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The Storm - The Storm CD (album) cover


The Storm


Heavy Prog

3.70 | 22 ratings

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4 stars Despite forming in 1969, Spanish band The Storm didn't get around to releasing their debut s/t album for five years, and somewhat surprisingly the group, formed by brothers Ángel (guitars) and drummer Diego Ruiz, performed in English. However, the wait was worth it, as 1974's `The Storm' is a minor classic belter of ballsy heavy rock with a touch of psych and blues, all grafted to a keen pop edge and lively roaring vocals, with a couple of instrumental tracks worked in too, and its `proto-prog' fusion of Sixties/Seventies sounds is in the Hammond organ-dominated manner of Deep Purple, Atomic Rooster and Procol Harum among others.

Opener `I've Gotta Tell You Mama' is a punchy three-minute up-tempo rocking blast of energy, all Ángel's crunchy guitars, José Torres' thick slab bass, Diego's snappy drumming and Luis Genil's dense dirty Hammond backing an infectious chorus. The spiky `I Am Busy' is another brash rock n' roller with plentiful twisting grooves and shrieking vocal outbursts, but even better is `Un señor llamado Fernández de Córdoba', a chilled instrumental jam driven by guitars that move from dreamy ringing chimes to grumbly slow-burn bluesy meltdowns with just a touch of an early Pink Floyd/David Gilmour sound to them. Then there's a great raspy lead vocal and nice wiry guitar grooves with strangled acid-rock wailing soloing throughout the sweaty and sexy first side closer `Woman Mine', and dig that subdued little sparkling Hammond organ break in the second half that keeps getting belted with heavy bluster and noise!

Side B's `It's All Right' is a harmless hip-swivelling Hammond organ-coated groovy rock n' roller with a catchy group chorus, ditto the dirtier `I Don't Know' and its raucous lead vocal, mangled guitar noise with a little lightly jazzy break in the middle. The seven minute `Crazy Machine' offers another snarling improvised jam that also throws in purring jazzy breaks and spacey psych interludes, and it's crammed with endless widdly-diddly guitar tantrums, violent swirling organ washes and machine-gun fire drumming (Diego even charges into the `oh-so-Seventies' obligatory drum solo!). Fast and furious instrumental closer `Experiencia sin órgano' burns with a heavy bluesy strut and wraps the set on no shortage of howling guitar histrionics.

The Storm would release a gentler and more lightly proggy follow-up ` El Dia de la Tormenta (`The Day of the Storm')' at the end of the decade before splitting in the early Eighties, but their reputation is more or less sustained on the strength of this powerhouse debut rocker. It's not so much that the group were especially original, but what they did, they did damn well, and any band from the era that played in a similar style would have killed to have such a strong work in the discography! Great energetic playing and cool catchy tunes - what more could you want?

Four stars...and don't forget to play it LOUD!

Aussie-Byrd-Brother | 4/5 |


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