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Montefeltro - Il Tempo di Far la Fantasia CD (album) cover




Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.80 | 52 ratings

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4 stars Symphonic music is a difficult beast to master as it requires not only a mastery of the individual instruments but also the ability to weave them into a multi-partitioned opus that has substance as well as body. With the progressive element, the "orchestra" is replaced by massive use of analog and digital machines (sequencers, synths, mellotrons, computer software) as well as hopefully and ideally, real drums and percussion and some crafty electric and acoustic guitar work. Montefeltro's debut is a singular achievement in the annals of Italian Symphonic Prog, with an effort that evokes distant shades of Ezra Winston and marshalling in the continued tradition of magical compositional ability. The only drawback is the slightly muddy production but, hey, it adds to the charm. As the musical curtain is drawn aside, it reveals a first act of gigantic proportions, an enormous 22 minute extravaganza "Canto no1" (a letter to a friend in 1400), a ten-part suite that expresses the gentleness of the Renaissance with all the modern accoutrements of the progressive arsenal. This velvet euphoria hypnotizes like a lyrical anesthetic, plunging the listener into the plush romanticism of orchestral seduction, hard to imagine not smiling at all the craftiness. Singer Attilio Virgilio has an expressive voice that shirks operatic professionalism, offering up instead some entirely fragile singing that suits the suite perfectly. He also adds some diverse acoustic and occasional haunting electric guitar that both adorn instead of disturb. The bass and drums are provided by hired guns and they shoot straight without any overkill (Okay, drop the mafia innuendo!). Lots of organs, assorted massed string synthesizers, mellotrons, grand piano and plenty of ravishing harpsichord. Grandiose, unpretentious and majestic, this is prog that exudes genuine beauty and grandeur. The next 4 tracks are actually sonically more of the same, with plenty of choir, some outright guitar Hackettry that surges and sways, with real Genesis flair. Nothing really comes close to that opening salvo, though! Is this a masterpiece? No, not really but it is a most definite quality addition to any ISP collection. 4 roman candles.
tszirmay | 4/5 |


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