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TRACK LIST: 1. Preludio 0:42 2. Volumen Viejo 5:46 3. Silencio 4:14 4. The Grave & Stern Decorum 4:23 5. Bleak December I 6:20 6. Bleak December II 3:06 7. Exasperacion 1:37 8. Something's Wrong 3:32 9. Lenore 2:14 10. A Demon That's Dreaming 5:46 All music: by Galera, except: 10: by Sanz & Galera. All lyrics: by Oliva. LINE-UP: Daniel Galera - electric & acoustic guitars; vocals Gonzalo Sanz - Hammond, Mellotron, piano, & synthesizers Roberto Oliva - bass Pablo Bagazgoitia - drums Ma Jose Millon - lead vocals With: Parra - percussion (on 1, 3, 6, & 9) Pepe - flute (on 8) Ester Rojas - flute (on 9) Christie Love - viola (on 6) Jorge Escavias - cello (on 1) Produced by J. Pinero & Snowdonia. Engineered by J. Pinero at "Green Drum", Madrid.
Prolusion. As far as I know, "Pallas" is the only album by the Spanish band Snowdonia.
Synopsis. Every constituent of the music on this album - all the solos of all of the instruments involved, both of the female and male vocals, etc - is original and can't be compared with anything, and yet as a whole, "Pallas" sounds like one of the Camel classic albums accidentally forgotten to be released in the 1970s. In other words, this is another real clone album (please don't confuse a clone and imitation). It is excellent by all means and is at every respect on par with most of the best albums released by Camel (the only really noticeable exception being "The Snow Goose", in my view). "Pallas" features six songs and four instrumental compositions (tracks 1, 6, 7, & 10), and with the exception of Exasperacion (7), which is a classic acoustic guitar-based piece, all of them were created within the framework of a unified stylistics, which is certainly nothing else but Classic Symphonic Art-Rock lightly flavored by Jazz-Fusion. While the music is predominantly characterized by the alternation of soft and intensive arrangements with either the guitar or organ solos at the helm, it always remains very beautiful and full of that inexpressible magic, which is typical only for the works of the 1970s. The four songs on "Pallas": Volumen Viejo, Bleak December-1, Something's Wrong, and Lenore feature both of the female and male vocals, the other two: Silencio and The Grave & Stern Decorum only female ones, and one of the instrumental pieces: A Demon That's Dremaing (10) female vocalizes. What's curious about this album is that some songs here feature English lyrics, some Spanish, and one of them (Bleak December-1) somewhat of Anglo-Spanish ones.
Conclusion. The very nostalgic "Pallas" will certainly please anyone into Classic Symphonic Progressive, though of course, especially those who love a very specific musical atmosphere typical for early Camel.
VM: Agst 20, 2003
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