Altair - Fantasías & Danzas

Year of Release: 1999
Label: Luna Negra
Catalog Number: CDLN09
Format: CD
Total Time: 51:01:00

I'm going to return with detailed reviews to the best offspring of the relatively new fully progressive Mexican label Luna Negra, founded in 1995. First let me say some words about the release of the first European band that signed under the Black Moon and put out its fourth album recently. Altair of 1999 is a duo: Alfredo G. Arcusa - drums (full-time leader and the main composer) and Isabel Muniente - keyboards, synth-bass. A sort of prog-couple. The album goes into the domain of the traditional key-dominated art-rock, in the style (I don't mean any structural or thematical analogies) of ELP, Rick Wakeman, etc. While its not Neo stuff, the music, on the whole, doesn't stretch up to the real great art rock solely because of a pretty poor instrumentation.

All 9 tracks are original and peculiar, but, apart from a sea of keyboards and drums, I don't hear anything here, even the mentioned synth-bass. Keeping in mind that all songs, except for the opener by Isabel, stem from the drummer, I could add a half point to the rating, but despite numerous base themes, the diversity of arrangements occurs in the constant key changes, that means you won't find exceptional virtuosity here. Either Alfredo himself isn't strong in arrangement, or Isabel doesn't shine technically. All told, I can be sure that Altair is one of the three (at most five) best prog bands to come out of Spain; the program is impressive both in terms of diversity of themes in each track (it's not easy to get into that music) and absence of any "borrowings", which is an asset too. If only there were a full line-up.


Obertura Celta (5:15), Oración Del Eritano (2:42), Summer's Triangle (4:04), Al Abordaje (7:23), Visiones (6:57), Manos De Hada (3:25), Tiempos Dif?ciles (8:47), Danza Del Gaucho (3:45), Estrella En El Camino (En Vivo) (9:56)

Alfredo G. Arcusa - drums
Isabel Muniente - keyboards, synth-bass

Altair (1990)
Fantasías & Danzas (1999)
Altair 3 (2004)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin ES

Added: November 24th 1999
Reviewer: Vitaly Menshikov

Artist website:
Hits: 1135
Language: english


[ Back to Reviews Index | Post Comment ]