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Runaway Totem - Le Roi Du Monde CD (album) cover


Runaway Totem



3.48 | 19 ratings

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3 stars "Italy goes Zeuhl"

This unique Italian musical project is rooted in 1988, their goal was to use music as an universal language. In 1993 Runaway Totem released its first album entitled Trimegisto, during the years followed by a serie of albums. In 2007 the band released the CD Esameron on their own label Runaway Totem Records, as a part of a trilogy about the four elements. The second part is named Manu Menes from 2009 and the third effort Le Roi Du Monde (from 2011), this review is about that final part of the trilogy.

Listening to Runaway Totem is entering the realm of the Zeuhl, first the suite entitled Il Giardino Del Nocciolo E Del Melograno, more than 30 minutes. It is divided in many parts featuring a huge variety, but without a theme or other elements that blend the many different moods. First a bombastic atmosphere with choirs, moving guitar runs and a wonderful blend of Grand piano and synthesizers. Then spoken words in an Arab-like language, mixed with brass instruments and again choirs. Next a long and very atmospheric and experimental interlude, again that brass and the choirs, followed by an accellaration featuring powerful vocals, propulsive guitar and a dynamic rhythm-section. This culminates in a fiery and bombastic part, but suddenly the climate changes in dreamy with beautiful Grand piano and sound effects, finally biting guitar runs and tight drum beats, evoking avant-garde King Crimson. I needed a short break to breath, so many experimental ideas for an 'Old School 70-77 Genesis die-hard'!

The second composition is the mellow Le Marriage Du Soleil E La Lune, it sounds melodic with the focus on hobo and flute, along warm male and female vocals. The fiery electric guitar delivers the musical contrast, pretty unique music.

The final track La Citta Azurra Del Sole (around 30 minures) contains the most adventurous music, a kind of avant- garde version of Seventies FrankZappa, featuring a huge array of instruments, from brass, harder-edged guitar and vibraphone to violin, flute and synthesizers. The atmospheres change from dreamy and slow rhythms to fiery and sumptuous, to me it sounds very experimental, but if you like this kind of music (from Zeuhl to avant-garde King Crimson), this album is a real musical adventure!

My rating: 3,5 star.

TenYearsAfter | 3/5 |


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