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Venezuela 70 - Cosmic Visions Of A Latin American Earth - Venezuelan Experimental Rock In The 1970s (CD/2LP, Soul Jazz, 2016)

English label Soul Jazz Records released this summer a collection of experimental rock recorded in Venezuela in the 1970s, at a time when oil was flowing in abundance and consequently culture rather well subsidized. However, this music had never really got out of the country until now, it's really a beautiful discovery. As for example the piece from Angel Rada, 'Panico A Las 5AM' : on a first listen, one wonders where that music comes from, from which era… The chords are classy, after a while a jungle beat comes in, sound is rather crunchy, the tune is very addictive, in a nearly haunting way. This compilation really stands out from the pack! (review by Loik Dury)

Venezuela 70 - Cosmic Visions Of A Latin American Earth - Venezuelan Experimental Rock In The 1970s
Various - Venezuela 70 - Cosmic Visions Of A Latin American Earth - Venezuelan Experimental Rock In The 1970s
(CD/2LP) Soul Jazz Records SJRCD/LP335, 2016-06-24

Tracklisting :
01. Vytas Brenner - Araguaney 2:36
02. Pablo Schneider - Amor En Llamas 3:44
03. Un Dos Tres y Fuera - Machu Picchu 3:29
04. Miguel Angel Fuster - Polvo Lunar 8:49
05. Angel Rada - Basheeba 4:25
06. Fernando Yvosky - Barcos De Papel 3:36
07. Un Dos Tres y Fuera - Son De Tambor y San Juan 2:02
08. Vytas Brenner - Bang-Going-Gone 2:41
09. Aldemaro Romero y Su Onda Nueva - Irene 2:10
10. Miguel Angel Fuster - Dame De Comer 2:16
11. Un Dos Tres y Fuera - San Juan, Tambor Y Fuera 5:09
12. Vytas Brenner - Caracas Para Locos 5:03
13. Grupo C.I.M. - Joropo No. 1 3:20
14. Angel Rada - Panico a Las 5am 5:32
15. Apocalipsis - Ayudame A Encontrar Mi Camino 3:16
16. Miguel Angel Fuster - La Quema De Judas 3:21

Links :
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Review (in French) :
Le label anglais Soul Jazz Records a sorti cet été une collection de rock expérimental enregistré au Vénézuela dans les années 1970, à une époque où le pétrole coulait à flot et par conséquent la culture assez bien subventionnée. Pourtant, cette musique n'était jamais vraiment sortie du pays jusqu'ici, c'est vraiment une belle découverte. Comme par exemple le morceau d'Angel Rada, 'Panico A Las Sam' : à la première écoute on se demande d'où cela peut venir, de quelle époque… Les accords sont classieux, au bout d'un moment un beat jungle arrive, le son est assez saturé, le morceau est très addictif, de façon presque obsédante. Une compilation qui sort vraiment du lot! (Loik Dury)

Press Release :
Soul Jazz Records' new Venezuela 70 is the first-ever album of its kind to take a look at the groundbreaking experimental rock music made in Venezuela and created in the 1970s – during a time when the country was both a modern cultural and economic powerhouse in Latin America on account of wealth from its vast oil supplies.

Venezuela lies at the northern part of South America, with neighbouring Colombia to its west and Brazil to its south. The north coast borders the Caribbean.

Whilst much of 1960s Venezuelan rock music emulated British and USA styles, the 1970s saw the evolution of a new generation of creative artists such as Vytas Brenner, Angel Rada, Pablo Schneider and Miguel Angel Fuster, who all explored the possibilities of mixing together rock with elements of electronica, funk, jazz, latin rhythms simultaneously exploring their links with Venezuelan roots music, creating a new sound which blended a multitude of new and old world influences, uniquely Venezuelan.

These Venezuelan artists looked to the future while exploring their country's own musical heritage to create a new cultural identity. Similarities can be drawn with then contemporary movements around the world such as the Trópicalia and post-Trópicalia 1970s scene in Brazil of Os Mutantes, Novos Baianos, Secos e Molhados (all of which feature on Soul Jazz Records' earlier Brazil 70). A similar parallel can be made in Europe with the experimental German groups of the 1970s (Can, Amon Duul, Harmonia, Neu all featured on Soul Jazz Records' Deutsche Electronische Musik) who deconstructed and reconstructed the links between rock music and electronics to define a new German cultural identity.

Most of these artists featured on Venezuela 70 remain practically unknown outside of Venezuela's borders and yet their progressive forward-thinking music is some of the most sophisticated in the world – a stunning ‘melting pot' mix of underground rock, synthetic electronics, funk, jazz and Latin American rhythms all of which explored new sounds and broke down musical boundaries to create a distinct and unique Venezuelan music and cultural identity.



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