January 25, 2006

Music DVD Review: Tierra Santa - Rumbo a las estrellas

My first foray into Spanish metal is promising. Before seeing this live DVD, I had never heard of Tierra Santa before. After seeing this live DVD, I do believe I will track down some Tierra Santa CD's. This concert runs nearly 30 minutes and contains 6 songs from the Lorca Rock Festival held in 2004, where they shared the stage with Germany's Scorpions.

The music is fantastic, a mix of melodic metal, and progressive rock. The twin guitar attack leads the sonic assault. There are heavy riffs, great lead solos, and twin harmonies. Backing them up are a solid rhythm section with steady bass and driving drums. To fill in the sound stage, they also have a keyboard player who adds another layer to their sound.

Tierra Santa's music is upbeat and driving. The live performance is first rate, timing is excellent, energy is high, and I found myself banging my head to the rhythms. My only problem with the performance, and it is relatively minor, I could not understand a single word he said. I admit, I have enough trouble with English that I have not dared challenge any other languages. It is a small quibble that mainly comes into play between songs when the lead singer addresses the crowd, I wouldn't mind knowing what he's saying.

The show looks like a good show, plenty of flashing lights and a good sound mix. You can tell that they aren't the headlining act, but they were still made to look good on the stage. The editing is good, giving them all decent screen time, but focusing on the guitar duo leading the charge.

The DVD is good presentation of the live show, presented in 1.78:1 widescreen. My biggest complaint would be that the colors are a bit washed out. The audio is the heart and soul in a PCM stereo track. The mix sounds like it was taken through the board, as the crowd noise is rather minimal. The DVD, overall, captures the bare essence of them live.

The disk has a couple of extras on it. It includes 2 music videos, "Rumbo a las estrellas," and "El canto de las sirenas." The videos are good, but nothing revolutionary, they are the standard "put them in a warehouse and intercut some live footage" variety. Not bad, but nothing special. Also included is a photo gallery of promotional shots, they are imaginatively edited and set to Tierra Santa music.

Bottomline. As my initiation into Spanish metal, in general, and Tierra Santa, specifically, this has been a positive experience. This is a good show to be checked out by any metal fan. The one thing I wish, is that it was a full concert, they probably can do a great set spanned over 60-90 minutes.


Track listing:
1. Hamlet
2. Indomable
3. Juana de arco
4. Las walkirias
5. La sombra de la bestia
6. Tierra santa


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