“This has taken time, time to understand that it is a cry from the soul”.
To understand the depth of Crisalida’s music you must first understand the route that Chilean music has taken and the struggle it has endured to be heard. The repressive military regime prohibited all manifestations of rock music with the military coup in 1973 which lasted until 1990. Many artists either left the country or went underground where there were a number of metal bands who performed at clandestine locations throughout the 70’s and 80’s but at considerable risk to themselves and their audience. As the regimes power declined a resurgence of talent began to become the voice of youth disenchantment and so beginning a freedom that is as current today.
Crisalida were formed in 1997 and now, eighteen years later, they are still creating atmospheric musical themes on Terra Ancestral; seven tracks that flow through an arena of emotion, technical adeptness and musical intrigue. Influences abound, from Dream Theater and Pink Floyd to Joe Satriani and Jade Warrior to name but a few and the maturity and atmosphere found on “Cabo De Hornos (Cape Horn)” is highly reminiscent of Joe Satriani’s bassist Matt Bissonette’s solo work accompanied by the kind of power vocals you’d expect from Yes’s Jon Anderson.
Highly accomplished, Terra Ancestral creates a real desire to understand the meaning of the lyrics – the only downside to this album is the fact we don’t speak Spanish – but nevertheless, the musical interpretation and the passion of vocalist Cinthia Santibáñez pulls the tracks through. No greater example is “Lágrimas Negras’ (Black Tears)” which has a Pink Floyd / Gilmor-esque trait which lifts you up by the armpits, drags you around the floor and drops you outside the door wanting, like a small child, to ride again!
The word that encompasses this album most succinctly is ‘proud’. Terra Ancestral is proud about its protestations on environmental issues and proud about its musical and technical achievements. There is a place on the international stage for Crisalida and it’s now time to unleash South American progressive rock and metal on a greater and wider audience. 8/10