ESVEDRA: “El Circo de los Fenomenos” CD

All the way from darkest Peru, this fleeting album was almost dismissed out of hand by its somewhat lack lustre opening. Fortunately, a change of tact a minute in shook off those feared generic shackles. The music meticulously delves into classic rock with progressive leanings and moody refrains unexpectedly tapping into pleasant memories of Against Nature. The remaining half hour of the disc is contained within two mammoth suites and a shorter closing piece. Entirely instrumental yet retaining a hard rock framework, the emphasis is on journey, labyrinthine in character, with dollops of light and shade. There is a distinctive Peruvian colour too not unlike the mythical Tlon or Don Juan Matus at times. But without the distraction of a voice, if it could be coined so, the lead character remains the guitar. Deftly played and with a foot in the past, it might most appeal to ’70s aficionados and old timers alike. By and large, “Los Belkings” is heavier than the stirring title track although at seven minutes shorter that it’s prerogative. Some cracking drumming to boot. But both are intriguing and more enjoyable than much of the shallow tripe peddled nowadays.

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