Album Review: Proa by Tremor

You know that moment when you get to the place where “the bow of the boat cuts through the water?” We think we may… perhaps, quite possibly at some point know what that means and, like us, you will need to know exactly what that moment is once you listen to the project behind that elusive point in time. Proa, whose literal definition we just went through, is also the name of Argentine trio Tremor‘s new album.

tremor album cover - proa

Released by Wonderwheel Recordings, which is also home to artists like Candela Allstars, Carol C and its founder Nickodemus, the 10-song album includes guests such as Micaela Chauque, enchanting in her delivery of haunting vocals. Also a guest is the Sachaguitarra, a one of a kind stringed instrument, created exclusively by artist Elipido Herrera for Tremor. These music magicians orchestrate regional instruments, folklorico sounds and electronic elements which set off explosions of danceable rhythms.

Watch the teaser for Proa

The debut single from Proa is “Huella” and it’s presented like a story in three parts, perhaps a reflection of those involved in its creation. We wonder but will let you decide. Chauque’s beautiful vocals express a range of emotions and we are touched by sadness, then hope, then happiness. It’s an alluring invocation to join the magic carpet ride that’s about to take place. No exaggeration; it’s the most introspective introduction we’ve ever felt in a song. The echoes, strings and layering of rhythms swiftly glide through digital universes and you’re quickly lost in time. And then, just as quickly, the song brings you back to reality in a trance of what sounds like the bombo leguero, beating rhythmically. It ends much too soon. (Side note: Have you seen how they play that thing? Woah. Power!) We think “Huella” needs to be a 10 minute song. While they work on that for us, take a listen…

Proa opens with a spoken word sample by literary great, Julio Cortazar, in “Palabras Preliminares.” Bookworms will swoon. Also, is that a subconscious ode to drum’n’bass in “Galopeador Contra el Viento?” The rest of the album contains glitch (“Polly” is brilliant in its glitchy guitar combination) cumbia, chacarera and all types of electronic goodness. This is analog wonderland. These are sound alternatives for traditional South American folklore, a la Tremor. It was or is or will be the digital era that never sounded better thanks to artists like Leonardo Martinelli, Camillo Carbajal and Gerardo Farez, also known as Tremor.

Want to hear more? Tremor – Proa – Wonderwheel Recordings