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Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM) - River Of Life: The Manticore Years Anthology 1973-1977 CD (album) cover


Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)


Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.01 | 18 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars This collection of PFM's Manticore-years I a fine one. It features higlight-tracks from all the LP's they recorded for the label.

The first disc features the formation without a proper lead-singer. Except for the very strong attemt 'Il Banchetto", all is sung in worse English. It does not disturb much, though, for tracks like 'River Of Life', 'The World Became The World (one of the best instrumental parts in progressive rock to me, with a combination of mellotron and mini-moog)' and 'Just Look Away' (accessible, but with a wonderful mellotron-flute / whistle melody at the end).

The live-tracks 'Four Holes In The Ground' and 'Alta Loma Nine Till Five' from the double-live- LP 'Cook' are impressive and contain influences from jazzrock like Mahavishnu Orchestra.

The second disc features some previously unreleased live material and songs from the last 2 Manticore-LP's 'Chocolate Kings' and 'Jet Lag'. Bernardo Lanzetti (Mangala Vallis) is doing the lead-vocals here and the sound is leaning more towards King Crimson. 'From Under 'and 'Harlequin' are great progtracks with great instrumental work. The three threats from 'Jet Lag' are very Chick Corea-ish, atmospheric and pleasant to listen to, although quite different from the 'Chocolate Kings'-sound.

Their most popular track, the instrumental 'Celebration', is featured in a live-version here. The studio-version can be found on the 'Photos Of Ghosts'-cd.

After all, PFM easily can compete with giants like Yes, ELP and King Crimson with those 70's- album. The quality of their playing and compositions is that high, you can see them as one of the major progrock-bands from the 70's. If you are new to this band, this very stable 'best-of' is really worth the purchase!

If you really like the live-PFM, you should keep aan eye on Esoteric Records, who will release a re-issue of the double live-LP 'Cook', with a bonus-live cd added, later this year.

ProgRob | 4/5 |


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