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TÓrax - Tórax CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.13 | 4 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Tórax is a band from Argentina that aims at the vigorization of the jazz-pog and fusion areas in the current rock scene. Not unlike other South American bands such as Leprechaun or Prisma-X, Tórax stateas a friendly attitude toward the power and dynamics of jazz-prog-metal, but the fusion trend is solid enough as to keep the band closely related to its compatriot ensemble Fantasía Cromática, as well. In many ways, this eponymous debut effort has a repertoire that signals alternately to both directions. The opener (titled as both band and album) gest started with a rocking stance that borders on prog-metal through its controlled rhythmic cadence; as the track progresses, things get gradually relaxing until the closing climax brings a concise retake of the first motif. 'Terapia de Grupo' is based on a funky dynamics, bearign enough hooks as to keep things rolling around a few motifs. 'Altos amigos' is a mid-tempo piece that kind of reiterates the previous track's mood: the interlude makes a shift toward exotic atospheres, with the inclusion of sitar and tabla performed by guest musicians. 'Tribus' kicks off with a well defined melodic drive, revolving around an energetic mixture of Satriani and Holdsworth delivered by Rivarola's guitar phrases. A series of complex passages break in halfway through in purely progrssive fashion; from here, the stage is set to create a climax that perpetuates this strategy of prog-friendly jazzy complexity. A special mention has to go for drummer Gabrielñ Pedernera, whose technical proficiency is fairly displayed. The following track is a perfect combination of muscle and swing, preserving and ven intensifying the fire inherited from track 4. 'Plaza del Mercado' is teh first track in teh album in which the fusion element becomes he crucial one (and not just an ornament). The mood is warm and the vibrations ae candid, prominently based on Afro- American cadences: the use of cajón, a typical perucssion instrument from Peruvian black folklore, emphasizes the fusion sonorities, which are undoubtedly prevalent in spite of the cosmopolitan airs brought in by the Return to Forever-inspired solos on guitar and synthesizer. With the ironic title of 'Una de Coldplay' we find a solid exercise on funk-instilled jazz, with slight touches of fusion. Thankfully, this is not a cover of that pseudo-existentialist, formulaic pop band that some audiences and press label as one of the greatest in contemproary rock (Coldplay), but a showcase for the talented Brenda Martin to make good use of her skills on bass guitar. 'Ukeleles' bears another deceitful title, since it snaivety is frontally contradicted by the heavy nucleus of its melodic delivery: the track may sound like a lost Siamese of the pening piece, but thsi time the energy is augmented to a Planet-X level. 'El Pájaro' sets a sort of combination between the two preceding tracks' moods, cleverly mixing punch and swing. The use of programmed percussion and eerie industrial-friendly synth layers in the interlude allows the band to introduce some cntrolled density in order to organize variety within the track's confines. The sense of vigor reinstated by 'Ukeleles' is recaptured by 'Martillo Neumático', which finds the band exploring its aggressive side deeper than ever before. This track would have made an excellent closue, but this honor is reserved for 'Amor Ausente', a pop-rock semi-ballad with an extra grunge edge. This song features singer/2nd guitarist Lula Bertold as a special guest: it's nicely done, but it sure kills the album's overall scheme. All things considered, my personal balance about this album is very positive. Tórax is an excellent jazz-prog item and Tórax is a band prog fans should pay attention to.
Cesar Inca | 4/5 |


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