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Celeste - Principe di un Giorno CD (album) cover

PRINCIPE DI UN GIORNO

Celeste

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.15 | 202 ratings

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Andrea Cortese
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Celeste' self titled album (aka Principe di un Giorno) is a very peculiar record released in the second half of the seventies. None of the traditional italian prog artists and bands sound like Celeste. The band tried in fact to abandon any usual progrock structure to make something completely fresh and delicate. This is the most melodic work ever relased in all the italian prog scene of the seventies.

Warning! Do not think that Celeste is less exciting and interesting as other more conventional bands do. Bass guitar, for example, loses its normal rythmic function and becomes a freely played instrument, sounding sometimes more like a gentle cello or contrabass. Acoustic guitar is always dreamy, celestial expression of souls and fairy worlds. Two flute players alternating , soft and deep mellotron's waves, spinet, eminent and arp odissey. Choruses like angels singing from Heaven and mellow piano's classic interludes.

That was not enough, though! An "intruder" was necessary: a wonderful alto saxophone, a quasi-jazzy instrusion in some tunes, as in "Giochi nella Notte" (Games in the Night, 8,11 mns).

Me I'm really impressed for how the album at each listening has grown in me. Very few records reached such a result. Only two weeks ago I probably would have assured people this was not a masterpiece of italian prog. How wrong I was! This is not anybody's cup of tea, I admit it. But you also have to recognize that nothing's more pure than it. The completely white cover it's a sort of presage.

"Principe di un Giorno" (Prince of a Day) is the 6,13 mns opener. A relaxing mellotron introduces the listener into an instrumental duo between flute and acoustic guitar. Warm and nice vocals and lyrics inspired by fairy tales. I recommend you to listen just before closing your eyes and sleep. Put your headphones on, let joyful thoughts flow into your dreams!

"Favole Antiche" (Ancient Tales) is the longest track of the album. Not very long running time, though (8,18 mns). Warm, soft and deep vocals, bass, mellotron and percussion for a quasi-medieval feel. Melodic but not traditional italian tune. That's the wonderful surprise with Celeste. Then the silence, interrupted only by child's voics then flute and xylophono. Then a duo again, between church organ and chorus, then acoustic guitar comes from behind the cloud...fantastic.

Then it's up to "Eftus". Some reminiscences of Jethro Tull? Maybe but in few seconds it is definitively gone. Arp 2006 gently whispering. Flute is convincing, never too loud nor boring or tedious.

Of "Giochi nella Notte" I've said before. I only add to what I say that I think this is the most proggy and interesting track of the album. From minute 2 on your ears will be pleased. Drums and sax winded by mellotron. Then flute. Again.

"La Grande Isola" (the Great Island) is another well inspired song with remarkable nice arp 2006 solo at the end, softly fading out.

"La Danza del Fato" (Fate's Dance) is a more short track (3,52 mns)which is in the same vein of all the previous stuff. The closer "L'Imbroglio" (The Fraud) is another excellent song, another quasi-medieval effort. Simply the icing on the cake!

After so many listening now I know that Celeste is very original stuff! Believe in me, people. If you want to take a break, sometimes, from all those usual technicisms, this one is for you. Give it the chance of more spins, please. You'll thank me. No wonder this is voted the best italian prog record of 1976 year!

Andrea Cortese | 5/5 |

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