Tarkus, the heaviest of all hard rock/progressive bands from Peru, was formed in 1971. The members were the Peruvians Alex Nathanson and Walo Carillo and, the Argentina born, Dario Gianella and Guillermo Van Locke.
It was Guillermo Van Locke, the group's bass player, who approached two members of Telegraph Avenue : Alex Nathanson, singer and acoustic guitar, and Walo Carrillo, drums and percussion. Both musicians have just finished recording Telegraph' s first lp, an album that was going to became the best seller of all lps by Peruvian rock groups in the 70' s.
Nathanson and Carillo decided to temporarily leave Telegraph to join Van Locke and explore new musical ideas on the direction of mixing hard rock with progressive.
The new group was baptized Tarkus, after a mythological being that lives deep inside everybody's soul and has the function to protect the individual's morality against the external world.
The trio was pretty successful in concerts but the melodic element was missing. Finally arrived in the persona of Dario Ginella, an Argentinean guitar player, friend of Van Locke, avid fan of Led Zeppelin, and who was, like Guillermo, a prolific composer.
After months playing together, the band signed a contract with MAG, a Peruvian label, to record an album (LPN-2423).
Tarkus was recorded from April 3rd. to May 16th., 1972. The studio gave the group total freedom to record their music the way they wanted it. The recording, under the technical direction of Carlos Guerrero, was done with love and dedication.
Fifty copies were made, all of them test pressings with the standard MAG label, to be giving as promotional material, and a few copies that were sold in stores.
The LP had it all, heavy rock, excellent compositions, good musicianship and futuristic vision, but it was too advanced for Peruvian rock fans. In USA it could have sold thousands of copies, but in Peru, the label decided not to released because of the low demand, making it the most look after album from South America. The insert, containing the lyrics of all songs, was never included with the promo copies. Even today this recording sound fresh and contemporary, it has the makings of a true classic.
Tarkus had a few live presentations, being the most famous the one at La Plaza de Acho, together with Pax, El Ayllu, El Polen, Kabul, etc...At the end 1972 the members of the group decided to follow their own paths in life. Alex Nathanson and Walo Carillo continued with Telegraph Avenue and went to record a second LP (Telegraph is still active giving concerts in Lima, Peru), Guillermo Van Locke returned to Argentina where he is a successful music producer, and Dario Gianella traveled to settle in Miami, Florida, where he does studio work.
By George Bonilla Copyright ©1997 Lazarus Audio Products
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