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Le Orme - Uomo Di Pezza CD (album) cover

UOMO DI PEZZA

Le Orme

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.22 | 483 ratings

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AtomicCrimsonRush
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
5 stars

Uomo di Pezza is as good as it gets from the masters of RPI, Le Orme. Let's get straight into this track by track. You can then draw your own conclusions.

Una dolcezza nuova is the first track that is heavily reliant upon piano and quiet vocals to begin with after a lengthy introduction of pipe organ sounds. The cathedral sounds are intriguing, giving it a religious stately feel. Gioco di bimba is a short piece that is as melodic as the track from Felona E Serona simply called Serona. It is a pop orientated tune that is pleasant to the ears and a beautiful instrumental.

La porta chiusa is a 7 and a half minute triumphant track that begins with loud symphonic stabs of prog virtuosity. The bass keeps the same melody as the vocals and this works very well. The track is split by massive instrumental sections. The band launch into an amazing discordant keyboard and bass trade off with intricate busy drum metrical shapes. There are sparse orchestral arrangements, featuring primarily Pagliuca's organ phrases and the spacey guitar of Tagliapietra. The minimalist feminine sections are augmented by the masculine rock sections balancing out the quieter moments. The sonata form structure is powerfully realised, utilising an opening theme, transition, a second theme, and a final closure. This is one of Le Orme's finest compositions from their early albums. It all settles down and we hear a lone voice followed by cathedral pipe organ sounds. The track then detours into a synth line and heavy speed keyboards. It slows for a section then speeds into a frenetic freak out of bass, drums and keys, the band at their best. Rossi's drumming is frenetic and chaotic; he just pounds the hell out of those drums. Then it ends abruptly with a scorching Hammond explosion. A master work.

Breve immagine is another short piece that begins with shimmering, sparkling keyboards and strong vocals. It crashes headlong into a powerful sound with symphonic strains. This is one of the most ethereal tracks from the group, a sombre sad feel and reminds me of King Crimson's In the Court of the Crimson King at times.

Figure di cartone is a track that focuses on an acoustic guitar and harmonious vocals. It begins with the beautiful acoustic vibrations of Tagliapietra, a real beauty that meanders like a flowing stream. Then we are thrown over the waterfall as the majestic wall of keyboards bursts through like sun bursting through dark clouds. There is a nice tune throughout and this is broken by shattering keyboard passages. The keys sound like a buzzsaw at times, a bit like the sound in ELP's solo in Lucky Man I will admit.

Aspettando l'alba begins with clean acoustic picking and shimmering keyboards. It is very atmospheric prog; the way the vocals are answered with instruments is admirable. The flute segment works well, and in fact the whole track is high pitched instruments to match the falsetto vocals. This is a more uplifting track then some of the previous work on this album. I love the effects of an ocean and the way the song interchanges time signatures. The ending features awesome synth washes like waves on a beach and a scintillating solo of keyboards. The atmosphere is unbelievable. It stops and moves back to the intro to bookend this masterpiece of prog.

Alienazione is a fast paced dynamic instrumental that relies heavily on intermittent drumming and keys. The sound builds constantly and is quite dark and ominous. The next section allows the track to breathe and changes a new direction that keeps the metronome working overtime with changes in time signatures. Then the last movement is the apocalypse which is a soundwave of multi-layered textures and nuances. This is absolutely incredible music and there is a focus on a pounding Pagliuca motif with chaotic punctuation. The fuzzed keys in the mid section adds a new element, and it feels portentous and off kilter. The piano is an estranged tune that does not seem to gel with the other instruments, and this alienates the listener, hence the appropriate title.

This last track sealed the deal for me. I believe this is better than Felona E Serona, though they are different conceptually and musically, I would rather this wildly inventive album out of the two if given a choice. It is not as restrained as Felona and is certainly an excellent example of RPI at its most innovative. At about 32 minutes this is a rather short blast of prog albeit one of the best from the legends of RPI. 5 stars as an outstanding RPI classic.

AtomicCrimsonRush | 5/5 |

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