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Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) - The Rome Pro(G)ject CD (album) cover

THE ROME PRO(G)JECT

Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)

 

Various Genres

3.71 | 27 ratings

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AtomicCrimsonRush
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
4 stars "The Rome Pro(G)ject" is an Italian concept album conceived and produced by Vincenzo Ricca as ''A musical walk through the history and the places, the greatness and the beauty of the Eternal City''. The album is mainly instrumental and features a host of guest artists well known in the prog community and each track offers something special. After an Italian narrative from Banco del Mutuo Soccorso's Francesco Di Giacomo, it launches into a scintillating guitar solo layered with dreamy synths on '... April 21st 753 B.C.'. This is followed by acoustic guitar picking and gentle synths and the wonderful electric violin work of King Crimson's David Cross on 'Over 2,000 Fountains'. The violin is exquisite, relaxing and tranquil, and the piece has a medieval Elizabethan feel, and a Canterbury flavour in its lengthy running time. The cadence quickens after about 5 minutes and the keyboard of Vincenzo Ricca dominates.

Guests that feature include the members of Il Tempio delle Clessidre and Mauro Montobbio from Narrow Pass on 'In And Around The Colosseum'. This musical journey is laced with grand piano and spacey synth, along with guitar picking finesse and a steady drum beat. Soaring electric guitars are well executed by Montobbio, and overall the musicianship is brilliant.

'Monuments And Statues Everywhere' features the members of The Steve Hackett Band, John Hackett on flute and Nick Magnus on keyboards. This is an ambient tune with a pretty melody, enhanced by a sumptuous flute passage. The guitar powerhouse Steve Hackett features on 'Down To Domus Aurea' and as usual the legendary guitarist is first class. I also like how the tune speeds up and a 70s organ takes over.

'Caracalla's Dream' features Canterbury giant Richard Sinclair on his patented fretless bass. It is sprinkled through with a floating flute melody and swathes of drifting synth lines. 'A Mankind Heritage...' flows with the saxophone excellence of Van der Graaf Generator's David Jackson. His flute playing is also stunning, and this one stands out as a definitive highlight of exquisite musicianship. '... Towards The Future' is the return of Mauro Montobbio to close things off, with ribbons of flute drifting along, before the bonus track. This bonus is actually more of Steve Hackett, never a bad thing, playing well on 'The Mouth Of Truth'. The lead guitar is embellished with cathedral organ phrases, and an angelic choral choir; again extraordinary musicianship.

Overall the album is a nice slice of Italian prog pizza with all the trimmings, and a hard 70s flavour throughout. It is well worthwhile indulging in this delizioso Italian banquet. Bellissimo!

AtomicCrimsonRush | 4/5 |

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