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Aerodrom - Kad misli mi vrludaju CD (album) cover



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Honorary Collaborator
3 stars A new wave band with a prog debut. What about the debut?

Well, it's certainly influenced with YES, melody-wise. Music is far for complex; mostly it comprises of dense songs, sometimes with heavy prog, sometimes with neo-prog touch. There are no drastic changes and collages within the song structures, they're homogenic and often inclining towards pop-rock. So much for the structure.

It contains of pleasant, more-or-less high pitched vocals, very decent guitar, Hammond organ and beefy synth that's more in the role of a texturizer than a furious soloing device. I don't have any significant opinion about bass and drums, they're not outstanding, but they're not distracting the listener from the overall picture neither. Decent.

The opening track, Kad misli mi vrludaju was a hit single, it's more-or-less straightforward heavy-almost-prog track with beautiful vocal melody (Jon Anderson's influence is obvious), very catchy chorus and overall boogie-woogie attitude. I loved this track since I was a little kid.

Nestala dobrota is even more YES-influenced, with it's 9/8 intro and typical ingredients from the YES' sound palette. A good tune.

Other tracks are less memorable, varying sometimes between very straightforward prog and mainstream rock, there are a few bars of nice keyboard or guitar solos, sometimes in a irregular time signature, but only briefly! What a pity. There are also some touches of psyche, and some darkish, but artistically not so succesful atmospheres, done with unusual vocal melodies and hilarious amounts of reverberation, so typical for the below-par seventies Yu-prog rock.

Kraj tebe u tami is their second hit single from the album, later covered by the most famous new-wave band AZRA...however, it's incredible! See, the tune is quite poppy, sort of a new wave song with a simple synth sequence repeating on and on sounds so 80's right? Well, somewhere around a middle of the song, the poppy arpeggiated sequence went mad, howled, and a whole song changed its pace and turned into a great prog rocker! Song changed the pace once again calming down for a downtempo jazzy ending. Great. This one is not so 'choked' with sound like other songs, offering some 'air' and let us take a broader look at the structure.

The last two tracks are more or less in the same vein as the majority of the album, but much less enjoyable.

In conclusion...

This is decent album. This is a decent band. One may only wonder what would have happened if the band refused to shift their musical style and continued to play prog rock...the second and the third prog albums would probably be much better, as this one is suffering from some syndromes typical for a debut, and Jura Pađen proved his songwriting skills many times in the past decades.

On the other hand...

They were good new-wave band, and even in their new-wave peak occasional 'prog' moments happened, here and there...but from the pure post-punk/new wave point of view...Croatia had much better bands, even bordering (or stepping the border) of the prog realm. So why bother? I won't recommend it to aim your prog cravings to, but if you came across this one, don't hesitate to give a spin.

Report this review (#158662)
Posted Tuesday, January 15, 2008 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars AERODROM's debut (En. "When My Mind Flies By"), apart from recalling the similar RARE BIRD's title, has seemingly one serious flaw - disposition in time! Had it been released around 1974-75 it would probably have been a groundbreaking effort in prog rock scene in former Yugoslavia. In this way, showing up during the outburst of New Wave music scene looks like an unbelievable musical time machine.

That said, it is still a good album. Musical performance is strong even if lacking the technical virtuosity of musicians, a tenet so akin to prog genre as a whole. The strongest points have to be the excellent Jon Anderson-like tenor of Zlatan Zivković (whose first job was actually a drummer!), and overall songwriting and production. Jura Pađen as a leading composer and competent guitarist did not want to engage too much in the soloing territory and perhaps he was right, but what he does in certain moments, like in Hackett-styled sustained solo in "Pusti neka traje" (En. "Let It Be") or "Sareni kolači" (En. "Coloured Cakes"), is very good.

Amazingly, this album contained a huge hit single, the title track, which did not help the album sales, paradoxically. The single was a smash hit - the album much less so. Obvious explanation is that it differs from the rest of the songs on the album - the title track is a concise, strong melody and chorus- laden rock song with radio play potentials, which cannot be said for other compositions.

On one side one cannot help but brag about a "half-cooked" product, not sufficiently devised compositions, not very original ideas and restrained development of epic song structures, even if we neglect a poor PR and audience targeting. "Vrati se Ivane" (En. "Come Back, Ivan") with its honky- tonks leaning is outright poor and totally out of place. On the other, "Kad misli mi vrludaju" is one of very few Yugoslavian albums that follow a "genre-orthodoxy" and can easily, without hesitation, be qualified under the tag of "symphonic prog rock", as defined by prog giants YES and GENESIS. Other albums that came close to this definition were KORNI GRUPA's "Not an Ordinary Life" and INDEXI's "Modra rijeka" but they were released earlier. In the best moments - "Nestala dobrota" (En. "The Kindness Lost"), "Pusti neka traje" and "Kraj tebe u tami" (En. "Beside You In The Darkness") - AERODROM shows decent prog capabilities that would unfortunately be largely dismissed in their later career.

Jura Pađen continued to pursue a commercial, new wave/pop rock and mainstream path after this album, so this all makes "Kad misli mi vrludaju" even more interesting piece of work to check out.

As a personal note, I should mention that my first rock concert attendance was actually AERODROM around 1980, after this album has been released, so I have pleasant memories for this period.


P.A. RATING: 4/5

Report this review (#158822)
Posted Thursday, January 17, 2008 | Review Permalink
4 stars Hear this disk went to me a beautiful surprise . Actually in "Kad misli mi vrludaju" (1979) the band AERODROM, presents a sound that although it cannot be compared to pearls of the progressive of the European east with for instance KORNELYANS "Not an Ordinary Life" (their compatriots), at least it shows an effort in the sense of approximating of the progressive classic, mainly in the line of YES & GENESIS and some others with smaller intensity (as for instance in the track 1 "Kad misli mi vrludaju" that reminds a lot of Latin bands like SUI GENERIS or .LA MÁQUINA DE HACER PÁJAROS, or still as in the track 3 "Vrati if, Ivane" that brings a rhythm close to the ragtime with some similarity with QUEEN). However, in the remaining tracks the sound if is not very complex , it presents beautiful keyboard and guitar arrangements as for instance in the track 4 "Pusti neka it wears" (one of the best moments of the disk) and the track 6 "Kraj tebe u tami." Besides I detach the musicians quality, all excellent . My rate is 4 stars!!!
Report this review (#301766)
Posted Sunday, October 3, 2010 | Review Permalink

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