Galadriel - Muttered Promises From An Ageless Pond

Year of Release: 1988
Label: Musea Records
Catalog Number: FGBG 4020.AR
Format: CD
Total Time: 56:13:00

A look at another CD that has been kicking around my collection for quite awhile:

Galadriel are another in a long line of progressive rock groups with a Tolkien-inspired moniker - though Galadriel actually acquired it from a band that had split.

Their sounds is classically influence with dashes of Yes, Genesis and Marillion. The Genesis influence is obvious by the Wind And Wuthering-like cover: cold and grey in its starkness.

Vocalist Jesus Filardi is the focal point of Galadriel, as most of the music and lyrics are written or co-written by him - his voice is often like Jon Anderson's - high and tight - though his delivery isn't like Anderson's.

The music is highly composed, lush, and beautifully played. The opening track "Lagada," for instance, is light and delicate, yet strong - like a lattice, actually.

The other spot where the Genesis influence comes through is in the heavy keyboard figures and textures. In fact, in a lot of ways, Galadriel bears similarities to other Eurpoean neo-progressives - Galadriel are from Spain.

The blend of electric and acoustic give this a warmth that makes for very enjoyable listening, though I have to admit that I didn't cotton on to this right away, expecting more of a Fish/Gabriel influence in the vocals. To be sure, there are moments when Filardi lowers his register and delivers lines like the Fish of early Marillion - during "To Die In Avalon" occurs just such a moment, even down to word choice: "Eternally condemed to obscurity" (which recalls "Milo" from Misplaced Childhood (which isn't to suggest either plagiarism or that those words alone constitute a Fish influence; phrasing the words with a hint of a Scottish brogue does, however, suggest the latter)).

But, without getting too hung up on the whole "influence" thing, this album holds enough attention, contains enough dynamics of sound and texture, to move beyond any pretense of trying to mimic any one band or sound.

Like nearly all Musea releases (or re-releases) this album comes with liner notes, detailing Galadriel's history. Although the booklet also includes some supportive text for the songs, the lyrics aren't reprinted. That is left to an additional sheet, where the lyrics appear in both English (as they're sung) and in Spanish. For economy's sake, the text is printed rather small, which makes it difficult to read, and the track names aren't really clearly discerned. But hey, that's the only drawback and magnifying glasses are cheap enough.

Well, those who know me, know that I have a strong affection for things Arthurian - and I've mentioned a few times in these reviews. So ... yeh, "Avalon," is my favourite track here - but not just because of that. The other epic track is the 20-plus minute "Landahl's Cross," a story told in five parts. There is a great medieval feel to this album thematically, as the main character undertakes a journey - a quest.

Anyway, I'll leave that for you to discover. But for one vocal effect that I rather dislike, this is a great album and worth seeking out.

The Day Before The Harvest: L?gada (8:30) / Virginal (2:26) / To Die In Avalon (10:00) / The Year of The Dream: Limiar (Winter's Request) (1:26) / Landahl's Cross (20:04) / Summit (11:27) / Nunca De Noche (2:20)

Manolo Macia - guitars
Manolo Pancorbo - guitars and bass
David Aladro - keyboards
Cidon Trindade - drums and percussion
Jes?s Filardi - vocals and percussion
Alfredo Garcia - violin (1)
Pablo Molina - bass (5, 6)
Angel Romero - backing vocals and percussion (5)

Muttered Promises From An Ageless Pond (1988)
Chasing The Dragonfly (1992)
Mindscapers (1997)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin ES

Added: October 25th 1999
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website:
Hits: 1798
Language: english


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