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Nichelodeon - Il gioco del silenzio CD (album) cover





3.88 | 48 ratings

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4 stars Brilliant band, amazing album!

Yeah, they are Nichelodeon. A peculiar band from Italy whose work does not lie only in the musical side of things, because they tend to also emphasize the visual side, of course that cannot be noticed in an audio CD, but if you have the chance of getting their DVD, you will understand what I mean.

When I read the interview Torodd did to them, I felt really interested, so I read the reviews here in PA and visited their website, and let me tell you, that when I fortunately got the album (thanks Claudio), I understood why it was so praised and why people were talking about them in the past few months. They are a fabulous band!

Their music may be difficult to classify, so you better listen to it and enjoy it without labeling, though if you want some adjectives, the term avant-garde would fit. This is a 2010 studio album entitled "Il Gioco del Silenzio", which features twelve compositions that make 78 minutes of running time, not really a short album.

It kicks off with "Fame" which is one of the shortest compositions. Since the first seconds the sax sound appears, along with other elements that create a tense atmosphere, later vocals enter and add its dramatic sound. A couple of minutes later there is a cadence and even sensual sound that lasts for a few seconds, and then the song changes again.

"Fiaba" is a great song that has a soft sound, which is progressing little by little, I like the different elements they use to create music, and how they manage to build up structures and atmospheres. One can easily feel part of the music, create images on your mind and even conceive an imaginary story. "Claustrofilia" begins with a melodica sound, later vocals appear and once again create that sensation of tension. At half the track makes a change, a great and interesting passage appears with various instruments that create werid noises, along with Milano's voice, it makes a great track.

"Malamore e la Luna" is one of the longest tracks here. There is a brief sound reminiscent of a tango at the beginning, but it disappears seconds later when the voice appears again with those werrd noises. The role of the piano all over the album is extraordinary, it puts different colors and adds fresh and eclectic moods to the existent sound. I really like those quieter passages where you can close your eyes and let your imagination do the rest.

"Amanti in Guerra" offers a cool mixture of sounds and emotions, I love how it begins carefully, soft and calm and then gradually progresses creating chaotic sounds and those dramatic atmospheres, the vocals (not only Milano's, but all the backing ones) help a lot in the success of this track. "Ombre Cinesi" takes you to a different but curious world, those weird wind and percussion sound together lead the listener to an unknown place which is about to be explored, you just have to open your arms wide and feel the music deep inside your mind. Some minutes later, the name of Demetrio Stratos will come to your mind, I believe he inspired Claudio somehow.

Now a track I really enjoy. "Apnea" is full of cadence, a great sax sound which leads the track at first, later the other instruments with such freaky noises, and vocals, contribute to build up the road of the track. This is a pretty interesting composition that surely will appeal to those RIO fans (actually most of the songs here would appeal, but I mentioned this since it is one of my favorite tracks on "Il Gioco del Silenzio"). "Il Giardino degli Altri" may alter your senses, the voices are freaky (or freakier) and some of the musical passages will make your heart beat faster, I imagine some terror scenes, very dramatic.

The shortest track is "La corsa dei trattori" which is an instrumental piece that suggests some grade of comedy. "Se" is a longer song in which the voice reminds me again to some of the "games Stratos played" in the live performances. The guitar sound is not that evident, but always present and consistent, and once again, the piano plays a pretty interesting role. Worth mentioning also the string instruments such as violin and counterbass.

"Lana di vetro" is a calmer, yet intriguing track that offers different nuances while the time is running. Before minute three it stops for a second and then a brand new structure and rhythm appears, with some kind of folkish sound that will be interrupted for some seconds, but later it returns. Actually, in this song you will notice several changes in a brief space of time, which made the music even richer and more interesting.

The album finishes with "Cio che rimane" which is another long composition. The piano and its importance is evident once again here; and then the music makes some changes and provoke different sensations. After three minutes it takes a new direction and turns faster, there is a climax and the vocals enter and add its grain of sound.

The album is brilliant, complex and interesting, the only problem I found was that it is so long and in moments difficult to dig, there were one or two listens where I felt exhausted when reaching the tenth track, so go figure. Anyway, I am happy with this album and I really hope to see them on stage. Soon I'll review their DVD, which makes me want to see them and enjoy their magnificent performances. Returning to Il Gioco del Silenzio, I recommend it mostly for fans of avant-garde music. My final grade will be four stars.

Enjoy it!

memowakeman | 4/5 |


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