AVENTURAS DE KIRLIAN was Jone Gabarain (vocals), Teresa Iturrioz (bass), Ibon Errazkin (guitar) and Peru Izeta (drums, guitar). Before going ahead with the story we should leave clear that these four people -plus the addition of Gorka Ochoa- would later change their band name to LE MANS and release four absolute masterpieces in Elefant Records throughout the nineties: “Le Mans”, “Entresemana”, “Saudade” and “Aquí vivía yo”, plus a handful of singles. Their sound -fragile, understated, constantly changing but always unique- made them a very well-respected band in Spain, and they managed to have their songs released in such countries as Japan, United States, Argentina, Mexico, Germany, Portugal, Poland or Greece; LE MANS became a much name-dropped reference for many pop lovers all around the world.
The core of the band was formed by Ibon and Teresa, which started playing together in the summer of 1985 (as a curious fact, in the beginning they both played bass!). In February 1986 Jone and Peru joined the couple, and AVENTURAS DE KIRLIAN was officially born. From the very first moment they left clear their aim to avoid the affectation and excess of most of their contemporaries; it was mid eighties and Spanish pop music was going through quite an unpleasant phase. Many bands were born at the same time as AVENTURAS DE KIRLIAN, but nearly all of them are completely forgotten by now.
AVENTURAS DE KIRLIAN was not just “another band”. In fact, everything in ADK was distinctive in the context of 1986: their influences (FELT, Tamla Motown, LOVE, MARINE GIRLS, early TALKING HEADS, Spanish band DÉCIMA VÍCTIMA), their lyrics (more descriptive than narrative; completely far from trite territories but at the same time very natural and simple), their naked, minimalistic sound reduced to the minimum (Ibon used no effects in his guitar; Peru’s drumkit had no cymbals or bass drums) and, above all, Jone’s vocals. She is probably one of the most unaffected, quiet singers in the history of pop, following the tradition of Astrud Gilberto or Maureen Tucker.
From 1986 to 1988 the band records several demo tapes and plays gigs accompanied by local bands such as LA INSIDIA (which would later changed their name to FAMILY and record superb “Un soplo en el corazón” album for Elefant ) or 23 OJOS DE PEZ, a band formed by Javi Pez (later he would make dance music as PARAFUNK, and also would collaborate with Elefant’s French band SPRING in the classic “Out of time” album), a band Ibon also played with. In August 1988 Alejo Alberdi (ex DERRIBOS ARIAS, a Spanish eighties band) attends one ADK live show and offers to find them a record deal, as well as to produce their first album.
As a result of this encounter, AVENTURAS DE KIRLIAN signs for DRO label and an eponymous nine song mini-album is out in 1989. The album got rave reviews in Spanish music press, but failed to gain the favours of big audiences. A year later the album was deleted and the band was searching for a new record company. Soon afterwards the name change from ADK to LE MANS would take place. And the rest, as it’s often said, is history...
In spite of its relative commercial failure, “Aventuras de Kirlian” (the album) would turn out to be a very important thing for Spanish indieland: there we could already find a rough version of the main elements that would turn LE MANS into worldwide indie pop darlings some years later. We can easily trace the influence of this album in many new Spanish pop bands, though maybe most of them never got to hear songs like “Maravillas” or “Un día gris” as the album had a very short commercial life; in fact it was impossible to find during most of the nineties, till it was reissued in CD almost a decade after its initial release.
Nearly coinciding with this release a series about the story of Spanish pop -on Spanish TV Channel 2- broadcasts a special show on the bands from San Sebastian, featuring some tv live appearances by AVENTURAS DE KIRLIAN.
Discography in Dro:
- “Aventuras de Kirlian” (LP 1989)
- “Víctor” (Single 1989)
- “Un día gris” (Single 1989)
Discography in Elefant:
ER-1086 AVENTURAS DE KIRLIAN “1986-1988” CD Digipak (December 2001)
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