Progarchives.com Homepage
Forum Home Forum Home > Progressive Music Lounges > Prog Recommendations/Featured albums
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed: Amagrama from Argentina
  FAQ FAQ  Forum SearchSearch  Calendar   Register Register  Login Login

Topic ClosedAmagrama from Argentina

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
Message
avestin View Drop Down
Special Collaborator
Special Collaborator
Avatar
Honorary Collaborator

Joined: September 18 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 12620
Direct Link To This Post Topic: Amagrama from Argentina
    Posted: October 22 2007 at 17:25
AMAGRAMA are a young band who have much talent as is evident from their excellent album Ciclotima.
 
Here's what Erik wrote about them here in PA:
In 1998 four teenagers, aged between 13 and 15, decided to make rock music: Agustin Amaya (keyboards, synthesizers, lead vocals), Juan Cruz Sanabria (guitars), Juan Amaya (drums, percussion and vocals), and Javier Martinez (electric bass). First they played covers from songs by THE BEATLES, PINK FLOYD and QUEEN. But then, under the name AMAGRAMA, the band started to write their own compositions, influenced by Argentine progrock legends CRUSIS, EL RELOJ and PABLO EL ENTERRADOR, new band NEXUS and the symphonic dinosaurs GENESIS and KING CRIMSON. In 2003 AMAGRAMA began their recordings sessions and a year later they released their debut-album entitled “Ciclotimia” (with guest guitarist Alejandro Graziano): dynamic and often sumptuous, melodic 24-carat progrock with spectacular solos and interplay. The music has echoes from CRUCIS and both GERARD and DREAM THEATER (but not that ‘over-the top-scale-acrobatics’).

The debut-album “Ciclotimia” by the new Argentine progrock band AMAGRAMA sounds great: lots of dynamic compositions featuring spectacular and sumptuous interplay between keyboards and guitar, supported by an adventurous rhythm-section and many flashing synthesizer solos and lots of sensitive guitar work. Their music has strong echoes from the breathtaking approach by GERARD and DREAM THEATER but no so ‘over the top’. AMAGRAMA includes just enough mellow songs and moments to relax, containing warm Spanish vocals and piano, acoustic guitar or soaring keyboards. A nice bonus is the cover “Recluso Artista” from CRUSIS, AMAGRAMA delivers a pleasant and inspired version. An impressive debut-CD!

: : : Erik Neuteboom, The NETHERLANDS : : :
Fan & official Prog Archives collaborator
 
 
 
I do hope they will release another album soon. Their Volumen 1 (Buenos Aires Free Experience) is a not too bad improvisation album, but it leaves a lot to be desired as many interesting musical ideas come up there but many go unfulfilled... Which makes me think they should have material for a second album.
 
 
 
 
Some of the reviews of Ciclotimia posted here in PA:
 

Collaborators Reviews

AMAGRAMA — Ciclotima

Review by Marcelo (Marcelo Matusevich)
PROG REVIEWER

4%20stars The first album released by this very young band is a nice surprise. Influenced by the monsters of genre and -specially- by the legendary Argentinian band CRUCIS, AMAGRAMA shows creativity, some beautiful and complex compositions and amazing musicians' skills.

Both instrumental tracks, "Ciclotimia" and "Fábulas de un Títere", are the highest points: energetic and elaborated symphonic rock. Sometimes, the album turns a little bit uneven, because quality in vocal parts is far from the excellent instrumental sections (this is a common point in Argentinian progressive rock, it never had an important male singer). Anyway, "Ciclotimia" is a very good album.

As bonus track, this stuff includes a wonderful version from CRUCIS' "Recluso Artista", perhaps the finest song of that band. Precisely, if you like CRUCIS, you'll love AMAGRAMA.

Summarizing, an impressive debut. Thinking about the band's youthness, we have fresh air for South American prog rock and, improving some details -the above mentioned vocal weakness-, a real promise.

Posted Thursday, August 12, 2004, 13:47 EST | Permanent link

AMAGRAMA — Ciclotima

Review by erik neuteboom (erik neuteboom)
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Prog Expert

4%20stars AMAGRAMA is a young Argentine band, the four muscians know each other from their childhood. Their debut-album “Ciclotimia” sounds great: lots of dynamic compositions featuring spectacular and sumptuous interplay between keyboards and guitar, supported by an adventurous rhythm-section and many flashing synthesizer solos and lots of sensitive guitarwork. The music has strong echoes from the breathtaking approach by GERARD and DREAM THEATER but not that ‘over-the top-scale-acrobatics’. AMAGRAMA includes just enough mellow songs and moments to relax, containing warm Spanish vocals and piano, acoustic guitar or soaring keyboards. A nice bonus is the cover “Recluso artista” from the legendary Argentine progrock band CRUSIS, AMAGRAMA delivers a pleasant and inspired version. An impressive debut-CD from a very promising band.

Posted Tuesday, October 26, 2004, 17:47 EST | Permanent link

AMAGRAMA — Ciclotima

Review by hdfisch (Dieter Fischer)
PROG REVIEWER

4%20stars Edited 09/26/2005

This album by very young Argentine band AMAGRAMA is one of the best debuts by a modern prog band I've listened to recently. Incredible how these guys are transposing elements of 70's kind of Prog in the vein of YES, GENESIS, KING CRIMSON or GENTLE GIANT into modern times without sounding ever like a rip-off of any of those bands. This is just symphonic prog how every lover of this sub-genre is looking for, fully in the spirit of the old originals, but melted well with elements of modern ProgMetal in the vein of DREAM THEATER. AMAGRAMA offers everything for lovers of both Symphonic Prog, ProgMetal and Fusion, just the right stuff for me!

The instrumental title track opens with a mixture of DT-typical keyboards and intricate symphonic prog enriched with interludes of jazz fusion. The main theme is actually rather simple but by playing it in many different variations the track is becoming a really excellent and versatile one. Fantastic opener. Thereafter they continue with another two short instrumental songs, first of them Vigilia being a very relaxed and mellow one with nice piano sound whereas second one El Vacio I is very much in a progmetal vein presenting again quite DT-alike fast and intricate keyboard and guitar play. With Tu Eternidad the mood is shifting once again to a more mellow symphonic one with Spanish vocals, reminding me a bit to THE AMBER LIGHT, when Luis Gabbiani sings in this language. In its second part it’s getting more into a hardish vein. An awesome intricate and versatile song with nice piano and excellent guitar. Then there is the second part of the instrumental track “El Vacio” which is quite similar to the first one, although being DT-reminiscent even better than those. It segues immediately into Todo lo que pueda ser having vocals again as well as some really intricate guitar/keyboard interplay. Although it’s clocking less than three minutes, a very interesting prog song. It’s revealing once again that excellent prog doesn’t need necessarily extended timing. The instrumental track Fabulas de un titere is an incredibly intricate one but they manage to keep it all the times still within a very accessible frame. This one is for sure a highlight of the album, although I’ve to say that the whole one is almost ONE highlight. Desierto Humedo is mostly a very quiet song, more in a acoustical vein with a short breakout towards its end. La luz y el cristal is as well an excellent highly complex more heavy rocking song, a hybrid of great symphonic prog and metal. I really miss such addictive moments in DT’s music. The final instrumental track Dislalia is once again, I really hate to repeat myself, an incredibly complex one in a symphonic and progmetal-ish vein. The bonus track Recluso Artista is a cover from a song by CRUCIS, one of the bands they’ve been influenced by according to the liner notes. I listened to the original and I can only say, they’re playing it really excellently here, maybe even better than the original.

SUMMARY

Although there are some influences by DREAM THEATER present AMAGRAMA is really creating their very own style by merging perfectly only some of their elements with some 70’s influences. Thus I’d like to say that this is a highly notable debut by a promising young band and actually worth 4,5 stars!

Posted Friday, March 11, 2005, 18:21 EST | Permanent link

AMAGRAMA — Ciclotima

Review by avestin (Assaf Vestin)
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Zeuhl/RIO/Avant Team

4%20stars There is something magnificent happening in Argentina. What a great album! This album has quickly become a favourite. What beautiful melodies, excellent musicianship, clever compositions, good production. They have two guitar sounds, one crunchy and one slightly “yelling”, they have excellent keyboards and they all intertwine together to create stunning music. The first song kicks in with a joyful tune and you can immediately tell who these guys love – Crucis and ELP and the likes. But this is no clone, not at all. They take their influences and mold their own sound. Moving from joyful parts to more melancholic soundscapes, they create a voyage in this track, while maintaining the basic melody all the time and playing around it and developing it all the time. There is not a single boring moment in here. I consider tracks 2 to 6 as one continuous track, since they blend in with each other. It starts off with a nice short instrumental in track 2 that flows so nicely into track 3 that begins with a sudden alarm like keyboards and then guitars and drums, abruptly stopped by a telephone ring. And then the guitar and keyboards start their dance, setting the scene for what is to come. I can’t really describe this. It is simply a great piece of slightly dissonant and mostly harmonic piece of music. It ends softly going in to track 4 Tu Eternidad that starts with a piano and the soft vocals of Agustin Amaya. This track then gets more dynamic both vocally and instrumental-wise. Sanabria on guitars and Amaya on the keys do an excellent job here, elevating this song to higher levels thanks to their performance. Then it ends quite suddenly. Begins track 5 that goes back to continue track 3. And again we receive a masterful performance of keyboards and guitars, backed up very good by the bass and drums. It ends in a falling scale back to track 6- Todo lo que pueda ser that continues track 4. This interplay between the songs and the breaking and resuming of songs is what gives these 2 to 6 tracks the feel of one lengthy opus. Even when it resumes the original song, there are variations of the original tune, so you can still be interested to hear what is being played. Track 7 Fabulas de un Titere is my favourite song/track here. There is the basic repetitive keyboard part played at first with the bass giving a strong tone to it. This basic part is then played over a few times over the track with variations and developed more and more. The end of this track is simply amazing – there is a change of scale to a more melancholic sounding key, which contradicts the whole overall cheerful and full of life sound of this album. I can’t get enough of this part. This track exemplifies the great trait of this band – their ability to create a rather simple tune, improvise and then dance around it, developing it more and more making it so much more good and beautiful, complex. This track alone predicts a great future for them. Desierto humedo is a welcome break from the dynamic predecessors. Calm with an acoustic guitar, and the mellow voice of Agustin Amaya and the backing voice of Juan Amaya. Then in 4:20 comes the rest of the band with guitars, drums and keys and give this song a dynamic assistance, but not fast, only to give it a powerful ending. La luz y el crystal starts off with a bell chiming and then the short bass line intro and the songs starts. This is a more heavy song, with the bass being brought more forward to amplify the effect. There are also some symph prog buts in it to keep things interesting making it a song with mixed styles in it. Dislalia is too a heavy sounding song, not metallic, but more inclined towards hard rock. And then it suddenly changes mood to something light, which you do not anticipate. This is one of the things that make this band so great. They keep changing things, they develop everything they create, they do not stagnate, they do not just fill an album with senseless music. They obviously have an enormous passion for what they do, and I can hear it very well in all of their songs. Recluso artista is a Crucis cover. Listening to it, you can get a clue as to how they influences them. This track is in the same high standard of the other tracks on this album.

I strongly recommend this album to everyone. Not only symphonic prog fans, or Crucis fans.

I have struggled hard about how many stars to give this – 4 or 5. This was really hard, since as much as I love this album, I can’t say this is a pure masterpiece. Apart from that, I strongly feel this is an album that should be in every prog fan's collection. It is why I decided eventually to give it 4 stars. A very hard choice for me. Go get it!

Posted Saturday, April 29, 2006, 09:24 EST | Permanent link

AMAGRAMA — Ciclotima

Review by el böthy (matias boettner)
PROG REVIEWER

3%20stars As I have said many times, prog in Argentina is hard to find, and as its not that popular there are not many prog acts, so whenever you come across a band like Amagrama, you must be thankfull. Amagrama is a quartet of very capable and imaginative musicians that deliver a fresh prog with influences from bands like Yes, Dream Theater and even that other argentinian group; Nexus. The end result is very enjoyable...instrumentaly, and I make this clear because this band has a flaw, and that is their singer, which is also the keyboards! This guys need another singer, cause Agustin Amaya is an excellent keyboarder...but no more than that! Luckily the mayority of songs are instrumentals, with Ciclotimia as a big stand out. As a first album, its quite impressive, if they continue this road they will be releasing some fantastic albums in the future...and if they change the singer maybe one or two masterpieces.

Posted Monday, September 25, 2006, 16:05 EST | Permanent link

 
 
 
Back to Top
erik neuteboom View Drop Down
Prog Reviewer
Prog Reviewer


Joined: July 27 2005
Location: Netherlands
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 7659
Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 23 2007 at 05:22

Assaf, I will mail the band how about a successor to their wonderful first studio effort, it would be too bad if they call it a day. By the way, good idea to post the reviews, it's nice to read the varied opinions and I am pleasantly surprised to read again all those positive reactions (lots of 4 stars reviews) on their debut CD Thumbs%20Up

 


Edited by erik neuteboom - October 23 2007 at 05:22
Back to Top
TheProgtologist View Drop Down
Special Collaborator
Special Collaborator
Avatar
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin

Joined: May 23 2005
Location: Baltimore,Md US
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 27554
Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 23 2007 at 09:10
A wonderful debut,especially considering the ages of the musicians in the band.
 
I just wish they would release another album sometime soon.

Back to Top
el böthy View Drop Down
Prog Reviewer
Prog Reviewer
Avatar

Joined: April 27 2005
Location: Argentina
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 6336
Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 23 2007 at 23:52
A promising band, they just need to get a better singer jejejeje. Im sure this guys will give us more and better stuff in what I hope is not a far away future. I really doubt they wont release another album, this guys know each others since they were kids, Im sure they will continue making music!



Uh, is that my review there?.... jejejej
"You want me to play what, Robert?"
Back to Top
memowakeman View Drop Down
Special Collaborator
Special Collaborator
Avatar
Honorary Collaborator

Joined: May 19 2005
Location: Mexico City
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 12475
Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 13 2007 at 12:46
Haven´t listened to Ciclotimia for ages...let´s do it soon

Follow me on twitter @memowakeman
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 9.69
Copyright ©2001-2010 Web Wiz

This page was generated in 0.156 seconds.