Tuesday 8 September 2015

Catalonia from Spain, 1981

I was puzzled as to why this album was in such high demand until I realized on reading the band information bassist, Rafael Escote was in my favourite Spanish group, Gotic.  For those like myself who have pretty much memorized their brilliant masterpiece "Escenes," Rafael wrote the compositions "La Revolucio" and the last track, the story of the drop of water.  On the other hand, keyboardist Jordi Vilaprinyo was in the band Coses throughout the seventies, and was responsible for my favourite tracks...

Back to this release, which is rounded out by the following musicians in addition to Escote: Angel Pereira on percussion, Lluis Vidal on piano and Antonio Peral on saxes; there are hints of the old Gotic magic but here we are delving deeply into slightly Hispanic-inflected complicated and composed fusion, winding beautifully into remote and reflected chambers of acoustics, flashes of gorgeous scenes and memories of beautiful emotions, cascading like a technicolor dreamscape after an unsettled night... or imagine the fresh insomniac feeling of falling in love (so long long ago for me) and being filled with the ups and downs fighting for your soul and that feeling of high-focused attention making you look at the world like a crystal, a geode full of light...

Check out the ultra-chromatic lush romanticism of the Sueco in America, with hints of Debussy or Ravel in the rich red and lingering vintage:

These composers really knew their stuff!  Whilst the most Goticlike track is the Lorelai: with its diatonic majesty of stepping stones in whole tone chords:

Apologies for the poor quality of the rip, btw.

Finally, notice that Escote later teamed up with Max Sunyer for the fusion superband Pegasus, which put out quite a few records.  Those are of course a little more disappointing in general, at least to me, being with both feet in the slick decade of the 80s.

But this stands out as a true fusion masterpiece with the passionate and hot spirit of the country from which it came.  Aren't we spoiled with treasures already?


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