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ATILA

Symphonic Prog • Spain


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Atila biography
The Spanish band ATILA was formed in '73 by Eduardo Biebla (guitar), Joan Punyet (drums) and Paco Ortega (keyboards), soon several personnel changes followed. This legendary and highly acclaimed progrock band made three LP's: "The Beginning Of The End" ('75), "Intencion" ('76) and "Reviure" ('77). At the end of '78 the band dissolves but in '99 they reformed with Joan Punyet (drums), Benet Nogue (keyboards), Ignasi Bosch (guitar), Pere Martinez (bass) and Joan Cardoner (guitar). In the same year this ATILA line-up did a reunion-concert, playing their best material. The sound of ATILA has elements from VANILLA FUDGE, CREAM, The NICE and ELP but in general ... it's ATILA!

The remastered second album "Intencion" (considered as their best) and a concert from '99 are put on 1-CD (entitled "Atila: Intencion + Reviure"), this is a treat for the lovers of 'vintage-keyboards' (Hammond, Moog, Mellotron) with some mindblowing moments (swirling organ and fat Moog runs) but the guitarwork is also worth listening, a bit harder-edged but very inventive, at some moments with a Spanish flavour. The songs from the live-concert ('99) are more original and belong to the best Spanish progrock ever made: intense, compelling and exciting climates and shifting moods (a bit like the Italian IL BALLETTO DI BRONZO but less complex) with lots of great solos. "Reviure" is a masterpiece for the fan of Continental European progressive music. BEAUTIFUL MUSIC!!!

: : : Erik Neuteboom, The NETHERLANDS : : :
Fan & official Prog Archives collaborator

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Hello Young LoversHello Young Lovers
2009
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ATILA discography


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

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

3.77 | 48 ratings
Intencion
1976
4.07 | 56 ratings
Reviure
1977

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

1.95 | 9 ratings
Beginning of the End
1975

ATILA Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

3.05 | 3 ratings
Intencion & Reviure
1999
4.09 | 4 ratings
Intencion / Reviure
2009

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

ATILA Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Intencion by ATILA album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.77 | 48 ratings

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Intencion
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Although the Spanish progressive rock scene of the 1970s produced some fine groups and a handful of noteworthy albums, it never scaled the same artistic or commercial heights attained by the respective scenes of fellow European nations France, Germany and Italy. Prog-rock would flourish late-in-the-decade albeit rather briefly during the latter part of Franco's Iron rule, with young groups typically influenced by the leading English groups of the day - Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd, King Crimson, Van Der Graaf Generator etc - whilst also blending in strong elements of flamenco and jazz. The top Spanish outfits of the era included Triana, a now legendary three-piece heavily-influenced by flamenco, and other groups such as Bloque and Crack, who preferred a more experimental, art-rock approach fused with classical motifs. However, in the instance of Atila, classical Spanish influences were more-or-less eschewed in favour a more straightforward, symphonic style that was heavily indebted to the leading British acts of the early-seventies. Formed during this time, Atila would release three full-length studio albums before the usual lack of success, creative differences and touring difficulties colluded to cut short their promising career just as it seemed they were starting to become something rather special. Of these three albums it is perhaps 'Intencion' from 1977 that truly showcased Atila's remarkably non-Spanish style and impressive instrumental abilities, the album's overall sound falling somewhere between Van Der Graaf Generator's experimental curiosity and Pink Floyd's adventurous and melodic space-rock. Featuring four tracks, 'Intencion' starts strongly with the keyboard-dominated symphonic rock of the eight-minute title-track - a piece which careers recklessly from one soundscape to the next, all the while infused with angelic female backing vocals, twittering bird effects and shimmering synthesizers that prove one minute pacey, the next slow and dreamy. The same levels of enthusiastic invention are less prevalent on the more classically-orientated, organ-dominated 'Cucutila' and it's choppy, punchy follow-up 'Dia Perfecto', though happily the album's fifteen- minute closing epic 'El Principio Del Fin' finds Atila back on top form. A rousing, highly-eclectic suite with strong psychedelic overtones, 'El Principio Del Fin' is the album's crowning glory, an epic and adventurous composition featuring a range of emotions and some powerfully-drawn solo's that find keyboardist Benet Nogue and guitarist Eduardo Niebla on almost telepathic form. It's an enthralling finish to an impressive and largely instrumental slice of Iberian prog-rock, and an album that also proves that on their day the Spanish could create original music to rival their fellow Europeans. Alongside Triana's classic 'El Patio', this second release from Atila marks one of the high-points of the small-but-satisfying Spanish scene.

STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2012

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 Intencion by ATILA album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.77 | 48 ratings

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Intencion
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by Marty McFly
Special Collaborator Crossover and E&O Teams

3 stars The problem here is that it's average music. Averagely good Symph Prog, but nothing special - nothing to capture you attention too much (and half classical inspired, half jamming ending piece doesn't help at all, on the contrary, it falls so flat for me). Too many psychedelia (symph psych) that it may sound like Symph (all the instruments and sounds are there), but the composition of this album hints elsewhere. Of these tracks, Dia Perfecto (Perfection of God?) is the best, but even that one would be 4-star track, nothing special really. It's not bad album you see (hear?), but there are many better from this era. The band is from Spain, but I fail to hear that in their sound.

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 Reviure  by ATILA album cover Studio Album, 1977
4.07 | 56 ratings

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Reviure
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by Marty McFly
Special Collaborator Crossover and E&O Teams

3 stars I am not sure if this album is an improvement over their debut one, but it certainly is different. Gone is the pure symph atmosphere, welcome far more atmospheric pieces which spans quite in length, not that less jamming, but it's rather of a different kind. Indeed, everything is different here. More jamming, more endless solos which in the end leads to no particular conclusion. They are just here, lying uninterestingly, waiting to catch someone's attention. Last track - Al Mati really tries to be the strongest one on Reviure and perhaps is succeeds. But one track cannot redeem the rest.

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 Beginning of the End by ATILA album cover Live, 1975
1.95 | 9 ratings

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Beginning of the End
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by Gerinski
Prog Reviewer

1 stars 1 star for Atila's debut, not so much for being terribly bad but because it's only for collectors and completionists, the reason being that you have a better version of the same music in their next album Intencion, so you should not spend your money in this one. Their next 2 albums are worth discovering though.

The original vinyl of this album is said to be the most sought for in the collectors market of spanish prog, reportedly having reached prices over 1000 euro (I believe only 1000 copies were released)..

Most 70's catalan prog bands were from Barcelona and unintentionally they formed the movement called 'rock laieta' (Laiteania was the roman name for the region around current Barcelona), and they frequently interacted with each other using as a platform the concert venue Zeleste and its associated recording label Edigsa..

Atila on the other hand were from the city of Girona, and while it's only 100 kms away from Barcelona this was enough to put them in another basket. They did not consider themselves as belonging to rock laieta but rather they just did their own stuff, and indeed their music is quite different from the other catalan bands, no fusion and no local folk, and more space / psych mixed with a fuzz hard rock guitar influenced by Hendrix, Cream and Tony Iommi, much more rocking than most other catalan bands. Indeed they only played once at Zeleste in 1976 (for 2 consecutive sold-out evenings). In any case they evolved quickly from proto-prog style to nearly symphonic in just 3 albums..

In 1975 they released this debut album which was recorded live in studio and can be considered more as a demo than anything else. It consists of a single track of 30 min which blends a few JS Bach chops with long instrumental jams with keys, guitar and drums, including a drum solo. As most 70's spanish prog it sounds much older than it is, this is more like proto-prog in the style of Iron Butterfly or Rare Earth, with touches of keyboard oriented prog such as The Nice and Egg but less masterful. One section reminds of Deep Purple's Child In Time..

Not bad but far from very good. The CD edition was apparently ripped from a vinyl and not from the original master tapes and the sound quality is rather poor, and the fact that they did not have a bassist does not help, although in some sections I could swear that I hear a bass besides the keys, guitar and drums, not sure how they did it..

A condensed to 15 min but much better version of this track is included in the follower "Intencion" with the title translated into spanish El Principio Del Fin, it keeps the most musical sections and drops the more unnecessary improvisation jams, so you should not spend your money with this album unless you are a completionist, huge Atila fan or fond of rarities..

As a curious note, in the album sleeve the track is divided in 18 imaginary parts and credited to imaginary authors. Apparently this was forced by the producer because in this way he grabbed part of the authors rights. Atila is worth discovering, especially their great 3rd album Reviure, but this debut is dispensable.

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 Intencion by ATILA album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.77 | 48 ratings

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Intencion
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by Gerinski
Prog Reviewer

3 stars After their demo-level debut, Atila got a high reputation as a live band because of their high rocking energy compared to most catalan prog bands of the time who were doing a more sofisticated fusion-based prog. In '76 they got a deal with BASF, keyboardist Paco Ortega was replaced by Benet Nogué (who would also contribute the few vocals) and they recruited bassist Miguel Blasco, and everything was set for a proper album recording.

Their debut track The Beginning Of The End had become quite popular in their live acts but that album had been very poorly recorded and distributed, so they decided to re-record it in this their second album (the last track, here with the title translated to spanish El Principio Del Fin), which is a good and a bad thing. Good because it gives us a much more polished version, compressed from the original 30 min to 15, concentrating on the more musical sections and dropping much of the improvisation jams and reducing the drum solo to some 2.5 min. Bad because it's still proto-prog style and somehow lowers the overall quality of this album.

The three new tracks are much more evolved towards what would become the real Atila sound, a mix of symphonic RPI style, space-psych and hard rock. This is a trasition album where the last track, the reworked version of the debut El Principio Del Fin keeps the hard- rock proto sound and the new tracks show a more spacy sound and hints at symphonic. The next album Reviure would consolidate the sound eliminating the proto side and enhancing the symphonic one.

The first track Intencion starts in symphonic style with some female choirs, a bit like RPI, but then Eduardo Niebla's guitar provides that Deep Purple / Black Sabbath feel, then followed by a vocal section which may remind of Pink Floyd's Meddle period, although the guitar is not up to Gilmour's level. There are some synth effects sounding like space laser wars in a japanese B-sci-fi movie which sound completely outdated today but ok, we have to bear in mind the time of the recording.

Second track Cucutila starts with an epic sounding organ and quickly gets upbeat, it's instrumental except for some female choirs which seem taken from a musical such as the Rocky Horror Picture Show, good but a bit lacking coherence.

Dia Perfecto is the best track, a mix of space-rock and symphonic, featuring also some female choirs, probably the track which best anticipates their great 3rd album Reviure.

At this period Atila performed in the 1976 Canet Rock festival and they stole the show, they played in a small side stage but the audience got hooked on them, they were named the best act in the festival.

There are, as far as I know, 3 different CD editions of this album, 2 of them as a pack together with the 3rd album Reviure in which this album Intencion is the same, but not Reviure (see my review of Reviure for more details) and a Wah Wah release including a bonus track "Un Camel De Xocolata" which is a reworked version of the vocal parts of the track Intencion, recorded during the band reunion in 1999.

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 Reviure  by ATILA album cover Studio Album, 1977
4.07 | 56 ratings

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Reviure
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by Gerinski
Prog Reviewer

4 stars 4 to 4.5 stars. The 3rd and most elaborated album by Atila, gone are the proto-prog elements and here we have clear symphonic style blended with space-prog ala Pink Floyd Meddle epoch. They signed to EMI, bassist was replaced by Jean Pierre Gomez and the female choir was eliminated, keyboardist Benet Nogué still provides the few vocals.

First track Reviure (Live Again) is a great song, starting atmospherically and building up tempo. The bass and drums are much better than in the previous albums, finally taking some attitude. There are a few vocals with lyrics revindicating the catalan culture.

2nd track Somni (A Dream) is more spacy, with a constant bass line over which keyboards and guitar improvise, good but the weakest of the album.

3rd track Atila starts with some disgusting coughing but once started it's a great track displaying very good keyboard and guitar soloing on a strong rhythm background.

Al Mati (In The Morning) is the best track, the most symphonic, with a few vocals sections but for the most part relying on the great instrumental work of the guys.

Definitely the best Atila album, if you feel like discovering this band this is the place to start, if you like them then check out their 2nd album Intencion.

There are (at least, as far as I know) 2 CD editions of this album, as a pack together with the previous album Intencion. The release by the tiny and now extinct label Pan Y Musica featured a live version of the full Reviure album from a live concert in 1999, sice EMI would not release the rights of the studio recording, it's good and it can decently substitute the studio version. The Mandala release contains the studio version of the Reviure album which I personally find the best.

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 Reviure  by ATILA album cover Studio Album, 1977
4.07 | 56 ratings

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Reviure
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by Bonnek
Special Collaborator Prog Metal Team

3 stars 'Reviure' is one of the few progressive rock albums from the latter 70s that can distract some words of praise from me. The main reason is that it maintains some of that rocking edge of the early 70s prog. In fact - and maybe it's due to the Spanish language - this recalls very much the 1972 RPI spirit, in particular bands like Il Balletto Di Bronzo or Osanna.

But that doesn't mean all is good. First of all the songwriting is never outstanding, or at least, I can't find much to distinguish one track from the next, the sparse vocals are weak in execution and also lack anything resembling a hook or decent melody. Sure, this ain't Genesis or Yes, despite the great rhythm section which closely resembles the Bruford-Squire tandem of old.

The musicianship is good, although I might have preferred the ELP-inspired synths to be lower in the mix. This would have brought the much more palatable bass and drums to the fore. Admitted, I like Prog mainly for the usually outstanding drums and bass parts. Still 3.5 stars, more for people that like keyboard-dominated Progressive Rock.

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 Intencion / Reviure by ATILA album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2009
4.09 | 4 ratings

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Intencion / Reviure
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by seventhsojourn
Special Collaborator RPI

4 stars This release brings together onto one disc Atila's brace of highly regarded albums from the years 1976-77. Since you get 'Intención' and 'Reviure' for the price of one normal CD there's hopefully no need to raid the biscuit tin. Several of our prominent reviewers have already posted their thoughts on the individual albums and readers would do well to check those reviews if they're looking for a detailed commentary on Atila's music. And YouTube is your friend. What I will say is that this is symphonic prog at its best and among the most significant to come out of Spain, although from looking at Atila's history I think there's one issue that needs some clarification.

The sleeve notes in this digipack edition are more or less identical to the band's bio here on PA, and those sleeve notes give the impression that the tracks from 'Reviure' on this release were taken from a live 1999 recording. These two albums have been paired previously so perhaps that's the release the notes refer to. It's all a bit confusing but the version here is for sure the studio version from 1977. Just to complicate matters further, the MP3 stream of 'Al Mati' on PA is ostensibly the 1977 recording but it's clearly a live cut with applause at the end. It's actually superior to the studio version, which means I'm now trying to track down that elusive live recording from 1999.

Anyway, that's more than enough about my lame sleuthing procedures. Returning to the fundamental issue of the review and there really is some fantastic music here, particularly on the 'Reviure' half of the album. Definitely one for the list.

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 Beginning of the End by ATILA album cover Live, 1975
1.95 | 9 ratings

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Beginning of the End
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

2 stars A real top of the Spanish/Catalan prog scene,Atila were formed in 1973 as a trio by guitarist Eduardo Alvarez Niebla,keyboardist Paco Ortega and drummer Juan Panet,hailing from Girona.They were mostly famous for the two full-length lbums they released,but before them it was the live recording ''The beginning of the end (El principie del fin)'',which functioned as a demo presentation of the band.

This was just one track of 30 minutes length,but do not expect a structured superb epic to be heard.''''The beginning of the end'' is more of a live jamming of the band,which additionally sounds a lot more than an early-70's than a mid-70's archive.This lengthy composition can be described as organ-driven Heavy Psychedelic/Prog Rock with a few Classical adapted themes connected with plenty of guitar/organ solos and grooves,cut around its middle by a 3 min. drum solo.The abscence of the bass does not help,despite the generally rich sound.Surprisingly the track flaws easier than expected,as the band changes from smooth psychedelic to heavy organ-driven forms in constant moments.

The album ends up to be a cool archival release of this short-lived Spanish legend with some high but also a lot of low points,yet nowhere near their full-length releases,both in terms of music and production.Recommended mainly to fans of organ-based Proto Prog...2.5 stars.

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 Beginning of the End by ATILA album cover Live, 1975
1.95 | 9 ratings

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Beginning of the End
Atila Symphonic Prog

Review by toroddfuglesteg

1 stars Is this a bootleg ?

Bad packaging, very bad sound and probably a band not on their best too. This is essentially a rip-off release, cashing on Atila's very good name.

My gripe is not with Atila or their music on this album. It is difficult to judge their music based on this very bad sound. The inclusion of a very lengthy drum solo does not make this album any better either. In other words; it is impossible to even judge Atila and the music on this live album. So I am not. What makes me mad is this album presented as an Atila product. It probably is not. It is a rip-off, no less and no more.

The "music" here just makes me hungry for their studio album (the 2 for 1 package, to be more precise) where Atila is presented in all their glory. And you too should buy that package. Don't be as stupid as I have been by purchasing this pile of squirrel droppings. If you are looking for proofs that I am an idiot, the presence of this album my house and the credit card bill should do.

1 star

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