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Le Orme - Contrappunti CD (album) cover


Le Orme


Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.96 | 234 ratings

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2 stars After two sweepingly lyrical and melodic exercises in the bombast, LE ORME shifted direction rather dramatically. "Contrappunti" holds mere remnants of the elements that helped forge two early 1970s classics. The playing remains impressive but mostly for its own sake, while the voice of Aldo Tagliapietra takes a back seat to the increasingly ELP and Yes-ish keyboard marathons unfeelingly juxtaposed with eerie organ passages that sound like soundtracks to B grade Italian horror flicks. I do not stand in the way of a group's attempts at evolution, and would gladly applaud when the results take on human form.

While "Uomo di Pezza" and "Felona e Serona" were more composition than song oriented, with occasional and generally appropriate unstructured romps, "Contrappunti" fails at both levels, and exposes Le Orme's considerable deficiencies in the songwriting department at this point in their history. Sure, "Frutto Acerbo" has the trademark sweet melodies, and "La fabbricante d'angeli" uses synths to approximate flutes, and is fairly similar to the "Felona" style until it teeters off the precipice in the final minute, an anticlimax if there ever was one. The longest track "Maggio" alternately sparkles and stagnates, as the experimental ambient sounds that plague the album opener, "Aliante", and "Notturno" restore the malaise.

Perhaps I am just not a sufficiently discerning listener, but "Contrappunti" lives up to its name a bit too much, shifting indelicately about when I wish it wouldn't, and holding still far too long when I wish it would break out. I think I'll punt this one to the sidelines.

kenethlevine | 2/5 |


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