Saturday, October 31, 2015

Iceberg - 1977 "Sentiments"

The musicianship on this album is fantastic and if you are into jazz you should flip your gourd over this release. Actually some of this sounds like stuff I heard when my dad played his 78rpm vinyl from the 40's. There is a bit too much jazz and not nearly enough rock for me. Well, that's just me, you may love this if you are seriously into jazz/fusion.

One of the best fusion albums of the 70s. Definitely influenced by RTF and Mahavishnu, but still a sound of their own. Both keyboardist Josep Mas and guitarist Max Sunyer are virtuoso talents, able to command attention with their solos, like those aforementioned bands. I love the retro sound of Mas keyboards, but Sunyers tone is screechy, and even the remasters have not helped him. It's about the songs though. A Sevilla and Ball de les Fulles are incredible. A cut above the rest of a very consistent record.

For 1977 this is a pretty impressive fusion album. I'm actually pretty surprised how much more cohesive this effort feels, not just compared to Icerberg's previous album, but for the entire spectrum of fusion artists of that period in history. While R.T.F was producing poor albums like "Musicmagic", Iceberg actually summarized the strongest moments of the mid-seventies fusion scene with this enthusiastic album here. A focused effort of latin influenced jazz-fusion where guitar & keyboards are having duels in the frames of skilled composition spiced up by dynamic rhythms. Mysterious and mellow textures changing roles without getting too pompous nor frantic. I really like this one.

After their surprising two first records, released in an unknown field to Spanish fans and musicians as jazz-rock fusion, Iceberg returns with an even better record: Sentiments. The base of their music is similar to Coses Nostres: a little jazz, a little rock and a little symphonic, but this time compositions are much better and focused. Still songs are instrumental and quite long, but this time the band manages to compose more solid music, able to keep your attention through the tracks.

It is a pity that -at least in the CD- one of the electric guitar tracks is faulty, becoming too noisy in a couple of songs. I have no idea if this happened in the original LP or this happened in the digital remastering only.

Other than that, there are three or four excellent tracks, but A Sevilla is a symphonic rock monument that Transatlantic would have been glad to sign 25 years later.


Madrid would be again the city to receive the talents of the remaining Iceberg quartet, as the group moved on to a third work.Angel Riba, who had cut any instrumental ties with the band, still served them as a manager and was propably the one who arranged the visit of the group at the Sonoland Studios.The album was titled ''Sentiments'' and was released in 1977 on CFE.

Iceberg would now present their sharpest and most dense album so far, still containing the occasional Latin Fusion echoes, but performed in a frenetic and convincing way.More mature than on ''Coses nostres'', their smoky performances remind me of Italians ARTI E MESTIERI, the tracks are fast-paced with impossible-to-follow interactions and breaks into dramatic solos and bombastic parts.They never forget to throw in the appropriate laid-back, Latin-spiced melodies, more apparent during the guitar solos, and the album keeps the listener stuck on his headphones until the very end.Now, there is something called ''composition'' in music and, yes, they did it pretty well in that section too, even if the album is dominated by the solos and interplays.And that's because every note here seems to be appearing in the proper place, the executions are maybe too excessive, technically superficient and fairly virtuosic, but the mass of breaks leads to more down-to-earth passages with atmospheric and melodic injections.Fantastic guitar work by Sune and Josep Mas had eventually become one of the notable figures of Spanish Fusion with his electrified keyboard playing.And a special mention to Jordi Colomer, who's drumming is coming out of a seminar, flawless, solid and very technical.

Very nice Spanish Fusion.Rich in interplays, melodies and atmospheres, containing lovely Latin tunes and some amazing solos.Strongly recommended.


Tracks Listing

1. Sentiments (1:50)
2. Andalusia, Andalusia (5:37)
3. A Sevilla (5:13)
4. Ball De Les Fulles (5:30)
5. Magic (6:23)
6. Joguines (3:00)
7. Alegries Del Mediterrani (9:17)

Total Time: 35:50

Line-up / Musicians

- Jordi Colomer / drums, percussion
- Josep "Kitflus" Mas / acoustic & electric pianos, synthesizers
- Primitivo Sancho / bass
- Joaquim Max Suñe / acoustic & electric guitars 
 
 
 

4 comments:

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  2. Many thanks for another "Iceberg"

    ReplyDelete
  3. Todos los discos de Iceberg son extraordinariamente buenos.

    ReplyDelete