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martes, 8 de noviembre de 2016

Holy Lamb - Beneath The Skin (A Transgressive Rock Tale) (2002)


Desde Lituania volvemos con este grupazo que saca chispas en cada una de sus espectaculares canciones, con la técnica del metal progresivo más intrincado y rebuscado embutido dentro de melodías sinfónicas. Si es que aún no lo hicieron, no dejen de conocer a este grupazo que viene desde los más lejanos parajes para ofrecernos un rock impresionante. Dénle otro guztazo a sus oídos y no dejen de escucharlos, dicazo super recontra recomendadísimo!!!! Y ojo que únicamente lo encontrarás en el blog cabezón.

Artista: Holy Lamb
Álbum: Beneath The Skin (A Transgressive Rock Tale)
Año: 2002
Género: Rock sinfónico / Neo-progresivo
Duración: 59:17
Nacionalidad: Lituania


Lista de Temas:
1. Psychovertureture - In The Beginning
2. The Plan That Failed
3. Makhtartam & The Low Brotherhood - Parts 1 - 3
i) The New Order ii) Get - Together iii) Our Power Supreme
4. The Conquest
5. 'Audiodurg'
6. Stars Fell On Fertile Lands
7. Wear It In The Morning
8. Beneath The Skin (Part 1 - i) Get Going!)
9. The Meeting Of The Majorminors
10. Beneath The Skin (Parts 2 & 3 - ii) Arrival & Panic iii) Peace)
11. The End - Headturn's Release

Alineación:
- Aigars Cervinskis / electric and acoustic guitars, vocals, whistle, one note on a keyboard
- Juris Rats / keyboards, vocals
- Uldis Elerts / electric and acoustic guitars, vocals
- Ugis Zemitis / bass, vocals
- Mikus Rullis / drums, percussion, tubular bells, vocals
Guest artist:
Ieva Pudane / flute on "Stars Fell on Fertile Lands"
Guest singers (in order of appearance):
Valdis Indrisonoks, Romans Pavlovs, Arturs Tiesnieks, Orests Silabriedis & Andris Smaukstelis




Un álbum conceptual basado en una historia real, y probablemente el disco más ambicioso de la banda hasta la fecha, con cantantes y flautistas invitados,.
Un disco muy aventurero, no demasiado melódico pero sí muy expresivo, bastante potencia y fuerza. La música es lo suficientemente ambiciosa, las instrumentaciones espectaculares, aunque la voz principal sea relativamente plana y sería lo único negativo que tendríamos para achacarle a este trabajo, porque si bien el disco no es muy fácil de digerir por su música disonante, compleja, aventurera e incluso molesta en algunos lugares, cosa que requiere de varias escuchas para encontrarle la onda, demuestran ser el dignos herederos de los pioneros de la música que mezclaban lo complejo con lo emocional en los lejanos años setenta: Gentle Giant, VDGG, King Crimson, Yes y Genesis.
Para apreciar un álbum como éste, es necesario advertir que hay que tener la mente abierta y ser persistente porque en su aparente falta de armonía se esconden melodías dulces y profanas que son una joyita que sólo después de varias escuchas se pueden ir descubriendo de a poco.

Es así que cada vez que lo oigas, el disco irá creciendo en tu interior, conformándose la imagen de una obra maestra casi absolutamente perfecta. Es un álbum enormemente impresionante de principio a fin.



Diferentes vocalistas han participado para ayudar en una narración sobre la historia de una revolución divina, con un Dios enviando gobernantes para cada uno de los países, y encarando una lucha por el reino de la música, algo más o menos así. En todo caso se asemeja a una especie de ópera rock donde la temática sirve como excusa para aplicar todos los recursos que los tipos tenían a mano, y tengan muy en cuenta que aunque estén faltos de recursos técnicos, tienen tanta capacidad musical e instrumental que una vez que empieces a engancharle la onda al disco, ni te va a importar el concepto.
No he encontrado comentarios en castellano, solo algunos comentarios en inglés que les paso a copiar. Pero si has escuchado y te ha gustado la onda del asombroso "Gyrosophy" del 2015, entrale a este disco de cabeza. Un discazo impresionante.


Highly recommended album from Latvia. I rate it 5 stars altough I recognize it isn't an absolutely perfect masterpiece (it's very, very close) but, since I 've got this album, I heard it again and again, growing in me each time.
The feeling is generally dark-symphonic, with solemn organ, magnificent piano and guitars and even gothic chorus sometimes, but melodies are very clear and beautiful at the same time.
I find reminiscences from bands like VDGG (and the contemporary VDGG influenced VERSUS X), a little bit from KING CRIMSON and many influences from the nostalgic Scandinavian bands (ANGLAGARD or SINKADUS). But despite these obscure references, it isn't an album difficult to listen to, being each track a little symphonic prog gem itself.
Almost 60 minutes with dark and -paradoxically- very luminous music. Really enjoyable, don't miss it.
Marcelo Matusevich


I have to confess to not knowing many Latvian prog bands (okay, I don't know any) prior to receiving this album, but I see from their interesting web site (www.holylamb.lv) that they have previously released an album on the Italian Mellow Records. This is a concept based on the story of God creating the earth and sending rulers for each kingdom, and the struggle for the kingdom of music. It is a shame that there wasn't room to print the story in the booklet as it is interesting and certainly adds to the album, but at least the link to it is printed and the album also contains all of the lyrics as well as details as to which character is singing.
It is a hugely impressive album from start to finish, with more than enough on here to interest the proghead. It is an album that is very cinematic in concept and in some ways it has more in common with shows such as Jesus Christ Superstar than to many other prog albums. I found that right from the beginning I was very involved in the music as it is highly complex, bringing in not only different keyboard sounds but also moving from pop into complicated hard rock.
Different vocalists have been used to assist in the telling of the story and this all adds to the theatricality of the album as a whole. Gentle flute and harp lend some passages a gentle tranquillity that is certainly missing from other sections! This is by far the best album that I have heard from Periferic and one that I can heartily recommend to all lovers of prog.
Kev Rowland


This obscure little gem from Latvia is closer to a Prog-Rock Opera than to a traditional Prog concept album, featuring several characters performed with the help of a few guest vocalists.
The concept must be taken with a pinch of salt, and thankfully the band themselves seem to take it with humour because otherwise it could have sounded terribly nerdy and pretentious. The album booklet includes the lyrics (in English) but not the story itself, which used to be available in the band's website but apparently has been mysteriously removed, so at risk of making this a painfully long review I will post it here for you:
Headturn was the demi-god assigned to rule the World of Music, and under his control musical art flourished, filling the world with peace, art and happiness. But another demi-god, the evil and greedy Makhtartam had different plans and wanted to turn music into a money-making machine at his service. He had been conquering different aspects of the world and locking their respective demi-gods in cages, but Headturn's cage was still empty. With help from the Low Brotherhood he managed to catch Headturn and lock him too into his cage. The Low Brotherhood then proceeded to create cheap music in the form of 'bricks' which they unleashed on the unsuspecting world. These bricks were highly addictive thus enslaving the music consuming population and generating big revenues for Makhtartam and his fellows.
Yet, before his capture, Headturn had seized stars from Heaven and sprinkled them throughout his land. Some of these fell onto fertile soil and thus the Fatty Brothers heard true music of the stars and avoided the enslavement of the musical bricks.
Meanwhile, God was not pleased with the imprisonment of his favourite demi-god and intervened to save him through the Angel Laudor, who provided the Fatty Brothers with 'the Skin of the Lamb', a sort of invisibility cloak by which they could approach the cages undetected and free Headturn. Along the way they met others who'd been touched by Headturn's scattered stars and joined them in their quest. Protected by the Skin, they finally free Headturn and depart for distant shores were pure music can develop again.
Yeah, even Rush's 2112 sounds serious next to this!
After such a long introduction I will not make a track by track review, but we find here excellent Prog with multiple influences ranging from King Crimson to Neo-Prog, Camel, Van Der Graaf Generator, other Rock- Operas such as The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Mike Oldfield, some Jazzy moments, Hard-Rock riffs, church organ parts, you name it. No weak moments in the whole album, my only warning concerns the vocals, not very good timbres and often excessively theatrical which can put some people off.
If this album was by a renowned band I would possibly rate it 4 stars but coming from an obscure Latvian band I find that I must reward their achievement and I will give it the 5/5 stars status.
Gerard Gerinski


This is an excellent album, a real masterpiece from Latvia. I didn't know this prog rock group before. Fortunately I could buy their CD on very low price in my country, but after listening to this fantastic album I think it was a bargain. It was very cheap but the quality of music is very high. It became one of my favourite prog rock album. Prog rock fans must by this album.
Kendernay Attila


Holy Lamb is one of the few progressive rock bands in Latvia. And we can say that Beneath The Skin is the greatest latvian prog-rock album. This album includes some very, very great musical moments. Good instrumentation and concept. Some songs are better then others but actually each track is good. It is surprising, but this album is one of my favourite progressive rock albums. Why it's so surprising? Because in Latvia there are not strong progressive rock roots and traditions. I give to this album 5 stars, but it's not because I'm latvian - just listen this album and I think you'll agree that this music is really fantastic.
Best tracks: The Plan That Failed Makhtartam & The Low Brotherhood The Meeting Of The Majorminors
darkroom

I think this is my first acquaintance with progressive rockmusic from Latvia and I must say that I am quite impressed. Holy Lamb is the name of the band I am talking about and in particular their 2002 album “Beneath the Skin” that holds the subtitle A transgressive rock tale. This is true progressive rock: a diversity of styles ranging from rather heavy and theatrical (vocal) rock to beautiful symphonic and atmospheric (instrumental) pieces.
The album is based upon a “very true tale” written by Ieva Dmitricenko, that can be found on the band´s website. It is about the fact that despite an excess of “cheap” music, quality music is on it´s return. We of progVisions couldn´t agree more.
The line-up for this album is as follows: Aigars Cervinskis (electric and acoustic guitars, vocals and whistle), Juris Rats (keyboards and vocals), Uldis Elerts (electric and acoustic guitars and vocals), Ugis Zemitis (bass and vocals), Mikus Rullis (drums, percussion, tubular bells and vocals). The band originated in 1991 and via thrash/speed metal and rock they started writing and playing progressive rock music in 1996. After their international debut “Salt of the Earth” in 1999 “Beneath the skin” is their second international release.
This album starts of with the ambient sounds of “Psychovertureture - In The Beginning” (1:33). After this you get a good impression of the quality of the musicianship and variety of musical styles these guys manage to weave into one another with the second track “The Plan That Failed” (8:32). “Makhtartam & The Low Brotherhood (Parts 1 - 3)” (5:40) is a typical theatrical or rock opera piece, where the lyrics play a dominating role, but are nevertheless supported by good rock music. Even some ska-music comes by and I very much like the organ sounds in this third track. A more than beautiful solo church organ part is the next surprise that features almost three minutes of the opening sequence of “The conquest” (8:19). The rest of this song is also more than good symphonic progressive rock with nice bass and guitar play, and a reprise of the church organ themes joining the rest of the band. The up-tempo finale and synthesizer sounds in this track are continued in the again more theatrical piece “Audiodurg” (5:29). The second instrumental half of this track is rather jazzy, mainly because of the piano play.
I must confess that I am not a great lover of this kind of theatrical stuff, were the different characters if the story are represented using different types of voices and vocals, but in this case this is more than compensated by the excellent music these guys produce, the overall quality of the composition and the arrangements.
Track 6 is a very beautiful and more easy symphonic piece entitled “Stars Fell On Fertile Lands”(3:38), with very nice acoustic guitar play and accompanying keyboard sounds. More dark and mysterious are the organ and guitar themes of “Wear It In The Morning” (7:53) with typical classical opera vocals. This is certainly a progressive piece with its flamingo guitar part and alternation of strange and beautiful themes and sounds. “Beneath The Skin (Part 1)” (1:12) and “Beneath The Skin (Parts 2 & 3)” (5:32) are separated by track 9 “The Meeting Of The Majorminors” (5:53). All three are excellent progressive symphonic rock pieces with much tension. Nice multilayered guitar play in “Beneath The Skin (Parts 2 & 3)” is followed by a very nice atmospheric keyboard piece supported by some electric guitar notes. The albums finishes with “The End - Headturn's Release” (5:36) that after a more solemn introduction has a great jazzrock part with good bass, guitar and piano play. The finale of this song is rather heavy with aggressive guitar chords and vocals.
Almost 60 minutes this very gripping album lasts. A solid production and art work make it a quality product. It found it very hard to find any direct references and I think this fact shows that these guys have a rather unique sound. It certainly is progressive and therefore recommendable to any true progfan.
Wim Verweij

Espero que lo disfruten, ya saben dónde buscarlo.



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