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Alphataurus - Alphataurus CD (album) cover




Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.12 | 389 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars Once one gets a bit deeper into RPI, beyond PFM, Orme, Goblin and Banco there come encounters with the phenomenon of the 'one and done' bands. A plethora of bands in a very crowded prog field in a few years span in a country smaller than California saw competition for attention and sales quite fierce, with many bands not getting the attention they deserved. Alphataurus is one of those bands who delivered an excellent album, then disappeared.

Opener Le Chamadere (Peccato D'Orgoglio) is a combination of excellent dynamic organ led prog with bubbling moogs, complex drumming, harpsichord (spinet) and symphonic flourishes. The instrumental opening section shows off the dexterity of the rhythm section right away before we are introduced to excellent vocalist Michele Bavaro. Catchy and complex at the same time with excellent moog runs that fall into the room shaking bass frequencies. Bits of Dance on a Volcano are a reference point in the closing section. One of the highlights of the album.

Song two, Dopo L'Uragano , is a riff on Led Zeppelin style rock filtered through heavy Tull that still retains a prog edge but shows off their musical abilities before returning to some vocals from Bavaro. It wouldn't be out of place in any early UK proto prog band. The closer to side one is a spinet workout that leads to a full on well charted and sophisticated faux symphonic flourish that would make the Enid proud. (another band that could convincingly simulate an orchestra without any orchestral instruments employed, which the inner sleeve notes here.)

Side two begins with La Menta Vola, a song that any prog head would love-string synths, ringing keyboards, subtle vibraphone, ambient flute, playful drum lines all lay out a slow building journey as deep moog lines begin to build underneath in an ELP fashion, with a bit of Le Orme stirred in there. Finishes with some excellent gurgling sound effects from the moog over the fade out. Ombra Muta is one of the other highlights of the album. It starts like an Italian version of Novalis, but halfway through they are off and running in a high energy instrumental organ/guitar/bass/drums UK style prog workout. (drummer Giorgio Santandrea is excellent in his busy but subtle attacks on the kit). Great synth on this song too, as keyboardist Pellegrini knows how to coax 'sound' out of a synth, rather than just play lines on it. Nice crashing fake ending that leads to an intricate low key Crimson-ish guitar led fade out to the album.

Fairly well recorded throughout, I think this one would play well with non RPI fans if folks want to go out and indoctrinate the unaware. Heavy rock and symphonic classical mix together nicely. Not perfect but an essential addition to an RPI collection. Fans of Campo di Marte and Metamorfosi will probably dig this, as well as Balleto di Bronzo and heavier New Trolls fans.

Absolutely stunning triple gatefold painting on the LP is one of the best album covers in Italian rock. Cool inner photo of the band takes up all three inner panels. Lyrics are printed on the right hand panel.

4.25 stars

zeuhl1 | 4/5 |


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