Proyecto A - Proyecto A + Proyecto B. 1970, 1974 Spain
CD reissue: 2015 Sommor (as Proyecto A + Proyecto B)
LP reissue: 2015 Sommor (2LP set as Proyecto A + Proyecto B)
Proyecto A were a band from Barcelona lead by a one Frank Dube, and who could arguably be considered Spain's first progressive rock band, predating Maquina and Pan y Regaliz by at least a year. The music is at the meeting point of late psychedelia and early progressive rock, with a strong dose of horn rock. A surprisingly sophisticated sound for an album coming from Spain during the Franco era (especially as early as 1970). Mucho use of fuzz bass and guitar, along with the aforementioned fine horn section. The album tracks are planet names, and it's a concept album inspired by the recent moon landing as well as Gustav Holst's famous work. Borderline the very good and excellent fence line here, but weighting favorably given the pioneering spirit, just like the album's inspiration itself.
In addition to the original album, the CD and LP reissues include a full unreleased second album called Proyecto B which is from 1974 (3rd scan above). The irony of the material presented is that whereas the 1970 debut was a groundbreaking work for Spain, Proyecto B would have to be considered charmingly antiquated for 1974. There's a bit of Hullabaloo and lounge crooning interspersed amongst the late psychedelia aspects. Where fellow travelers The Canaries had progressed to Los Canarios doing a 2LP full blown symphonic work called Cyclos, Proyecto A were well on their way to doing The Hustle (do it... doo do doooo doodoodoo do doooo de doo). Despite what it may seem, I still found the music highly enjoyable and the melodies are quite engaging. And there's still plenty of period fuzzy instrumentation to sink one's teeth into. A superb addition to the original LP, and fascinating archival material.
The original LP is housed in a fine gatefold cover. The CD package also features full liner notes (in English, Spanish, and Catalan) and great sound. An essential purchase.