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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Beledo

Seriously Deep

Review by Gary Hill

This set features some strong music that focuses on the fusion end of the spectrum, but does work more toward pure prog at times. Beledo himself handles guitar and piano. Tony Levin plays upright bass and bass guitar. The drums are played by Kenny Grohowski. There is a guest performance by Jorge Camiruaga on vibraphone, and Kearoma Rantao and Boris Savoldelli each add their voices to one song. This is a unique and compelling set that might make you think of other artists at times, while still maintaining its own sound and vision.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) form in Music Street Journal: 2022  Volume 1. More information and purchase links can be found at: garyhillauthor.com/Music-Street-Journal-2022.

Track by Track Review
Seriously Deep
The piano work that brings this into being is so pretty and evocative. Eventually other instruments are added to the mix as the cut grows outward. The fusion concepts once this really gets into are so classy. I'm reminded to a large degree of Al Di Meola, but there are plenty of other things underway, too. The guitar playing on the track is tastefully expressive. I dig the bass showcase fairly late in the song a lot, too.
Mama D
This fires out with rocking fusion right from the start. I'm reminded more of Allan Holdsworth on this than I am Di Meola. There are vocals on this tune. They have a more traditional jazz vibe to them. Still, the bulk of the piece is instrumental and it really works through some smoking hot fusion territory along its run. The guitar has a tendency to be on fire.
Coasting Zone
As strong as the songs that preceded it were, this elevates things to a previously un-reached level. The comparisons to Holdsworth are definitely valid. This is a real powerhouse fusion romp. It's so tasty and cool. The guitar work is on fire. This has some drum soloing in the midst of it, too.
Maggie's Sunrise
A melodic cut, this leans more on pure jazz than some of the others do. I really love the vibraphone and the piano on this tune. Mind you, everything here is cool. Those two instruments just get more of a chance to be showcased. This gets quite involved before it's over and done.
Knocking Waves
Coming in atmospheric and understated, there is a sense of mystery and impending magic as this gets going. This grows out into something that at first makes me think of the mellow side of A-Farewell-to-Kings-era Rush. It eventually gets more powered up and jazz-oriented. This gets quite intense and powered up further down the road. It's a highlight of the set for sure.
A Temple In The Valley
There are vocals here, but they are either in a different language than English or non-lyrical. They are sort of typical fusion vocals. The whole tune has a real mainstream melodic fusion vibe to it.
Into The Spirals
The bass and guitar on this work together to weave some serious magic. This is quite an effective piece that makes for a great closer.
 
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