M.I.A. - Transparencias. 1976 Argentina

Classically trained pianist Lito Vitale leads the Músicos Independientes Asociados bunch through one of Argentina's first true symphonic rock albums, when everyone else in the country were still mired in the blues. He mixes complex progressive rock with classical interpretations to create his own brain salad surgery. So yes, of course, Keith Emerson rises to the front of the influence line, as he has for many a budding keyboardist in the rock world. Side 2 brings forth a bit more jamming and hard rock to the mix, and probably could have been tightened a bit. So the album certainly has its flaws - it's painful to sit through Pomp and Circumstance at graduations much less for my own enjoyment. But let's give the kid a break, eh? I mean, he was 15 years old when he showed up on the world stage. What were you doing when you were 15? I most certainly wasn't putting out fully realized progressive rock albums with sick piano chops, that's for sure. It usually took me a few minutes just to take the shrink wrap off the LP. Still does actually...

Anyway, MIA were to improve from here, and then lay down one of the all time greats in Cornonstipicum two short years later. When he was an old man at 17.

Personal collection
CD: 1994 Belle Antique (Japan)

The 1994 Japanese disc was pressed in Argentina but marketed and sold in Japan.

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