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Perigeo - La Valle dei Templi CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.70 | 64 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars Perigeo were formed in Rome in 1971 on the initiative of Giovanni Tommaso, bass player with a solid jazz background, who gathered around him some experienced musicians like Tony Sidney (guitar), Franco D'Andrea (keyboards), Claudio Fasoli (sax) and Bruno Biriaco (drums, percussion) with the aim of blending jazz and rock. Their debut album "Azimut" was released in 1972, followed by "Abbiamo tutti un blues da piangere" (1973) and "Genealogia" (1974). "La valle dei templi", their fourth work and my favourite one, was released in 1975. On this album the line up was enriched by Tony Esposito, a brilliant Neapolitan percussionist who appears as a special guest adding a peculiar ethnic flavour to Perigeo's music.

The opener "Tamale" is solar and dynamic. Tamale is an African city, in the north of Ghana. It could be the starting point for an adventurous musical journey through the Sahara desert to the Mediterranean coast... But do not expect to ride on camel back! Indeed the rhythm section here runs fast like a cross-country vehicle, so close your eyes and let the music drive...

Well, from Africa to Sicily. The title track, "La valle dei templi" (The valley of the Temples), is dedicated to a magnificent archaeological site near the city of Agrigento, an outstanding example of Greater Greece art and architecture and one of the main attractions of Sicily (you can see one of the temples on the art cover). Actually the term "valley" is a misnomer, since the site lies on a ridge outside Agrigento... The track is divided in two parts, the first one is calm and dreamy while the second one is lively and bright as to mark the contrast between the magic atmosphere of the ancient temples and a prosaic and busy modernity.

Next comes "Looping", a beautiful track where from pulsing bass lines sax notes seem to soar in the air inviting you to fly with your fantasy in a clear Italian sky. When you're tired you can rest on the shore and look at the horizon where the sky meets the sea... "Mistero della Firefly" (Mistery of the Firefly) starts quietly, then irresistible bass lines make you move and embark on a mysterious ship defying the waves. Drums and percussion provide a strong Mediterranean flavour while guitar and sax lead to breathtaking landscapes full of colours and exotic scents.

The short "Pensieri" (Thoughts) comes then like a nocturnal and meditative pause. Don't worry anyway, the charm is not broken yet and you can keep on dreaming your imaginary cruise on the notes of the following track "Periplo" (Circumnavigation) experiencing more sensations and exploring other unknown musical sea lanes.

"Eucalyptus" is a short and intense. Another tasteful and aromatic track that makes you dream of far countries. Then comes a slow awake with "Alba di un mondo" (Dawn of a world) where nocturnal clouds let gradually filter drowsy melodies. "Cantilena" (Singsong) is another calm and dreamy track full of delicate nuances...

"2000 e due notti" (2000 and two nights) features a peculiar oriental flavour. It begins with a dark atmosphere, then obsessive bass lines doubled by sax bring a touch of anxiety... How long has lasted our journey? By now it's coming to an end...

The last track "Un cerchio giallo" (A yellow circle) begins with an evocative acoustic guitar arpeggio, the anxiety melts under a starry sky for another Mediterranean night under the yellow circle of the moon, cradled by the waves and cuddled by the notes of an excellent album...

andrea | 5/5 |


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