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Mangala Vallis - Intergalactic Video Archives CD (album) cover


Mangala Vallis


Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.12 | 8 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website


Recently the Dutch music venue De Boerderij (in Zoetermeer) is voted as the second best, after the legendary Royal Albert Hall in London. That is a huge award for concert planner Arie Verstegen, he is not only the one who took big names like Kansas, Steve Hackett, Ange, Uriah Heep and UK to Holland, but also the Italian progrock, from Le Orme, PFM and The Watch to Moongarden and ... Mangala Vallis. Their gig is partly used for this live DVD (6 tracks), a registration of the 2006 European tour. It also contains 2 concerts in Italy (2 tracks in Milan and 3 in Fidenza), along some interesting extras.

The focus is on legendary singer Bernardo Lanzetti who was a member of Acqua Fragille that recorded two albums in the early seventies. But he also joined the legendary PFM, between 1975 and 1978 Bernardo made three albums with PFM. I was pleasantly surprised that this prog rock veteran decided to join Mangala Vallis, in those years a new and promising band. Lanzetti sang already on the debut album The Book Of Dreams (2002) with a guest role on one track. Then he was asked fort he entire, very strong second album Lycanthrope (2005). Another big name (from the last two decades) is multi-instrumentalist and producer Christiano Roversi, his calling card includes Submarine Silence, The Watch, Moongarden, John Wetton, David Jackson and he made the album Quasi English with.. Bernardo Lanzetti.

Watching this DVD I notice that Lanzetti adds an extra dimension to the pleasant blend of symphonic rock and neo- prog that the six-piece formation Mangala Vallis deliver. He has not only a distinctive voice, but he obviously adds a theatrical element with his Peter Gabriel -inspired gestures, facial expressions and the phrasing of his vocals. However, he is not the only one who has an important role in the sound of the band. I also enjoyed the lush vintage sound of the keyboards from Christiano Roversi : the violin, flute and choir sounds of the unsurpassed Mellotron (on a Roland U 20 keyboard), the Mini Moog sound (on the Nord Lead synthesizer) and the sound of the Hammond (on the digital Hammond-Suzuki XB-2). Especially on the highlight The Boy That Howls At The Moon it's vintage keyboard time, but the composition A New Century also features lots of Mellotron! The guitarists use 'a small vintage guitar museum', I noticed: a Gibson ES 345, Gibson Les Paul, Fender Stratocaster and a Fender Telecaster, both legends in the history of the electric guitar. In the track Call Me Alias one of the guitarists plays on a Fender Stratocaster with delicate use of the bottle neck and in the track Days Of Light we can enjoy a guitarist playing on a red and white Fender Stratocaster. For me these are almost magical elements! The songs Lycanthroparty/Hum/Animal (in The Netherlands) and Cosmotraffic Jam and The Journey (both in Fidenza) are embellished with animations, a fine visual element on this DVD just like the two interesting bonus video clips entitled Lycanthrope Ducalis: The Boy That Howls At The Moon and The Mask. The 'Milan session' was recorded live in the studio, a nice feature.

To complete my review I have to mention that this DVD also contains an interview and concert excerpts including PFM's composition Impressioni Di Settembre. The total running time of this DVD is 143 minutes, so there's plenty to enjoy.

TenYearsAfter | 4/5 |


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