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Area - Crac ! CD (album) cover




Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.25 | 360 ratings

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5 stars After the explosive debut album "Arbeit macht frei" and the experimental and controversial second one "Caution Radiation Area", in 1974 Area released "Crac!", probably their best known and accessible work. It was recorded by the classic line up featuring Giulio Capiozzo (drums, percussion), Patrizio Fariselli (electric and acoustic piano, synthesizers, clarinet), Ares Tavolazzi (bass, trombone), Paolo Tofani (electric guitar, synthesizer, flute) and Demetrio Stratos (vocals, organ, harpsichord, percussion). Gianni Sassi, Area's producer and "ideologist", wrote the lyrics and took care of the art cover. In the liner notes there are some words by Spanish "guerrillero" and anarchist Bueneaventura Durruti that should help the comprehension of this work... "We don't fear the ruins. We'll inherit the Earth. The bourgeoisie will have to smash its world into pieces before go out from the scene of history. We bring a new world into us and this world is growing, every moment passing by. It's growing, right now that I'm talking to you...".

The opener "L'elefante bianco" (The white elephant) is full of rebellious energy and blends rock with Oriental influences. It invites you to search for the obsolete rules that do not work anymore and to break them in a radical way... "Run fast boy, keep on running / People say it's your fault / White shadows, old powers are shamelessly buying the world / Old images, stupid saints are leaving everything as it is / Look foreword boy, don't think about it / History is running along with you / Run fast boy, keep on running / People say it's your fault / Take everything, don't stop / Fire is burning your virtue / Lift up your fist boy, do not tremble / Look at reality straight in the face...".

Next comes "La mela di Odessa" (The Apple from Odessa), a complex track that begins with experimental sounds and a drum solo... It tells in an allegoric way the story of a dadaist artist, a certain Apple, that in 1920 hijacked a German ship and led it to the seaport of Odessa, in the communist world. The people celebrated Aplle's heroic action blowing up the ship... Demetrio Stratos' exuberant and theatrical recitative vocals soar from a fiery rhythm pattern narrating this terrorist act like a fairy tale..."Once upon a time, there was an apple riding a leaf..."...

"Megalopoli" (Megalopolis) is an instrumental track that begins with synthesizers and vocals used as an instrument, then, after a drum roll, rhythm takes off blending modernity and tribal rhythms. According to some interviews with the band this piece was inspired by the construction of Brasilia, the capital city of Brazil, and by the blind megalomania of some governments that waste money building modern and useless cathedrals in the desert instead to think to the primary needs of their people...

"Nervi scoperti" (On edge) is a vibrant and tense jazz rock piece that leads to "Gioia e rivoluzione" (Joy and revolution), that after a peculiar introduction, features strummed acoustic guitars and powerful melodic lines... "I sing for you who come to listen to me / I play for you who don't want to understand me / I laugh for you, who can't dream... We fight our battle / With the sound of our fingers... My machine-gun is a counter-bass / Shooting into your face what I think about life...". It's one of the best known Area's songs.

"Implosion" is an instrumental track that begins calmly and then develops with sudden changes of mood and rhythm allowing the musicians to showcase their great musicianship while the last track "Area 5" is a short piece of "contemporary classical music" composed for the band by Juan Hidalgo and Walter Marchetti, two followers of John Cage. A bizarre way to conclude a great album!

Well, you can like or dislike Area's committed approach to music and share or not their revolutionary point of views about art and life but this is for sure one of the most influential album of the Italian prog scene of the early seventies and a must for every prog lover...

andrea | 5/5 |


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