Venue: Sala Miguel Angel Clares (Auditorio de Murcia)
Date: 8 Jan 2011
When getting back to basics is the call of order, there’s no better course of action than some good old rock ‘n’ roll and that’s just what Murcian veterans Los Marañones offered last Saturday.
Their first gig in the acoustically divine Auditorio had a “songs around the fire” feel to it as most of the 300-strong audience were members of the extraña familia Bañon & Co. have created during their more than 20 years in the business. Indeed, the majority of the audience seemed a little too comfortable at times and, much to my disappointment, were reluctant to get up and dance. Rock ‘n’ roll in a chair just wasn’t meant to be.
Thankfully, the band’s energy onstage was more than enough to ease my frustration and finally the latest addition to the line up, Carlos Campoy on keyboard and organs, persuaded us to get on our feet. He’s proving a valuable addition to their live performances.
The set of nearly 2 and a half hours was one of those musical journeys to the far east and beyond the galaxies Los Marañones enjoy so greatly. The audience was skillfully led on a 25-year voyage through time as the group combined tracks from their latest album, ‘Tipos Raros’, with material from previous releases. As is often the case with them, the live versions enhanced the original recording and new tracks like “Blas El Triste”, “Barrabás” or the Kinks-esque “Un Tipo Surrealista” proved that Los Marañones have not run out of fresh ideas. The old favourites were still top notch and included classics such as “Las Manzanas Del Mal” – the opening track – , “Mi Gato Se Llama Persona” or “Voy Loco Mama” as well as a poignant homage to Javier Balibrea, who sadly passed away last year, on “La Memoria Del Extranjero”.
Two encores, and the closing “Conozco Una Canción”, complete with a virtuoso guitar display few others in Spain could match (when will Bañón get the recognition he deserves?), were more than enough to confirm that, despite the passing of time, Los Marañones are still one of the best live acts you are likely to see in Spain, even if you do have to sit through it!