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Karmamoi - Silence Between Sounds CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.75 | 13 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars This year of 2016 was the first year that I was finally in a position of personal preference to buy more than just a few new releases, and thanks to my inclusion in the membership of a Facebook page called Progressive Rock Fanatics, I was also exposed to many new bands, obscure bands, and established bands with new releases. It was that page that connected me with Karmamoi, an Italian band of three members who chose four different female vocalists for their latest and third album, "Silence Between Sounds". I watched a promotion video and at first thought they sounded good but with the heavy rock guitar and odd time signature, they didn't sound different from much of what I had heard already. Then the vocals came in and I was drawn into the song. The singer sounded like Che Aimee Dorval of Casualties of Cool, a band project with Devin Townsend. I love Che's voice on the CoC album and here was a woman who could sing in that dusky, jazz lounge style. The next thing, I was backing the band's new album on PledgeMusic.

Sadly, Karmamoi were not able to reach their goal; however, they went ahead with releasing their album at the end of October and through some message exchanges with drummer/keyboardist/music and song writer, Danielle Giovannoni, I was able to order the album directly from the band instead of through Amazon as I usually do.

Karmamoi and "Silence Between Sounds" really surprised me. I had them pegged as a heavy, neo-prog type outfit but this album delivers so much more. Each of the seven tracks moves, twists, turns, stops and changes gear and direction, and never becomes formulated or predictable. A gentle, atmospheric start can abruptly change to a crunching, heavy battery, drop suddenly into the atmosphere with something light and mind-soothing, sprinkle pretty notes all around, and then move on into another territory. Each piece is like a journey and you can never be sure where you are going to go and where you will end up. But one thing for sure is that the music feels like it was written from the mind and the heart and no label or formula was considered in the process. This is music for creativity and expression's sakes!

It took me a while to conjure up any comparisons to other bands though I felt that the musical styles were still familiar enough. I think older Porcupine Tree comes to mind often, and because of the combination of heavy and atmospheric and sometimes acoustic with female vocals, I also think of White willow, too. In a couple of spots I was also reminded of non-heavy Devin Townsend. Danielle told me that Pineapple Thief, Steven Wilson, OSI, and many prog classics are influences and as well artists like Sting, Toto, and Massive Attack are favourites. What makes this album so interesting is how all these influences are blended to various degrees into the resulting music, creating an album that is both unique and familiar.

As I mentioned above, it was the vocals that sold me on giving my time and attention (and ultimately my money) to this album. We have four female vocalists, each with her own contribution to the songs. Sara Rinaldi is the one whom I heard in the promotional video and she sings on "Nashira", Martes", Plato's Cave", and "Canis Majoris". Sometimes she has an American, down south, almost staccato enunciation that reminds me just a bit of Janis Joplin in quieter moments but more so like someone who might have had a hit album in the nineties. Hellena sings on "Atma" in low and soothing tones and also in higher tones in harmony with herself. Serena Ciacci takes the mic for "Lost Days", which reminds me of a Sarah McLachlan style of a song. Finally, Irene Morelli sings soprano on "Sirio" and "Martes". Each of the four women contributed with their own feelings and experiences, says Danielle, allowing the band to concentrate on the music and let the singers interpret their roles much like an actor.

An album where each song is crafted independently but by the sum of the songs, a greater whole is achieved, this album is a wonderful addition to my 2016 collection!

FragileKings | 4/5 |


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