, in almost all other songs (with possible exception of "Vrisak mora"/"The Scream of the Sea" whose excellent Hammond and electric piano notes and congas invoke some brilliant TRAFFIC moments) Lesic vocals are too horrible to listen. As if this is not bad enough, the compositions are lame, unconvincing and underdeveloped and full of out-of-place backing vocals so you really need to be patient in order to listen through the entire record.

This is sad, because the trio is instrumentally very competent (SPEKTAR minus Lesic plus Neven Franges on piano was to play an important role as backing band on several important Drago Mlinarec albums) and Lesic did his best to use a variety of keyboard instruments of the day in order to fill the sound in what might have been a good progressive effort. But, the result more often than not sounds like a second-rate ELP trying to play some accessible vocal jazz-rock.

PERSONAL RATING: 1,5/5

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 Spektar by SPEKTAR album cover Studio Album, 1974
2.35 | 3 ratings

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Spektar
Spektar Crossover Prog

Review by ljubaspriest

3 stars Enzo Lesic,former keyboardist fof Indexi,formed Spektar in Zagreb,Croatia in 1974.Next year out of nowhere self-titled album appeared on Suzy label.Along with Belgrade's Opus self-titled album Spektar is probably rarest rock based album from former Yugoslavia and retains semi- cult status among local collectioners.Music on this record is a mixed bag.Half of the material have very strong prog-fusion feel to it,other half is pure pop,somewhat undeveloped and at moments even dumb and banal to the core.Spektar I&II are both excellent jazz-rock driven instrumental tunes,Dobri kapetan is full blown prog extravaganza with anti-war message,Pjesmom bih htio da ti kazem is beautiful proggy ballad,although singing is not one of Enzo Lesic strenghts.Listening to these songs one could sense great potential,which,unfortunately ,was never fully realised.After recording album,band essentally disbanded,with Rocco and Brcic reforming it few months later under same name and teaming up with another classically trained keyboardist Neven Franges.This incarnation of Spektar can be heard on Drao Mlinarec's excellent 1976 album "Rodjenje".In subsequent years Enzo Lesic built one of the most succesful producer carrers in music bussines in former Yugoslavia.

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