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Thread: Featured album: El Reloj - Al Borde Del Abismo

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    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
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    Featured album: El Reloj - Al Borde Del Abismo

    http://www.progarchives.com/progress...71332012_r.jpg

    Let's cross the Andes Cordillera


    El Reloj - Al Borde Del Abismo

    ER.jpg

    Tracks Listing:
    1. El Hombre Y El Perro *
    2. Camino Al Estucofen *
    3. Al Borde Del Abismo
    4. Tema Triste
    5. La Ciudad Desconocida
    6. Aquel Triangulo
    7. Harto Y Confundido
    8. Tema De Todas Las Epocas
    9. Aquella Dulce Victoria
    10. Egolatria

    * non album single bonus track

    Line-up :
    - Juan Esposito / drums, vocals
    - Eduardo Frezza / bass, vocals
    - Willy Gardi / lead guitar, vocals
    - Luis Alberto Valenti / keyboards, vocals
    - Osvaldo Zabala / guitar


    Let's see what Guldbamsen has to say about it on ProgArchives.
    Wild fire from Argentina

    I can't believe that it has been 5 years since the last review of this little thing. Man you've got a powerful album coming your way, if you choose to acquire El Reloj's second outing. Of the few Argentinean albums in my collection, I rank this magnificent album along with Bubu's Anabelas, Pescado Rabioso's Artaud and Luis Alberto Spinetta's debut as my absolute faves. Though different in textures and feel - I would say that the vocals of El Reloj sound a lot like Spinetta, if the guy had chosen to walk the progressive hard rock path. To those of you who are unfamiliar with either one of these artists, then imagine a sweeter and slightly more sensuous South American version of Robert Plant.

    To start off, I'd like to recapture a bit about El Reloj's rather bumpy start into the musical lands. Already early on in their career these guys faced what very easily could have been the end of the band, as guitarist Gregorio Felipes were killed en route to a concert back in 1970 at the Olimpia Theater. The terrible accident involved a car crash and a drunk police officer, who managed to steer clear from any subsequent accusations. Incredibly the band pulled through and did the gig in front of 1500 people the same night. The reason why I mention this is not because I wish to induce a series of misty eyed reactions and the following empathic buy. No it has infinitely more to do with me trying to convey what I truly feel must be one of the main engines behind this band. I feel a turbulent, jagged and hectic energy associated with El Reloj. Maybe more like a sonic guided rage that shows itself in every piece of the puzzle, whether that is the furiously pumping drums, those sensuous yet highly manic vocals or the eruptive masses of shredding guitars - it's always there, this rage.

    The sound of these guys as a whole is not that far from other hard rocking proggers of the time, such as Uriah Heep and Atomic Rooster, although El Reloj sound completely different. I realize the contradiction of this sentence, but I still claim there to be what I'd personally call "influences"(although I'm using the term loosely here) from the aforementioned bands - yet you'll find a distinctive nerve - a melodic sense and flow to this band which feels totally original and endemic to the South American peninsula. What comes closest in terms of reference to the European progster is perhaps the melodic feel of the early and more gritty RPI acts. There's something there that rings a bell - most definitely yes, and if you are sitting out there with a huge boner on for that particular scene, then you should be placing your order of this magnificent album as soon as possible.

    This second outing is packed full of steaming hard rock with a boot full of progressive tendencies - in fact a truck load more prog than many of the British bands of said genre were conjuring up around the same time, -which again leads me to one of this album's greatest attributes: Chops. Man oh man do these guys know their way around their instruments. The drummer is easily one of the best and most intricate I have ever heard. He plays everything with ease, like a regular jazz nut - yet what he hits he hits with the force of a small sumo wrestler, and to top it all off - he plays like all of my fave drummers, which means that he is all over the kit - using the toms like it was second nature. Even when the natural structure of the track craves for a steady beat, he is all over the place with wonderful results, whilst still being astonishingly tight. Tight as a rooster's anus - just like the rest of the band actually...

    Then we've got the guitars which are played with the virtuosity of a male figure skater using his hands to pirouette around the ice. Jagged, fluent and everything in between - coming very close to the perfect hybrid of Fripp and Page with a teeny tiny twist of spicy salsa thrown in. It's rock n' roll with an infinite amount of melodic twists and turns.

    All in all El Reloj's ll boasts a powerful series of hard hitting, virtuosi and at times slightly symphonic tunes that are as prone to melodies as they are to letting the music run wild in a sea of democratically performed musical rides that get my juices flowing like an adolescent labrador pup mounting a teddy bear.





    Last edited by Trane; 6 Days Ago at 07:16 PM.
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  2. #2
    Moderator Duncan Glenday's Avatar
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    It's official :

    Trane is a rockstar for helping with the featured CDs!
    Regards,

    Duncan

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    Casanova TCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duncan Glenday View Post
    It's official :

    Trane is a rockstar for helping with the featured CDs!
    Yes agree ;-) and thanks Trane!.

    Good album, great band ... Argentinean hard rock pioneers and more: a favorite around here that I haven't played in ages and I am right now!.
    So many good memories my friends ... I really love it!.

    Their first, El Reloj (1975) is also recommended IMO!

    ( a la DP!)


    ps: mission accomplished Captain Trane!. -
    Pura Vida!.

    There are two kinds of music. Good music, and the other kind. ∞
    Duke Ellington.

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    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duncan Glenday View Post
    It's official :

    Trane is a rockstar for helping with the featured CDs!
    "If you want to see the true nature of humanity, just look at the internet."

    http://www.discogs.com/user/moecurlythanu/collection

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    Moderator Duncan Glenday's Avatar
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    @ ^^^
    Regards,

    Duncan

  6. #6
    One of my favourite south american heavy albums.
    Macht das ohr auf!

    COSMIC EYE RECORDS

  7. #7
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    Most of the trains I launched don't get past page 1, and when they do, they die at the top of P2

    Promise, one day I'll feature a Yes album.

    Quote Originally Posted by Duncan Glenday View Post
    It's official :

    Trane is a rockstar for helping with the featured CDs!
    I'm glad this FA opportunity is making me revisit for preparation purposes some deeply buried sections of my shelves

    Quote Originally Posted by TCC View Post


    Cool timely vid, thx Tomŗs
    Last edited by Trane; 6 Days Ago at 03:58 AM.
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  8. #8
    As with their brethren Psiglo from Uruguay, this is SO much of an improvement on the debut. About as close as you'd get to proto-progmetal in the mid-70s South Americas, and folks who dig the more "manic" Italians (Semiramis, RRR, Biglietto Per L'Inferno and so on) should check it out immediately. I need ti spin this over drinks this afternoon, I think.

    Although Morse and Portnoy have more illustrious careers.
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
    "[...] things that we never dreamed of doing in Crimson or in any band that I've been in," - Tony Levin speaking of SGM

  9. #9
    An absolute classic from Argentina. This is no proto-prog metal for me, no proto-anything. El Reloj had already arrived to heavy metal in 1975. Compare this to an archetype metal album like Judas Priest's Sad Wings of Destiny, which was released about the same time. El Reloj is heavier, faster, louder, madder than Priest. Of course they're also a lot more complex and refined in their musical content - and this is because of their very direct symphonic ambitions. These guys were trying to play symphonic music with killer, electric guitars - taking the Deep Purple/Uriah Heep agenda to the next level. Riffs piled upon riffs, hysterical screams instead of singing, gaucho electric guitars and thundering drums - El Reloj II is a monument of heavy, electric music.

    I don't know the status of the album in wider musical circles - possibly zero - but this, along with Semiramis only record, is the definition of a record ahead of its time. A record that one keeps looking at the date of release to confirm that no mistake has happened.

    That first side in particular is colossal. Tema Triste is an absolute masterpiece of heavy rock music, of any music in my opinion. Its dramatic intensity, and manly onslaught has a pulverizing effect on me.

    PS Trane, if you haven't noticed, it is always the same 5-10 people that keep posting about the featured albums. People just don't care to listen to new to them music, or comment on it. The site is going downwards in my opinion, because of the lack of new blood. It's the same few people writing the same things about the same few readers. Unless a younger generation appropriates this bulk of great records of the past, it is all going to die quicker than we think.

  10. #10
    ^ Ok, then. They're not proto.

    Of course, I see what you mean. El Reloj weren't more "proto" than that debut TrettioŚriga Kriget from '74 or the first Procession album from '72 (Frontiera).




    B... B-but according to Prog Mag prog-metal was invented by Rush and Dream Theater. And you do not want to go up against Prog Mag.
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
    "[...] things that we never dreamed of doing in Crimson or in any band that I've been in," - Tony Levin speaking of SGM

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrotum Scissor View Post
    El Reloj weren't more "proto" than that debut TrettioŚriga Kriget from '74...
    That's an excellent example, and another incredible stunner for me (and a favorite). See where Rush were in 1974 and where these guys already stood.

    [Actually, I had the idea on first encounter with Kriget that Rush had somehow listened to it. Silly, I know].

  12. #12
    Member nosebone's Avatar
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    New to me, sounds cool!
    no tunes, no dynamics, no nosebone

  13. #13
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    I only have a CD of the first album. Discogs lists a boatload of titles up to 2018. Anybody keep up with them?
    "If you want to see the true nature of humanity, just look at the internet."

    http://www.discogs.com/user/moecurlythanu/collection

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    PS Trane, if you haven't noticed, it is always the same 5-10 people that keep posting about the featured albums. People just don't care to listen to new to them music, or comment on it. The site is going downwards in my opinion, because of the lack of new blood. It's the same few people writing the same things about the same few readers. Unless a younger generation appropriates this bulk of great records of the past, it is all going to die quicker than we think.
    With all due respect, this is a rather bleak assessment of the PE site and of the future of Progressive Rock in general. And I am of the view that it is not an accurate one. This in a way ties to previous, recent discussions about whether current prog fans can appreciate the music that they do love if they never heard all the early "classics" that others have identified as "essential" in order to appreciate and even understand their own musical predilections. Prog is not going to die just because the younger generation doesn't "appropriate" the bulk of past records.

    Specific to the featured albums, most all of them are posted with samples for listening, which helps the potential poster decide whether it is worth pursuing. Even if one doesn't take a liking to it immediately, they may decide to pursue the particular featured artist further. However, writing a review or commenting on it may be premature, since one or two listens to one or two tracks is only a beginning. Perhaps they will return later to discuss it; perhaps not, if it's not their cuppa. A good example for me is this one by El Reloj, of which samples I listened to this morning. It sounds interesting from a legacy standpoint and I probably would have pursued it in the 70's when I was more into heavier rock sounds, but to me it isn't something that I need to go back and immerse myself in. I've moved on in my musical tastes and that's a positive thing, since the PE site allows me to delve into artists that suit my current taste and interests. Therefore, other than this post, I have nothing to offer relative to the featured album.

    From my perspective, for every featured album that spotlights legacy bands such as this (the ones that only attract 5 or 10 people), it would be helpful to feature more current or upcoming artists that the younger generation (and even elderly Prog fans like myself) would be interested in listening to and commenting on. For instance, Bad Dreams from Argentina or Aisles from Chile are two intriguing South American bands, among many others. Please accept my apology if they have been featured and I missed them.

  15. #15
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SunRunner2 View Post
    From my perspective, for every featured album that spotlights legacy bands such as this (the ones that only attract 5 or 10 people), it would be helpful to feature more current or upcoming artists that the younger generation (and even elderly Prog fans like myself) would be interested in listening to and commenting on. For instance, Bad Dreams from Argentina or Aisles from Chile are two intriguing South American bands, among many others. Please accept my apology if they have been featured and I missed them.
    you could have a point about featuring 70's stuff (though Jaivas' album was from 83), but I placed two 90's artistes in my stretch (Ravana & Volare) that started in November, and they didn't gather more posts.


    And there are site guidelines not to feature new artistes or really new releases.

    But anyways, I'm not looking for 15-pages-thread popularity.
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

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    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    ^ A rousing success then!

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by SunRunner2 View Post
    Prog is not going to die just because the younger generation doesn't "appropriate" the bulk of past records.
    The younger generation was NEVER the problem. Oldfarts insisting that "prog" was/is a set of asserted sonic assets confirmed by adherence to the very same 6-7 artists was.

    Progressive rock development and mentality has generated each and every significant movement in keeping with rock's survival. But in terms of a general virtue of creativity in relation to dominant trends of popular culture, Steven Wilson, Neal Morse and Mike Portnoy had practically nothing whatsoever to do with it.
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
    "[...] things that we never dreamed of doing in Crimson or in any band that I've been in," - Tony Levin speaking of SGM

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by SunRunner2 View Post
    With all due respect, this is a rather bleak assessment of the PE site and of the future of Progressive Rock in general. And I am of the view that it is not an accurate one. This in a way ties to previous, recent discussions about whether current prog fans can appreciate the music that they do love if they never heard all the early "classics" that others have identified as "essential" in order to appreciate and even understand their own musical predilections. Prog is not going to die just because the younger generation doesn't "appropriate" the bulk of past records.

    Specific to the featured albums, most all of them are posted with samples for listening, which helps the potential poster decide whether it is worth pursuing. Even if one doesn't take a liking to it immediately, they may decide to pursue the particular featured artist further. However, writing a review or commenting on it may be premature, since one or two listens to one or two tracks is only a beginning. Perhaps they will return later to discuss it; perhaps not, if it's not their cuppa. A good example for me is this one by El Reloj, of which samples I listened to this morning. It sounds interesting from a legacy standpoint and I probably would have pursued it in the 70's when I was more into heavier rock sounds, but to me it isn't something that I need to go back and immerse myself in. I've moved on in my musical tastes and that's a positive thing, since the PE site allows me to delve into artists that suit my current taste and interests. Therefore, other than this post, I have nothing to offer relative to the featured album.

    From my perspective, for every featured album that spotlights legacy bands such as this (the ones that only attract 5 or 10 people), it would be helpful to feature more current or upcoming artists that the younger generation (and even elderly Prog fans like myself) would be interested in listening to and commenting on. For instance, Bad Dreams from Argentina or Aisles from Chile are two intriguing South American bands, among many others. Please accept my apology if they have been featured and I missed them.
    It's a bleak assessment but at least it got you going.

    All I am saying is that there are fewer and fewer people commenting on these albums, and actually making a comment (any comment) on the music. You don't have to be an expert to do that. Several times I have listened to an album just once and shared my first impression on it. If I say a dud, all the better - somebody is going to correct me - if he bothers. But a discussion is generated.

    I understand: people don't have the time or the energy to contribute here, or simply the interest. But that takes a toll on the quality of discussion. It becomes poorer and poorer.

    As for the future of prog, yes, you need new ears, new readings, new interpretations to keep it going. You also need a historical sense of things - not only in music but in everything. The historical sense of mankind is under severe pressure in the times we're living, and this has destructive consequences on the preservation of anything worthwhile that mankind has created. Talking about bleak, ha!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trane View Post
    you could have a point about featuring 70's stuff (though Jaivas' album was from 83), but I placed two 90's artistes in my stretch (Ravana & Volare) that started in November, and they didn't gather more posts.

    And there are site guidelines not to feature new artistes or really new releases.

    But anyways, I'm not looking for 15-pages-thread popularity.
    Sorry, I was unaware of the site guidelines relative to newer releases. You no doubt field complaints from all sides regarding the site rules, but I am not complaining as much as offering input on the type of albums you feature. By primarily concentrating on 70's artists/releases, you are going to observe posts from the same type of members who look to the historical development of progressive rock music (which is not a negative thing). If you expand the criteria to more current output (not brand new releases) such as those that have blossomed in the last 5 years, the feature would be more forward-looking in it's scope. I guess the question is "what are the main interests of the typical member or guest"? You probably know the answer to that question better than the members, since you know the demographics of the site. I will continue to click on the featured album and will at least offer my initial impressions in the future, rather than being silent on it (to be a more active participant in the process). Thanks for the clarification.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post

    I understand: people don't have the time or the energy to contribute here, or simply the interest. But that takes a toll on the quality of discussion. It becomes poorer and poorer.

    As for the future of prog, yes, you need new ears, new readings, new interpretations to keep it going. You also need a historical sense of things - not only in music but in everything. The historical sense of mankind is under severe pressure in the times we're living, and this has destructive consequences on the preservation of anything worthwhile that mankind has created. Talking about bleak, ha!
    Thank you for the clarification and the measured response. I especially agree with and understand the last few comments, relative to "a historical sense of things" in music and all things mankind. I have committed to offering input on the featured album rather than just clicking on it and sampling it. I also offered input on the site guidelines regarding the type and age aspects of the albums featured. Nothing should be set in stone or exclusionary; the past, present and future perspectives are required for a "total view" (apologies to Mike Pinder).

  21. #21
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SunRunner2 View Post
    Sorry, I was unaware of the site guidelines relative to newer releases. You no doubt field complaints from all sides regarding the site rules, but I am not complaining as much as offering input on the type of albums you feature. By primarily concentrating on 70's artists/releases, you are going to observe posts from the same type of members who look to the historical development of progressive rock music (which is not a negative thing).
    Absolutely not... It seems like no-one cares.

    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    I only have a CD of the first album. Discogs lists a boatload of titles up to 2018. Anybody keep up with them?
    It looks like the PA crowd is more gentle than the Gnosis and RYM crowds (hardly any reviews on either side for those later albums.
    I only own the first two.
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  22. #22
    Casanova TCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    I only have a CD of the first album. Discogs lists a boatload of titles up to 2018. Anybody keep up with them?
    Through the history of the band, a constant has been the return and new formations or musicians!.

    - La Escencia Es La Misma (1983):
    In 1983, Willy Gardi decided to start again the band by calling the original members but soon, very, he discovered that he was facing the same problems that had led to the dissolution of the band, so, he was the only original member.

    A good album that went unnoticed because of its lack of diffusion and consequently poor sales. (IMO)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NlsUvS8Um5s

    - Santos y Verdugos (1994):
    New and inedit songs and they recreated several classics; once again, the album didn't have the support nor the diffusion on the part of the record company.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-07i0ZeTmv0


    -- On August 11, 1995 Willy Gardi, his main composer and guitarist, dies in a traffic accident. --


    - Hombre de Hoy (1999):
    Good effort IMO!.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDYEBSVCAFU

    - Mercado de Almas (2002):
    6th album: good album!; special attention to Leůn Gieco's cover "Hombre de Hierro".
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=APcjbjhF9Qc


    -- On August 26, 2004 Luis Valenti, keyboardist, dies following a cardiorespiratory arrest. --


    - En Concierto (2011):
    Live material.


    I tend to return to the first 3 albums and the live one.
    My 3 cents!.


    Regards,
    TomŠs.
    Last edited by TCC; 3 Days Ago at 06:49 PM.
    Pura Vida!.

    There are two kinds of music. Good music, and the other kind. ∞
    Duke Ellington.

  23. #23
    ^^^
    Thanks for the input. Much appreciated.
    Macht das ohr auf!

    COSMIC EYE RECORDS

  24. #24
    Casanova TCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spacefreak View Post
    ^^^
    Thanks for the input. Much appreciated.
    You're welcome!.


    I would like to add:

    - Santos y Verdugos (1994):
    It's the classical formation that recorded this album.

    - En Concierto (2011):
    This is material recorded in 2003 and edited in 2011.
    Last edited by TCC; 3 Days Ago at 07:37 PM.
    Pura Vida!.

    There are two kinds of music. Good music, and the other kind. ∞
    Duke Ellington.

  25. #25
    Member Since: 3/27/2002 MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER's Avatar
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    I bought the first 2 El Reloj albums back when they got their first CD issues and all I remember is the preponderance of Boogie style rhythms. Kinda like an Argentine version of Lynard Skynard on Black Beauties (speed)

    that was at least 20 years ago... time to revisit methinks
    Last edited by MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER; 2 Days Ago at 01:21 AM.
    Why is it whenever someone mentions an artist that was clearly progressive (yet not the Symph weenie definition of Prog) do certain people feel compelled to snort "thats not Prog" like a whiny 5th grader?

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