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viernes, 3 de junio de 2016

Hidria Spacefolk - Symbiosis (2002)


Con otro aportazo del Mago Alberto cerramos otra semana llena de excelencias musicales con algo que no escuchaba desde hacía tiempo. Grupo de rock psicodélico de avanzada proveniente de Finlandia y que arremete con un estilo a lo Ozric Tentacles con ritmos indúes. Y hablando de Finlandia, recuerdo que quedé en presentar a los Alamaailman Vasarat y aún no he tenido tiempo. Mientras tanto llévense este verdero discazo! Maravíllense con la magia de su música!

Artista: Hidria Spacefolk
Álbum: Symbiosis
Año: 2002
Género: Rock psicodélico
Duración: 51:25
Nacionalidad: Finlandia


Lista de Temas:
1. Terra Hidria
2. Reversion
3. Kaneh Bosm
4. Kaikados
5. Nasha Universo
6. Jahwarp
7. Agents Entropos
8. I-Mantra
9. Pangaia

Alineación:
- Kimmo Dammert / bass
- Mikko Happo / electric guitar, digeridoo, harp
- Teemu Kilponen / drums, percussion, voice
- Janne Lounatvuori / synthesizers, electric and acoustic piano, organ
- Sami Wirkkala / electric, acoustic and midi guitar, mandolin, sitar, jawharp, synthesizers
Musicos Invitados.
Teemu Väisänen / flute
Olli Kari / marimba, vibraphone, percussion
Tuure Paalanen / cello
Mikko Rajala / violin
Sabrina / voice




Este grupo de músicos fineses vino a contribuir a renovar el género del space rock durante la última década, especialmente con este, su tremendo álbum debut.

Luego de tanta distorsión típica de los años 90s, comienzan a darse a conocer en el mundillo artístico y entrados los 2000 una banda que de alguna manera puso pequeños ladrillitos en la avanzada del space rock. Que si bien la historia nos informa sobre su creación en la década de los 60, considero que hay géneros que mutan, otros que se mixturan, otros que nacen, por lo tanto considerar que esta banda engrosa los atributos del setentoso género en cuestión para mí es sólo un accidente, en todo caso una anomalía o una desagradable tarea de encasillar todo.
Músicos genuinos con arrebatos de lucidez musical sorprendentes, arriesgados por los estilos que mixturan, los Hidria Spacefolk son de esas bandas que se brindaron al 100% y dejaron su legado por demás impresionante.
Estos muchachos no vienen de la rama académica sino más bien de "vamos a divertirnos y a pasarla bien" y eso se nota en cada una de sus producciones, y vamos con la primera que hasta hoy es considerada su obra maestra, aunque sus trabajos en vivo son por demás interesantes y muy difíciles de conseguir, en especial sus bootlegs.
Un proyecto atrevido, novedoso y muy consistente, todo esto van a encontrar acá. Si bien sus dos primeras canciones estan emparentadas con la música hindú, luego de escuchar el resto se daran cuenta que es solo una excusa. Un disco para disfrutar y apreciar.
Mago Alberto
 



Psicodelia muy bien producida, con un ambiente denso, vertiginosa en cierto punto, y con ideas bien marcadas. Por momentos la música se acerca a la Ozric Tentacles, o al menos a ellos nos podría remitir. Los efectos especiales que suelen dar los sintetizadores más las guitarras con efectos en esta música, sumado al bajo hipnótico y la batería simple que marca el paso, se le agrega la particularidad de diversos instrumentos como la flauta o el violín, aportando sonidos que enriquecen de gran forma a la música, y agregándole a la psicodelia algo más electrónica, un toque folk.
Por suerte podemos encontrar tanto atmósferas etéreas como densas a lo largo del disco, aunque estas últimas son más comunes.
Un disco muy disfrutable que se hace escuchar fácil y puede gustar a cualquiera.
Jesu

A mediados de los 90, el alicaído género space rock, hijo directo de la sicodelia de los 70, sufrió una profunda y radical transformación gracias a la aparición de una serie de bandas en Europa y Estados Unidos que reunieron los largos solos, sonidos experimentales, improvisaciones y flotantes atmósferas de la sicodelia con elementos de la música electrónica lo que, por supuesto, reforzó la idea de estar en presencia de un género bastardo, aunque con padre conocido, con influencias que van desde el krautrock alemán de los años 70, pasando por los legendarios Hawkwind, Pink Floyd, Gong y Acid Mothers Temple, quizás más cercano en el tiempo al sonido de Oresund Space Collective y con representantes seminales surgidos a inicios de los 90 como los siempre bienamados Ozric Tentacles,Vespero, los subvalorados y bestiales Melting Euphoria y los lamentablemente olvidados Kinski.
De la nueva camada surgida a inicios del 2000, no hay que ser un genio para mencionar de inmediato a los fineses de Hidria Spacefolk y su álbum debut Symbiosis (2002), más aún, recordándoles que este año lanzaron su tercera producción, Symetria, que los mantiene como una de las bandas preferidas de los melómanos redomados y más aún, como una de las mejores expositoras del space rock contemporáneo.
Aunque un primer repaso de la música de Hidria nos recuerda innegablemente lo hecho a estas alturas por Ozric, y que se ha constituido en una referencia obligada para muchas bandas del género y de otros estilos, lo cierto es que la música de los fineses se caracteriza por ir un par de pasos más allá, con temas de largo aliento que evolucionan continuamente con la precisa necesidad de loops, programaciones y elementos electrónicos que por momentos, hacen pasar a las guitarras a un segundo plano.
En sus composiciones, todas ellas instrumentales, podemos escuchar influencias que van desde la sicodelia de los 70 (con referencias tangibles de los teclados de Tim Blake y los “glissando” de la guitarra de Steve Hillage), pasando por frescos de procedencia oriental, secuencias progresivas y el desenfreno metódico, cadencioso y creciente de los mencionado Ozric y Melting Euphoria.
Con estos elementos, nos enfrentamos al tema que abre este poderoso primer disco de Hidria Spacefolk. Se trata de Terra Hidria, que luego de una flotante introducción, comienza a convertirse en una interesante mixtura de bases árabes y sucesivas secciones lideradas por guitarra, caracterizadas tanto por sólidas bases rítmicas como por constantes e intrincados cambios.
El corto intermedio de Reversion, pone algo de suspenso antes de la aparición de Kaneh Bosm, que con una pesada base de bajo, progresa en torno a diversas y ágiles secciones hasta un cierre apoteósico. Kaikados contiene otra vez las características mencionadas: una base rítmica en donde destacan los sintetizadores y el bajo, que va mezclándose con constantes golpes sorpresivos de sonidos y ritmos entreverados por progresivos riffs de guitarras que desembocan en otro cierre lleno de energía. Nasha Universo, en cambio, es lo más retro del disco. Con una masiva presencia de flauta traversa, teclados y una base rítmica mucho más suave, es casi un homenaje al rock sicodélico de los 70 y hasta me atrevería a mencionar una que otra obra de Manuel Göttschling.
Jawharp comienza con una base rítmica muy cercana al fusión, que poco a poco va derivando en lo más progresivo del sonido de la banda, manteniendo la tensión constante entre las diversas y explosivas secciones que se desarrollan en poco más de cinco minutos con la presencia sólida de guitarras distorsionadas y uno que otro pasaje decorado por el sonido de los violines. Agents Entropos es uno de los temas más cortos del disco y, sin duda alguna, está lleno de directas referencias a la época dorada de Gong, mientras que I-Mantra se yergue como la más electrónica de las piezas del disco, sin dejar de lado los riffs poderosos y cargados de aliño progresivo ni las bases rítmicas casi catárticas que caracterizan el álbum.
El disco cierra con un épico de proporciones, Pangaia, en donde volvemos a encontrar similitudes con los grandes clásicos de los 70, pero renovados y frescos; un tema lleno de exquisitos retruécanos musicales que explotan en constantes catarsis progresivas en medio de una serie de secciones que se entremezclan pero sin perder la base de este “magnum opus” con que cierra este brillante disco, epítome de la nueva generación de space rock que, si bien puede estar dirigido a ciertos oídos, no está demás explorar para dejar que las alas se extiendan y volar un poquito entre cielos púrpura y arcoiris de colores desconocidos. De seguro que este discazo de Hidria Spacefolk contribuirá a ese viaje con estas andanadas musicales que contienen más de una sorpresa para oídos ávidos de nuevas experiencias.
Iván Ávila

This is one of only two albums I have from these guys, the other being the more trance- oriented Violent Hippy Remixes, and I have to say I find this one much more accessible. It’s hard to believe these guys are Finnish instead of like – I don’t know, something else. The sound here is quite exotic, and I find myself wondering if this is what Third Ear Band might have sounded like if they’d have grown up in the 90s instead of the 60s and 70s.
In fact, that band may have been an influence on Hidria Spacefolk, and Ozric Tentacles certainly were, plus possibly some early Gong and even a bit of early Santana on the guitars and keyboards. The sound is a hypnotic mix of space rock, acid rhythms, lots of sound effects (including bird-like chirping all over the place – a didgeridoo?) and percussion, and a strong middle-eastern feel with liberal sprinklings of mandolin, jawsharp, flute, and of course the ubiquitous sitar, although this instrument seems to fade from the mix on the almost funk-riffs of “Kaneh Bosm”.
The flute is especially strong and up-tempo on “Kaikados” and “Nasha Universo”, which has some very spacey synthesizer and melodic guitar riffs with marimba that is quite reminiscent of Santana and even some very early Journey (pre-Steve Perry of course). Most of the album is instrumental, and this is one of those rare occasions where I don’t really miss a vocalist.
Pretty much the entire album is very up-tempo with driving rhythms and plenty of strong percussion. “Jahwarp” is full of jawharp and vibraphone, very delicate without sounding trite. The piano is almost jazzy, but strident enough to keep you from getting too comfortable or bored.
Just when I’m starting to get pretty comfortable with the overall sound of the album, “Agents Entropos” comes along with pretty much the same rhythm as “Jahwarp”, but with a much more hypnotic guitar riff and some heavy space-rock synthesizer that turns into a kind of electronic storm before fading out.
“I-Mantra” is totally hypnotic space-funk, with a slowly building bass line that morphs into a pulsating beat overlaid with a series of instrumental variations with guitar, synthesizer riffs, all manner of percussion, and a vibrato fadeout that leads into the final and most extensive track, “Pangaia”. The liner notes show credits for violin and cellos, and this is actually the only track since the opening one where I can actually make them out from time to time, although certainly not in the flowing, extended way you typically hear these instruments on progressive or metal albums. They’re used more to augment the percussion, with brief snippets in between the keyboard sounds. By the time this one winds down after more than ten minutes, I feel like I’ve been on a short journey through the cosmos, and I haven’t even been smoking anything! A very seductive instrumental with plenty of variety to keep it interesting.
This isn’t the kind of album you’re likely to play all the time, and it definitely is meant for some very specific moods, some of which probably involve alternate mental states. But overall it’s a fun album to listen to, especially if you’re looking for a record that doesn’t dominate the mood, but rather helps to gently form it into a casual evening of relaxation and no worries. I have to say that this is just above good, but probably not an essential album, so four stars is a good place to rate it. Well worth picking up if you’re into space rock, heavily percussive music, or just some up-beat, lightly psychedelic sounds to brighten up a dull day.
Bob Moore


Very, very nice young Finnish band that plays a space rock similarly to the Brit legends Ozric Tentacles. You may also hear a bit of early Gong and a smidgen of Hawkwind, but the Oz's are a definite influence. Middle eastern sounds crop up early in the album but when 'Terra Hidrea' kicks into gear it's outer space all the way. They groove and trance also, so if you have a lady friend who may not dig a bit of proggyness, she may come away thinking otherwise, and dance too. My favorite song has to be the last track, 'Pangaea' which is also the longest. It starts out very spacey, but at the 3:25 mark it settles into a vert tasty groove that just rocks out. It continues a bit then switches direction with some riffing then after a few minutes mellows out and ends with a slow fadeout wistfulness. The progiest track and just awesome. A super album and just right for blasting thru your car speakers cruising down the highway.
Ray Rappisi jr

As an Ozric fan for 20 years I felt obliged to check out some of the bands they've gigged with through the years. Boy did I get a suprise with the Finnish 5 piece Hidria Spacefolk. I've been mulling over all their albums for a while before submitting a review. Any review is going to be limited because I have not seen these guys live. OK .. Symbiosis. Nine Tracks of spacerock. Zero vocals. OK that solves the headache to deciphering the deep philosophical mouthings Terra Hidria I & II: acoustic guitar that reminds me of Phil Keaggy (that's a big compliment in my book). Kaneh Bosh finds a new sound with what sounds to my ill-trained ear arabic overtones with a hint of pulsating zeppelin tempered by early marillion. kaikados throbbes (a term for Ozric fans). Nasha Universo has a gorgeously syncopated opening groove with Tull-esque flute. Gotta say that I've never quite heard anything like it. Then it settles in to a contagiously boppy theme. Music that a thousand student unions would love to move to. break down. Parra diddle out welcome back jethro tull with jon lord guesting .... Just excellent. Jahwarp. INteresting bass. Nice playing but (being picky) I would have preferred Kimmo Dammert to have had a cleaner sound with more attack. Nevertheless an intriguing track. Sometimes the transitions are a little harsh (but the same could be said of Topographic Oceans which is one of my all time favourites) but even so they drag along over the rough edges, and maybe that's what good music should do. I-mantra (very high tempo opening (not my cup of Tea)) "each to their own" as my ma says. Pangaia, beautiful bass groove. Hidria craeate a dense soudstage but still captivating. The everpresent Teemu Kilponen impresses. Agent Entropos: there's no point ... just listen to this. Short but hilarious. My favourite.7 stars You know, this is doing an injustice. I always try to describe new music by comparing it to what has gone before. None of us live in a vacuum so that will always be valid, but it may only serve to pigeon hole the band in the reader's mind. If you like Ozric Tentacles you WILL like Hidria. In fact, the local Ozric fans are completely bowled over by this Finnish outfit. Please come to Belfast!!! Such is the impact of this group that there are already 6 of us planning a trip to Finland to catch a gig. Rating ...5 because I really do think this is one that anyone interested in spacerock must listen to. And if not this one then Balansia
Brian McKee

4.5/5 stars. This is one of the best albums i have heard from this Psychedelic / Spacerock category.This isn't as repetitive as a lot of spacerock is, and it is so melodic with lots of solos as well.There are many instruments used like violin, jawharp, accordion, flute, mandolin, vibraphone, sitar and cello as well as the traditional ones.The sound by the way is crystal clear.
Things get started with "Terra Hidria" opening with an atmospheric guitar melody that slowly builds until 2 1/2 minutes in as drums and a vocal melody from Sabrina come in. I really love the sound here as flute and synths come in, and mandolin later in the song. "Reversion" is a short haunting and spooky soundscape. "Kaneh Bosm" is an upbeat tune with synths, sitar and some fantastic drumming. "Kaikados" opens with the rain coming down with synths and guitar as thunder rolls in. This is another uptempo ride in space as the stars whiz by. The guitars are great and check it out 4 minutes in. Vibraphone enters the song before it ends with the birds singing.
"Nasha Universo" has a very catchy melody. The guitar is beautiful and although they're not quite soaring, I am, these guys are so good ! The flute and drumming is amazing. "Jawharp" opens with the birds singing and vibraphone, drums, guitar, bubbling synths, piano and cello are all part of the mix. The melody speeds up on this fantastic tune. "Agents Entropos" has such an intoxicating sound to it with more great drums, vibraphone and amazing guitar. "I-Mantra" opens with percussion that just builds and builds until you know something has to give, and then the guitar comes in guns blazing in this uptempo song with terrific drumming and synths that seem to riccochet around in the melody. The final song "Pangaia" features hypnotic and mesmerizing melodies of synths and drums. The song slows down and ends with cello and violin.
I came close to giving this a five star rating, it's that good ! I highly recommend this band and this album. Especially if you like the OZRIC TENTACLES.
John Davie

Nicely Finnished!
Finnish band Hidria Spacefolk are reasonably well known in these parts, thanks in no small part to the availability on their website of a free download of their first EP HDRSF- 01. Look a bit harder on that site though, and you will that their first album "Symbiosis" can also be downloaded in full.
Released in 2002, the album is an exciting, pulsating affair. As the opening track "Terra Hidria" gets going you could forgiven for thinking you had stumbled across a long lost follow up to PORCUPINE TREE's "The sky moved sideways", such is the similarity between the tracks. Here though, there are no vocals to speak of apart from the occasional vocalising of guest singer Sabrina. There are Eastern influences to "Terra Hidria", especially in the flute and sitar parts, but the overall effect is somewhere between Europe and Asia.
There is some nice guitar work on tracks such as "Kaneh Bosm" and "Kaikados", the latter having distinct Santana overtones thanks to the nature of the percussion. "Jahwarp" reverts to the "Sky moved sideways" feel, the track being heavier than much of the album.
"I-Mantra" is a frantic, pulsating number with real energy. The final track "Pangaia" is the longest at just under 12 minutes. There are passing similarities here with the work of Tangerine Dream around the time of "Force majeure" (when they allowed lead guitar to infiltrate their sound). The track has a hypnotic repetitive rhythm with evolving themes which develop as the back-beat slowly climbs the scales. Think perhaps of HAWKWIND plays the TANGS!
The music tends to follow the same pattern, with lengthy part improvised jams over a strong repeating rhythm. At times that rhythm can be reminiscent of HAWKWIND, but the sound is generally looser. Inevitably, given the style of music, comparisons are going to be made with OZRIC TENTACLES. Those comparisons are certainly valid, particularly in view of the repeating nature of the tracks and the predictability of the album as a whole. For me though, the music here is far more dynamic and enthusiastic.
The general production is clean and distinct, with good separation between the instruments. There is an excitement to the performances which indicate a real determination among the band members to deliver something which represents them well.
The space rock tag stems as much as anything from the many floating sound effects which adorn each track, with liquid bubbles and laser fire aplenty. Take those effects away though, and what is left is far more earthy, with strong links to jazz, fusion and avant-garde.
Bob McBeath

Ethnic OZRIC
First studio album from HIDRIA SPACEFOLK, "Symbiosis" is in continuity with their free debut EP and confirms the band's talents. The musical style is still mainly inspired by OZRIC TENTACLES and, to a lesser extent, GONG: an ambient psychedelic / space rock jungle, but in a softer, folkier manner than their british elder brothers. The compositions are rather homogeneous, do not contain any vocals and feature numerous various instruments.
For example, the opening track, "Terra Hidria" has some middle-eastern touches, while the short ambient transition "Reversion" introduces "Kaneh Bosm", an electronic piece with indian sitar. The dark "Kaikados" alternates agressive and acoustic passages, whereas "Nasha Universo" is softer with its flute incursions. Back to middle-eastern lands with "Jahwarp", maybe a bit too lengthy and repetitive. "Agents Entropos" possesses a catchy hypnotic bass line, and "I- Mantra" could stand for a lost OZRICs tune. The last and longest track, "Pangaia", also sounds like their elder british brothers, however displaying a more vaporous and mystical atmosphere.
"Symbiosis" is a consistant first album, propelling the finnish band to the front of the modern space rock scene. The musical style and quality of the compositions are constant, while the ambiance and the inspiration are present. A good record to start with, and which should please all OZRIC TENTACLES or GONG fans. The succession is insured.
Nico

A very solid space-rock album, with everything that makes space-rock great. The music melds acoustic with electric and synthesized, Eastern music with Western. Experimental and extremely trippy, with the musical chops to back it up. It sounds almost like a lost Ozrics album with the swirling synthesizers,occasional flute and lack of vocals, and indeed, The Spacefolk on this album could quite easily go toe-to-toe with the Ozrics. Usually a jawharp makes me giggle, but it actually fits in quite nicely on the first track of the album. Throbbing bass lines and middle-Eastern melodies are the norm, held together by the aforementioned swirling synth parts and drumming by Teemu Kilponen. There is hardly a second of empty space in this album, it all seems to be filled to the brim with beautiful music. If you're a fan of bands like the Ozric Tentacles, Pink Floyd, jam bands, or anything psychedelic and trippy this album will hold your interest for some time.
Alex

I think this is their best album. It's not as heavy as their last two albums, and not as structured. It sounds more "organic" to me. Very active drumming, and intense guitars. And the amount of synths is just right for my taste. Kaikados and Nasha Universo (great flute by the way) are very alert and spirited, I can't sit still, it's almost an overdose of energy. Perfect if you feel a bit sad or tired. Pangaia is darker and more psychedelic, and at the same time very beatiful. I don't know the total number of hours that I listened to Kaikados, Nasha Universo or Pangaia, but I know that it's impossible to weary of these three songs. I'm just hoping they soon return to a sound that's more like this. I really like the cover art too! 5/5!
symbiosis

Very good space rock from Finland!
These guys are clearly very much influenced by the legends of space rock, Ozric Tentacles. The sound is, although there aren't any obvious rip-offs, very similar. But if you like that sort of music, it doesn't matter. To describe Hidria's music a bit more accurately, they play a bit "Eastern influenced" spacey prog rock, in which they blend the guitars and synths together and add some flute, didgeridoo and other acoustic instruments as well to create a pretty cosmic and at the same time acidic layer of sounds.
The guys seem to have talent, in composing as well as playing their instruments, and that shows. The result is a solid debut album with strong, interesting songs and an amazing overall atmosphere. Check this out, folks!
Matti Sillanmaki

Y agradezcan al Mago Alberto por compartirles semejante discazo. Ya saben dón de está, y si no saben, pregunten...
Imperdible y maravilloso.




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