1. De Mi Corazon Al Aire
2. Reino De Silia
3. Gitano De Lucia
5. Maestro Sanlucar
6. Callejon De La Luna
8. Tio Arango
Vicente Amigo is a young flamenco guitarist from Spain and many see in him the successor to Paco DeLucia's throne as the untouchable master of flamenco guitar. That's no mean feat, considering how conservative the Spanish flamenco scene can be, and how overtly Amigo has commercialized some of his music (see his lackluster Vivencias Imaginadas). But there is no denying that Amigo is an absolutely stunning musician and excellent composer, and his debut album is a jaw-dropping collection of highly melodic, emotional and flamboyant instrumental compositions (two of which feature traditional flamenco vocalists). The songs range from slow but intense melodic ballads to faster dance accompaniments, and the instrumentation includes handcaps, electric bass, tablas, and other percussion on several tracks, with three superb solo pieces. The compositions are more melodic and harmonically accessible than Paco DeLucia's, and would likely appeal to more listeners than traditional hardcore flamenco albums generally do.
The highlight of this album, however, is Amigo's extraordinary command of his instrument. While his technique is stupendous and his highly reverbed sound enormous, his expressiveness is really what makes him stand out from the crowded field of flamenco young guns. The solo pieces, in particular "Morente", are some of the most emotional music I have ever heard, and have the uncanny ability to melt any living being in their presence.
Why is this album reviewed on a primarily rock-oriented site? Well, though the music itself is clearly not rock, the power, virtuosity and passion that permeate every second of this short album have a lot in common with, say, Strapping Young Lad, Ocean Machine, Bathory's viking albums, or Coroner. Essential music for those reflective moments.
Review by Rog The Frog Billerey-Mosier
Review date: 03/2002