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Semiramis - Dedicato a Frazz CD (album) cover

DEDICATO A FRAZZ

Semiramis

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.02 | 200 ratings

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friso
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Semiramis - Dedicato a Frazz (1973)

And you thought the cover-art was good... inside my fold-out vinyl edition of this rare Italian prog record can be seen one of the best surrealistic land-scapes filled with mysterious beings ever drawn for a progressive record. That having said, this packaging of this one- shot RPI wonder is very good.

Now, the music. Semiramis plays symphonic progressive rock with Italian vocals with influences of Genesis and Van der Graaf Generator. This is a rare combination, since symphonic beauty is often followed by crazed out instrumental passages. The title of the album, dedicated to madness, fits the music very well. The guitars can be quite heavy. Drummer Paolo Faenza also plays vibraphone on the low volume themes, which is another characteristic of this album. Bass-player Marcello Reddovide often plays fast arpeggio's of the chords which gives the music a lot of speed, even during mid-paced moments. The vocals of Michele Zarrillo are honest and intensive, but not too trained.

The compositions often lack cohesiveness, especially on side two, but they are often original. The energy this band must have had was well recorded, and the record sounds fresh and exciting. The recording-quality is however a bit poor, which made it a bit hard for me to get to like the music. The main problem are the many themes with slightly out of pitch instruments. Often the Moog-sounds are false, as well are some of guitar parts. For a musician like me this can be painful on some moments, others might not even notice. I do thing the point made by others about this band sounding a bit amateurish has largely been based on this problems with the pitch of some of the instruments. Perhaps the naive song- writing also played a role. Finally I would like to comment on the poor key-instruments used, especially some the organ-sounds that sound very dated. But I can't blame the band for this.

My brother and his wife just visited me and my brother somehow came to like Semiramis quite much as he asked for it again. I had to think again for my own opinion and I've come to the conclusion that I will give this three stars. The artwork is amazing, no - perfect! The style of the band is likable, but I just can't fit the word excellent in it. So let me put it this way; this is a great addition to your RPI collection, but if you aren't particularly interested in RPI this is just a good/non-essential addition to your collection. A small three and a halve stars.

friso | 3/5 |

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