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Reale Accademia Di Musica - La Cometa CD (album) cover

LA COMETA

Reale Accademia Di Musica

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

2.77 | 6 ratings

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coasterzombie
3 stars La Cometa was supposed to be Reale Accademia Di Musica's second album - it was shelved for unknown reasons and remained unreleased until 2010. Composed exclusively by Henryk Topel, La Cometa was recorded in 1974 by a transitional formation of the band; core members Topel and Frederico Troiani were joined by guitarists Enzo De Luca, Gianfranco Coletta and Pericle Sponzilli, drummers Roberto Senzasono and Stefano Fournier, bassist Carlo Bruno, guest violinist Toni Marcus and singer Micaela Grandi. Even Adriano Monteduro, whom had recorded his first solo album with the group, lends backing vocal duties and inspiration. La Cometa shares some qualities with that album, namely the wealth of acoustic guitar-centric material and shorter song development, but also hints at the previous greatness RAM achieved on their immaculate debut. I feel fortunate to have heard La Cometa and wish it were available in a physical format - the digital download will set you back a mere six dollars. Personally I want to give the release four stars but, being reasonable, it is a luxury and non-essential by nature.

The title track "La Cometa" swirls in with a freewheeling attitude, and is reminiscent of "Ognuno Sa" from the debut. Though the six-minute track is the longest on the album, it never really ventures too far from jammy blues so don't expect a mini-epic. The restrained "Nenae" is deliciously beautiful and my favorite from the first half. The backing vocalists particularly shine, as limited percussion and subtle bass play a more reserved role. "Quando Moriro," with its catchy chorus and playful fiddle, is enjoyable but somewhat one- dimensional. "Aereoporto" seems reflective and is the most 'progressive' of the bunch - check out the cascading guitar in 9/8 just after the second verse.

"Makumba Hotel" has a Spanish feel and creates some interesting tension to break up the album a bit. Though we may never know the original running order or if the album was ever completed as originally conceived, a few more bumps in the road like this couldn't have hurt. "Oratorio," by far my favorite song on La Cometa, is a Beatlesesque hymn and totally perfect in every way. Monteduro's angelic backing vocals provide the necessary balance to Topel's somewhat uncharacteristic crooning. If you do nothing else today, go buy this song and tell me your day didn't just get a little better. "Una Canzone" reminds the listener of the charismatic opener and has a little harmonica goodness going on. "Uomo Rosa" is an interesting honky-tonk and not my favorite here. "Topolino Topel" is a silly closer that sounds like a game show theme song. In all, La Cometa is a worthy addition to any RPI collection and a must for RAM fans. I could certainly think of a worse way to spend six bucks - you can't even buy lunch for that.

coasterzombie | 3/5 |

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