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Ünder Linden: Ünder Linden

The debut from this Argentine instrumental symphonic progressive outfit is impressive, as it should be with musicians of this pedigree (ex-members of Fahrenheit, Krill and Elixir de Pasión) and the fact that it took them nearly 7 years to get to a full studio recording stage. The band started life as a power-trio but eventually added keyboards and violin. The predominant style is symphonic with occasional jazz leanings, opening with atmospheric washes of keyboard, guitar and violin. Gradually the violin asserts firmer strokes with weeping guitar chords and the music then ebbs for a while before a full-blown rhythm develops and the violin ascends into a vibrant middle section interchanging with Camelesque guitar.

Track 2 is a short, spacey sound effect collage leading into the next full piece, a religious lament which gradually opens out into a more joyful awakening. This more colourful theme is extended into the next composition, a warm keyboard backdrop enhancing the soaring guitar chords. "El Conducto" has a little guitar trill on opening that evokes Howe's "And You and I" intro. The composition takes the tempo up a notch with a more strident guitar style and an interesting chord structure concluding with an exuberant guitar and violin duet. The next number, "Gravitaciones", features a rather rakish violin arrangement dancing about a repeated bass and guitar figure which then erupts out into air-guitar heaven finishing on a brazen drum and guitar flourish. Tapped bass strings give "El Cortico" a different flavour whilst the following piece returns to the laid back sweet style of the earlier works. The Linden tree is the touchstone for the band and evokes memories of Berlin in the spring, making the connection between the tree and the use of certain Germanic designs in the architecture of their hometown, La Plata. This title track ("Linden") is a beautifully arranged showcase for all the band's instruments and reminds me a little of how Daryl Way made "Cadenza" work on Wolf's debut album. Fahrenheit's "Parfinal" is added as a bonus track.

Rhythms are relatively simple in general with little opportunity for the back line to spread their wings. It is nonetheless a nicely crafted labour of love for the band, with the first and last tracks being taken from the days of their membership of Fahrenheit. If you enjoy Camel and South American instrumental bands like Index, Quaterna Requiem, Quantum, Tempus Fugit, Dogma etc. this will float your boat. I'm a sucker for the violin/guitar combo anytime so it's a winner for me.

Track Listing
1. New-New/Danza de Ballenas
2. Desolacion
3. En le Piedad de los Dioses
4. Casi Fué
5. El Conducto
6. Gravitaciones
7. El Cortito M.K.
8. Tiburón en marcha
9. Linden
10. Parafinal

Added: May 27th 2008
Reviewer: Richard Barnes
Related Link: Viajero Inmovil
Hits: 1777
Language: english

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