Despite the dictatorship, Spain didn´t remain outside of sympho-prog genre, although it hasn´t the same success as in the rest of the world. The blend of Andalusian rhythms and progressive developments were created by bands such as Triana; in Madrid the progressive genre was mixed with urban rock (Asfalto). Only Catalonia, closer to Europe and more open-minded those years, was able to give a good fistful of progressive bands (Atila, Máquina!, Iceberg, etc.). In this new century Catalonia keeps on rising our genre´s flags with bands such as The Knive, Dr No, or Vintage, the band I´ll talk about, formed by Esteve Rodriguez (vocals), Eduard Bernad (guitars), Oscar Gómez (bass, vocals), Carlos Fernández (keyboards, vocals), and Abel Benito (drums, percussion).
Vintage´s proposal is not as vanguardist as other bands from Catalonia; in the same way, can´t be easily labeled within a genre as, for example Dr No, who plays english neo-progressive. I think that sometimes people from Barcelona tend to be vanguardist in a forced way, as if it was something inborn. Here Vintage offers a melodic but up-to-date music strongly linked to classic-melancholic sympho played by bands like Camel.
“Tempesta” is a good sympho record that guarantees a nice listening for all who enjoy with the most lyrical side of the genre. Tracks like “Per què te´n vas anar?” (6:54) have nice, elegant and Camel-like guitars wrapped by Carlos Fernández´s keyboards, undoubtedly the real discovery of the band. The same classic feeling is shown in other tracks like “Malson” (8:59), a wonderful piece plenty of changes, atmospheres, and good taste; “Records” (8:14), with a precious piano later joined by a romantic sax that creates a melancholic development; “Suicidi” (4:39) a nice ballad with a piano that reminds me of Chicago´s “Hard to say I´m sorry”, but later enriched with beautiful arrangements. Without any doubt, the weakest tracks are those when the band tries to be a “rock and roll band” such as “Joc Real” (4:37) or “Angel Caigut” (8:38). The best song is the last one “Abisme” (8:44) where the aforementioned influences and rhythms are blended altogether.
The sound is really good and the musicians are high skilled, but I´ll remark Carlos Fernández´s work, a good keyboardist and a great pianist, over the rest, specially Eduard Bernad, a good guitarist but he can´t follow Carlos in guitar-keyboards interplays. Anyway this is a minor detail that doesn´t influence me when evaluating the whole album, an album that is worth it by own merits apart from keeping the Spanish progressive flame alive.