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Alan Sorrenti - Alan Sorrenti CD (album) cover


Alan Sorrenti


Rock Progressivo Italiano

2.97 | 13 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

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Honorary Collaborator
3 stars One artist that does not get a lot of discussion in prog circles, even among fans of Italian prog is Naples's own Alan Sorrenti. Sorrenti of course released Aria in 1972 which was a landmark album in Italian prog. In addition to being known for that album he is also known as having left progressive rock behind and having a 'notorious' successful career chasing the almighty Lira, not to mention those of the female persuasion. He turned musically to the most dire and despicable forms of music known to prog fans... disco and music made to make the young ladies swoon. What a waste of musical talent beh. That changeover from the music of Aria to 'Non so che darei' hahaha (check that on youtube and you'll understand) was not an abrupt or immediate one however. After Aria he released two albums that did mark a downward progression away from progressive rock. This, a self titled album from 1974 was his last gasp of the pure progressive air before we got to see him shake his moneymaker to throngs of screaming girls. The inspiration to reviewing this album came from my better half.. who noticed that his subsequent album to this has a higher rating than this album does.. and in the scope of the prog universe, this site,.. there is something very wrong with that. Even if there are no blaring saxophones, tear inducing mellotrons that scream I AM PROG HEAR ME ROAR this album is a very good album with still very strong attachment to progressive rock, also to Neopolitan music which he would also leave far behind starting with his next album.

'Un viso d'inverno' leads off the album. Of course the star of any Sorrenti album is going to be the voice of Sorrenti. I find his voice to be very hypnotic and sensual. If his voice makes ME feel that way, you could imagine the lure ..the temptation to sing to scores of pre-pubescent chicks hahah. The song, the longest on the album at just under 8 minutes is a tranquil exercise in Sorrenti's vocal abilities where he doesn't as much sing as again use his voice as an instrument dancing around the main melody in pleasant journey through the puffy white clouds in our minds. Excellent music again, not for getting revved up for the hot date, but music for rainy Saturdays when you want to be taken away to a better.. more beautiful place than the one we currently have.

'Dicitencello vuje' is next up. The song has a bit of story to it. For non-speakers of Italian the lyrical meaning of the song is lost but is a Neopolitan love song composed in 1930. It has been performed by the greatest of Opera stars in Italy like Enrico Caruso,and Pavarotti. Sorrenti's version of it on this album did not go down well and was not well received. Now from our vantage point as pure listeners who don't see the song as the equivalent of having 'The Star Spangled Banner' covered, thus mangled of course by young punks like Slayer, the song is not going to elicit the same response. What we are though, are prog fans, and I hate to say. As wonderful as Sorrenti's voice is, this song holds as much appeal to prog fans as Willie Nelson performing Jerusalem hahha.

Thankfully the next song up is a more interesting one for us. 'Ma tu mi ascolti' harkens back to the opening song in length, about seven and a half minutes, and in feel as well. A sedate song with a wonderful acoustic guitar melody and the rhythm held with simple percussion and a low in the mix electric bass. Using this sonic canvas Sorrenti takes off for the heavens again with his majestic voice taking the listener who feels as much as listens on another voyage of beauty of sound and inner mental wanderings. Wonderful music again for those rainy Saturday afternoons or a cuddle session with that special lady.

'Sulla cima del Mondo' follows next and is a more layered with synths and a more prominent bass guitar and drums. Here Sorrenti shows great range in vocal delivery shifting from strongly delivered lines to the soft and ethereal to using his voice as an instrument. Some notable yet not particularly wild shifts in tempo give the piece a nice feel with a nice synth and e-guitar section thrown in for good measure. Good song. 'Poco piu piano' is next up on the playlist. The most distinctive feature of this song is the use of violins in it which give the song a real interesting feel with some funky guitar playing. Good song.. but nothing I see the prog fan specifically will find all that interesting.

'Microfoni assassini' starts us down the homestretch of the album. Sorrenti's instrumental voice starts it going over a strong snare drum and piano melody before shifting to lyrical verse. Again.. I can't stress that even though the song may not be progressive as many see progressive that in itself does not mean the music can not be uniformly excellent. There really isn't much here again for the prog fan, but if you are looking for good music. We have another one to satisfy you. The album is brought to a close with a song very.. very close to my heart. 'Incrociando Il Sole'. Raff will hear of this when she reads this for the first time but I always took this album with me when I went to see her in Rome (as I have been saying..this is a great album). I never failed to play this song when I was flying over the Atlantic on my way back home after spending such precious time with her. I coined a term in reference to another album, another artist soon to be added to the site. Sensual Prog. My god... listening to Sorrenti's sensual ethereal voice starting this song for a verse or two is enough to bring tears to my eyes thinking about when I would see her next. If that wasn't bad enough.. after a couple of verses we get a beautiful piano melody which takes us through to the end of the song. I jest not that I remember one time that I hit repeat on this song 11 times in a row. It is memorizing and again.. will take you on a voyage if you let it and get the stick out of your ass that good music has to have thundering charges of rhythm sections, moogs, and Rickenbacker basses.

Rating the album... as pointed out in the first paragraph, I reviewed this for a specific reason. To show the dividing line for this site regarding Sorrenti's work since this site lists all albums by an artist. The ratings can be, and are in this case deceiving. My rating will not change that of course without giving a rating far exceeding what the album deserves, but maybe the review itself will for show that for anyone exploring Sorrenti past Aria. Is the album 100% prog.. no it is not,. It again is a transition album between his first albums and the progressive ABYSS of his next album. It is an album that music fans may well adore as I do. For the site... 3 stars. If you liked Aria, this album may hold some real interest to you. For myself, 4 stars. I love his voice. Not just his voice.. but love what he does with his voice as an instrument which is a common theme in Italian prog. This review is dedicated to Scott who gave me some great advice regarding inspiration and reviewing.

*new Micky review feature alert*

next review..sticking with the RPI/AR mansion 'Naples' reviewing theme here of late.... St. Just-S/T

Michael (aka Micky)

micky | 3/5 |


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