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4 stars Another succulent gem from Mellow Records full of beautiful symphonic progressive rock somewhere in the vein of PFM and GENFUOCO. APOTEOSI blends soft piano passages with mellotron, flute and acoustic guitar. Tempo is changed quite frequently with major mood swings. I love the heavy moog synth and electric guitar parts which fit in perfectly with the softer interludes. Many of the instrumental moments carry that intricate Ital-prog classical feel. Apoteosii have all the right stuff for this music lover with complex musical interplay, romantic interludes and delicate analog symphonia. The Italian lyrics are delivered quite delicately by female vocalist Silvana Ida who has a rich and lovely voice.
Report this review (#19303)
Posted Saturday, March 20, 2004 | Review Permalink
4 stars This is sure a collector's piece! Beautiful music and atmosphere...I can only say good things about this album 'cause I've played with Franco Vinci's nephew Marco Vinci (a fine drummer) and met Franco too...a GREAT guitar player. So, i can only suggest this album to everyone...but it's just impossible to find it on shop!
Report this review (#19305)
Posted Friday, September 10, 2004 | Review Permalink
4 stars An oft-overlooked gem of the Italian scene. The songs are atmospheric, the playing is excellent, with beautiful use of different keyboard textures, and the female singer has a great voice. Has a typical Italian classical feel, but not to the point of overwhelming the melodies. Definitely recommended for the peninsular prog lover!
Report this review (#19307)
Posted Wednesday, March 30, 2005 | Review Permalink
5 stars I hesitated to give this album five stars as I wouldn't call it essential, but it is a true masterpiece. This is Italian symphonic prog at its finest. The music is very close to LE ORME, driven by great keyboards and a distinct rhythm section. The difference is the guitar on this one, and of course the female singer. The guitar adds texture to the mix and the singer's gentle voice is really the icing on the cake. This beautiful album will have your attention for its 35 minutes, and it's time well spent. Get it!
Report this review (#19308)
Posted Monday, April 18, 2005 | Review Permalink
erik neuteboom
4 stars Here is another great one-shot Italian progrock band from the Seventies. The 5 tracks sound melodic and alternating, the female vocals are wonderful. In the mellow pieces you hear a lot of strings, piano and flute, this often gives the music strong classical overtones. The more up-tempo interludes contain a strong harmony between the keyboards and guitar, the solowork is also very worth listening, the guitar has some psychedelic hints. This album has many beautiful moments, thanks to the subtle and inventive approach from these good musicians.
Report this review (#35895)
Posted Thursday, June 9, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars Very good one-shot Italian Symph band with a female lead singer. Starts out with an instrumental and right off you think of PFM, very pastoral and nice. The second song, which clocks in at over 14 minutes has female vocals. The song has many nice spots with synths that sound a bit dated to me. The guitar playing is fiery and rough, sort of bluesy which contrasts the spacey, bubbly keyboards. The drummer, by the way, is outstanding. I tend to zero in on the drumming more than the keyboards! The third song is my favorite, it features male vocals, more aggressive guitar work, slows down in the middle section and the female vocals kick in very beautifully. The fourth songs is a simple ballad sung by the female lead singer, nice but nothing special. The last song is instrumental and starts out spacey then gets aggressive fading out nicely. Overall, a nice addition to anyones Italian prog collection. My only complaints is the boring cover, shortness of the album and the dated keyboard sound, so I'll round it out to 3.5 stars total.
Report this review (#39772)
Posted Tuesday, July 19, 2005 | Review Permalink
Andrea Cortese
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Somewhere in the universe of prog each of us, old prog tough fellows, runs into a bright lonely star. That's what happened to me when, for my long coveted holidays in Histria, I thought it was a great idea to put in my large bag the cd reissue of this mid- seventies album.

Apoteosi was one of the many italian so called one-shot-bands but, of those many, surprised me for the particular composition of the band. Three brothers (the IdÓ's brothers: Federico on fender bass and flute, Silvana on singing and Massimo on keyboards and sinth arp) working togeter along with other two skilled musicians (Marcello Surace on drums and Franco Vinci on guitars and singing), all them under the supervision of Salvatore IdÓ, the father, who produced this very well done piece of art and also pleased us with the writing of the track titled Oratorio (Chorale). All the five band's members are from Calabria, the famous southern region of Italy which I really did not expect a memorable classic prog band could come from.

I was delighted that the situation of backwardness of southern Italy is the topic the band chose to build up their wonderful concept work. Regarding to the own words of Federico IdÓ, as resulting from the few notes in this Mellow Records reissue cd, this is a hymn to their homeland, a hymn of hope for the awakening from the numbness of that wonderful piece of our beloved country.

All this passion and emotional involvement are the propulsive force of this great opus and the resons to understand the highest standard of quality of what it was thought to be only their debut album.

The main references of the band is represented by the previous italian prog experience and in particular the warm and pastoral production of Premiata Forneria Marconi. This was their starting point. The atmosphere is rather spacey, though, often going to dreamy and theatrical due to the master use and mix of keyboards, synth and classic piano. Nice and mellow female vocals are their trade mark, 'cause it's not common in the prog movement. By the way, I have to admit that the few times that women graced us with their contribution, always it was for excellence, never for mediocrity.

Apoteosi is a dream. And as for all dreams, it ended too soon.

4.5 stars

Report this review (#87585)
Posted Friday, August 18, 2006 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Great!

Italian prog lovers like me , and so many members of Prog Archives, would be agree with my position of consider this album as a beautiful piece of symphonic rock. From Italy, one more of the uncountable bands that gave light in the 70`s and died at the same moment, exactly in 1975, (how many beautiful albums can you count of this year?, sum this one), it`s kind of strange that a band with an extraordinary talent and musical compositions, create one album and then despite it`s quality (i dont really know the reasons here in Apoteosi) prefer to die and not make a new effort.

Apoteosi features female vocals, beatiful female vocals i mean, and a complex and great keyboard sound, to people who loves italian symphonic , and dont know this album, please give a chance to it, it`s excellent and it`s a clear example of the beauty sound of symphonic prog, with the always particular sound of Italia.

Only 5 songs we will find here, the first one is something like an introduction, an instrumental short song, but pretty nice to open the album. Then probably the most beautiful of them all," Prima Realta / Frammentaria Rivolta" whose lenght is almost 15 minutes, showing us the quality of the members of the band, from the vocalist trhough the bass to the synths. Also using the always beautiful sound of flute, but what i love the most are the keyboards, a complex and creative symphonic atmospher created by them, the song has some tempo changes which are always healthy and enjoyable in a prog song, also i think the guitar work is fantastic.

The third song is also great, since the beginning with that organ sound, and the progression reminding me a bit of PFM ( i know, the other reviewers have already said that, but it`s the true it happens also with me), but actually so many bands were influenced by PFM, talking about Italian bands, this third song changes a bit in reference of the vocals, here you will find male vocals, which are not outstanding at all, but pretty good and sooo italian, great as well.

"Dimensione da Sogno", if i have to point my less favorite song or a "weaker", it would be this, it`s better than the first, but the first was an introduction, so is understandable, and attention, this song is alos great, but not as greater as the other ones, again with the beautiful female vocals and the piano with a softer sound, maybe a bit of Rennaissance?, a classical composition tending to be a song to sing, but again, this is also a good song.

The last song has the same name of the band- album, and its excellent, almost 6 minutes of pure progressive sound, excellent bass playing and great atmospheric background. The sound is actually repetitive, but excellent and this shows us the other side of the band, leaving a bit the symphonic side, and entwring to the psychedelic side, simply great!

Man, i really love this album, and as you noticed i didn`t point any horrible or bad moment, so when that happens i feel the need or will to give an album 5 stars, actually i wouldn`t consider it as a 5 stars, but 4.5 worthy stars, which yes... makes me move the computer`s mouse and mark the 5 star thing, highly recommendable.

Report this review (#89913)
Posted Sunday, September 17, 2006 | Review Permalink
5 stars Apoteosi is a perfectly balanced album, the playing of every instrument is of high standard; especially drums and keyboards, but none of them outshines any of the other elements in this album. Consisting of 5 superb tracks, this opus approaches musical perfection, but sadly the lyrics in Italian are out of reach for me. But if they come anywhere close as the music on this album, which I'm guessing happening in my head, the album is a complete work of art.

The female vocals are very rare in this type of music, but Apoteosi shows how better it would be if they were used more often. Suits very well with the beautiful pasages of Apoteosi, and in facts elevates the whole album.

A pure gem for progressive music, like the numerous other rarely known Italian prog albums. I wish Apoteosi went on to creating other albums with the same level of complexity and brilliance.

Report this review (#110996)
Posted Thursday, February 8, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars This is definitely an album to be considered when building a prog collection. The emphasis of this album is on the keyboareds, and more specifically the piano and the synths. The way Massimo IdÓ can play, accenting important notes and not overstressing virtuostic runs, is absolutely amazing. There's a captivating texture to the music that simply carries you away as you listen to it. In the sleeve, you'll find a note by one of the band members (can't remmeber which right now) explaining that the lack of organisation in the music was intentional and that it was the lack of unison between the members that allowed for such a solid work. Many would think this completely ridiculous, but if you look at ELP, or ANGLAGARD, it was the same situation. Each member brings his own style to the music and the result is a mix of Fusion, symphonic rock, and folk that is jsut splendid. In terms of the songs, "Prima Realta / Frammentaria Rivolta" is definitely the highlight, with a great interplay between keyboards and drums. There were no real downs to this album, only maybe that the vocalist sings too softly for my taste (compared to my fav Annie Haslam of course). All in all, a very solid work from this band who, for some reason, decided to halt all creative efforts after this work, making this one all the more worth purchasing.
Report this review (#114893)
Posted Monday, March 12, 2007 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Keyboard rich Italian with female vocals

Apoteosi is yet another of the Italian bands that made one great album and vanished. The group core was the three Ida siblings whose father apparently got them a record deal and produced them. Massimo Ida, the keyboard player, was just 14 years old when this album was recorded. If you plan to add some Italian prog to your collection this should be a prime candidate. The music is a wonderful blend of melodic symphonic Italian prog with some jazzed up rhythm. Primarily a keyboard album it is filled with marvelous piano and moog but also a decent amount of electric leads. The drummer is tight and impressive with great moments throughout. One thing that makes Apoteosi unique is that we have the angelic voice of Silvana Ida on several tracks rather than the typical deep operatic male vocals one is used to on Italian albums. Her singing is a bit meek and too low in the mix but it is very pleasant. The sound is a bit of a problem on Apoteosi, there was obviously little budget and things sound a bit thin. But the music is solid, a little mysterious, and full of heart from people who were likely aware this album would be their only one. They made the most of it in my opinion. Sure you can detect the youth and inexperience in places but you'd be amazed how well they actually do.

"Embrion" is a short and shimmering keyboard introduction for the first half with the band charging in full force for the remainder. I read that the music was a fragmented mess of everyone's ideas and that there was no time to really hash things out so they just used the chaos to their advantage and explored all of them. At times it sounds that way but that's also part of the charm. "Prima Realta" at nearly 15 minutes is the centerpiece and is wonderful stuff. With lovely piano, acoustic guitar and flute, crisp drums and bass, and heavenly vocals from Ms. Ida this track is vintage Italian as beautiful as PFM. At about 6 minutes we get our first taste of the spacey keyboard effects that admittedly sound a bit dated but are pleasing nonetheless. And to top it all off, a stunning and energetic ending. Next is "Il Grande Dishumano" which is more energetic finesse and along with "Prima" is another superb track. We get some fuzzed-out psych guitar and a tight rhythm that would make Bruford proud. Next up is "Dimensione" which starts as a short vocal piece to piano and distance delicate electric leads. Drums come in around 2 minutes and things pick up. The title track is the closer and it is a fiery instrumental rocker which by the end makes you wish that Apoteosi had been given a chance to take their time and do a second album. I bet it could have been amazing. Definitely don't judge this book by its rather bland album cover!

This album is highly recommended for lovers of quality 70s symphonic prog. While I acknowledge there are a few flaws with the sound that along should not stop RPI fans from getting to this title eventually. The young people involved wear their hearts on their sleeves and that always helps win me over. Their love for this music they came up with is obvious. I want to close by quoting fellow reviewer Andrea Cortese who summed up what makes this really special: He writes "....this is a hymn to their homeland, a hymn of hope for the awakening from the numbness of that wonderful piece of our beloved country. All this passion and emotional involvement are the propulsive force of this great opus...." 7/10

Report this review (#126434)
Posted Wednesday, June 20, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars Another great album from the '70

Apoteosi is another italian band who made a great album and after that gone in the thin line of prog history. But for sure they contribute to prog music with this single album from 1975 less or more that others. The fact is Apoteosi sound incredible solid for such a young band and without experience in music business, the bass player is amazing, not to mention the drumer. The female voice is very warm and is incorporate wery well in the music. The keyboard player is the youngest from the musicians, and i guess he has 1975 just 14 years old, and man, he relly knows to use the instrument in a propper way, maybe sometimes is kinda cheese sound but very OK. The forte tracks are the longest piece from here Prima Realta / Frammentaria Rivolta and Apoteosi both pieces full of great bass lines, amazing keys and drums. This album is recommended for prog heads who love symhonic music and specialy bands like Sandrose, Curved Air and even Renaissance. 4 stars and recommended for every one.

Report this review (#126524)
Posted Friday, June 22, 2007 | Review Permalink
Prog-Folk Team
2 stars I do feel like I've wandered into the wrong room here, like who died and made me a progressive rock reviewer? Amidst all the 4 and 5 star ratings for this 1970s "classic", I cannot even stretch to give it a 3. Whatever genius others may cull from their listening efforts, I desire from my music something that does not wander the way my thoughts sometimes do, that reins me in and focuses me, and which has some sense of development, even progression, if you will, between and within pieces. I cannot find any of these qualities here. We rush from repetitively irritating guitar figures to almost inaudible vocal segments to the occasional lush keyboard section, but seemingly without any glue to keep them from falling apart, so they do.

The best I can say is that, in typical Italian 1970s fashion, the album is mercifully brief and only contains two extended meandering tracks. The shorter songs are infinitely better but still seem incomplete, needing to serve as a prelude or bridge to something more, and so they are done a disservice as well. For RPI apologists or snobby musicians only. A weak 2 star effort.

Report this review (#138647)
Posted Sunday, September 16, 2007 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Unfortunately APOTEOSI were a one shot band,which made only one (great) album and then disappeared.They play great symphonic rock with hints from PFM,BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO and other unique italian groups,but there are also influences from RENAISSANCE and GENESIS...Great female vocals,very smooth,maybe the best female voice I've heard so far.The second and the last song of the album are the best in my poinion.An important discovery of our scene,I'll give them a rate between 3.5 and 4 stars...PROG4EVER!
Report this review (#149725)
Posted Friday, November 9, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars If the progressive Rock has many slopes, there are persons who cannot like anyone. To give only two stars to this album only can come from a person who cannot appreciate the classicism of the progressive Italian rock. If the sound is not at all of special one, the music is very melodious and very quite tipsy. The feminine voice is not exceptional but it is adapted. We should not have forgotten what in the height in which this album was done, were not existing sophisticated studios of carving, greatly less in Italy. This album is spectacular specially for the musical inspiration and for the atmosphere that it manages to create, when an Italian classic is for me not losing. The one who likes this album never again forgets and always hears it again with pleasure
Report this review (#176914)
Posted Tuesday, July 15, 2008 | Review Permalink
Italian Prog Specialist
3 stars Another classy RPI one-album band that unfortunately pleases and disappoints in about equal amounts.

It's always a risky business to attack an album based on what it sounds like in the way of influences, due to many reasons, especially since you sometimes can be very forgiving and tolerating when it comes to those sorts of things if there are redeeming features that overshadow them.

Apoteosi is classic RPI to the bone. It's so full of familiar sounds and structures that it's hard not to start thinking about it. I can identify the amazing melodramatic mood-setting capabilities and sometimes impulsive and rushed moves from segment to segment that I love with Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso (piano included). Even the way they accentuate breaks are here! When reaching a higher tempo it's the feisty, playful and rockier style of PFM that blasts out of my speakers. Bass up front with drums and keys with a wandering guitar filling out the gaps in the background. And then there's Dimensione Da Sogno, chasing after the same feelings and atmosphere as parts of Reale Accademia Di Musica's Ognuno Sa.

Does it really sound like that, or is it merely based on what I thought the first time I heard it? I'll stick to the old and proven 'no smoke without fire' in this case. Despite of being a lush, melodic and stable effort it feels safe and rehashed, considerably lowering my interest. Not even the obvious inspiration and passion can save the day. Neither can the beautiful but understated female vocals when they enter the stage.

Don't for a second expect it to be nothing but a copy though. There are elements of Apoteosi that are their own and no-one else's. The strong synth presence is a strength, expanding in some interesting sound experimentations but also in adding a veil of space rock that is unusually strong for an RPI album, enriching the sound and smoothening out the edges in a way that should please fans of for instance Camel, just as the biography notes.

At times it feels like a disparate album, with the composition more relying on surprise and spontaneity rather than careful 'storytelling' and proper dynamic effect, but it's only occasionally a nuisance.

To return to where I started; it's classy, and probably a great introductory record to the sub-genre but in all honesty there are a lot of more interesting albums out there.

2,5 - 3 stars. That's three stars on PA.


Report this review (#189339)
Posted Saturday, November 15, 2008 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is an absolute masterpiece of Italian Progressive Rock!

The prefatory instrumental piece 'Embrion' heralds in this incomparable treasure of an album: a baroque organ builds a nocturnal mood: a starry summer night sky... slow gliding synthesizers wash through the vista like wispy clouds obscuring a full moon. A darkly romantic serenading piano follows, which then erupts into an aggressive Jazz-like attack with an excellent rhythm and bassline underneath wondrous Moog leads from the masterful Massimo IdÓ. This short two minute piece is a masterpiece unto itself and contains more quality and emotion than some band's entire albums. And the best is still to come...

Mere words can not describe the magnificence of the 'Prima Realta, Frammentaria Rivolta' suite. In my opinion this is one of the greatest pieces of music ever recorded. The first movement of this epic is an aggressive tour de force with myriad layers of synthesizer atmospherics and technically impeccable and emotive piano playing. The rhythm section is one of the best in all of the Rock Progressivo Italiano scene. The guitarist is good but often overshadowed by the virtuoso keyboardist most of the time.

The suite takes a dramatic shift into a soft mellow Pop-like arrangement which sets the stage for the singer's first appearance: delicate and haunting female vocals submerge the listener in a fantastical world of unparalleled emotion and languid beauty. Soft gentle cascades of flute and melancholic voice coalesce... a rare angelic beauty results. This portion of the opus is evocative of an Italian version of Minnie Riperton's hit 'Loving You'. This might seem like an odd comparison, but it's meant as a sincerely positive comment... just listen to the two songs back to back and see.

The song continues through a progression of alternating soft and hard themes; every movement of the suite is of extremely high quality and the atmosphere it weaves is inescapable... you become totally immersed.

'Il Grande Disumana' sustains the magic and contributes the most aggressive segments on the entire album. There is a great change of pace when male vocalist Franco Vinci takes over and wails like a banshee for a couple of verses... at one point he sounds close to Rob Halford of 'Judas Priest' when he hits a few particularly high notes in a very theatrical operatic style. I like this delivery very much, it is a great contrast to the tranquil female vocals.

The drummer also pounds out some very heavy double-bass patterns that remind me of Stained Class era Judas Priest. This is an extremely dynamic album... after the pseudo metal portion it morphs into a 'Selling England By The Pound'-style extended instrumental section with great synth soloing and guitar leads.

From beginning to end this album is just perfect: perfectly composed, performed, and recorded. This may just be my very favorite Italian Symphonic Prog album. Always melodic and dripping with emotion, there is never a dull moment.

I highly recommend this to all Symphonic Prog fans, and RPI fans in particular. 5 stars

Report this review (#202760)
Posted Saturday, February 14, 2009 | Review Permalink
2 stars More Mellotron drenched Italian progressive rock.

This time with a slight twist: Female vocals. Although they are not dominating here. This album comes with two long epic tracks and three short ones. The musis is both a bit hard, technical as in fusion, symphonic and well played. There is plenty of Moog, flute, guitars, drums and bass here.

What this album does not include is good melodies or even an identity. If you have PFM or Banco albums, this album and this band is pretty much a copycat. ......With the exception of the female vocals. The female vocals is not particular good, I am afraid. She is painful when she tries to hit the high notes. That's the only difference. The music itself has no identity and no particular soul. Neither is any of the songs here any good. There is nothing here I am particular happy about. It is generic and utter generic, the music. This album is not a disaster, but it is in that neighbourhood. The "art work" is a disaster though.

2 stars

Report this review (#257882)
Posted Saturday, December 26, 2009 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
3 stars I can certainly relate to kenethlevine's opening statements about this album. I have listened to this I don't know how many times and my feelings about it have not changed one bit. Not a fan of the female or male vocals,and the music in general just doesn't click with me. I feel that in giving this 3 stars i'm being very generous. The last track is the only one that I really like.

"Embrion" is spacey to open with bass. It changes before 1 1/2 minutes as piano takes over. Drums and a fuller sound come in before 2 minutes. "Prima Realta / Frammintaria Rivolta" is the longest track at over 14 1/2 minutes. Piano slowly plays to start before drums and flute take over. The tempo picks up after a minute. Female vocals after 2 minutes as it settles. I'm just not into her vocals. Drums, flute and piano are prominant here. I like the guitar and drums after 6 minutes. A calm with piano 7 1/2 minutes in then it kicks back in. Vocals and a calm before 12 minutes before it kicks back in one more time.

"Il Grande Desumana / Oratori (Chorale) / Atteca" opens with piano and mood is melancholic. It picks up before 1 1/2 minutes with drums.This is good. The male vocals aren't so good after 3 minutes. Guitar follows. A calm 4 1/2 minutes in with female vocals joining in after 5 minutes. It kicks back in at 6 1/2 minutes. "Dimensione Da Sogno" opens with piano as synths and female vocals eventually join in. Guitar, piano and drums stand out before 3 minutes. "Apoteosi" is for me the best track by far. This is an instrumental that opens with cymbals and bass and starts to build until the drums lead with guitar playing over top. Just a great tune.

Obviously many feel this is a classic, i'm just not hearing it. Barely 3 stars.

Report this review (#262536)
Posted Tuesday, January 26, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars From the initial whimper of arpeggiated organ in "Embrion," to the tumultuous bang and ultimate fade-out of the title track, Apoteosi's one-and-only album is a wild ride from start to finish. While I don't believe this is 5-star territory, the intricate fusion-inspired playing of the brothers IdÓ coupled with the lovely vocals of sister Silvana put a smile on my face every time I hear it. Four stars lovingly given.

The playing really is first-rate. The drums are tight as...well, a drum and the bass player is always right in the pocket, really one of the more interesting rhythm sections in all of Italian Prog. And the keyboard work, especially regarding acoustic piano, is very tasteful and never becomes boring or overstated. Which is really the trademark of the album; the band never stays on one theme or section long enough for it to stagnate, yet the transitions between them never feel forced or out of place. But obviously, the most unique aspect of the band is the female singer, which I guess you'll either love or hate. If you fall in to the latter category however, find some solace in that there really aren't many vocal passages. Sure, there are only two extended tracks. I can think of many other classic prog albums with a good variety of song lengths. This is music that BEGS to be heard by an attentive listener, and the listener is doing himself a disservice by not giving it proper attention.

One of the shorter songs, "Dimensione Da Sogno," is actually my favorite moment on the entire album. A concise four-minute slab of symphonic pop, with one of those melodies you never forget and an arrangement founded in the Italian tradition. Simply a great song that leaves you wanting more, and a great lead-in to the instrumental closer, which can be heard on this site.

It absolutely boggles my mind that the only in-print version of this album currently available is the expensive Japanese import SHM-CD. A true shame that BTF/VM hasn't stepped up to release this pinnacle of the Italian scene as part of it's Remaster Series. Do yourself a favor, and try to snap up one of the Mellow CDs before they become too scarce. Apoteosi is a worthy addition to any collection, and an essential cornerstone for any Italian Prog fan.

Report this review (#491530)
Posted Thursday, July 28, 2011 | Review Permalink
5 stars One of my favourite "one album wonder" bands from the RPI scene, Apoteosi play a style of symphonic prog which meanders between dark, brooding sections reminiscent of Van der Graaf Generator or the spookier King Crimson tracks on the one hand and light, pastoral segments reminiscent of PFM on the other. The young band structured around the teenage Ida siblings outperform their elders magnificently, with Silvana Ida's vocals resembling across between a classic operatic style and Annie Haslam's work with Renaissance. Franco Vinci's guitar work also deserves mention, as does Massimo Ida's precocious work with the keys and synths. A spooky, foreboding masterwork, of which all involved can truly be proud.
Report this review (#545955)
Posted Saturday, October 8, 2011 | Review Permalink
4 stars There are too many of these. Amazing one shot Italian albums. Why the hate? Female vocals. It's the only thought I can come up with for the words weak, copy-cats, and uninspired comments. I wish others would listen without prejudice and stop leaning towards the Prog Rock or RPI giants for comparison and a benchmark... or as some odd graduated cylinder. It also helps to mention the "He-man's Woman Hates Club" that exist in so many rock circles. No one can let a band stand as it's own... but Triumvirat and Starcastle? Great bands, but you can slam them all you want.

Perfectly cohesive, serene, engaging and angelic in parts with some great intensity and heavy bits most polentone bands (this band is from Calabria... the foot part) can't dish. After a thoughtful run through today, I felt the album was one song. Seamless. It's sure to please some who can tolerate a female lead. Much varied instrumentation and technical prowess with the keyboards (he was 14 years old at the time), killer drumming, strong vocals from Silvana and some nice flute in a few spots... which is all too fleeting. They did a great job creating music for others. "Prima Realta" in itself is like a huge wave. A surge of well crafted power.

With bands like this I wish more could have been produced to see where else they could have gone. After reading some interviews on those who have recorded and played in Italy during the 70's it's no wonder most bands couldn't continue. Damn fascists companies and venue owners!

I have read a considerable rude unfounded review. All I can say is give it some more time, you'll like it.

Thanks Apoteosi! 4 Godlike stars.

Report this review (#613172)
Posted Thursday, January 19, 2012 | Review Permalink
Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars Another talented group that fell to the dreaded one-and-done Italian prog curse of the Seventies (well, until so many of them started making comebacks over the last few years!), Apoteosi of Calibria in Southern Italy left us with this one precious and dynamic self-titled album from the mid Seventies. With a core line-up that was very much a family affair made up of a group of brothers and sisters - and teenagers no less! - and produced by their father, these impeccably skilled youngsters offered a primarily symphonic album comprised of a bunch of scattered little ideas, culminating in lengthy instrumental sections drowned in lavish servings of piano, Mellotron and spiralling spacy effects, constantly busy drumming and fiery guitars, and the use of a female vocalist grants it a very unique place in the Italian progressive works of the vintage era.

Along with `Embrion's brief opening introduction of crashing cymbal storms, rising synth washes and lightly jazzy guitar licks all growing in stature, `Prima Realta' tears through Massimo IdÓ's vibrant piano/keyboard-dominated sprinting musical segments full of power not too far removed from fellow Italian one-off band Triade's `1998: La Storia di Sabazio' from 1973, but also finds time for several placid and pastoral moments to catch your breathe. Silvana IdÓ's voice is sweetly cooing with moments of stronger urgency, Marcello Surace's drums are endlessly frantic yet brilliantly controlled, Franco Vinci moves deftly between classy acoustic and charging electric guitar bursts, Federico IdÓ's bouncing bass leaps around with finesse and his breezy reflective flute weaves in and out of memorable reprising themes that flow with ease. It drifts right into `Frammentaria Rivolta', offering moments of gothic piano and delicate classical elegance in amongst the whirling keyboard runs and rumbling propulsive bass attacks. Silvana's plaintive voice is sweetly melancholic here, but the mood of the album is lifted again with an infectious and joyful whirring synth finale amidst ragged guitar grinding and thrashing drums.

The flip side holds a three-part suite - `Il Grande Disumano' opens as a subdued and stark piano introduction with impossibly subtle electric guitar wisps, but it and `Attessa' spring to up-tempo jazzy life to tear into buoyant and snappy spasms of Triumvirat/E.L.P-like pomp. Franco's brief wilder vocal almost reminds of Osanna, there's even a haunting and sobering spectral organ and choral interlude (`Oratorio Chorale'), and there's plenty of back and forth/call-and-response soloing duelling between all the members. `Dimensione Da Sogno' turns triumphant and hopeful with Silvana singing with great dignity and spirit, and self-titled instrumental closer `Apoteosi' unveils slowly unfolding deep-space glistening synths and slow-burn electric guitar soloing, perhaps the closest the disc comes to a psychedelic moment that might not be too far removed from bands like Nektar and Eloy.

Sophisticated and ambitious but tastily lacking an overly polished production to retain just enough of a grit that perfectly captures the youthfulness, energetic bluster and determination to impress of the young players, `Apoteosi' proves that while the band might have lacked the absolute pinpoint precision of Banco del Mutuo Soccrosso, damned if they didn't come close to their own version of the eclecticism, variety and energetic instrumental arrangements of that defining band. There's probably plenty of more important albums in the vintage Italian prog era, but Apoteosi and their grand little self-titled album with its humble sleeve is a much-admired minor classic and beloved personal highlight for many.

Four and a half stars.

Report this review (#1716460)
Posted Tuesday, May 2, 2017 | Review Permalink
4 stars One of the best Italian prog albums from the '70s.

Very young and skilled musicians, Apoteosi wrote only an album, but the construction of each track is almost perfect, delevoping each theme without boring the listener.

The sounds are very "vintage" but, since both songs and playing are solid and the recording quality is good, they add a "sign of the times" feel that in the end is nice.

I also like the voice of Silvana IdÓ: some say they do not like her because of her heavy "southern-Italy" accent. In fact, her southern accent is undeniable, but in my opinion it adds sweetness to her singing, and it also reminds me of another, much more known, singer from southern Italy: Marcella Bella, a pop singer very famous in the '70s. All in all, I think this is an issue that non-Italian listeners will not get, concentrating on her nice clear soprano voice.

The only defect of this album is that her voice was kept a bit low in the mix, but for the rest Apoteosi is a really good album from the rich Italian Prog family!

Report this review (#1840271)
Posted Sunday, December 10, 2017 | Review Permalink

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