Beluga -
Architecture Of The Absurd

(CD 2013, 42:38, Martian Sheep MS -03)

The tracks:
  1- Photosynthesis(5:19)
  2- Paris Ragtime(6:08)
  3- Trying To Be A Court Clown(5:25)
  4- Under A Bad Cloud(7:10)
  5- Thylacine(6:18)
  6- Monologue(6:43)
  7- Sunny View For Douchebags(5:24)

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Beluga is the name of a new Spanish progressive rock duo consisting of keyboardist and sound engineer Lorenzo Matellan and singer-guitarist Raśl Huelvesis, who would rather be called Razl. Recently they recorded their debut album Architecture Of The Absurd, which they labelled as 'prog rock, with no boundaries or limits.' They also added the following: 'rock that laughed at the world and at itself, a delicious caricature of music'. After reading this I had to think of a funny kind of music swaying to all sorts of musical styles. Well, let's find out whether this is the case or not.

Architecture Of The Absurd contains seven compositions on which the duo is accompanied by two well-respected musicians namely drummer Marco Minnemann (Steven Wilson, Joe Satriani, The Aristocrats) and bass player Damian Erskine ( Peter Erskine New Trio, Gino Vannelli). Together they created a musical style that reminded me of albums recorded by acts like Faith No More, Mr. Bungle, Frank Zappa, Jack Dupon, The Mars Volta, Echolyn, Van Der Graaf Generator, Gentle Giant and King Crimson. All these bands made eclectic music containing several styles of music. They just did whatever they liked and indeed: without any boundaries or limits. Most songs are up-tempo and show how gifted these musicians are on their instruments. In a way singer Razl sounds like Frank Zappa when he sings humorously. Sometimes it's more talking than singing and every now and then it comes pretty close to rap music. All these facts prove that the above-mentioned statement of the band is correct.

The well-thought out and structured compositions of Architecture Of The Absurd may not be enjoyed by everybody though. It's not the average kind of progressive rock to which prog heads are listening on a daily base. For that reason I would like to advise to play this kind of music more than once, that is, if you have the opportunity to listen to it. It certainly helps to form an honest judgment which I think Beluga deserve. Finally it resulted in a positive review for this new duo. This album is recommended to those who enjoy the music of all the aforementioned acts! Thumbs up for Beluga!

*** Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)

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