Coming out of the Spanish new wave band, Alaska Y Dinarama, Carlos Berlanga released his first solo album, El Angel Exterminador (The Exterminating Angel). He left the group due to internal conflicts but due to his part in the success of the band, Hispavox signed the artist. Two years after his departure, Berlanga released the album with limited success.
Diehard Dinarama fans loved the album but critics panned it. What they said was true. El Angel Exterminador is the best and the worst from the singer-songwriter. When you have such a great collaborating writing team with Nacho Canut (Alaska Y Dinarama), it is hard to listen to this album when you are expecting something completely different. Maybe that is what we actually got. Something different.
Carlos Berlanga’s music is slow and has a more lounge club vibe to it. Much different than the new wave sound and edgy lyrics from Alaska Y Dinarama. Fans wanted what they knew and what they got was completely not expected. Does it make it a bad album? No, not at all.
When critics claimed the album was the best and worst they heard from him, one track that was beloved by critics was the song, “En El Volcan” (In The Volcano). This is the exact sound that would have been found on his previous band’s album. I agree. It is the best song on the album and not because I am a fan of Alaska Y Dinarama. Berlanga has given us a buttload of good music on his album, but we are talking about this album.
The album feels a little old for its release. While it is dated for today, it felt dated then too. The album feels like it is holding on to the early ’80s pop era. He wasn’t bringing us anything new, more like rejects from his works. Berlanga does grace us with a duet with Miguel Bose, which helps the sound but doesn’t get very far.
If you like that early Dinarama sound, you might like this… Give it a listen.