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Ingranaggi della Valle - In Hoc Signo CD (album) cover

IN HOC SIGNO

Ingranaggi della Valle

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.04 | 167 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars INGRANAGGI DELLA VALLE's debut "In Hoc Signo" certainly caused a stir among RPI fans last year, in fact it was on many people's top ten for 2013. They are a five piece band out of Italy and have nine guests helping out so we get a wide variety of instruments here on this expansive recording. I was surprised after listening to this many times last week to find out yesterday after reading the liner notes that David Jackson(VDGG) and Mattias Olsson(ANGLAGARD) are two of the nine guests. Interesting because two of my favourite sections involve these two men not so surprisingly. There is a lot to like here but I must admit the violin and lead vocals both of which are very prominant on this album don't do a lot for me, hence my 3 star rating(ducks). Still as I just mentioned there are some spine tingling moments regardless of my musical tastes.

Funny though that after one listen I knew this wasn't quite for me and many spins later I still feel the same way. After a very brief intro track of mellow guitar and melancholic violin it blends into "Cavalcata" where it kicks into a full sound with violin playing over top and leading the way. Piano then vocals lead a minute in then it kicks in again with violin. It's fairly heavy here until a calm arrives before 2 1/2 minutes. It's full again before 5 minutes to the end. An okay tune. "Mare In Tempesta" has lots of synths and drums to start as vocals join in. Violin and guitar take over when the vocals stop. "Via Egnatia" sounds good early with the atmosphere and soaring guitar. Violin and vocals take over before 2 minutes then it picks up but the mood and tempo continues to shift. Vocal melodies and violin end it. Not bad. "L'assedio Di Antiochia" has some great sounding organ early on as the violin joins in and leads. It becomes fuller then the vocals join in as well. I like the instrumental sections on this one, especially 4 1/2 minutes in. Not a fan of the vocals that follow though. A calm 5 1/2 minutes in then it slowly builds until we get this great sound that starts before 7 minutes.

"Fuga Da Amman" is probably my favourite tune and it's an instrumental. Best part is the guitar that comes in around 3 minutes. "Kairuv'an" reminds me of DFA early on and yes it's really good. Vocals come in then it settles before picking back up. "Masqat" is led by drums and violin until it settles down well before a minute. Piano before 2 minutes as it starts to pick back up, nice bass too. A heavy sound after 4 1/2 minutes. "Jangala Mem" is the track Mattias plays drums on and he's outstanding as usual. There's this eerie vibe after 1 1/2 minutes. I like it ! That mood changes as we get some impressive instrumental workouts. "Il Vento Del Tempo" has this intro that is quite dark and Mattias is credited with adding "weird noises" on this song. It kicks in before settling back quickly with reserved vocals, mellotron follows. I really like how themes are repeated on this one. "Finale" is the longest song at around 9 1/2 minutes. Violin leads early then it becomes fuller. Nice. Not a fan of the vocals before 4 minutes but I like the mellotron. Sax(David Jackson) before 6 minutes then the piano leads. Adventerous sounding sax follows before it turns mellow with relaxed vocals. Violin takes over 8 minutes in followed by flute.

Man talk about an epic debut, these guys really impressed me with such an ambitious work here, I just wished I liked it more.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |

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