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Alux Nahual - Americamorfosis CD (album) cover


Alux Nahual


Crossover Prog

3.95 | 9 ratings

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4 stars For this album, Alux switched to Sony in order to find international recognition, something that never happened, although the album was very succesful in Central America. One would expect much more simple and commercial music if they're trying to get some recognition, but no! They bring back the symphonic elements. Every song has excellent arrangments and exquisite interplay between the instruments. Yeah, the songs are short, the structures aren't off the wall and the emphasis is on the vocals, but that's what makes crossover prog, doesn't it?

"El Gigante del Jardín (De atras)": From the first notes, we find that we're in for a thrill. As had been usual even from their first album, the oponer is an energetic song, rocking, fun and interesting. Driven by cello and organ with very nice riffs, this is surely one of the highlights of the album. In this album we're going to find many interesting bridges within the verse-chorus structure, and this is the first one. The song has a political theme, usual for Alux, which is the self-affirmation of Latin America.

"Del Suelo Se Suele Aprender": I love this one. It has a really nice overdubbed cello riff driving the song, and also some tasty guitar licks. The chorus is very catchy. Again, the bridge is my favorite part. Lenin plays very convincingly, not only on this song but on the whole album.

"Árboles": The intro is very dreamy, with synthezised voice and vocals doing the same melody. Then we go into a rocking flute riff, sounding much like Jethro Tull. This song, much like others in the album, have and ecological theme. This can also be called Alux's "green" album. Alvaro's vocals have matured to this point of his career, and an example of this is this song. Great performace by everyone.

"El Trovador de la Noche": this song changes a bit the pace of the album, after three rockers, this is much lighter song, with some jazzier leanings. Sax is very prominent. The lyrics are ok. It's not the best song but it's a welcomed break.

"Vuelve": A piano driven ballad and with delicious bass fills. A few times it has actually made want to cry a little.

"La Plegaria del Hombre Lobo": Another "green" song. At first I didn't like it much, because I found it too plain. It grew on me and now I like it more. It's similar in spirit to "árboles", because of the ecological message and the prominence of the flute in a rock context.

"Salva": A good song about the country El Salvador. Much in the style of the previous song, we're treated with the tasty symphonic arrangments.

"Alma Verde": This one is a ballad about a bird that lives in the city. Alvaro sings that the bird should go back to the forest because that's were he belongs. The lyrics are nicely written and also the arrangments.

"Niños de Maíz": Oscar Conde composed a song about the kidnapping of children to make them fight with the army. This happened during the civil wars in Central America. The song is fast-paced, and with some key-changes. The middle part again is of interest, with nice drumming.

"¿Qué me pasó?": This a different song for Alux, since it's blues based. The guitar solo and the vocals at the end are very rock and rollish, in an old fashioned way. The song is fun, but a bit forgettable.

"Sola": Ranferí's ultimate ballad. They always included one or two ballads in their albums, but IMO here is where they perfected their style of ballads. The subject of the song, just like in "Un Minuto de Ilusión" from their first album is about a woman that didn't find a couple and now is alone. The lyrics convey this image so perfectly, that you can sympathize with the woman. The song only has acoustic-guitar playing with a string synth pad and some cello complementing it. The guitar is excellent. The bridge has an unexepected vocal variaton which ends with many (or all) of the vocalists in the band singing the word "Sola". I love it so much! It's a spine-chilling moment. By the ending of the song I'm driven to tears.

"500 años": Some have said that this is "Conquista part II". It treats the same issue as Conquista, which is the conquest of Latin America by the spaniards. And the music? I think it's up there with the original. An organ intro with an ominous guitar riff. The vocals then sing the first verse that then lead to an organ-guitar little duel. The guitar then goes into arabic mode for an instrumental part previous to the second verse. The bridge has some tight drumming, with the organ helping to set the mood. Then we have a repetition of the arabic mode. After that, another bridge with cello. The outro is a nice climax with cello and layered guitars. As expected, Paulo Alvarado has deliverd one of the greatest song's in Alux's catalogue.

This is an extremely hard to find album. I'm ashamed to admit that I downloaded it. If they ever reissue it, I recommend that you get it if you like crossover prog. It really is crossover prog at it's very best! It doesen't get the five stars, because it's not essential to the prog fanatic, but it sure deserves four stars.

RaúlGuate | 4/5 |


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