Fusion / Jazz Related Rock • Spain
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ICEBERG Discography

ICEBERG albums / top albums

ICEBERG Tutankhamon album cover 2.77 | 4 ratings
Jazz Related Rock 1975
ICEBERG Coses Nostres album cover 3.51 | 7 ratings
Coses Nostres
Fusion 1976
ICEBERG Sentiments album cover 3.96 | 5 ratings
Fusion 1977
ICEBERG En Directe album cover 4.00 | 2 ratings
En Directe
Fusion 1978
ICEBERG Arc-En-Ciel album cover 3.25 | 2 ratings
Fusion 1979

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ICEBERG Coses Nostres

Album · 1976 · Fusion
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Switching from a symphonic prog rock band to an all-instrumental fusion group was a smart move on Iceberg's part, the vocals on their debut album being the weakest link. This time around they play a style of fusion reminiscent of the darker Mahavishnu Orchestra or Return to Forever tracks, with the keyboard work of Joseph "Kitflus" Mas being a major presence. Unfortunately, the synth sound used by Kitflus has not aged well, which makes it hard for modern ears to appreciate the technically proficient fusion on offer here. In addition to this, the usually competent playing is let down occasionally by slipshod songwriting - the second track, Nova, in particular seems to lack cohesion to my ears. Still, a solid three star album from a more than competent fusion outfit.

ICEBERG Tutankhamon

Album · 1975 · Jazz Related Rock
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Emerging just as Spain was on the cusp of its transition to democracy, Iceberg's debut album finds the band unsure of just what direction they intend to take. Regular nods to the conventions of symphonic prog aside, the band's heart really seems to lie in funk-influenced jazz fusion, leading to an intriguing blend of styles which keeps the album entertaining - though I'm left with the impression that the music would be improved if Iceberg had committed to one musical direction or another rather than prevaricating. In particular, I'd like to hear much more saxophone and less vocals from frontman Angel Riba, though guitarist Max and keyboardist Kitflus trade solos more than competently.

ICEBERG Sentiments

Album · 1977 · Fusion
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Sean Trane
After the superb Coses Nostres, how can one follow up and still appear as on top of their game? Iceberg found the easy (but not so obvious) answer, to make another superb album, and believe me they did. The album actually veers a bit more jazzy in the fusion sense sometimes approaching the over-demonstrative Return To Forever or even a bit Weather Report and still the better Santana (Caravanserai) and Mahavishnu Orchestra. Some moments are so powerful that I cannot help but thinking of Journey’s superb jazz-rock debut album with the incredible Ainsley Dunbar on drums.

Right from the opening title track, you know this album will strike all the rights chords if you like the above-mentioned bands, and the Spanish feel is present but nothing obtrusive (hardly any flamenco hints, but more of Rodrigo (Aranjuez) feel. Again Sunyer and Mas take the stage by storm, but the rhythm section is really on top of its game. The only small gripe I might have is that the synths sounds are a bit more “modern”, but at least on this album they have been correctly reproduced during the CD transcript. To separate one track and raise it above the rest is simply impossible to this reviewer, because the album is incredibly even, with maybe Magic a bit under par. However, if I must name just one track, listen to the closer Alegries Del Mediterraneo.

A smoking album, just as excellent as the previous Coses Nostres but better rated because of no avoidable sound flaws. Among my top 40 jazz-rock albums, no problems even if I have only known it for the last few months.

ICEBERG Coses Nostres

Album · 1976 · Fusion
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Sean Trane
Under this Mafiosi title comes one of the better jazz rock fusion albums from Spain (at least among the few I know), the second one from this mid to late-70’s Catalan band. Gone is their frontman sax and singer Angel Riba and they are down to your standard prog quartet, but this hardly seem to stop them, quite the opposite, becoming entirely instrumental.

For the most part this album seems to be lost between Maha’s Inner Mounting Flame and Santana’s Caravanserai with some KB coming more from Weather Report and RTF or even Jan Hammer, but this is more due to the instruments chosen than the actual playing, although some guitars are a cross of De Lucia and Di Miola on one side and McLaughlin on the other. I think this sets you with a good idea of the sound of the album, if you want more get the album, you………..proghead! ;-)

The first side is really awesome in musical execution with some particularly astounding moments where you’d swear Nova (as well as its prelude) should be on Inner Mounting Flame or on Cobham’s Spectrum, simply because the playing and writing are of the same quality. Acustica, as its names suggest, is much calmer and tamer (but valid only for the guitar since there are synths halfway through) although the incredibly high quality is maintained and the subtle flamenco and Catalan influences appear towards the very end. The remark that my colleague reviewer makes about the sound quality is unfortunately correct, although the first side of the record is relatively spared.

Kitflus brings us back to the Mahavishnu world and the second track and only congas are missing to take us into the Sahara Caravans of Santana. Flamenca Electrica is an aptly named track but is only taking the usual formula and adding some Andalusian feeling to it. Unfortunately, this is where the bad vinyl transfer to Cd gets irritating about the synth layers (and it gets worse in the following tracks). I assume this last comment because I cannot possibly conceived this was recorded so on the master tape and therefore think that they worked from vinyl. The last track is….. you guessed it in 11/8 (which does not mean it was recorded on August 11, you wisearses).

Since this record only exist in CD form under this version, I knock off almost one star because of the inexcusable sound problems, which unfortunately does ruin the enjoyment of an otherwise superb record. Sounds a bit severe? Check it out for yourselves if you do not believe me!!! As soon as I find the vinyl or a re-issue, I will jump on it.

ICEBERG Tutankhamon

Album · 1975 · Jazz Related Rock
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Sean Trane
With its great artwork sleeve (note the birds on the right of the iceberg or the one lifting it), Iceberg’s debut announces the colour of its greatness and even if the following albums will differ greatly in style, the quality will remains constant until the end and a very stable line-up with only lead vocalist Angel Riba leaving and not being replaced after this album. I am generally wary of concept albums based on a historical background - Triumvirat’s Spartacus or Suspersiter’s Iskandar for example. Somehow the sound is in between early King Crimson, Yes and Mahavishnu Orchestra will typical Latin touches.

I must say that Iceberg’s Tutankhamon avoid some clichés, although their switching from Spanish to English lyrics is a bit unsettling but not bothersome, that most of these fallacious historical pretences force upon – the narrations or lenghty texts linking the songs, their obligatory visions of Antiquity’s music etc… All is not excellent either with a rather lenghty drum solo in La Muerte - I wonder how that fitted with their concept except being bored to death, and one of the cheesiest track recorded in Spain (Close To God – reminding you some of Santana’s worst distractions in the late 70’s). Guitarist “Max” Sunyer (ex-Tapîman) really shows his class (reminding you of Akkerman, Mc Laughlin and the great Carlos) and dominates the album although across him is a superb «Kitflus» Mas.

One of the first albums I would recommend if you are new to Spanish prog and are into symphonic prog. And even if not your first foray in Hispanic musical heaven, this is still highly recommended.

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