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Gli Alluminogeni - Scolopendra CD (album) cover

SCOLOPENDRA

Gli Alluminogeni

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.09 | 31 ratings

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coasterzombie
2 stars I have tried for years to give Scolopendra a chance. Its dated production, lackluster composition and plodding musicianship prevent me from enjoying it. Gli Alluminogeni were headed in the right direction but by 1972 their brand of heavy Italian Beat had long since worn out its welcome. And although there are some psychedelic influences and unconventional ideas here and there, they are few and far between and can't save this thing from being dead on arrival. It doesn't help matters any considering the band basically disowned the album upon release, citing label Fonit's mix tampering as "too commercial." Ironically, the poppier moments such as "La Stella Di Atades" succeed most. My opinion is Fonit weren't given much to work with, and did the best with what they had. The most glaring oversight being bass. Not bass guitar; bass frequencies. This album has none. A shrill, trebly mess describes much of Scolopendra, an album fundamentally third-tier and for collectors only.

As "La Natura e L'Universo" begins, you notice immediately something just isn't quite right. The sound is phasey and disorienting, but not in a good way. This is not space rock. Despite its length, the song never really goes anywhere or does anything. I guess the silver lining is Daniele Ostorero's drumming, but even that becomes annoying by the 8-minute mark. The titular "Scolopendra" sounds a little better, adding Mellotron and acoustic guitar to flesh out the stereo image a bit more. The opposite is true of "Che Fumo C'e." A flanger effect has been added to the drums, relegating them to the background and ruining an otherwise decent track. "La Stella Di Atades" may be the best song on side one, but even it never gets off the ground and simply deteriorates.

Side two starts with the excellent "Thrilling," by far the best song here. Gli Alluminogeni sound serious, determined and actually interested in what they're doing. A heavy tandem of molten guitar and overdriven Hammond organ lead the charge while Ostorero shows power and restraint in equal doses. Vocals enter near the end and give the song a haunting vibe, amply supported by some epic pipe organ. "Thrilling" sees a band fulfilling their promise, albeit briefly. "Cosmo" returns to a kitschy ELP-inspired sound. "Pianeta" ends this uneven and unsatisfying album. If nothing else, "Thrilling" is worth repeated listens, but the ratio of bad to good is too high to really recommend Scolopendra.

coasterzombie | 2/5 |

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