Year of release: 2018
Released by: La Caverna Records
Rating: 8 / 10
This is the third release of the young Colombian publisher La Caverna Records, and, without doubt, the best at the moment. The first were re-release of the only record of the ancient Death Metal band THROMBUS (quite good) and demo compilation of the band SIETE LAGUNAS (awful).
The members of the same SIETE LAGUNAS play in CÓNDOR, and this, of course, aroused fears. But they turned out to be groundless. This album is positioned as Doom/Death with elements of Heavy Metal and "...a journey through key passages of Colombian history". I will not argue with the latter (and how it is possible - the album is performed in a language native to the musicians, which I don’t speak at all), but with music everything is somewhat more complicated. To call “El Valle del Cóndor” a doom death metal, even if with some “elements”, is the same as calling CELTIC FROST a simple thrash metal. The music performed by Colombians on this album has a valuable and rare quality - it cannot be counted among one or two genres. I think I’m not mistaken if I say that the band was inspired by the classic ROTTING CHRIST albums (or those albums of the Polish scene inspired by the works of the Greeks, but this is unlikely). he similarity is extremely strong - the manner of playing the guitars, the warm “evening” melody, this soft mystical sound, many additional arrangements, free flight of compositional thinking. For me, the key difference is only one thing: with ROTTING CHRIST, I can only listen to “Passage to Arcturo” (performed in a completely different style), but these Colombians, I can listen to them whole day. The melodies and guitar parts here are wonderfully good as well as these pure-voiced recitations that seem to have come from the mid-90s. Of course, “El Valle del Cóndor” has something to scold, but I do not want to do that at all. Such old-fashioned and soulful albums come out extremely rarely.