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Toto Torquati - Gli Occhi Di Un Bambino CD (album) cover


Toto Torquati


Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.55 | 22 ratings

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4 stars Warm, classy Italian keyboard gem

What an interesting find. Here we have an Italian treasure from a session man and keyboard extraordinaire. The album is a strange concoction of orchestral music, prog rock, and pop that might remind you of Rustichelli Bordini or Tower in that you have an accomplished keyboardist dabbling his toes in whatever tickles his fancy. The results were very good despite the potential pitfalls. What is quite notable is the fantastic playing and solid production values; the bass, drums, guitars, keys, and vocals all shimmer with brightness and clarity considering this is 1973 (and the nice cd remaster helps too.)

"La Terra" opens the album with a majestic orchestral introduction. "Il Mattino Dopo" is completely different shifting to an electric guitar riff with some piano coming in followed by a big synth sound. "Dove il Buio e'Signore" begins with some fluid bass alone and some beautiful backing vocals before the warm and rich main vocal begins. Then a great funky section with piano and wistful horns leading to a killer electric guitar solo. The playing is very tight but also with lots of emotion. This is a standout track to be sure. "Tu" begins with solo piano moving from moods of tension to sadness, very nice. Then we get a very soft introspective sounding vocal with piano and e-guitar. Towards the end a huge choir comes in and the vocals surge to a great crescendo before the track ends as it began with solo piano. "Adagio" is a strange one starting slow and changing to sections of breezy pop to a nice dual flute solo. Side one ends with "Gesu Quel Giorno" which features a nice organ intro. Then it gets an almost gospel feel with some nice choirs backing the piano and heartfelt vocal. Side two begins with an introduction called "Presagio" that leads into "Uomo Nasce" which is the longest track and another winner. The first section features energetic strummed clean guitars over a funky rhythm. A second section is completely different with the band replaced by strings. Soon the band comes back for a reprise of the main melody. "Adagio" is a wistful orchestral piece. "Il Conto Alla Rovescia" features spicy keyboard runs and hand percussion. "Era L'ora" is a lovely gentle piano ballad. Suitably we close with the opening "La Terra" orchestrations.

"The Eyes of a Child" is really a remarkably pleasant surprise that will knock the socks off of many Italian fans who seek it out. It is warm, inviting, and easy to enjoy. Recommended to Italian fans, keyboard fans, and fans of prog that incorporates classical and jazz elements. There's a nice BMG gatefold mini-lp sleeve reissue of this one available if you can find it.

Finnforest | 4/5 |


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