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Il Bacio Della Medusa - Deus Lo Vult CD (album) cover

DEUS LO VULT

Il Bacio Della Medusa

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.81 | 91 ratings

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Finnforest
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Medusa Returns!

Well well, our friends of Il Bacio Della Medusa are back with their follow-up to "Discesa agl'inferi d'un giovane amante", the album which stunned the 2008 Collaborators poll by finishing 2nd and nearly upsetting Opeth. Following an album like "Discesa" is a tall order and I was pretty certain there was no way I could like the next one better. Well I'm happy to report that you need not be afraid to test your expectation. "Deus Lo Vult" is a punchy spitfire of an album that finds BDM in no mood to rest on past success. There have been changes for many folk's favorite post-2000 RPI band and it sounds like there are out to prove themselves all over again. They sound ferocious and battle-ready so the sword on the cover is appropriate.

The first change you might notice is that they have severed ties with Black Widow Records. They have also parted ways with violinist Daniele Rinchi, more on that later. And then there is the length which my good friend Paul discussed in his review. "Deus Lo Vult" is only 34 minutes long, almost unthinkable in today's world of unending CDs and digis. But I personally LOVE the fact that they did this! First, it harkens back to the classic 1970s RPI tradition of incredibly short albums when the 30-35 minute range was common and even quite a few that dipped below 30 minutes. This made for pure excitement because most of the bands were putting everything they had into that window of time. The same is true here. The band is succinct and putting every bit of gut they can into a short, sweet listening experience. There is never a second of boredom, this thing is alive and kickin' front to back. While there are times when I want a long drawn out affair, these days especially I value the approach taken here.

The material here, composed by Petrini and Cecchini, is as good as before and the performances have improved. While there are undeniably beautiful passages on Discesa which I have on my RPI brain loop, Deus has just as many while being more economical. There is a nice balance of intense, heavy rocking with poetic pastoral RPI, and a few of those quirky surprises as well. Sometimes there is a medieval feel, and this time around they flirt with prog-metal in a few spots. Not intentionally perhaps, but in these sections the speed and aggression are kicked up several notches. The band have all improved as performers as well. I sense a tighter core band seemingly more in tune with each other's musical dialogue, creating some very nice interplay, while Cecchini's vocals are fantastic. I love Diego's keyboard choices and aggressive drumming. Everyone is robust, passionate, and just kicking ass. I will say though that I miss Rinchi's presence on the album and that loss of an independent strings man is noticeable and not for the better. Coming from the world's biggest QVL fan this should not be surprising. But that is really my only criticism of Deus. Though the upside would be that it leaves more room for Eva Morelli who does not disappoint here, great flute and sax just like on Ornithos.

"Invocazione alle Muse" is such a stunningly beautiful opener, pure RPI, grandiose, majestic, romantic, with the first of many Eva flute solos. "Urbano II bandisce la Prima Crociata" has a patriotic march feel with Eva playing piccolo over these gregarious group vocals, you can almost see the guys with their arms around each other belting it out as if a pub sing-along! "Simplicio" is the change-up, an inspiring ballad with Cecchini and Morelli just breaking your heart, so damn beautiful is the vocal and flute with great guitar leads as well. The title track is amazing and powerful, great timeless riffs and memorable melodies. The other tracks are just as impressive and feature more of the heavy prog/symphonic/rockin' side of the band whose influences feel like Purple and Tull yet filtered through the RPI experience with highly theatrical vocals and loads of drama. Don't worry about comparing the album to its predecessor or to Ornithos. Both this album and Ornithos should be on your list if you enjoyed the previous BDM album. It comes in a nice book styled digipak with lyrics, photos, and artwork.

Finnforest | 4/5 |

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