Ángel Ontalva is a guitarist and composer with an extended trajectory in creative musics, exploring the boundaries between progressive rock, experimental music, free improvisation, jazz or ethnic music, with an idiosyncratic language developed through decades of intereaction with different musical traditions and endless collaborations with musicians from all cultural and geographical background.
He is also a painter and illustrator with a long career in visual arts in parallel with music. Currently he is mostly focused in exhibitions and CD artworks.
Ángel is better known for being the leader of the cult avant-progressive band October Equus. Besides, he has released several critically acclaimed albums as a soloist and he has created multiple international projects: the ethnic-psychedelic OBO with musicians from Irkutsk, Moscow and Portugal, the avant-rock band No Grooves with siberian musicians, free jazz with Siberian Dogs, a stellar ensemble of finnish musicians, the exploratory trio Yurei with musicians from Australia, Colombia and Spain, the ethno fusion jazz band Mundo Flotante, the spanish-portuguese-swiss quartet Drop Dead Ugly Radio, the collaborations with the space-prog legends Vespero, from Astrakhan, his collaboration with Guy Segers' Eclectic Maybe Band or the explosive collaboration with the Moscow-based Priot Duo are only a few of them developed in the last years. Ángel is also the founder of the discographic label octoberXart Records.
As a solo guitarist he uses to play his own compositions in an open way with wide space for improvisation, making of each concert an unique experience, always different, often using alternative tunings and extended or unusual techniques for to construct different ambiences and textures, always exploratory but putting emphasis on melody.
With October Equus, Ángel has participated at the more important european festivals dedicated to progressive rock and creative musics: Rock In Opposition Festival in France, Gouveia Art Rock Festival in Portugal, Freakshow and Zappanale in Germany, MamFest in Madrid or AltrOck Festival in Milan are a few of them. As a soloist, with other projects or collaborating with improvisers, performers or dance groups he played in Portugal, Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany, Romania, Finland and specially in Russia, where he did around 300 concerts in the last five years, in all its geography from St Petersburg to Vladivostok, twice as a member of the prestigious MuzEnergo Tour with a team of international artists and on his solo travels playing live and collaborating with dozens of russian artists of different styles. In October 2018 he organized the first octoberXart Records Festival at the legendary DOM of Moscow.
Formerly a draughtsman and painter, Ángel worked long time as a freelance animator and illustrator in parallel with music. At some point he decided to focus totally to music and stop his professional activity in the visual field. Years after his retirement, he was offered to make an exhibition in Nizhny Novgorod in 2017. He took this occasion as a comeback and since then he did seven exhibitions in Russia, in wonderful places as for example the Theatre of Opera and Ballet or the Khlebnikov Museum in Astrakhan.