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Le Orme - Piccola Rapsodia Dell'Ape CD (album) cover


Le Orme


Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.20 | 68 ratings

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4 stars When Orme shortened their name and ditched their electronic equipment at the end of the 1970s, the effect was like a mild gust of unsullied air in an increasingly stale musical environment. It was a short-lived epiphany, lasting only a little more than a year. And by the time they recorded this 1980 companion piece to their gently unplugged 'Florian' the band was already diluting the acoustic purity of the earlier album, with more assertive percussion and the occasional electric bass guitar (not listed in the credits, but hard to miss).

So the new album was a compromise of sorts, between the classical chamber pieces of its predecessor and the exquisite RPI of the group's better-known masterpieces. The music was still attractively switched-off, but held all the melodic appeal of the best Orme balladry from the '70s, minus only the synthesizers. In an age of Arena Rock bombast and Neo Prog ascendancy, the simplicity of purpose and clarity of presentation was refreshing, precisely because it was so out of step with changing fashions.

The album doesn't rock, despite the emphatic momentum of songs like 'Il Treno', and the atypically forceful chorus of 'Raccogli le Nuvole'. But it rolls with a natural grace that hasn't aged in 35-plus years: the sound of classic (if no longer classical) Orme, stripped to its lyrical essence.

And when Aldo Tagliapietra sings the album's closing lullaby, he's bidding a wistful 'Buona Notte' to a decade of creative music making, the likes of which would not be heard again from this band for another fifteen years. Upcoming efforts would mark Orme as quintessential sellouts in a dumbed-down marketplace. But they at least ended the '70s on a welcome note of pristine benevolence.

Neu!mann | 4/5 |


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