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Santana - Santana 3 CD (album) cover

SANTANA 3

Santana

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.00 | 299 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
4 stars 4.5 stars really!!!!

Could Santana realize the hat trick? Well I don't think they even thought about it beforehand, and probably never realized it after they achieved it. Again another superb/stunning gatefold artwork, the group presents a teenage Neal Schon as second guitarist, but it will not change their overall sound, still favoring this high energy fusion between rock, jazz-rock and latino musics.

Right from the opening Batuka, you just know you are in for yet another classic Santana ride that will bring you to heaven and back. The band can go from sheer power (Jungle Strut is awesome) to real suave moments (check out Taboo) and some rebellious moments (Toussaint L'Overture was a slave rebel if memory serves) and ethnic (Guajira) interludes. One of the sadly-forgotten classic is the closing Rumberos where Areas' trumpet is used sparingly but with great effect.

Although the album is still as good as its predecessors (and even better in some respects, but less jazz-rock) it was clear that the group was playing it safe, just content on maintaining the formula of Abraxas. Little did we know what was around the bend............

The album comes in now in an expanded edition: Columbia's Legay Edition and this double disc edition is rather interesting for fans. With three real bonus tracks coming from the album's sessions, and the first of which Gumbo is an absolute must. The Following Folsom Street (very excellent too) and Banbeye (a little lengthy) are both added value to the original album. The second disc is live from July 4,71 and features the group in excellent form even if there are some moments where the sound is not perfect. The usual set was played that night (featuring Abraxas and Three), but there is an invaluable plus to the disc in the form of In A Silent Way (written by zawinul for Miles Davis' groundbreaking album of the same name) and it is a pure joy: although only an extract and vastly diofferent, the piece blends in beautifully with the rest of the set.

Sean Trane | 4/5 |

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