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Il Rovescio Della Medaglia - La Bibbia CD (album) cover


Il Rovescio Della Medaglia


Rock Progressivo Italiano

2.87 | 63 ratings

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Italian Prog Specialist
2 stars Four minutes of twiddling, tweaking, rumbling and other sorts of primeval fragments of music is a great setting for the nothingness the first track represents. But trying to create something out of nothing is just as difficult as it sounds, and it is with sceptically raised eyebrows that I wait for the rest of the album to unfold.

And when the crushingly loud guitar kicks in, heavy and sharp due to the rough production, my eyebrows stay raised. The initial and continuing problem with La Bibbia is that it feels out of proportion. While I most certainly get the taste of the hunger and passion, and ultimately also the goals and ideals behind this debut album, it aims for the stars by giving full throttle and then never look back instead of carefully planning out the route and possible problems that might arise along the way.

Nose-diving from thunderous drumming and wild cymbal clashes, a bass that walks all over the place and unforgiving guitar riffs into softer, almost pastoral choral parts (preferably packaged in a smooth flute wrapping, but that's not always the case) is a crude, and in my eyes not particularly successful way of adding dynamic strength to the album. One could argue that the distinct changes provides an element of surprise, which likely is what Il Rovescio Della Medaglia were aiming for, but it soon feels rather formulaic. Unlike their peers of Osanna, which master this roller-coaster approach to music, the effect is lost mostly due to the fact that the musical variation remains relatively low on La Bibbia. If you're not paying attention to the various parts closely, it's going to turn into a sequence of on-and-off explosions, tiring your ears more than refreshing them.

Sodoma E Gomorra is nothing but a long explosion, but since it's just as fiery as Deep Purple it's easier to forgive here. Surprisingly Blackmore-esque guitar, drumming that would strike Ian Paice by not being of his making and bass guitar with that Roger Glover swing is sure to please any fan of the British rock pioneers, and that's true for most of the album in general. Any big fan of heavy prog would most certainly find lots of meriting parts on La Bibbia. The problem is, as I've already explained, the disposition of them.

The longest song here is the ten minute effort Il Guidizio, and as a natural consequence this is where you find most room for variation. Focusing a little more on mood with a both menacing and gradually heavier build-up, it really feels real in its darkness. A break in the middle of the song features a great bass semi-solo, with a duelling guitar joining in now and then. Good stuff.

And then we're back to the beginning. Closing it all is another two minutes of acid effect experimentation, obnoxious guitar and amp sounds conveying the sonic equivalent of an earthquake.

In the end there's no reason to DISLIKE this record if you're in it for face-melting guitar bonanza with the odd bits and pieces of.let's call it 'sound expansion'. But fact remains that what I enjoyed the most was the always highly emotional and unapologetic Italian vocals.

Judge for yourself.

2 stars.


LinusW | 2/5 |


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