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Prog Folk • Argentina

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Melimelum biography
After the well known Argentinian folk rock duo Pedro y Pablo broke-up, Jorge Durietz, the artist formerly known as "Pablo", formed this interesting folk rock group, whose name is latin for honey apple, or quince.
Durietz composed all songs from their only LP, released in 1976, which featured relaxing songs with a gentle bossa nova flavor, highlighted by vocal harmonies, guitars (acoustic and electric) and flutes. Durietz wrote or co-wrote all the songs, which he dubbed "humanist romance". Arrangements were sensitively handled by Daniel Russo who also played bass and piano.

Flautist Fernando Gonzalez left after the album to study in the US, and the group began to work on a new album. The plan was that it would not be as acoustic as the debut. It never saw release, as perhaps the group's continued existence was extinguished by poor album sales on their debut.

Afterwards Durietz retired from music until the early 80s for Pedro y Pablo's successful comeback, which endured on and off until 1991, with both members concentrating on solo careers afterwards.

The sole Melimelum album is recommended to fans of the type of spare and deceptively simplistic folk prog that seems to be endemic to Argentina.

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2.53 | 5 ratings

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Showing last 10 reviews only
 Melimelum by MELIMELUM album cover Studio Album, 1976
2.53 | 5 ratings

Melimelum Prog Folk

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

2 stars Short-lived Argentinian Folk Rock band with guitarist/singer Jorge Durietz being the main composer.Durietz was already known as half of the duo Pedro y Pablo (the other members was Miguel Cantilo), with this project he had a relatively succesful stint between 1969-72.In the 76' formed Melimelum he joined forces with bassist/pianist/guitarist Daniel Russo, drummer Micky Mitchell, flutist Fernando Gonzalez and guitarist/singer Eduardo Figueroa.They released a self-titled album the same year on CBS.

With PASTORAL having sucked the major success of the period national Folk Rock movement, there was little room for Melimelum to become widely recognized.They played practically music in the same vein as PASTORAL, their album was a gentle attempt on Folk Rock with light electric guitars, plenty of acoustic themes, bucolic flute lines and neverending sentimental vocals in Spanish.They created a nice, rural atmosphere, but failed to deliver any true progressive content or trully memorable melodies.The endless vocal- and musical harmonies, the extremely soft folky arrangements and the lack of thematic and sound changes are preventing factors for a full enjoyment, even if the album is too short (just over 30 minutes long) to become tiring, because you have the feeling you listen to the same piece all the time, consisting of discreet flute/guitar interplays and emotional vocals.''Terrores primales, liberiola III'' is the only rockin' piece on the album, featuring a dominant electric sound and working as a nice bridge between the acoustic tracks, while ''Dame, dame la mano vida, liberiola I'' eventually unleashes the progressive spirit of the group, this one sounds a lot like early YES or FLASH with very good guitar moves and complex exercises, having also a slight jazzy touch.

Melimelum apparently disbanded due to lack of success not long after their debut.In early-80's Durietz rejoined forces with Miguel Cantilo in a similar project as Pedro y Pablo, now named Cantilo-Durietz for a short time, then switching it to the original name, but this reformation also failed, leading to the 85' dissolution of the duo.

Largely acoustic Folk Rock with some electric sensibilities and a good number of flute themes.More in a Psych/Folk than Prog Folk vein, the prog content is pretty limited, so the ones to appreciate the album will be certainly fans of the earlier style.

 Melimelum by MELIMELUM album cover Studio Album, 1976
2.53 | 5 ratings

Melimelum Prog Folk

Review by kenethlevine
Special Collaborator Prog-Folk Team

3 stars In the 1970s, duos like PASTORAL and PABLO Y PEDRO give the impression that mildly psychedelic and care free folk music were as widespread in Argentina as everywhere else during that period. But Romance languages are particularly well suited to the genre and seem to possess an unfair advantage. With the sadly short-lived MELIMELUM, the ingredients attained an optimal blend more often than not - dual acoustic guitars, mellifluously jazzy lead guitar, syncopated bass, and harmonious plaintive vocals.

The best examples of MELIMELUM's sensuous concoctions are in "Matinal Surgimagico", the upbeat "Terrores Primales", which also incorporates sprightly flutes and playful percussion into its sunny 1960s pop sensibility, and especially the brilliant "En El Otono", with a chanted chorus that will have you pulling your tongue off the floor. "Sol Amarillo" provides a fitting nightcap. Even the weakest material smacks of rather more of the same rather than anything remotely inept.

While it's decidedly mild mannered, this recording, like all such works from this period and place, cannot help but sound subtly subversive given the political climate, and MELIMELUM covers another base if your quest is an eclectic mix of "world" prog.

Thanks to kenethlevine for the artist addition.

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