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Lagartija - Particelle CD (album) cover




Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.80 | 30 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars Is a mostly-mellow jazz fusion-oriented album, in no way fitting into any RPI stylings despite the band's Italian origins. Like many other reviewers and commenters, I cannot help but add my acknowledgement of the extraordinary album cover. I'm really not sure what it is about, that photo, but it is extraordinarily alluring, seductive, and beautiful--and I am not a person who is attracted to smoking or smokers in any way or form. (Quite the opposite.) The album is flawed (not always so highly engaging) but contains several jewels that make it quite a delightful surprise.

1. 'Idiosincrasia' (5:10) opens the album with an instrumental which has some interesting drumming and chord progressions. I am not much of a fan of the saxophone but for some reason the playing on this album I find listenable and even, at times, engaging and enjoyable. (7/10)

2. 'Myths' (4:57) contains a blues-based rhythm section with some heavily treated vocals, an enjoyable saxophone 'chorus,' and some occasional interesting and odd electric guitar riffs and chord progressions. (7/10)

3. 'L'abbraccio' (5:13) is when the album really starts getting good. The opening drum and guitars play is quite engaging and then at the one minute mark we are graced with the awesome untreated voice of singer (and bass player!) Sara Aliani singing in a higher octave than the previous song. Awesome PAUL WELLER-like 'jazz' rhythm guitar play. The vocal "o-ohhhhh-oh-ah's" in the final minute are the icing on the cake. (9/10)

4. 'Tete' (4:03) is another instrumental that begins with alto sax soloing over the lounge- jazzy rhythm section. At this point it sounds quite a bit like the French band NEMO. At 1:40 there is a drastic switch into a blues form and style with the electric guitar soloing on his lower registers. Sax returns at 2:22 to do a nice jazzy/smooth jazz solo. The final 45 seconds turn into an ominous almost heavy metal section with lead guitar performing in a slide mode. (8/10)

5. 'Non si puo' cambiare' (3:37) is the gem of the album, a poppy, smooth, seductive journey with the band into the emotional world of (God! She sounds like Penelope Cruz!) I love the jazzy guitar sounds (and there are several different ones employed here) and I'm a sucker for any trumpet play--especially treated trumpet. The baby crying at the end is . . . odd. (10/10)

6. 'Sbrisiu' (3:08) is an electric 'lo-fi' piano solo by non-band-member Fabrizio Delledonne(!) It is performed in a European lounge jazzy style and feel, though there are also Sakamoto/Satie-esque sensibilities to it. Quite nice (though I'm not very fond of the computer program or recording sound the engineers or player chose). (8/10)

7. 'Particelle' (13:11) is a succession of three distinct parts played one after the other. Part one lasts two and a half minutes. It is a pretty mellow late-night sax ballad. Part two switches into a mixed meter jazz piece, not unlike some of the KING CRIMSON experiments for 75 seconds. At 3:45 the plaintive voice of Sara Aliani enters and draws our attention. Unfortunately her singing lines have to follow the chord shifts of the guitar and bass players making it sound more religious and more predictable and less engaging than it could've been. At 6:05 the song begins its shift into the final section with the 'radio' treated voice of some uncredited man speaking in Italian over the simple and repetitive bass and subtle guitar play (and, later, cymbols). At 8:05 the recorded talking stops and the band kicks into an awesomely hypnotic groove over which first saxophone and then treated trumpet solo away. Kind of PINK FLOYD and PAATOS to me. (Kudos to Michele Molinari: Awesome drum play!) (9/10)

8. 'Emilia Malinconica' (4:08) ends the album with a slow, sensitive song with Sara singing in the middle octave that we first heard her. Nice effect with the fast echo/fast reverb electric guitar strums. At 2:11 the rhythm section fills the previously spacious and a saxophone plays out a simple melody until the band kicks into heavy throbbing mode for the final minute. (8/10)

I want so badly to give this album five stars and label it as a masterpiece because its high points are so high, but, alas, there are weak spots'and several of them--so four stars is all it really deserves. It is an album I love to play over and over (and have done for over a year now). I love the singing, bass, drum, guitar and trumpet play and am quite comfortable with the saxophones, but it really is not a prog masterpiece. But I recommend this highly'it is, in my opinion, an excellent addition to any prog lover's music collection. A band I will be looking forward to future releases with great anticipation.

BrufordFreak | 4/5 |


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