Baja Prog 2001


From: "Steve McAdams" <> Date: Sun Mar 11, 2001 7:14pm Subject: Re: [e-Prog] Baja Prog
Impressions from Baja Prog. This year had the potential to be fantastic, instead it was only great. The bands that could have been at this festival would have made it fantastic. Early on Alfonso had IQ, that turned into John Jowit and friends, but they canceled. Lands End cancelled. Happy the Man cancelled/withdrew. Iona cancelled. This cancelled many of the neo-prog bands I was hoping to see, but left some great bands in Solaris and Le Orme, and some bands I was not familiar with. One point I want to make that will have allot to do with who I liked and who I didn't. I love progressive rock, I'm not so fond of progressive music. I was only able to attend Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
First up Thursday night Landmarq. I was really looking forward to seeing this band, especially because they were one of the only neo prog bands left. I was a little disappointed. I think Tracy Hatchings is great, and truly has an incredible voice, but the whole performance lacked energy. The last song of the set, Summer Madness was the only song with some energy. Tracy kicked off her shoes, started jumping around and the band performed the song with tons of energy. All in all I love this band, but I was disappointed.
Next, Eclat from France. They were GREAT, better than last year. I don't remember any of their songs having lyrics last year, this year they sang a couple of songs with lyrics, although the vocals were not their strength. Great performance.
Next up, Sylvan from Germany. Fantastic, hard neo prog. Great singer, lots of energy. Sylvan may not have been most peoples favorite band there but I thought they were great.
Friday night.
First band was Vital Duo from France. These are the two brother from Minimum Vital. They were the biggest surprise of the festival for me, they were wonderful. Just the two guys one playing guitar, the other keyboards. They each played drums at times during their songs simultaneously as they played their other instrument, it was amazing, entertaining, and very well done. I was very surprised how much I liked these guys.
Next, Finisterre from Italy. I did not know a thing about this band, and I loved them. They had a female singer who seemed to lack some confidence (I later learned she was new to the band), but the guitar player and the bass player were fantastic. The drummer was very interactive as well. The music was more classical progressive rock, very Italian, and the highlight of the entire festival for me was their encore of Genesis' The Knife, a show stopper.
Next, Solaris from Hungary. I like Solaris a lot, but it was just too late at night for me to stay focused. I think their set was great, their music was great, but it was tough to concentrate.
First up Discus from Indonesia. Well, I told you I'm not to fond of progressive music, and that's what Discus was, I could not get into it. I thought they were enjoyable enough, but I can't say I liked them. They had very bad sound problems that seemed to be better later in their set. There was this little guy who sat in the middle of the stage and played this little instrument (I have no idea what it was), and he kind of chanted for one song, kind of like if you picture the cartoon character the Tasmanian Devil chanting. My wife and I referred to him as "Taz" the rest of the performance. Discus were obviously a good band with lots of talent, just not for me, and lots of others, as I got up to use the restroom towards the end, because the lobby was just about full when I went out.
Next, Priam from France. Discus were not my style, but I could appreciate them, Priam I just hated. They never once engaged the audience, not one word. Their music was like just one long song, I could never tell if a song ended and another began. It was electronic crap. I mean, I need some kind of song, with a beginning, middle and end, their "songs" were nothing like this. They would go on and on and would just be electronic noise. Maybe their musical geniuses, I don't know, I just know what I hear, and I hated these guys. Don't get me wrong, many people seemed to really like them, I think they even got a standing ovation at one point, but like Discus when I could not stand it any more and went out into the lobby it was packed.
Next, the great Le Orme from Italy. Incredible, what a performance. I did not get to see them a few years ago at Prog Fest and I have always regretted it, this I was not going to miss, and I was not disappointed. Great Performance. I think they played all of Il Fume, and most of F&S ( I cant remember the name of their classic concept album). If you are familiar with their music you know it's wonderful. I though it was incredible that the guitar solos were played on a portable keyboard, I could not believe what my eyes were seeing, perfect guitar solo by the keyboard player.
My only complaint besides the bands who were not there, was the timing on Saturday. Show was suppose to start at 3:00, did not start until 4:30. It took a looooooong time between a couple of the bands, almost an hour, other that that it was once again a great festival.
Favorites from the festival: 1. Encore of The Knife by Finisterre. 2. Performance by Le Orme. 3. Performance by Finisterre. 4. Performance by Vital Duo.

From: "Luna Negra, S.C." <>
Subject: RV: BAJA PROG 2001 Newsletter No. 7
FYI: Enviado: Martes, 13 de Febrero de 2001 09:43 p.m.
Asunto: BAJA PROG 2001 Newsletter No. 7
Date: 13 FEB 2001
BAJA PROG 2001 Newsletter No. 7
Hello Prog Fans:
The fifth edition of the annual Progressive Rock Festival Baja Prog will be
held from February 28 thru March 3 of the year 2001 in Mexicali, Mexico.
HAPPY THE MAN have cancelled their appearance at Baja Prog.
VITAL DUO will be playing in their place.
Wednesday, February 28, 2001
Pre-concert show @ 2PM, Araiza Inn Convention Hall (2nd floor)
Two performing bands - us$5
-ARIA (Mexico)
Aria is a young band from Mexicali, Mexico that explores successfully the
genre of metal progressive rock.
Subterra from Chile obtains their sound from the english neo-progressive of
the 80's, when they started playing tracks from Marillion. Now we will see
them playing their own songs, which have been maturing since then. Good
instrumentation and a very expressive voice.
Then at the Teatro del Estado: @ 7:00pm
Three performing bands - us$15:
Azigza is the new discovery from San Francisco, California. Progressive
Rock, a female voice as beautiful as intense and. shades of middle eastern
music!!! A completely original sound, with instruments that include
percussions, violin, zither, and a formidable costume and stage presence.
-CAST (Mexico)
After a long life in the shadows, they presented themselves to the world in
the 90's only to become the maximum figure in mexican progressive rock.
Their music ? Two excellent voices, incredible keyboards and a powerful
rhythmic base. Their successful European tours made them become known even
-ANKH (Poland)
Ankh is a band from Poland that has released 3 Cds in the heavy progressive
rock categorie, with a certain alternative-rock influence that gives them a
very up-to-date touch. The progressive sound is given by an excellent violin
player who now also plays cello. Ankh was the revelation in the Art Rock Rio
Festival that is annually organized in Brazil.
Thursday, March 1, 2001
Pre-concert show @ 2PM, Araiza Inn Convention Hall (2nd floor)
Two performing bands - us$5
-KROMLECH (Mexico)
Kromlech is a mexican band that got rave reviews at Baja Prog 2000. It
created such impact that a lot of comments regarding the quality of their
music and about deserving to play in a better forum, so here they are,
presenting once again their conceptual work contained in their debut album.
Instrumental conceptual work with obscure, melodic and progressive passages.
-ECLAT (France)
Eclat is a french progressive band with an excellent guitarist as a leader
that gives a touch of fusion (mainly in the instrumental passages), in a
frame surrounded by inventive keyboards and a very good rhythmic base. Their
first album was one of the first released by Musea.
Then at the Teatro del Estado: @ 7:00pm
Three performing bands - us$15
-LANDMARQ (England)
Landmark is a neoprogressive english band, that with the addition of singer
Tracy Hitchins (Strangers on a Train) reaches today their maximum stage.
Strong Rock, accesible and more than anything, progressive!!!
-DISCUS (Indonesia)
Discus is an event by itself. This band from Indonesia makes consistently
varied music. Just to hear their album takes you from surprise to surprise,
visiting traditional jazz, jazz-fusion, rock, progressive rock,
middle-eastern music and perhaps even Broadway!!! Arrangements with an
incomparable versatility and geniality with first-class interpretation.
-SYLVAN (Germany)
Sylvan is a young german band that could be classified in neoprogressive
rock but with a very up-to-date sound, perhaps falling suddenly in the
alternative sound. A very good singer, who can sing strong and peaceful
pieces with a very special style, a very intense guitar, imaginative
keyboards and great composition can summarize their style.
Friday, March 2, 2001
Pre-concert show @ 2PM, Araiza Inn Convention Hall (2nd floor)
Two performing bands - us$5
-OMNI (Spain)
Omni is a talented spanish band that was formed in the late 80's within the
most progressive style of rock, creating instrumental music with long
passages of great strength, finesse and fine melodies. Drums, keyboards,
guitars and wind instruments, what else can you ask for?
-EXSIMIO (Chile)
Exsimio is defined as the "Missing Link of chilean rock" and makes very
original music. Inspired like they say themselves, in King Crimson and with
a great influence in Primus. Bass incredibly played, 2 guitars very well
coordinated and a very strong and fast drummer.
Then at the Teatro del Estado @ 7:00pm
Three performing bands - us$15:
-VITAL DUO (France) <>
This duo consists of the Payssan brothers, who also play with Minimum Vital.
Let's welcome back these two great players who were applauded during BajaProg '98.
Finisterre has gained our attention with their influence of classical music,
strong rock and that always present 'feeling' of italian bands. For their
presentation at Baja Prog it is being planned to have screens with images
for a great surprise.
-SOLARIS (Hungary)
Solaris became known when in 1986 they released to the market their
fantastic album "The Martian Chronicles", in which they mixed electronic and
classical elements, rock and hungarian folklore. Instrumental music where
each member shows us that they have top level, and the virtuoso flute
playing by Kollar Atila reaches a very special effect of warmth.
Saturday, March 3, 2001
Teatro del Estado@ 3:00pm
Three performing bands - us$15:
-PRIAM (France)
Rock, experimentation, Jazz Fusion, ethereal keyboards and new age? All this
in one band? Without a doubt Priam is one of the most adventurous groups of
recent years, with a very virtuoso guitarist and a rythmic section very well
structured and versatile, involved softly in keyboards that invite you towonder.
-IONA (England)
Iona is a band from England that mixes successfully the music of irish and
celtic influence with real Rock!!!, without limiting their horizons. Sublime
pieces interpreted by the beautiful voice of Joanna, long ethereal passages
and at the moment that percussions and guitar appear with force, Iona shows
us that it is truly a unique band in the world.
-LE ORME (Italy)
Le Orme is one of the main figures of Italian Progressive Rock since the
late sixties. Today, after three decades, the band is in very good shape
just like it was in their best earlier times. Aldo Tagliapietra and Di Rossi
are now joined by two virtuoso keyboardists that execute pieces with great
complexity and dynamics. The italian bands have always had a very special
"feeling" in their melodies and interpretation, and Le Orme is one of the
best of all times!!!
Closing party after last band (location to be determined).
Some additional information can be found at:
The festival is almost here. All we will need is your presence.

Progressively yours,
Members of CAST and the Consolidated Collaboration Group