Crack band

Si todo Hiciera Crack : The album - El disco

Crack's enhanced album cover          

Tracks Listing / Lista de temas

1. Descenso en el Maelstrom (5:27)
2. Amantes de le Irrealidad (6:15) - Lyrics and English translation
3. Cobarde o Desertor (4:56) - Lyrics and English translation
4. Buenos Deseos (3:54) - Lyrics and English translation
5. Marchando Una del Cid (7:45) - Lyrics and English translation
6. Si Todo Hiciera Crack (10:11) - Lyrics and English translation
7. Epílogo (2:19)

Total Time / Duración: 40:47

Si todo Hiciera Crack: Behind the lines

Our first and only album, "Si todo Hiciera Crack" was recorded in the Audiofilm studios in Madrid at the end of April 1979.

The record company had assigned for this record a maximum of 5 days working days in the studio and it was during this time that all preparations plus the actual recording were done.

According to the album credits, Crack, the band itself, was responsible for the musical production. I don't know yet exactly why there was no one from outside the group participating in this crucial site of the production. But, just a guess, there was no money for it. Probably, Mariskal, the producer for most, if not all, the other groups recording for the Chapa lable, did not quite know how to handle properly the production of a group like Crack who did not fit at all into the pattern of all his other rock groups. Most probably he did not pay much listening to the group and in any case did not invest the required amount effort to "sell" this record.

For reasons yet unknow, Rafa, our guitarist, was not allowed to use of his own Marshall amplifier for the actual recording. Even today he complains abut this silly imposition. He had carefully worked for months on his own sounds for every part, and he knew how to get them out of his Marshall. But mysteriously in the last minute he was forced to use a Roland amp instead that he did not how to set properly. He did his best, but even now he regrets this strange imposition by the label.

Mento Hevia, our keyboardist had however a great and positive surprise when the studio allowed him to use their mellotron as he considered best. Mellotrons were a rarity at the time, and as Luis Fernández Soria, the studio recording and mixing engineer ..., that particular mellotron had hardly been used by anyone before us. Mento, enthralled with the promising possibilities of the instrument, saw here new ways to enlarge his composition ideas. While Luis Soria was recording the parts of the rest of us, Mento would spend his "free time" learning how to translate and apply some of the sounds he had been working with to his new mellotron friend. The result of his effort can be heard largely throughout the record.

Encarnación González, "Cani" who we had met a few month back.... was invited to take part in the recording. Somehow we knew her voice could perfectly fit in some parts, and we thought her singing could add an extra to our vocals. She accepted right away and came to Madrid for a couple of recording sessions. We had had no previous rehearsing with her so it was a question of finding the most suitable parts where she could enrich our tunes. Here again, while other instrument were being recorded we prepared together Cani's vocals. With her there was no need for retakes (as she was a great singer) and all her parts were recorded in a breeze.

After five days at the studio and a tree months of impatient waiting, which seemed like ages to us "Si todo Hiciera Crack" was finally released on July 23, 1979.

The budget for the promotion of "Si todo Hiciera Crack" was close to non-existent. The record company had decided to invest in some more risk-free types of music. The rule of thumb has been always of course that the less commercial the music, the less interesting. On the other hand the new wave movement known in Spain as "La Movida", for many reasons more commercial and a more of a sellable product was gaining momemtum leaving little and finally no space for traditional rock groups and more particularly for the few representative groups of Spain's progressive rock. Those were hard times for progrock considered locally also as a more foreign british-american type of music.

However a notable example of that minimal promotion designed for Crack was the shooting of a TV video for the Spanish television which later was included in the Popgrama program, a mythical series dedicated to the Spanish rock and pop scene. A curious anecdote about this playback video using the master-tape ready for "Descenso en el Maëlstrom" is that Pepe Gamero, reponsible for the sound and lights in our concerts, had to take the role of Rafa Martínez, our real guitarist who for reasons yet unknown did not show in time for the early shooting session on our last day at the studio. Pepe was not happy with the idea as he did not play the guitar at all and did not feel comfortable in that role. It was after the insistance of Mariscal, the "non-producer producer", who he accepted to timidly, back in the corner pretend that he was here our guitarist.

I say that Mariscal was the "non-producer producer" of the record because altough on paper he had that role, apart from the fact that he got us the contract with the lable (Chapa), he invited us once to a modest meal, and spend a few minutes at the studio to see how everything was going on, he did not actually involve himself in the project. The proof of his little involvement is that he does not appear in the album credits, where the production is credited to Crack.

There was no serious promotion by the record company. The first record of a progrock group cannot reach the general public or even the symphonic rock fans if there is no a decided promotion by the record company. This should include interviews in newspapers and magazines, programming of the reproduction in local and national radio stations, appearances in TV programs and so on. Like I said before, there were probably many reasons not to invest in a product that you should want to sell, but the true fact is that really the company did not give a damn about Crack. This attitude from the company contrasts however with the interest shown years later by record companies from Asian countries which in various occasions decided to invest into a progressive album recorded many years before as the list of different releases shows.

Some details about the record:

Descenso en el Maëlstrom, literally "Descent into the Maëlstrom" is based in the short story with the same name by E.A Poe about the near-death experience of a white-haired man and his odyssey to survive a shipwreck after his vessel is caught in a whirlpool in a vortex ( the great Maelstrom). When the record company listened to our original compositions they considered that some of them were too long, far beyond the standards for a rock and roll band, and we were asked to reduce their length. So finally decided to split our long "El Cid" into three different parts and adapt the new tracks so that they conformed each of them a new different story.

The first new track was this "Descenso en el Maëlstrom" which musically was at the same self-contained and consistent in its own structure and at the same time totally different from his twin brothers:"Marchando una del Cid" y "Epílogo".

This division of the very long "El Cid" into three tracks which at the beginning we thought would be a very difficult task finally proved to be much easier than we thought. The reason is that Crack's music, if you listen to it carefully, except maybe for "Epílogo", you will hardly find any choruses or repetitions. The musical structure is a continuous line, a growing flow of musical ideas, all interconnected, progressively leading the story from the very beginning towards the end. This type of composition, that we could call linear, makes easy to split long pieces into shorter ones. Of course, you still have to be sure where to "cut" to make the story complete and credible and this requires a bit of adapting beginnings and endings. Anyway finally it was not that difficult to give birth to our three new compositions and once done we all agreed that, after all, that requirement imposed by the company proved to be a pretty good idea. Finding names for the new track was easy and those names positively conditioned the arrangement of the new tracks.

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Cómo se hizo Si todo Hiciera Crack

Tras la larga travesía del desierto, las horas y horas de local de ensayo , de buscar contactos, aquí y allí, de pelearse con las deficiencias de sonido del equipo y, cómo no, con nuestras propias y humanas pequeñeces de todos los días, por fin, un día no sé cómo llego la noticia: alguien en Madrid estaba dispuesto a producir nuestro disco.

Y de repente fue como si todas aquellas dificultades pasadas tuviesen ya su justificación.

Otro grupo de aquellos con los que alguna vez habíamos coincidido en algún concierto, Asfalto, había comentado a Vicente Romero (Mariskal) , que por entonces buscaba grupos interesantes de cada región del país, que en Asturias había un grupo que tenía cierto nombre y que no lo hacía mal. Asumo que le dijeron esto último y que ese argumento entre vete tú a saber cuáles otros fue el que hizo que nos llamasen.

Manolo, nuestro batería, habló con Mariskal y le envió una cinta un poco decente, una maqueta como solemos llamarla, hecha con una grabadora de aquellas con enormes cintas que no estaba nada mal para la época.

Con ella grabamos algún tema que escucharon en Madrid y parece ser que al final Mariskal decidió ficharnos para incluirnos dentro del sello Chapa sin tan siquiera haber escuchado esa cinta. En cuanto se fijasen las fechas con el estudio teníamos que presentarnos en Madrid.

Y para allí nos fuimos, encantados de la vida, más contentos que unas pascuas en cuanto nos llamaron sin plantearnos exigencia alguna que pudiese salirse del guión previsto.

Condición sine qua non del productor: recortar los larguísimos temas para llegar a un número razonable, por encima de cinco supongo.

Así pues,la primera tarea era recortar esos temas y retocar aquí y allí para encontrar una cierta coherencia a lo que iba a incluirse en el disco. Acordamos dividir "El Cid", un tema muy largo, con mucha épica sinfónica en tres temas que claramente podían quedar diferenciados:

Ya en aquella época encontrabamos que al menos el título de "El Cid" sonaba quizá demasiado pomposo y por eso decidimos mitigar esa pomposidad dándo al tema un nombre un poco más "simpático", más de andar por casa.

Y como el tema tenía mucha marcha, y los huestes del héroe marchaban reconquistando la "tierra patria", y como seguro que en una de las mil veces que ensayábanos el tema a alguno se le ocurrió eso de: "venga otra vez desde el principio, marchando una del Cid" (que hace además pensar en "marchando una de calamares, o una de pulpo", que también son cosa estupenda y a nadie se le escapa,) pues ese fue el nombre que decidimos darle a la parte central de nuestro antiguo "Cid".

A "Amantes", "Si todo Hiciera" y "Cobarde" también hubo que recortarlos. Eso sí, a pesar de ciertas reticencias iniciales, llegado el momento creo que todos nos mostramos satisfechos con el resultado.

Creo que esa imposición de recortar los temas, arbitaria sin duda cuando viene de alguien que no los ha compuesto, fue sin embargo a la postre una imposición con estupendos resultados.

El disco se grabó en Madrid en la primavera del 79. No sé exactamente ni la semana, ni tan siquiera el mes, quizá a finales de abril. Eso sí, dispusimos, tal y como habíamos previsto de 5 días de estudio para la grabación (seguro que de lunes a viernes.)

No sé si los estudios de Audiofilm eran los mejores de Madrid. Probablemente no, pero a nosotros nos parecieron estupendos.

Había todo lo que podíamos necesitar y sobre todo un ingeniero de grabación estupendo, Luis Fernández Soria, un profesional serio y al mismo tiempo dispuesto a escuchar nuestras ideas. Creo que disfrutó trabajando con nosotros aquella semana y creo recordar haberle oído decir que nuestra música le había sorprendido y le había permitido intentar alguna cosa que normalmente no hacía en su trabajo diario.

Especialmente para la grabación contamos con Cani, una chica de Oviedo con una voz sensacional a la en una ocasión habíamos oído cantar en nuestro local de ensayo. Creo que en esa ocasión consideramos la posibilidad de invitarla a que se uniera al grupo, pero no recuerdo ya si por nuestra parte o por la suya la cosa nunca llegó a cristalizar.

Tampoco recuerdo cómo y cuándo se decidió contar con ella para la grabación pero su aportación fue muy interesante y el disco tal y como lo conocemos hoy en día no sería el mismo sin ella.

Todas las voces de Cani e incluso algún apoyo vocal de Mento se prepararon directamente en los descansos entre una y otra grabación. Nunca nada tan improvisado tuvo mejor resultado (continuará...)

Releases of "Si todo Hiciera Crack" / Ediciones de "Si todo Hiciera Crack"

Title/Título (Formato / Format)Lable / SelloCat. n.ºCountry / PaísYear / Año
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(LP, Album, Gat)Chapa DiscosHS-35.021Spain /España1979
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(LP, Album, Promo, Gat)Chapa DiscosHS-35.021Spain / España1979
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(CD, Album, RE)Crime (4)K32Y 2188Japan / Japón1989
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(CD, Album, RE)Crime (4)KICP 79Japan / Japón1990
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(LP, Album, RE)Si-Wan Records, Zafiro, S.A., SerdiscoSRML-3001, KP-L002, HS-35021South Korea / Corea del Sur1992
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(CD, Album, RE)Si-Wan Records, Nices PopularSRMC 3001, SCP-013 PSISouth Korea / Corea del Sur1993
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(CD, Album, RE)Si-Wan RecordsSRMC 3001South Korea / Corea del Sur1998
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(CD, Album, RE)Si-Wan RecordsSRMC 3001South Korea / Corea del Sur1998
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(LP, Album, RE)Legacy, Sony Music19075971081Europe / Europa2019
Si Todo Hiciera Crack ‎(Cass, Album)Chapa DiscosCH 5021SpainUnknown / Desconocido 2021