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Assenzio - 'Avon CD (album) cover




Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.73 | 13 ratings

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4 stars Fantastic (and free!) RPI, don't miss it.

How has this not been reviewed yet by our RPI staff? I please guilty to missing the boat here. "Avon" is a fresh and eclectic RPI project of the Bari based group Assenzio, released in 2005 by the band. Bari must be a modern day hotbed as I've sound some great groups under the radar from there and nearby, such as Architrave Independente and Il Babau & i maledetti cretini. The best news is that the band's debut is offered for free download from their web page linked on their artist page here (though currently this link is down, so read below on how to hear it). I invite fans of modern RPI to check this out and honor the band with your thoughts.

"Avon" is a concept album about the seven deadly sins. Assenzio is a talented group whose influences include Area, Crimson, Genesis, and PFM. They remind me of lots of classic Italian bands in certain areas, but their eclectic mix of current styles brings to mind fabulous newer bands like Akt and Braindead. These guys have the chops to come at your with high powered fusion flavored riffs or the delicate touch to recall Orme. The introduction is one of the most beautiful pieces of music you'll hear, with serene and lovely flute over classical guitar with a medieval flavor. But they are not a primarily mellow experience, these guys rock hard although they never go into prog-metal. Hard rock, some crossover, occasional fusion, there is something for everyone. Lino Paglionico's vocals are all Italian and of a high register, energetic and with good control. The guitarists are impressive and the album is full of melodic lead work. The rhythm section keeps things interesting throughout with tight and jamming backup. Keyboards are often just fantastic, interesting jazzy sections alternate with symphonic ones, the piano parts being my favorite. There is a cool flute and guitar double that runs through Passione with jamming bass backing. The closer L'Oppio is a thrilling rocker with strong melodic leads that will please all rock fans. An exhilarating pace throughout by a clearly inspired band.

An absolute treat this work is. The downside of the self-produced work are the occasional production issues, but for the most part the sound is of a high quality. I cannot believe it took me this long to find Assenzio. Their free downloads are currently off-line and the band has not been around their myspace page for some time. For now you can listen to the entire album streaming from their myspace widget-pod if you scroll down their page-just click the link off their artist page. I plan on contacting some of the reissue labels about getting a proper CD put out for "Avon." I think it deserves a release. 3 stars.

Finnforest | 4/5 |


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