Tristeza - Spine and Sensory
Makoto Recordings

I hear this band get compared to Tortoise and the Sea and Cake all the
time.  While Tristeza is instrumental and sounds _sorta_ like those two
bands, I personally think they are much better. Chicago prog rock is too
played out. I mean, don't get me wrong, I like Tortoise but there's
something to be said for catchiness and pop sensibility. That's where
Tristeza comes in. They take Tortoise's sound and make it accessible, they
make it so much easier to listen to. Goddamnit, they make it beautiful.

Tristeza flows like water, bending each note around the melody of the intertwined guitars. They are climactic, building and building upon themselves with shimmering guitar work accented with soft keyboards in the background. The drumming moves in and out of the song as if understanding that at some times its needs only to be there for structure while at others it needs to be there for the rock out effect. I guess this band is like an instrumental version of Christie Front Drive. The music doesn't sound exactly like them, but they have the same kind of inherent beauty that CFD had. If you can't tell, I think this album is seriously amazing. It enraptures you, circling fluidly. It is the very definition of the word "breathtaking." Absolutely gorgeous.
...david smith...

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