Chelique Sarabia — Revolución Electrónica en Música Venezolana
(Pharaway Sounds PHS064, 1971/2019, CD / LP)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2020-02-06
In the early 70s, Venezuelan composer and arranger Chelique Sarabia decided to record an album of Venezuelan traditional and folk songs, but with an updated modern touch using musical instruments and equipment based on the principles of the Moog synthesizer. Aided by a team of musicians, they recorded the album on traditional instruments like the cuatro and bandola llanera, filtering them through oscillators, feedback, tape delays, synths, and reverb. The result was Revolución "Electrónica" en Música Venezolana. The album was originally sponsored by Shell OIl in Venezuela, provided as a Christmas gift in 1973 to customers, employees, and friends. After Shell’s exclusivity period elapsed, Sarabia released the album commercially. On May 29, 2019, Guerssen reissued this album on both vinyl and CD. While this album may have been ahead of its time in 1971, looking back from 2019 the music does not sound that revolutionary. In many places the use of the studio tricks and synths is subtle, in others a little more obvious. And the feedback loops and reverb sound like a precursor to dub. Overall the album is an interesting collection of blended folk and rock music or latin jazz. And some of the tracks, like “Río Manzanares” would fit in with 70s TV variety shows. If you are looking for 70s electronic music, you won’t find that on the album. But if you want to hear updated Venezuelan folk music with rock elements, then give the disc a spin.
Related artist(s): Chelique Sarabia
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more