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Museo Rosenbach - Zarathustra CD (album) cover

ZARATHUSTRA

Museo Rosenbach

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.29 | 546 ratings

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andrea
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Museo Rosenbach are one of the many Italian prog band of the early seventies that had the just chance to release an album before disappear. Their debut album "Zarathustra" was released in 1973 and the line up featureed Stefano "Lupo" Galifi (vocals), Enzo Merogno (guitar, vocals), Pit Corradi (keyboards, mellotron), Alberto Moreno (bass, piano) and Giancarlo Golzi (drums, percussion, vocals). It's a concept album freely inspired by the work of philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. According to the liner notes, the quest for the super?man described by Mauro La Luce's lyrics wasn't meant to exalt the violent leader of a new pure breed but the serene search for a human character who, living in communion with nature, tries to purify from every hypocrisy the human values... Despite the great quality of the music, on account of the controversial art cover and to the misunderstandings about the concept, Museo Rosenbach were treated as fascists by critics and part of the public and the album was quite unsuccessful determining the split up of the band. Nonetheless, as time passed by, this work has become a cult one for prog lovers...

The opener is the long title track, a suite in five parts. The first part "L'ultimo uomo" (The last man) begins with a calm and solemn pace, then vocals that seem to come down from a distant place soar drawing a beautiful melody... "Face of light, they told me about you / Your story lies in the echo of the mountains / Too high to descend into us.... Shabby shadow, empty glare of the ego / You don't need to understand the force / That pushes me to seek in the world...". An instrumental crescendo leads to the second part, "Il re di ieri" (Yesterday king) and to its delicate piano and organ patterns... "No, do not go on walking on never ending roads / You can already see in me what my father, God, taught to you... Love your Land, in her womb God will form itself". The contrasts between a quiet church like atmosphere and some more aggressive rhythmic passages give to this track a very peculiar and dramatic feeling... On the third part of the suite, "Al di lą del bene e del male" (Beyond the good and the evil) tension rises while vocals try to evoke how pretentious are human laws drawing borders between good and evil... "Ancient tables, divine wills in the past already divided the good and the evil / The man alone, far from God, cannot build his own moral / Run away from your will / Under these curtains lies a false wisdom / The truth is insulted / From the moral that you created no good will come...". The fourth part, "Superuomo" (Super-man) begins quietly and in a more reflexive way suggesting that you have to choose among many answers about the sense of life what's the right one... "Thousand traditions built a wall around me / Alone and without forces I get lost into my own words / And perhaps I'm looking for someone who has always walked behind me... / Now he is coming to life in me / I'm living the Super-man". Then vocals give way to a crescendo of amazing shifting musical passages leading to the final solemn instrumental part "Il tempio delle clessidre" (The temple of the hourglasses)

The other tracks are shorter but not less interesting. "Degli uomini" (About men) is as intense as an horseback ride. Vocals ask questions about war and peace, joy and pain, then a bittersweet reflection soars... "Like Autumn, the world wants to wither / It offers swords to the sky overriding the loyalty / It grows up and, as time passes by, it kills its humanity".

"Della natura" (About nature) begins with a frenzy rhythm, then suddenly a suspicious and treacherous quiet comes down... "Quietness falls over the night / Virgin in its mantle... The silence with its void lights the fear again / Terror, pregnant of magic as it is, makes Death's face come back in mind...". Rhythm takes off again, then melts in a complex and more relaxed section while lyrics draw a quite different landscape where men live in harmony with nature and where silence is described as the singing of real poetry... "My eyes are tired, I feel by now that I'm going to sleep / The dawn comes from quietness / Virgin in its own mantle, it lives and already thrills...".

"Dell'eterno ritorno" (About the eternal return) is about the eternal circle of life. Strange omens shake our certitudes while life comes to an end... The music is complex as usual, marching beats alternate with organ rides while soaring dramatic vocals depicts doubts and fading hopes... "By now my future is already there / The road I will take leads where the man stops / And where the Eternal Return reign...".

On the whole a great album that suffered of the political climate of the early seventies in Italy and that deserves to be rediscovered. A must for every Italianprog collector!

andrea | 5/5 |

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