Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Garybaldi - Astrolabio CD (album) cover



Rock Progressivo Italiano

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Bookmark and Share
Sean Trane
Prog Folk
4 stars The second album under the Garybaldi name (but the third overall from the group) is maybe their best, but be prepared for a very short track list as only two of them lasting each their own vinyl side. With this album, they only confirm the direction they had taken with the sidelong suite from their debut album. Rumours has it that keyboardist Lio Marchi played on this as a session man - he does not get any writing credits, although he is very present.

Mother Of Lost Causes starts off as a very spacey-sounding exploration, but soon develops superbly what they had promised with the Moretto Da Brescia pinnacle of Nuda. Simply superb double-tracked guitar wailing somehow reminding more of Robin Trower (another Hendrix-ey connection) and very abruptly ended by an almost sonar- echoed repeating key that is reminiscent of a great Argent track. Astounding stuff, you proheads!!! In Italy only Flea (with their Topi O Uomini album) approaches such a complete feast of guitars at the time.

The second track is recorded live and is kick-arse rock'n roll (sometimes sounding a bit like Hendrix's Voodoo Chile played by Trower) and some wild KB-guitars (Purple-like) call and response. This track is not quite as proggy as the previous one, but shows another facet (improvising) of the group. Pity these guys stopped so soon, even if Fossatti will make further records.

Easily their better album, this lengthy solo feast is never over-indulgent or gratuitous heroics and in its genre is a textbook example of its own.

Report this review (#68748)
Posted Wednesday, February 8, 2006 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars One more unusual but pleasant Italian Progressive album from 70-th. It includes only two compositions ( one on each LP side), so is very short.

First song is dreamy melodic composition musically in traditional RPI style of that time. Only the big difference are in instruments: whenever keyboards presents and plays important role, music in total are guitar driven. In comparence with previous album, guitar sound is softer and warmer, more rounded, far from heavy Hendrix sound. Composition by itself is very nice, one of band's very best.

The second song ( or side B of original LP) is very different. It's another long composition, but recorded live in small studio with small team of listeners. And in fact it's pure Hendrix-oriented psychodelic bluesy song. No prog elements there at all.

In total, the album is short, but leaves it's traces in your head and your heart. Quite unusual guitar-hero oriented music for Italian bands of period. But songs are melodic, sound openly and catch you with their warm melodism.

Report this review (#240961)
Posted Wednesday, September 23, 2009 | Review Permalink
3 stars I quite liked their first two albums (each one rated with three stars), if you would accept that "Gleeman and Garybaldi was a one and only band.

This one starts with a more keyboards approach and deep psychedelic texture. Some sort of very early Floydean impression combined with a definite Italian flavour. Quite well achieved to tell the truth. Poetic (I'm referring to the music, since I don't grab too much of the Italian language), and full of harmony.

The true prog feel has never been as deep than during this epic, and the usual and great "Hendrix" feel enters the scene somewhere at half-time. I have to admit though that this portion is not my fave one: it doesn't reach the ankle of the master for a good while, but then finally "Bambi Fossatti" shines as he did in the previous albums: a good (but not great) guitar moment.

Still, what prevails globally on this epic are the keys. Some excellent (but short) mellotron lines are wonderfully sustaining the fine guitar work during the excellent closing part.

The second and epic track was recorded live and has little to share with its first counterpart. "Sette" is fully "Hendrix" oriented even if during brief moments, keyboards are surging (but this was a standard for the band).

This track is heavy and bluesy and features a lot of guitar maestria of course. Like Hughes mentioned, there are some fine call and response between keys and guitar (while both Led Zep and Purple were doing this on a vocal / guitar base). This live performance holds a lot of improvisations and can definitely be considered as a tribute to the great man. But IMHHO it lacks of truly great moments.

Three stars for this good album.

Report this review (#244939)
Posted Friday, October 16, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars Garybaldi's last album ever is made up of only two long epic tracks: "Madre di cose perdute" and "Sette?", but that's enough to give us an absolute pearl of the genre.

What is absolutely evident for all to see is Bambi Fossati's Hendrix-influenced guitar playing and song writing style, infact the opening track seems to own a lot to "1983...(a merman I should turn to be)" from "Electric Ladyland". Not to mention how the second track recalls very closely "Voodoo Child" , not only in the musical structure, but also in the informal context in which the song was recorded: in other words a very long jam session, however brilliant.

This record differs very much from Garybaldi's previous release "Nuda", a work with much more keyboards and much closer to a "symphonic" prog sound; "Astrolabio" is totally different: the guitar reigns on everything, and the sound of the band is much closer to psychedelic /space rock kind of thing.

From a chronological point of view Fossati's guitar playing is incredible, considered the Italian guitarists scene of the time.

The record in the end risults very homogeneous and very enjoyable to the listener, and it is different from anything else in Rock Progressivo Italiano: a truly unique sound and style, powerful, evocative and visionary; impossible to ignore.

A truly gem, a must have.

Report this review (#259337)
Posted Monday, January 4, 2010 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
4 stars In my opinion this is a huge improvement over "Nuda" the debut.Those Jimi Hendrix hero worship moments in the vocals and guitar work are not so obvious here, in fact they're all but gone. Bambi Fossatti the guitarist is such an amazing player he really doesn't need to imitate anyone. I really like the fact that this album consists of two over 20 minute suites, it gives Bambi and the band lots of time to stretch out and experiment.

"Madre Di Cose Perdute" opens with the sounds of birds as relaxed guitar sounds come and go.Drums and organ 2 minutes in, reserved vocals 2 1/2 minutes. A change after 7 minutes as it builds quickly and becomes fuller sounding. Nice. The guitar is soloing beautifully as the bass throbs and the drums beat. A calm before 10 minutes with guitar expressions.The beat is back 12 1/2 minutes in as the guitar continues. An earlier theme returns 15 1/2 minutes in and the guitar is fantastico ! The theme ends 19 minutes in as we get some laid back organ with bass to the end.

"Sette?" is actually a live track. We hear it introduced then this excellent bass line comes in with guitar and drums in tow. It kicks in at 1 1/2 minutes.The organ dominates after 2 minutes. It's the guitar's turn before 4 minutes to lead. Vocals before 5 minutes. Love the guitar here. Check out the guitar / organ interplay before 8 minutes. Vocals are back 9 minutes in but he's pretty much speaking the words. His guitar is talking too. It picks up before 12 minutes with singing. A calm a minute later then the guitar starts to solo. Incredible performance here. A change 16 minutes in as the organ takes over. The guitar is back after 18 minutes. A huge applause ends it.

A solid 4 star album.

Report this review (#302409)
Posted Wednesday, October 6, 2010 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Garybaldi belonged among the popular Rock bands in early-70's, performing regularly at the most famous Italian open festivals and supporting acts such as Uriah Heep, Van Der Graaf Generator and Santana on their Italian tours.Prior to the recordings of a second album Lio Marchi and Angelo Traverso left Garybaldi, who were reduced to a trio with the addition of Sandro Serra on bass only.However the new album features Marchi as a guest musician on keyboards.For ''Astrolabio'' the band signed a contract with Fonit, which released the album in 1973.

This one contains two sidelong pieces only for a total time of 43 minutes, the opening one was recorded in studio and the second one was taped live.Both are good examples of guitar-oriented Psychedelic/Prog Rock with Fossati's guitar in evidence.Not technically explicit, both long tracks are based on atmospheric soundscapes, intense singing and Fossati's stretched guitar solos with a pretty old-fashioned sound and many moments with a quite loose playing.Some vocal melodies in here have a bit of a poppier tendency similar to 60's stylings, but the majority goes straight into jamming guitar fists, low-tempo groovy lines and some more fiery textures with Fossati's impressive solos in a HENDRIX style.The presence of Lio Marchi is responsible for some of the tunes close to Classic Italian Prog, coloring the sound with beautiful symphonic images or just supporting in the background with his Hammond organ.''Madre di cose perdute'' is propably the best of the two pieces, pretty solid effort with Fossati's displaying a wide variety of moods with both attacking riff scratching and melodic solos and Marchi's work being exetremely balanced.The live-recorded ''Sette?'' is even more guitar-oriented, tending to improvised performances, with ovestretched soloing and a less balanced sound overall.Still some of Fossati's most complex executions appear in this track.

Garybaldi officially folded in 1973, giving rise to a new Fossati project in 1974, Bambibanda e Melodie, which had a more jazzy but still charming style.Garybaldi were brought again out of dust by Fossati in late 80's, releasing two more albums, ''Blokko 45'' and ''La ragione e il torto'', both having a limited interest for Prog fans.An archival release, the 2010 LP ''Note Perdute'', containing some previously unreleased material, seems like a nice document, and in 2011 comes the release of ''Live in Bloom'', an interesting live album.

''Astrolabio'' marks the second and last official album of Garybaldi from the 70's.The opening piece tops up any previous or future piece recorded by the band, while ''Sette?" is rather uneven, abstract and less convincing, still some of Fossati's best guitar lines are included in here.Recommended overall.

Report this review (#1139200)
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2014 | Review Permalink

GARYBALDI Astrolabio ratings only

chronological order | showing rating only

Post a review of GARYBALDI Astrolabio

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.