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Metamorfosi - Inferno CD (album) cover

INFERNO

Metamorfosi

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.99 | 237 ratings

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Jozef
4 stars Out of all the Italian progressive rock bands, I would find Metamorfosi to be one of the most obscure. Compared to the big 3 bands of Italian Prog Rock (Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso, Premiata Forneria Marconi, and Le Orme), Metamorfosi always remained in the shadows. The group formed in 1969 and consisted of Jimmy Spitaleri (Vocals), Enrico Oliveri (Keyboards) Luciano Tamburo (Guitar), Roberto Turbitosi (Bass), and Mario Natali (Drums). Their debut album "..e fu il sesto giorno" was released in 1972. Following this in 1973, they returned with a concept album based off of Dante's Inferno. A long awaited sequel "Paradiso" was finally released 30 years later when the band reformed. "Inferno" itself is a masterpiece of an album and every fan of Italian Progressive or Progressive Rock in general should give it a listen.

The album opens with "Selva Oscura", a dark brooding keyboard and organ driven track. After Spitaleri's superb vocals sing the opening lyrics, the keyboards kick into high gear alternating between piano and synth alongside some heavy guitar cruches. About 2 minutes the song already kicks into high gear with a fast paced synth solo which continuously alternates between synth, organ, and grand piano. Song two, the short organ based "Porta Dell'Inferno" is only a minute and a half long and sounds like an extension of "Selva Oscura" but serves as a point in which the listener enters hell itself.

Song three "Caronte" is not much different than the previous two songs and it is here where the album tends to falter as it seems that these three songs would have fit together as one rather than three separate songs. Unfortunately this is common on this album but so long as you don't pay attention to the tracklisting and just enjoy the music, you'll be okay. Song four is the schizophrenic "Spacciatore Di Droga- Terremo" which opens as a slow vocal piece before the sounds of explosions distort the sound. The explosions lead into a jazzy bass and piano driven piece which moves into a slower pace once more with some lovely atmospheric wind sounds and piano solos.

Song five is the baroque "Lussuriosi" with a harpsichord carrying the melody throughout the song and harmonious vocals surrounding it. This is actually one of the more light hearted moments on the album. "Avari" the sixth song has the best synth solo on the entire album even if it is only another of the "extension" tracks that lead off from the song before them. "Violenti" the seventh song has another chaotic series of synth solos that by now are familiar territory but still sound great on the ears.

Song eight "Malebolge" is a dance on fire type of song where the listener feels they are sinking deeper into the depths of hell and it's one of the best songs on the album, sadly it suffers from being another one of those extended moments that should have been attached to the longer song before it. "Sfruttatori" is the ninth song on this album and continues the crazy keyboard insanity. The vocals are even more strained on this song and as if the vocals and keyboards weren't wild enough, it ends on a jazzy bass melody that sounds out of place compared to the psychedelic sounds from before.

The tenth song "Razzisti- Fossa Dei Gigante" has a marching drum beat and a very rigid, tense keyboard part compared to the other more free form melodies on the album. Song eleven, "Lucifero" is where the listener meets Satan himself and has more of those haunting organ melodies that opened the album. We find ourselves at the bottom of hell here, near the very end of the album and the vocal performance is one of the best, almost as if Satan himself is singing.

The final track, the aptly named "Conclusione" is simply another short keyboard based song with light vocals compared to the last bunch of songs that ends in a weird echoing sound, leaving the chaos of the underworld behind it.

Metamorfosi had planned to record a sequel album called "Paradiso" but split before this could be done. This album would be released 30 years later in 2004 after Metamorfosi reunited. Despite the numerous short songs, which in my opinion should have simply been attached to the longer pieces, this is an amazing keyboard and organ driven album with some of the finest performances on those instruments. If you can find this piece of art, listen to it and listen again!

Jozef | 4/5 |

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