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Rodrigo San Martin - 1 CD (album) cover


Rodrigo San Martin


Crossover Prog

3.42 | 12 ratings

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Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Uno.

This is the first album by Rodrigo San Martin, a true Argentinean talent whose compositions talk by themselves. When I was introduced (by him, in fact) to his music I felt lucky and happy of knowing that there is talent everywhere, and to know that progressive rock is alive and kicking asses. And though I admit I prefer much more his "There's No Way Out" album, it is evident that since his first work he made visible his skills as composer and performer. And I say this, because the album was composed and played by him in its entirety.

So here this one-man-band offers an ambitious one-song-album in which we can appreciate a symphonic oriented sound, changes in rhythm and mood, a diversity of passages, and a great blend of nuances, textures and melodies. I invite you to download the album through his website (it is free) and prepare for this 39-minute epic. Worth mentioning that with our help and spreading the word, his music will be better known, and he may be releasing the albums in CD in the near future, and not only in digital versions.

The song starts soft with acoustic guitar and delicate vocals in English, little by little other elements are appearing, such as drums and mellotron. It progresses, it flows and when we less expect it, changes. After five minutes a heavier tone enters and creates a sound that has nothing to do with the first minutes. A blend of styles make this a very eclectic album, because besides the previously mentioned symphonic sound (mainly due to the keyboards) here we can find some heavy prog moments, some spacey ones, and even some lighter and catchier ones, which make me think is the reason San Martin's music was labeled (wrongly) as Crossover Prog.

After ten minutes there is a beautiful instrumental passage where keyboards and drums join, creating a hopeful sound which all of a sudden will be vanished due to the entrance of the doubled- edged piano, because it creates a calm, but also a tense and nervous sound. Then vocals return, as well as the mellotron, which is essential here. A long instrumental passage comes later and finishes after the twentieth minute; the sound disappears and then the second part of the song/album begins.

Piano notes and a warm and bluesy guitar at first, then atmospheric keyboards complement it. A couple of minutes later vocals enter in a really soft way, giving us a melancholic sound. But guess what, it is only another passage because later the song explodes and its heavier side appears for a brief moment, just before being replaced by some spacey and atmospheric keyboards. Though changing so many times in a few minutes may not be the best formula, here it does not really harm the music, one can let it flow and enjoy it, having in mind that some passages would have been better if they lasted more. The rest of the song is composed by the same elements, by the same changes, until it delicately finishes.

For a debut album, and for a man who did it all, this is a wonderful work by Rodrigo San Martin, congratulations for that. Though I have to admit that the album is not flawless, no, it does have some weaker and plain moments, and I am sorry, but I am not that eager regarding his voice. On the other hand, the song is well-crafted without a doubt, and it shows that we have a new talent rising, aiming for reaching bigger goals. So now after two albums, I am truly interested in his third, which is about to see the light. My final grade will be three strong stars (3.5 would be better).

Enjoy it!

memowakeman | 3/5 |


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