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Album Review

Although Artaud was officially billed as the third Pescado Rabioso album, the Argentinean group had actually broken up by the time it was recorded. It's essentially a solo effort by singer-guitarist-songwriter Luis Alberto Spinetta, with contributions from his brother, drummer Carlos Gustavo Spinetta, bassist Emilio Del Guercio, and drummer Rodolfo García, the latter two of whom had played with Spinetta back in the pre-Pescado Rabioso band Almendra. If it's something of a progressive/psychedelic record, it has more to do with the juxtaposition of late-'60s and early-'70s styles on display than it has to do with the music itself. On various different tracks, Spinetta offers accomplished, sentimental acoustic-based folk-rock balladry ("Todas las Hojas Son del Viento"); languid jazzy San Francisco-styled mild psych ("Cementerio Club," "Bajan") with quavering guitar; folk-rock with a touch of late-'60s Lennon-McCartney at their most romantic ("La Sed Verdadera"); a piano-backed piece that recalls early Todd Rundgren at his softest ("A Starosta, El Idiota"); and a taut Latin-flavored rocker vaguely reminiscent of early Santana ("Las Habladurias del Mundo"). There's a little weirdness here, but it's limited to just a few spots, like the gradual submersion of "La Sed Verdadera" under ambient restaurant-like white noise and howling wind, and the sudden detour of "A Starosta, El Idiota" into gloomy dissonant piano rumbles, weeping, along with a far-off snatch of the Beatles' "She Loves You" single.

Artaud, Pescado Rabioso
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