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ACQUA FRAGILE

Acqua Fragile

Rock Progressivo Italiano


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Marcelo
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Not a classic, but nice folky prog. Maybe due English lyrics, or due some tracks aren't really progressive, or because -in comparison with another Italian bands of that era- ACQUA FRAGILE is a little bit weaker, this album never grew on me. But songs, specially the first, are good and worth a listen if you don't expect big surprises or the classic Italian magic easy to find in another bands.

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Send comments to Marcelo (BETA) | Report this review (#498)
Posted Saturday, December 20, 2003 | Review Permalink
emokid3000@ao
3 stars nice italian prog heavily influenced by Genesis (the singer wants to be Peter Gabriel) & Yes (vocal harmonies) though the music is folkier. the singer is annoying when he sings loud bu has a very beautiful voice in mellower parts of the record. All in all a good debut album but not an essential one !

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#499)
Posted Monday, March 22, 2004 | Review Permalink
lor68
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Well perhaps it's worth an inferior score- as a typical emulation of the early seventies- but for sure this was the first remarkable personal imprinting in the seventies - within a progressive ensemble - by Bernardo Lanzetti , as a composer/singer, even though much in the vein of GENESIS and YES. Besides,even by forgetting the question above,I can't think of the sweet melodic compositions inside,which will be better developed in the album "Chocolate Kings" by PFM,without standing by for the next folk tune by Bernardo:He has been able to make his debut album a light work to be collected, despite of the uneven arrangements. Certainly by forgetting his best work with PFM, you can regard this "Romantic-Progressive" album as the best Italian derivative work within such a fertile period for the Italian scene: it's so pleasant anyway and to me that's enough...recommended!!!

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Send comments to lor68 (BETA) | Report this review (#500)
Posted Wednesday, March 31, 2004 | Review Permalink
Proghead
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars ACQUA FRAGILE were basically known as proteges of PFM. PFM produced both their albums, and (on this album only), they recorded for Numero Uno, same label PFM recorded for. The band was known for the vocals of Bernardo Lanzetti, who is basically compared to Peter GABRIEL and Roger Chapman, which sounds about right to me. Musically they get compared to GENESIS, without good reason, listen to "Morning Comes" and you'll know what I mean. There's "Science Fiction Suite", which is an acoustic piece often compared to CROSBY, STILLS, NASH & YOUNG, except, the vocals aren't as polished (given Lanzetti's harsh voice, as opposed to the mellow voices of CSNY).

Some of the other music sometimes reminds me of FAMILY, while "Three Hands Man" sounds more like the Italian prog you come to expect of the time. PFM often gets compared with, don't know why (other than the fact Lanzetti actually joined PFM when ACQUA FRAGILE disintigrated in 1975 - by which PFM was going a more fusion-oriented direction). The music of ACQUA FRAGILE isn't anywhere as meloncholy as many of PFM's best works are.

Also the original LP comes with a cover that folds in to a giant poster. A cool cover made all that much better because it folds out, and it makes owning the LP all that more worthwhile. While I find the album falls shorts of being essential, it's a nice album to have in your collection.

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Send comments to Proghead (BETA) | Report this review (#501)
Posted Monday, April 26, 2004 | Review Permalink
soundsweird
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars I bought this when it came out since it was on PFM's label, Numero Uno. And, for several years, I just loved "Morning Comes", although the rest of the album did little for me. Then, one day, I played that song for a friend who was REALLY into Gentle Giant. I mean more than you and me; this guy was obsessed!! Anyway, he informed me that the instrumental break in "Morning Comes" (where the mellotron swells) was a complete rip-off of the instrumental ending of the title song on GG's "Three Friends". You know what? He's right!

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Send comments to soundsweird (BETA) | Report this review (#502)
Posted Friday, December 24, 2004 | Review Permalink
daniel@bigwal
4 stars Now here's an often underrated Italian prog album. Sure, it's not very original; the GENESIS and GENTLE GIANT influences are obvious. But I feel the music stands on its own merit. This is not a weak album at all, it's actually a very good one. ACQUA FRAGILE plays with great enthusiasm and a nice folksy touch. Great melodies. The vocalist does not put me off at all, I like his style even though he sounds like a GABRIEL impersonator at times. Lyrics are in English, I'd prefer them in Italian but that's not really a problem. All in all, an enjoyable album and certainly an excellent addition to any prog music collection.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#504)
Posted Thursday, April 21, 2005 | Review Permalink
progmonster
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars My God, this is pure crap ! I can't understand how genuine progheads can give credis to bands such like these who are not ashamed of stealing stuff from reknown bands (Genesis, Gentle Giant, and so on...) and then proclaiming it as original material ! I will not waste my time - and yours - by writing another review for "Mass Media Stars" which suffers from exactly the same problem. And on top of that, you have a guy like Bernardo Lanzetti who's singing is quite atrocious, with a high pitch vibrato that can make one thinks about a Peter Gabriel clone with a working dildo wedged in his throat. Lanzetti would later spoil the magic of a band like Premiata Forneria Marconi ("Chocolate Kings", "Jet Lag", "Passpartu"), but, hey, at that time, they choose him, so...

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Send comments to progmonster (BETA) | Report this review (#42619)
Posted Friday, August 12, 2005 | Review Permalink
Progbear
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Not something I'd get too worked up over. It's really more of a folk-rock album than prog-rock (the erroneously-titled acoustic-guitars-plus-vocal-harmonies "Science Fiction Suite" being typical), though you can hear some proggy touches on the lengthy album-closer "Three Hands Man".

Lead singer Bernardo Lanzetti is a bit of an acquired taste. Sounding eerily like Family vocalist Roger Chapman, his braying voice is hard for some to take, but he harmonizes well. Mostly, this album sounds like an attempt at an Italian answer to Crosby, Stills and Nash with some prog moves, largely derived from PFM. Certainly there are many more Italian albums you should check out before this. Not awful, but pretty dispensable.

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Send comments to Progbear (BETA) | Report this review (#43764)
Posted Monday, August 22, 2005 | Review Permalink
5 stars I can't believe how many people are un-impressed by the two Acqua Fragile records. It's like everyone is so ready to fall over the Wakeman/Emerson/Minnear axis of evil, that their judgement has become clouded. These LP's exist in their own element, and are products of their own time, and rules.Frankly, I find the honesty and innocence in these songs kind of sweet, and naieve. You try being a teenager in Socialist/Marxist Italy in the early 70's with rampant unemployment, extreme inflation, while still living under the shadow of world opinion regarding fascism, and Mussolini. Its a wonder punk didn't start there before anywhere else, and it's certainly no surprise that Italy embraced it so passionately when it hit. These recordings opened my eyes to a whole world of Italian musicians attemting to find their way, like some sort of weird rite of passage. Their heroes just happened to be the great prog stars of the day tempered with their own vision of the world. We don't hate the Raspberries because they were influenced by the Beatles, the Who, and the Beach Boys. We marvel at their attempt to meld those influences to create something unique of their own. The same must hold here as well. Please don't believe the people who tear these albums apart. Listen to them. You might even find them beautiful, and refreshing in light of all the crap we are forced to endure on the radio these days. You won't get any million mile an hour guitar noodling, or screaming, scronking virtuoso keyboard arpeggios. You will get two lps of stylistically wonderful music

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Send comments to boe_a (BETA) | Report this review (#80786)
Posted Friday, June 09, 2006 | Review Permalink
Andrea Cortese
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Acqua Fragile is one of those classic italian prog acts, an unlucky band that only released two albums between 1973 and 1974. Acqua Fragile is the starting point for Bernardo Lanzetti his long career, before he entered PFM (he's now in Mangala Vallis).

The eponimous debut album is usually considered a must have by many italian prog lovers, even if - how certain reviewers pointed out - it clearly shows a strong influence from english bands as Genesis and Gentle Giant (this last on the second track "Comic Strips", mainly). I don't think we should blame them for this reason. It would be wrong, also considering the fact that this is a debut album. And what a debut. An already mature work from a new band for the musicianship!

The main problem with the record is that the band still hadn't found their own prog way and so the complex and rich arrangements sound a little bit cold as they try to reproduce the cliché of such foreigner famous groups ad libitum.

The result is very good with sparse flashes of excellence, in my opinion, from a prog - strictu sensu - point of view. The first two songs "Morning Comes" and the above mentioned Gentle Giant - influenced "Comic Strips" are their best effort while the folky "Science Fiction Suite", even if builded up in a sweet, catching and enjoyable melody, it's too repetitive not from resulting, somehow, boring. "Education Story" is wonderful, a dramatic piece changing rapidly into a more relaxed and happy atmosphere alternating with the returning seriousness as in the opening plus some hints of Gnetle Giant (for some vocal choruses).

After the weak "Going Out" the album closes (fortunately) with "Three Hands Man", a proggy Genesis-like excellent tune. One of the best, though.

All in all a very good album near to the excellence status, but not completely. 3.50-3.75 stars for me. In any case the general rating on this site is too low. Heartedly recommendable, but without having too much expectations.

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Send comments to Andrea Cortese (BETA) | Report this review (#102839)
Posted Tuesday, December 12, 2006 | Review Permalink
2 stars HONESTLY, NOT WHAT I EXPECTED

When I started to listen to this album, it catch my mind, because the music sounded pretty enjoyable and catchy at the first instance, and it reminded me to the Peter Gabriel years in Genesis, unfortunately this light similarity turns into a simple and plain copy. From the orchestration to the voice, the influence that the British group has over this italian musicians is so strong that they just couldn't hold it. The other thing that disappointed me is the fact that the lyrics are written in English. It's such a shame that, even when the italian is one of the most rich languages and having such representative bands that turn themselves into a legend into this genre, these guys have the need of doing the crossover when they have the oportunity of having a little bit of identity and originality if they have sung in their own language.

Not even the lyrics reflect some of the extensive folk that the italian culture has as the cradle of the renaissance that they are. In my humble opinion, the few things we can really rescue from this album is the excellent bass job and also the guitar has its good collaborations with some arrangements that increase the quality of this release.

I would really like to make a more extensive review as I usually do, but I think that this general description is enough to emphasize the poor creativity and the tasteless I had while I listen this record. I was really tempted to give it only 1 star, but after reconsidering I decided to add another star.

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Send comments to MadcapLaughs84 (BETA) | Report this review (#113624)
Posted Monday, February 26, 2007 | Review Permalink
memowakeman
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Nice, but something is missing!

It was the year of 1973 (what a year in prog rock) when another very good Italian outfit came to scene with the recording of their first of two albums, sadly they also suffered that strange disease that several Italian bands suffered, one or two albums and the band dissappeared.

Acqua Fragile is a very good debut, as other reviewers have pointed out, we will notice a clear Genesis influence, the guitar sounds very Hackett inspired and also the vocals could remind us a bit of Gabriel. Anyway, the do have that traditional and unique Italian sound, it may not be as obvious as in other classic bands, but they have it. What could have been a mistake, at least for me, was that they being Italian and knowing the acceptance and beauty of their own language, decided to writhe and obviously sing in English, which actually is not that importa since the thing we all love is the music, but i would have preferred this same album but with Italian lyrics, just a simple point of view it might have been better receive by the people and mostly, but Italian prog fans.

Some of the previous reviewers have said (and correctly) that they have a strong influence of big 70`s artists such as Genesis, PFM or Gentle Giant, at the point that some could considere Acqua Fragile as another "clone" band, i dont really think so, every band has their influences and sometimes are placed in their own music, maybe this albums shows an obvious orientation to their influences, and lacks of originality, that is the problem here, though we should focus more in the music and not in if they are a copy of x or y.

This album contains 7 songs and a total of 36 minute lenght, as several of the 70`s Italian albums, this has the same range of 35 - 45 minutes, starting with "Morning Comes" which is one of the better songs here without a doubt, actually is a promising first track with a Hackett-oriented guitar and good arrangements. The second is "Comic Strips", i dont want to steal Andrea Cortese`s words, but actually i have to say that he is (as usual) right saying that this is which reminds us more to Gentle Giant. "Science Fiction Suite" is a nice song when we can appreciate everyone`s vocals and a good acoustic guitar making a folkish / traditional sound. "Song from a Picture" is a boring and nothing complex song, sadly one of the worst parts of the album. "Education Story" is far much better than the last one, here we can listen to a proggier song with keyboards and a very nice drums playing, also some little changes, very nice arrangements. "Going out" is the shortest and probably saddest song of the album, nothing happens if this song is skipped, you wont miss anything. "Three hands Man", contrary to the latest one, is the longest song and probably best song of this album, here we can say that they were a true prog band no matter their lack of creativity and originality, great bass lines and keyboard playing, but again, it would have been better with Italian vocals, this is how te album finishes.

After all, this is aln album that i can enjoy and listen sometimes, i honestly would recommend it only for Italian prog rock die-hard fans, though i repeat, the lyrics are not in English, every Italian lover might enjoy this, but if you are looking for another gem, this is the wrong place, this album is far from being a jewel and it has nothing to do with the masterpieces that we all know.

I would say 2.8 stars, lets give it 3.

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Send comments to memowakeman (BETA) | Report this review (#121935)
Posted Sunday, May 13, 2007 | Review Permalink
Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars English prog clone band

This album has some nice music and melodies, but please be aware this is not a true RPI album. It is a collection of impostor originals from the English prog scene, sounding ridiculously like period Genesis, Yes, Giant, and Crimson in various places. Vocals are in English and there is not much Italian tradition or even RPI style in the music or performance. If you don't care about that, read on for what they do get right: some nice songs.

"Morning Comes" is a classic song beginning with acoustic guitars before a serene vocal entrance. The full band kicks in big at about 2 minutes in with strong bass presence, a Fragile style drum sound and nice guitar solo. There are some dramatic, rather gorgeous peaks and valleys throughout the 7 ˝ minutes. This song falls into the Gabriel Genesis category. "Comic Strips" features Gentle Giant-ish style and vocals to a fault but it is more enjoyable to me than much GG itself! "Science Fiction Suite" features acoustic guitar and Yes inspired vocals that remind me of "Your Move/All Good People." Next is "Song from a Picture" and this is really beautiful mellow prog that pushes all my buttons. "Education Story" really does have vocals that sound like the Roger Chapman. It starts with a hard electric edge and gets a little bit jazzy with some marvelous changes and Squire like vocal harmonies. "Going Out" is short at 3 minutes and quite mellow. It would fit right in perfectly on a CSN album from the early 70s. Very nice harmonies. "Three Hands Man" is last and the longest at 8 minutes. Lush and gorgeous with nimble instrumental play like something from Tai Phong.

Far from essential, this is a title for those who want some original material based on the efforts of the English kings, and in that vein, they did OK. The 2004 Japanese mini-lp sleeve reissue features the usual great sound plus the unusual quad fold-out gatefold sleeve.

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Send comments to Finnforest (BETA) | Report this review (#130748)
Posted Sunday, July 29, 2007 | Review Permalink
apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Neo Prog Team
3 stars Another italian band from the early 70's but this time the weird thing is that this band sung in English and resembles more to the 70's british or US bands than the italian ones.So if you symphomaniacs out there expect something close to the italian romanticism and tradition of prog,you better search somewhere else.ACQUA FRAGILE hail from Parma and were formed around 1971.The band came to birth right out of the ashes of GLI IMMORTALI,a band where the singer was Bernardo Lanzetti.The band made their debut in 1973 with the self-titled album ''Acqua Fragile'',which was co-produced by members of PFM and where Lanzetti was accused firstly of singing in english than italian and secondly of imitating PETER GABRIEL...Well,I trully consider a crime a singer of an italian band of the 70's not to sing in his native language,the sound of the band loses its magic...On the other hand Lanzetti has -in my humble opinion-an excellent non-accented voice reminding and not imitating Gabriel...So,the voice in this album isn't a major problem...

About the tracks now...My opinion and review about this album won't get out of the line the previous reviewers have drawn...The album contains some beautiful moments along with some rather uninteresting ones and is heavily influenced by GENESIS and GENTLE GIANT.''Morning comes'' is a nice starter with Hackett-ish influenced guitar and Banks-influenced keyboards,an almost total GENESIS rip- off,but do not expect the amazing grandiosity of GENESIS.''Comic strips'' is dominated with complex musicianship and endless vocal harmonies in the vein of GENTLE GIANT.''Science fiction suite'' is a pleasant acoustic folk/pop song dominated again by vocal harmonies resembling to DELIRIUM.''Song from a picture'' is a decent ballad in the vein of GENESIS with Gabriel-esque vocalisation and interesting keyboards.''Education story'' reminds again of GENTLE GIANT with its complex rhythm and the vocal harmonies,another decent track in the line.''Going out'' is a boring ballad with little interest while ''Three hands man'' is a good closing track.This time the influences are balanced between GENTLE GIANT and GENESIS,while the track opens with complex arrangments and ends up in a more symphonic sound...

At the end of this listening I almost forgot that this band was italian!So,this album should be better categorized as a symphonic prog one in the vein of GENESIS...An album with some really strong moments worth checking out...One more 3 star rating by me...

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Send comments to apps79 (BETA) | Report this review (#188047)
Posted Wednesday, November 05, 2008 | Review Permalink
loserboy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Acqua Fragile were basically looked at as a PFM family band likely as their lead singer Bernardo Lanzetti would later join PFM itself! They managed in their short career to produce 2 albums in the early 70's with the debut inreview here. Musically these guys carries traces of PFM, Genesis, Gentle Giant and some folk leanings too. The music is complex (not crazy complex) and symphonic in arrangements. For those who love PFM's "Chocolate Kings" will clearly love this album. Songs like "Cosmic Strips" could have been lifted right off of "Chocolate Kings" easily. This album is often slagged for being less than original and although i guess a fair criticism it is still a huge album in my humble opinion and deserves its day in the sun. The opening track "Morning Comes: could be one of the best Italian Prog rock songs of the 70's!. Overall I think the debut album is a great slice of Italian Prog rock and an album i continue to enjoy year after year.

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Send comments to loserboy (BETA) | Report this review (#223794)
Posted Monday, June 29, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars 'Acqua Fragile' (eng: 'Fragile Water') is the first album of the band with the same name and it is sung directly in Enlish, due to the fact that Bernardo Lanzetti lives for many years in U.S.A.. The style of 'Acqua Fragile' is the same style of Bernardo Lanzetti's PFm's albums, also if with more Folk appearence.

I have two preferred songs: 'Morning Comes' and 'Three Hands Man' (the firstand the last...!). In truth all the songs are great but the sound production is not good for me, also if the production is by PFM and Claudio Fabri. This production penalizes the songs but the magic is save and also the voice beautiful of Lanzetti (a sort of Italian version of Roger Chapman [Family]) is saved.

In my opinion if you search the albums by PFM's members 'Acqua Fragile' is a good album.

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Send comments to 1967/ 1976 (BETA) | Report this review (#224727)
Posted Monday, July 06, 2009 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Since this band sings in English it could have fit into Symph Prog as well. But now we have one melting pot called "RPI" so. Anyway?

When one listens to this debut album from "Aqua Fragile", there is no doubt that the similarities with the very early "Genesis" ("Trespass" of course, not the "Revelation" stuff).

Same sort of plaintive and so recognizable Gabriel style of vocals, pastoral moments combined with some strong guitar and keyboards at the same time. These are the ingredients for the excellent opener "Morning Comes".

The second track "Comic Strips" is much more related to "PFM": it is heavier, jazzier and vocals are quite close as well. Somewhat loose and chaotic, which is in total contrast with the sweet melody of "Morning Comes" and can also be related to VDGG to some extent.

The band goes on with some acoustic notes, which at this time reminds me of a tranquil "Yes" part or a "Crosby, Stills and Nash" one. All this is not bad but one can argue that we are more confronted to a cover band (covering many) than to an original band.

Having said this, I am still charmed by the delicacy and tenderness of "Song From A Picture". A folkish and very melodic tune which offers some nice fluting and sweet acoustic guitar parts. Again, it contrasts with the following "Education Story" which is much darker, almost scary. VDGG again mixed with some enjoyable violin play.

The closing number is the more achieved and complex of the whole: GG, Genesis again are on the menu. Quite upbeat passages, but not only for this quite well arranged track. It changes often from theme but the whole is still very consistent. The best song from this album IMHHO.

This work is not very original but it offers some good chunk of nostalgia for some old freak as I am. Therefore, I rate it with three stars. You won't miss anything if you never listen to it, but if you come close to this work, why not giving it a spin?

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#243030)
Posted Monday, October 05, 2009 | Review Permalink
Nightfly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
3 stars Forming in 1971 in Parma, Italy, Acqua Fragile were yet another progressive Italian band that didn't achieve the success they deserved and their greatest claim to fame is in providing the springboard for their singer Bernado Lanzetti to move onto greater things with PFM. That's a shame as they certainly had the musical skills, both in playing and composition.

A criticism sometimes levelled at the band is their lack of an authentic Italian sound. This is true as their sound has a much more British feel and parallels can be drawn with early Genesis and Gentle Giant in particular. However taken on its own terms, this, their eponymous debut released in 1973 is a very good album and well worth seeking out. They make good use of vocal harmonies bringing Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young to mind, perfectly illustrated on Science Fiction Suite.

The aforementioned Genesis influences are immediately apparent on opener Morning Comes which starts with a mellow pastoral vibe like on Trespass. The track packs a considerable punch however with some powerful instrumental work including pleasing organ and guitar solo and good use of light and shade; dynamic stuff indeed. Comic Strips is where the Gentle Giant influences first become apparent with the quirky vocal lines and jittery structure. It won't go unnoticed by fans of Family how Lanzetti's vocals bear a resemblance to Roger Chapman with plenty of tremolo in his delivery.

Science Fiction Suite is all about the vocals, harmonising over an acoustic guitar backing. Song From A Picture is a lovely piece, mellow and tastefully played. Education Story is more powerful with a unison guitar and organ riff. It doesn't sit in one place too long however and runs through plenty of changes for such a short song, by prog standards anyway. Going Out is another acoustic track and they save the longest until last with the eight minute Three Hands Man. More vocal harmonies overlay a complex instrumental structure. It twists and turns through many changes and an exciting instrumental workout. A great way to close.

If you're looking for some genuine RPI then this won't be what you're after but let's not hold that against them. Putting that aside, Acqua Fragile's debut is a well above average release and worthy of 3 ˝ stars.

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Send comments to Nightfly (BETA) | Report this review (#291445)
Posted Thursday, July 22, 2010 | Review Permalink
historian9
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4 stars Maybe not the most original style, but still good music. Classic symphonic of early GENESIS era, all in english, with none of the elements of the italian prog scene that you usually hear, like domination of classical music over rock. Also added to the mix are some folky guitar pieces which suit them nicely. It's an enjoyable listen if you're not gonna nitpick how unoriginal or derivative the music may be , as I am quite tolerant of 70's bands that sound similar, it's quite a different story when a band in the 2000's try to emulate these sounds then they just bore the hell out of me. Recommended to symphonic fans, but not for someone who looks for italian sound though.

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Send comments to historian9 (BETA) | Report this review (#630080)
Posted Saturday, February 11, 2012 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars I must admit I really hesitated in checking this band out because of all of the negative reviews. The fact they sing in English and sound more British than Italian is one common complaint, but the biggest is that they sound too much like other bands. The strange thing with this album is that almost each song sounds like they are copying a different band. Usually a band will sound like one band throughout. So we get strong flavours GENTLE GIANT, GENESIS, CSNY and YES. The appeal for me is the amazing instrumental work and very good vocals. Also I just have too much fun when listening to this so it's hard for me to be critical.

"Morning Comes" opens with gentle guitar and vocals then it kicks in after 1 1/2 minutes with vocal melodies. The vocals that follow are Gabriel-like. Organ and guitar then lead and passionate vocals follow. Vocal melodies again before 5 1/2 minutes followed by a calm. Just an excellent GENESIS flavoured track. "Comic Strips" sounds amazing instrumentally and when the vocals arrive it's clear that this is inspired by GENTLE GIANT. Such a fun song. "Science Fiction Suite" has strummed guitar and vocals that recall CSNY.

"Song From A Picture" has intricate guitar and subtle bass as reserved vocals join in. There is a very GENESIS-like instrumental section before 2 1/2 minutes. Beautiful stuff. "Education Story" is fairly heavy with passionate vocals. "Going Out" has strummed guitar and reserved vocals. Vocals melodies follow as these contrasts continue. "Three Hands Man" is the over 8 minute closer and i'm impressed with the instrumental sections on it.

A low 4 stars.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#760564)
Posted Wednesday, May 30, 2012 | Review Permalink
4 stars Sometimes, we are just too precious about prog. We look to criticise, and for like-sounding bands against which to measure, and revel in complexity and virtuosity and downright inaccessibility, and are more or less obliged to drool over any track that extends beyond 20 minutes (minimum) on the grounds that anything that lasts this long must be an "epic" (and we daren't run the risk of being perceived as musically illiterate). It's all baloney. Whatever happened to the plain old-fashioned love of music simply and solely because it's enjoyable? And here's a band that delivers music that is enjoyable!

Twelve of the thirteen tracks shared between this CD and its successor (Mass-Media Stars) give you over an hour of excellent and diverse music - just enough time to cut the grass and paint the cat. Only track I shied away from (out of the 13) was Comic Strips off this CD. Yes, it's obviously Gentle Giant in disguise, and all the worse for it, too. In my experience, GG were a band whose musicality you couldn't fail to appreciate but whose music never leant itself easily to wholehearted enjoyment - they were always far too obscure and disjointed for that. Had Acqua Fragile steered clear of the GG influence, this CD might have been pushing for the bottom end of five stars. As it is, four stars and very worthy of it. Get the lawnmower out and give this an unbiased listen.

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Send comments to tbstars1 (BETA) | Report this review (#1268965)
Posted Friday, September 05, 2014 | Review Permalink

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