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Madrugada Madrugada album cover
3.02 | 25 ratings | 4 reviews | 4% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1974

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Madrugada I (3:00)
2. Camminar (5:04)
3. Vieni Nella Strada (3:44)
4. Uomo Blu (6:02)
5. D.M.T. (3:53)
6. Mandrax (9:50)
7. Madrugada II (1:57)

Total Time: 33:31

Line-up / Musicians

- Gianfranco Pinto / eminent, Hammond organ, harpsichord, piano Rhodes and steinway, Moog, vocals
- Alessandro "Billy" Zanelli / bass guitar, triangle, Moog, vocals
- Pietro Rapelli / drums, percussion, Moog, vocals

M. Paoluzzi / acoustic guitar (4)

Releases information

LP Philips 6323 033A
CD AMS/BTF AMS 107 (reissue with mini-LP gatefold cover plus 4 bonus tracks)

Thanks to andrea cortese for the addition
and to Joolz for the last updates
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MADRUGADA Madrugada ratings distribution

(25 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(4%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(20%)
Good, but non-essential (60%)
Collectors/fans only (12%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

MADRUGADA Madrugada reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars A keyboard-lead trio, Madrugada's (Dawn in Portuguese and Saanish) first album came out relatively late (74) in comparison with the band's birth (1970) and the previous 60's credentials (Le Bugie, Gruppo 3, Fuchs, I Condor & Mat 65) and their previous incarnation Terza Classe; and certainly even more in spite of the outside help of singers like Paoluzzi and Vecchioni. So these late bloomers produced their two albums in a short span, a sort of artistic boom, but even then most of the tracks on the first side of the present debut (graced with a normal artwork) are written by the pair, the rest being attributed to "piglet", which I assume is the trio together. But Madrugada is not your typical KB trio in the ELP style

Starting out a bit as if it was a Supertramp album with piano over wind noises, the eponymous track is a short intro leading into a 5-mins Camminar a folksy ballad, showing a poppy side of the group. Vieni Nella Strada is just as pop with a extended chorus and tape effects. Clearly the A-side's highlight Uomo Blue (Blue man) has a distinct electric piano sound and reaches calmly and subtly into Canterbury territory.

The flipside starts on the delightful DMT, and if it wasn't for this hugely neglected cymbals overpowering the whole sound, this track would be their best of the album. The cymbals/hi-hat sound was a problem a bit all over the album, but in this track, it really becomes atrocious. The 10-mins instrumental Mandrax is the album's highlight with its constantly changing soundscapes and Canterbury penchants, while the closing eponymous outro is sung, unlike its intro companion.

Four bonus tracks for this Mini-Lp reissue, two of them of great interest since they are correct live versions of the album's best tracks. Of lesser interest (but still) is an early longer version of Comminar, but we are again plagued by the cymbals problems, but the 06 reunion track (at least I think it is) Reborn is rather pleasant and proggy as well. Had this album not have its cymbals sounds problem, I'd not have such a hard time saying which of their two albums I prefer. Would this album have that problem corrected, the debut would clinch this, but I'll leave it as a draw.

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars This is yet another obscure Italian band of the mid seventies.

The music that you will discover has this definite Italian taste but I would say that there is something missing out there, but don't really know what. It is maybe therefore that they remained so discreet.

Both Madrugada are useless IMO (especially the church oriented closing), and I am not really passionate with the mellow Camminar nor with the straight-forward and simple Vieni Nella Strada which features poor vocals and a weak melody IMO.

There is finally some more texture in Uomo Blu: more variation in the music played as well. The instrumental part conveys some jazzy feeling (good bass play) which breaks the global atmosphere from this work which was too much on the tranquil side. The soft jazz feeling can be listened to as well during D.M.T which prepares for the best song featured on the album.

Because there is one formidable song featured on this album. By far the longest piece of music Mandrax is a perfect representative of the great Italian prog music we are all expecting from this sort of bands. Intricate, melodic, beautifully symphonic and moving. I only miss some great vocals but hey: nobody's perfect! Instead, we'll get a sublime guitar break.

Thanks to this song (which takes up a third of the album length), I rate this work with three stars.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Another soft prog Italian act,MADRUGADA were found in 1970 in Bergamo by keyboardist Gianfranco Pinto,drummer Pietro Rapelli and bassist Billy Zanelli,the later being a member of the beat group I Condor.Additionally Zanelli and Pinto were part of Mauro Paoluzzi's project PANGEA,which released an album in 1976.Actually some of the tracks of ''Madrugada'' were written by Paoluzzi.the rest of them written by famous songwriter Roberto Vecchioni.The debut of the band was originally pressed by Phillips,re-issued on CD in 2006 by BTF with four bonus tracks.

STYLE: Regarding the original LP,side A contains four tracks very fram from the classic Italian prog sound,mainly executed on keyboards.More specifically,after the 3 min. dreamy instrumental intro arranged for classic piano,the other three tracks are driven by Fender Rhodes piano/synth grooves,relaxed bass lines and drums and accesible polyphonic sections,while the compositions present a light rural edge.Side B opens with ''DMT'',where gears lift a bit up with some nice interplays,great moog and organ work and a touch of fusion overall.''Mandrax'' hails as the epic of the album (10 min. long''),where the band delivers smooth symph/fusion prog,characterized by the dreamy piano parts,the haunting organ and its hypnotic atmosphere.Borrowing the dreamy soundscape of the opening track,''Madrugada II'' closes the album in a nice and very lyrical way.

INFLUENCES/SOUNDS LIKE: The two sides differ so much,the first one obviously being in a West-coast style,while on the second one the band seems to draw influences from THE TRIP or soft PREMIATA FORNERIA MARCONI.

PLUS: The second side belongs among the most dreamy of Italian prog's soft sounds of the 70's.Beautiful keys throughout with some excellent organ and piano passages and a good collaboration between the members.The lyrical moments hold also some of the album's ethereal atmosphere.

MINUS: The first side is decent as well,but it's far out of the site's scope.Mainly accesible piano-driven tracks with multi-vocal parts often tending to the beat/psych past of the band's members.

WILL APPEAL TO:...mainly to lovers of the dreamy side of Italian prog and even keyboard-freaks (but with no bombastic moments).

CONCLUSION/RATING: ''Madrugada'' is nothing less or more than a decent release of 70's Italian prog.If only the whole album would sound like its B side...One of the most solid 3 stars efforts.Nice,but not even close to great.

Review by Mellotron Storm
3 stars MADRUGADA were a seventies Italian band (trio) who played a softer brand of Progressive music. I do like the music here but what i'm not a big fan of is the multi-vocals that are sung like backing harmonies would be.That really gives the music a sweet almost wimpy flavour.

"Madrugada" opens with the wind blowing as the piano plays these melodies throughout. "Camminar" is mellow as those multi-vocals come in. Drums after 1 1/2 minutes as the organ comes and goes. It settles back around 4 minutes but it's brief. "Vieni Nella Strada" opens with light vocals and piano as a beat joins in as it gets fuller. Multi-vocals before 3 minutes with a sample of someone speaking with passion in the background.

"Uomo Blu" sounds great until the vocals arrive but the instrumental sections throughout this song are very good. "D.M.T." really sounds like early CAMEL instrumentally at times.There are vocal melodies though.

"Mandrax" is my favourite.Sparse sounds come and go early on then it kicks in after 2 minutes. A spacey calm takes over before 4 minutes. It builds with synths then we get another calm before 7 1/2 minutes. "Mandrugadu II" is the short closing track.

A good album if you don't mind the vocal style.

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