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New Trolls - Concerto Grosso N. II CD (album) cover

CONCERTO GROSSO N. II

New Trolls

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

2.95 | 65 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Fitzcarraldo
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This was the 1976 attempt by the NEW TROLLS to repeat the success of their 1971 album "Concerto Grosso Per I New Trolls" (sometimes referred to as 'Concerto Grosso No. 1').

While the 'concerto grosso' on the 1971 album has four movements (well, three really: three rock-classical fusion pieces plus a coda that rehashes the second movement's theme in the style of Hendrix), the 'concerto grosso' on "Concerto Grosso No. 2" has three movements, the remaining five tracks on the album not being part of it.

The 1971 album's concerto has a Vivaldi feel to it, whereas this album's concerto has a hint of the Bach or Mozart about it, plus a slight classical Spanish feel in the third movement. As Argentinean composer of movie scores Luis Enriquez Bacalov was again involved, the three movements also have a soundtrack feel about them. Anyway, as with the earlier album, the result is pleasant but not stellar. The orchestra is more integrated with the rock instruments than on the earlier album, and the horns on this album are actually synthesizer (still good, though).

The first movement bobs along nicely in a funky, jazzy sort of fashion. The second movement is a sedate piece introduced by clarinet, with flowery vocals (corny English lyrics, too) and movie score strings wafting in the background; I'm more reminded of Burt Bacharach than Bach (pun intended). The third movement has some nice lute played in a Spanish-like style, giving a slightly medieval feel, and some modern-sounding synthesizer. There is some rather twee singing in English ("fare you well my restless dove", "farewell, farewell little dove" and the like) accompanied by violin. Nevertheless, of the three movements I prefer the third.

The remaining five tracks are a mixed bunch. 'Quiet Seas' reminds me of CAT STEVENS. It's a pleasant enough song, again sung in English, but nothing special. 'Vent'Anni' starts with some nice acoustic guitar or lute. It's a calm, commercial-sounding number in Italian, and I enjoy it. 'Bella Come Mai' is my favourite track on the album. It reminds me a little of 'Tornare a Credere' on the NEW TROLLS ATOMIC SYSTEM s/t album, which has the same Italian 1960s pop feel, the raucous, almost-gospel female backing vocals and the gruff Italian lead vocals (well, the vocals on 'Tornare a Credare' are not so gruff). The twangy guitar and slow, groovy beat are the business and I like the retro feel of the music. 'Let It Be Me' by Curtis, Delanoe & Becaud, sung in falsetto, is an incongruous track on this album, having been sung by ELVIS PRESLEY, THE EVERLY BROTHERS, BOB DYLAN, NINA SIMONE, JACKSON BROWNE and many others. 'Le Roi Soleil', sung in English, is an enjoyable, upbeat poppy number with a nod to classical music, and strongly reminds me of 10CC.

As with the 1971 album, this is easy to listen to in the foreground or background. The music is more accessible than on the 1971 album. The album is not bad if you have an eclectic taste in music and enjoy the type of pop played in the 1960s and early 1970s. From a Progressive Rock perspective this album is less interesting than the 1971 album. It would probably be more of interest to those who lived through those years and have a certain nostalgia for the sounds of the time. I wouldn't rush out to buy it, though. I'll settle for 3 stars (Good, but not essential).

If you don't already have the 1971 album "Concerto Grosso Per I New Trolls" then you could buy the CD of the same name issued by the Warner Fonit record company (CD no. 3984 26602-2) which has both albums on it for the price of one.

Fitzcarraldo | 3/5 |

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