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Bacamarte - Mário Neto: Sete Cidades CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.51 | 75 ratings

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4 stars Never understood why the harsh reviews receive by BACAMARTE'S second release "Sete Cidades", it's clear for almost everybody that "Depois Do Fim" is more solid, but hey, it's like the difference between Hybris and Epilog by ANGLAGARD, one is a bit better, but both are masterpieces or very close to that status.

One of the big problems is that Jane Duboc is no longer in the band, and that's a loss, but the voice of Mario Neto is very appropriate for music that has a lot of it's root in the rich Brazilian folklore, but not in the popular Samba or Bossa Nova as we are used to, but in the "Gaúcha" Music, the music of the southern regions with Argentinean, Bolivian, Paraguayan influences. Closer to the Andean Folklore but still unique (What is a paradox, because the geological site known as Sete Cidades is in the north of the country), Music of Conquerors being resisted, music that tells the story of centuries of Portuguese Colony, the unknown face of Brazilian Folk hidden for the foreigner by the glamour of the Carnivals and the gorgeous "mulatas".

"Portais" begins with a wonderful acoustic guitar solo reminiscent of the music from "Rio Grande Do Sul" which blends with a sweet flute to keep the bucolic atmosphere, but a guitar and drums explosion reminds us we are before a Progressive Rock band that blends perfectly the Ethnic spirit with pristine Symphonic in a way that you can't almost notice when it happened. Excellent arrangements, everything flows gently from stat to end.

"Ritual de Fertilidade" is a strange song with Afro-Brazilian influences, the rhythm is contagious, the spirit of "Candombe" is there, the sacred and the profane all blended, but being so short is used as an interlude or an intro for "Filhos do Sol" in which a more Symphonic sounds covers the listener, the good vocals of Mario Neto merge perfectly with the general mood of the track, the mellotron based chorus are outstanding.

"Espirito de Terra" starts very atmospheric with a soft synth solo slightly backuped by the drums, suddenly the volume starts to increase and other instruments as the guitar join to the music and the vocals complete the scenery. Very nostalgic and melodic song enhanced by the mellotron voices and a moody guitar instrumental break, incredibly beautiful.

"Mirante Das Estrelas" which I first heard in "Depois Do Fin" is repeated here, don't know the reason, but it's already commented.

"Carta" is another short vocal-acoustic folk interlude that prepares us for thegrand finalle, soft and gentle because two frantic tracks can't go one after the other without damaging the general atmosphere of the album.

Now if they wanted to close "Sete Cidades" with something more spectacular than "Canto da Esfinge & Portais", they couldn't had done it, from the start the band attacks us with everything they have, the guitar - Synth - drums duet is fantastic, reminding a bit of ELP, but suddenly a big change occurs, the music fades into a soft instrumental break which after some minutes leads to another frantic passage, plethoric of organs, mellotron, acoustic guitars, almost everything that can throw us is being thrown with perfect balance, the closing section organ reminds me of Par Lindh Project, but I understand this once lost album was released before the Swedish Organ wizard released his debut. Won't try to explain more, because words are short to describe the fusion of sounds and styles that come one after the other, just will say we are before 11:30 minutes of pure Progressive Rock.

As I said before, this album is not in the exact level of the debut, so I can't rate it with another 5 stars, but anything bellow four very solid starts would be just unfair.

Ivan_Melgar_M | 4/5 |


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