Omphalos is the Greek word for navel. This outstanding release should put Kotebel right there. In the centre of bands who write and perform complex, beautiful and outstanding progressive rock. The arrangements by Carlos Plaza & César Garcia Forero (and to some extend the rest of Kotebel), are outstanding
Omphalos starts out with the intriguing track “Ra”(13:10). Slowly build up between piano and flute, then they turn up the volume, let the guitar, keys and again the flute, burst it out into the open. In come Carolina Prieto’s fabulous voice. She sings like some of the greatest opera singers. A very powerful and majestic track. Next track “Excellent Meat”(8:51) is powerful, heavy, guitar driven progressive rock with outstanding drums, bass and majestic keys all over the track. Then it suddenly turns kind of “Floydish”, very slow with acoustic guitars for a short period. The use of several keyboards makes this track very thick, in the overall sound. Great stuff.
Next track is an epic “Pentacle’ s Suite”(30:11), divided in 8 tracks. This could easy be the best Carlos Plaza has ever written. What you get here is opera, jazz, progressive art rock and world music, in one cup. Again, one has to credit all the outstanding musicians. They play with power and conviction not many bands could manage or dare do these days inside the prog community. Add to this Carolina Priesto’ s fantastic & seductive voice/ vocals
Let me just give you the names, of this fantastic band: Carlos Plaza, keyboards. Adriana Plaza, keyboards. Omar Acosta, flute. César Garcia Forero, guitar- bass & keyboards. Carlos Franco, drums & percussion. Jaime Pascual, bass. Carolina Prieto, vocals. And if that’ s not enough, they have a guest; Miguel Rosell, who plays a wonderful cello.
I know I have a weak spot when it comes to Kotebel. The way Kotebel play and perform their music is honey to my ears. Therefore, I could go on and on and on, about Omphalos but I must tell you that this is their best work ever. And again, it’ s outstanding. When you think of their previous albums, which are all grand pieces of progressive music. Add to this, the cover arts. Which is a perfect match. I do love when bands take it all in - concept, music, art, etc.
Once again I must urge you all to try out Kotebel. They are a unique rare unit of outstanding musicians. This time around they’ve made a wonderful mix of different styles. Jazz, world, progressive rock, with just a little twist of heavy rock. Art rock & opera mixed with beautiful vocal arrangements. Again it strikes me: Why is it Kotebel have not been signed, to major label? It’s beyond me and my imagination.
Well, dear progsters, please support this band. They do deserve all the attention they can get. Kotebel is one of the most exciting progressive rock bands alive today. Don’t take my word for it. Try ’em out for yourself. I can promise you one thing: You will not regret it. Once again, Kotebel have made a progressive (monster) masterpiece.