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Rayuela - Rayuela CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.98 | 42 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Named after one of Argentinean writer Julio Cortázar's most bizarre novels, this band - also from Argentina - recorded one LP alone, which is yet to be re-released in CD format. Their music was not as bizarre as Cortázar's literary vision: its major asset lies on the creation of captivating emotional ambiences through pleasant melodic lines and their tasteful arrangements. Rayuela's repertoire is pretty much based on a delicate compromise between jazz-fusion and acoustic folk, two different musical sources that share an equilibrated presence in this album. The musicians' versatility allows them to instill symphonic airs into the final result: this very symphonic element helps the overall repertoire acquire a touch of stylish sophistication, mostly provided by the elegant keyboard inputs (textures, leads, layers) and the elegant use of sax and flute on most of the main melodic lines. The opener 'La Casa del Hombre' and the amazing instrumental 'Aéreo' are arguably the best examples of Rayuela's jazz-tinged progressive leanings. On the other hand, 'Los Últimos Grillos' and the blues-tempo acoustic ballad 'Vientos de la Calma' showcase the band's melodic aspect in a folkish context: the former of these two is really captivating, bearing an evident beauty and a not so evident sense of subtlety in the eerie arrangements, which helps it to increase its primal appeal. In many ways, it sounds similar to the ballads by their compatriot band La Máquina de Hacer Pájaros. The album's second half [tracks 5-7] is the most cohesive, and also the most rewarding in progressive terms. 'Acaso Tú Crees (Que no Me Dí Cuenta de que Te Fuiste hace Diez Años)' and 'Sexo y Dinero' are two catchy instrumental pieces that give way to a more candid exposure of the musicians' skills (without really showing off in excessive bombast). The former displays a pretty main motif recycled via the use of jazzy cadences and almost orchestral amalgams, while the latter paves its way across the funky-jazz trend. The album is closed down by the sung track 'Vendré con el Viento', yet another exhibition of the band's ability to bring out beautiful melodies: its overt romantic aura make it sound like a cross between "Wind & Wuthering"-era Genesis and classic Supertramp. The sax and guitar solos really complement the emotional spur reflected on the lyrics ("I want to have you without getting out of myself / without searching for you"). While not a masterpiece nor being consistently excellent, Rayuela's one and only album should be acknowledged as an inspired legacy of melodic art-rock, faithfully akin to the general spirit of South American melodic prog.
Cesar Inca | 3/5 |


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