Monday, 6 January 2014

Recuerdos de mi tierra (Mezquita, 1979)

This prog jewel comes from Spain and from "Recuerdos de mi tierra" (meaning "Memories of My Land"),  the first and best album by Mezquita, a short living Spanish band. You'll find in this title track all the main features of British Prog mixed with some Spanish flamenco, especially when, in the second part of the song, José Rafa's vocals - the typical cante hondo - and guitars come in, let alone the cicadas singing.

An apocalyptic cover art for Mezquita's masterpiece.

Roscka's keyboards provide the International sound and the inner coherence of the track, while the rythm section adds a skillful, energetic, Mediterranean pace and a range of complex tempos. There are also a strong classical influence and an Arabic flavour, but the thing I love here are the easy, natural passages from distressed moments to dramatic moods, usually enhanced by Spanish and electric guitars. It's a highly emotional music, as the performers employ all their skills to strengthen the emotional side of their song. And this, they know how to do very well.