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Architrave Indipendente - Azetium a otto piste CD (album) cover


Architrave Indipendente


Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.59 | 17 ratings

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Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars This young and upbeat band came out of nowhere three years ago with a wonderfully inventive and exciting debut that is essentially like every Italian prog release you've ever heard all at once, played with youthful vigor and confidence. It's amazing for a band so young to have such a firm grasp and understanding of the Italian progressive greats and be able to add their own individual stamp to come up with something fresh and full of life. The fact that they originally only released this album on vinyl just enhances their vintage and analogue appeal!

`Architrave Independente' wear their hearts on their sleeves and relish in their love of the classic 70's RPI works, with a small dose of the Canterbury Scene and a pinch of the booming classical elements of E.L.P and Focus also thrown into an intoxicating and original stew. It's an exhausting and frequently disjointed release that may drive some listeners mad with the constantly changing directions, but it's wonderful to hear a band take a lot of chances in attempt to see what works!

Opener `La Spinta' is a blur of spacy keyboard effects, heartfelt Italian vocals, warm energetic acoustic guitar and murmuring bass. Wonderfully for me, the atmospheric violin and fuzz organ solos throughout sound a lot like `Plump In The Night'-era Caravan! The rest of the first side is comprised of the three part 18 minute `Emplecton', full of a dozen fragmented and addictive ideas. The first section is a haze of E.L.P/Le Orme organ, warped loopy effects, gentle acoustic plucking and romantic flute before a twisted messy ending full of aggressive upfront bass and psychedelic noise. Grand piano swirls around passionate ranting vocals before dirty scraping violin, creepy organ, wild colourful keyboard solos and forceful electric guitar chords finish the piece in a slightly downbeat acoustic manner.

Lovely gothic and prancing organ, mourning cello and madrigal acoustic guitar open side B's three part almost 16 minute`Azezio'. A somber and occasionally treated voice soon joins in, easily the most successful vocal section of the whole album with a warm and commanding tone. The piece soon alternates between ragged electric guitar attacks and dreamy acoustic guitar/flute passages backed with thick whirling Le Orme-style Hammond. A haunting acoustic guitar solo for the middle bridging piece before harsh electronics, eccentric tape effects, crashing drum solos and dancing quirky keyboard melodies fly through. The albums brings back the light Canterbury sound on finale `Gli Altarini...', full of flighty jazzy guitar runs, twinkling piano and snappy drum-work before a slightly sinister sounding climax only lifted by the very late Caravan-like bubbling and playful keyboard solo. Pay attention to the lovely underwater-sounding bass work throughout too!

OK, so once in a while the over-ambitious vocals fall a little flat, but if there's one proper complaint about the album, it would be the endless ideas - which is really it's greatest strength as well as a negative! It's frequently difficult to tell where one track begins and ends unless you're paying close attention because every track jumps back and forth between styles and ideas over and over. There's very little in the way of musical/theme reprises, which might have helped give the album a more cohesive format. Each individual fragment and idea sounds terrific, but I think the band could work out how to better arrange all their little ideas into more fully developed extended passages. This will likely come with maturity and continued work, so I hope we get a follow up album from them sometime in the future. Far too much potential and talent to go to waste on a single, though wonderful album.

Four stars.

Aussie-Byrd-Brother | 4/5 |


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