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Nuova Idea - In The Beginning CD (album) cover


Nuova Idea


Rock Progressivo Italiano

2.82 | 32 ratings

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Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
3 stars Italian band Nuova Idea's 1971 debut album `In The Beginning' is a worthwhile psychedelic rock album that shows great ambition and plenty of noisy energy! The band are mostly remembered for releasing one of the albums that is considered by many to be a landmark of the vintage Italian prog era, 1973's `Clowns', as well as the almost equally as impressive `Mr E Jones' the year before. Sadly this debut is a little dismissed because of the strength of those two works (especially compared to the status `Clowns' enjoys), but it is still a vibrant, unpredictable and varied psychedelic work, where colourful acid rock mixes with hazy ballads and exploratory instrumental displays.

The entire first side of the album is comprised of a single twenty minute piece. It's a dynamic extended psychedelic composition with endless lengthy and dramatic instrumental runs mixed with winning vocal passages over a range of tempos. There's so much energetic bluster, yet more thoughtful and calmer acoustic moments as well. It's built around hard driving acid rock attacks driven by searing electric guitar runs, melodic murmuring bass and aggressive upfront Hammond organ in the style of the early proto- prog bands. There's even space for some jazzy diversions and fleeting moments of classical bombast. Especially pleasing to the ear is the dreamy mellow passage that starts at around the six minute mark, a lovely drifting hallucinogenic chill-out full of sighing harmonies to bring plenty of feel-good vibes. It's quickly followed by deranged drum soloing rising up behind droning panning electronics, then some nimble finger strolling jazzy breaks before a raucous high-energy thrashing finale. Very tasty stuff!

The B-side side consists of four shorter pieces, yet they're no less interesting. `Realta' proves that even what initially starts as a ballad is quite schizophrenic and likely to dart off in all sorts of directions! It alternates between soothing acoustic guitar and romantic drowsy harmonies with huffing dirty flute (the first signs of proper RPI beginning to emerge in the band) and relentless electric guitar snarl. A nice bluesy groove strolls through infectious pop/rocker. 'La Mia Scelta', and `None Dire Niente' is an uplifting slice of dream- pop with warm group vocals and strident acoustic guitar over a sprinkling of Hammond organ ripples, and a more up-tempo break in the middle with relentless skittering drumming hints at their emerging progressive tendencies. `Dolce Amore' is a gutsy rocker with roaring acid rock electric guitar eruptions, rough Hammond organ violations, rattling drumming and a wailing, almost distorted `la la la' chorus.

Comparable to what bands like Osanna and the New Trolls were doing at the same time, `In the Beginning' is wild, rough around the edges and a little directionless, but it's still a glorious mess of ideas and styles. Nuova Idea had yet to deliver grander and more polished progressive rock, but this is colourful psychedelic music from a band still finding their feet yet bursting with confidence and imagination. `Clowns' and `Mr E Jones' may be their defining moments, but there's still plenty of inventive psychedelic instrumentation, hazy rock atmospheres and cool tunes on `In The Beginning.'

Three stars.

Aussie-Byrd-Brother | 3/5 |


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