Ibio - Cuevas de Altamira. 1978 Spain


Ibio, like many Spanish bands of the late 1970s, incorporated regional influences into their unique brand of progressive rock. And while the majority of these bands resided in Castile (Madrid), Catalonia (Barcelona), or in Andalusia (Sevilla, Cordoba, and Grenada) - Ibio represented the Asturias region. Much of this can be attributed to the new freedoms of expression after years of Franco repression, when regional pride was discouraged.

Cuevas de Altamira is a fine album with wonderful guitar leads and nice keyboards (including mellotron, which wasn't very common in Spain). As I read current reviews, some folks trash the affected traditional singing (sparsely used but powerful when present), which underscores to me once again that few take the time to understand the time and place of a recording. Personally, I miss the regional influences in modern Spanish progressive rock.

Personal collection
LP: 1978 Movieplay
CD: 1990 Fonomusic

The original is a beautiful gatefold LP, and it's an album I frequently display in my music room. The 1990 Fonomusic CD is a cheap repro and typical of their presses from that time. The 2003 version corrects this and features a beautiful digipak. I still own that cheap 1990 version, for no particularly good reason. I should upgrade at some point.

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