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Faveravola - Contea Dei Cento Castagni CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

3.83 | 52 ratings

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3 stars A pleasant journey.

Many of us listen to albums that are "foreign language" to us personally and speaking for myself, I am generally able to enjoy them as much (or more) than albums in my own tongue. Italian albums are some of my favorite prog albums. But there is an important distinction that applies to this album. When listening to prog in a language other than our own, the music must really touch us since we are missing out on the story and lyrical content.

Faveravola's "La Contea" is a hugely ambitious journey of an album with 12 tracks spanning 73 minutes, a large team of musicians, and a wonderful booklet detailing the story. The problem for those who don't speak Italian is that we cannot understand the unfolding story through the continuous vocals and narration, and we cannot read the lyric booklet which is in Italian only. That is not usually a problem for enjoying an album because with most Italian albums the music is great enough to win us over anyway. In fact on most of the many non-English albums I love I am quickly won over and don't really care that the lyrics are lost on me, the music is the big prize.

Not so in this case, I'm afraid. This album is really about the story with the music being secondary. Don't get me wrong. The music is pleasant, well played, and easy going. But it's just a background for the story. Most of the music is just nicely done soft rock with a steady beat and safe, somewhat generic new-agey mood, and really not that remarkable. Occasionally someone will break out with a lovely interlude or an impressive guitar solo but those moments are few and far between. It's just not going to knock you out like your favorite PFM or QVL album. Now if you are looking solely for that mellow, pastoral experience to relax to then maybe this will work for you. But even for that objective there would be preferable releases to this one.

I am not dissing what seems a perfectly pleasant piece of work by dedicated artists. But I am suggesting that if you are looking for the best Italian progressive and you do not speak Italian to get the story being told, then there are literally many dozens of other titles that should command your attention before you buy this one. But you have to love the fabulous cover art!

Finnforest | 3/5 |


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