Exposé Online banner

Los Canarios — Ciclos
(Ariola 74321 17814 2, 1974/1991, CD)

by Mike McLatchey, Published 2017-05-11

Ciclos Cover art

When I think of modernization of classical works, I get nightmares of hallways strewn with Tomita albums or maybe Yngwie Malmsteen or even Emerson Lake and Palmer's (or Mekong Delta's) Pictures at an Exhibition. It's not really an approach that works for me, but there are exceptions to every rule, and Ciclos is a towering exception at that. This Spanish symphonic progressive outfit took Vivaldi's Four Seasons and really created a huge work of art that encompassed a lot of different approaches to its themes of the cycle of nature. I gave it a listen this morning and I was still really impressed by how much territory this covers, it's perhaps close to Aphrodite's Child's 666 in terms of its diversity over four sides of an LP. For one thing Ciclos really brings a lot of Vivaldi's themes to life, but it doesn't stick directly to the source material and stretches out in certain areas that really help ensure things don't get stuffy. I was reminded how much parts of the second movement remind me of Queen with the vocals, but Queen of a later vintage, almost a touch of opera in the middle of the suite. There are some really great, well placed guitar solos in the mix which also tend to help create climatic moments along such a long sprawling work and, of course, there's loads of Mellotron all over the place. You get the impression that instead of following the charts alone the musicians planned the album so that it would not get bogged down by tradition, and would always make you wonder what's coming next. Every time I play this I'm amazed at how many ideas are realized and how it's never tedious at all. Overall it's not only one of the great 70s progressive records from Spain, but one of the greatest double LPs in any style, a work of art that far surpasses its source material and has a longevity and presence that rarely shows up in covered music.


Filed under: Reissues, 1991 releases, 1974 recordings

Related artist(s): Los Canarios

Latest news

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Foetus - Flow – J.G. Thirlwell’s reputation preceded him like a plague, and I knew I had to be in the right frame of mind to listen to the kind of pounding, intense onslaught he dishes out. But eventually I had...  (2001) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues