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Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso

Rock Progressivo Italiano

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Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Canto Di Primavera album cover
3.71 | 206 ratings | 14 reviews | 18% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1979

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Ciclo (4:20)
2. Canto Di Primavera (5:30)
3. Sono La Bestia (4:35)
4. Niente (4:00)
5. E Mi Viene Da Pensare (3:20)
6. Interno Citta' (6:30)
7. Lungo Il Margine (4:50)
8. Circobanda (5:30)

Total Time: 37:15

Line-up / Musicians

- Francesco Di Giacomo / vocals
- Rodolfo Maltese / electric & acoustic guitars, charango, bouzouki, trumpet, horn
- Vittorio Nocenzi / keyboards, synthesizers
- Gianni Nocenzi / Yamaha electric piano, clarinet
- Gianni Colaiacomo / bass, fretless bass, 6-string bass
- Pierluigi Calderoni / drums, timpani, percussions

- Luigi Cinque / soprano sax, harmonica, Mongol mouth harp
- George Aghedo / percussions

Releases information

Artwork: Angelo Lodi

LP Ricordi - SMRL 6247 (1979, Italy)

CD Crime ‎- K32Y 2158 (1988, Japan)
CD Virgin - 7866092 (Italy)
CD Strange Days - WAS-1038 1 (2005, Japan)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO Canto Di Primavera ratings distribution

(206 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(18%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(42%)
Good, but non-essential (33%)
Collectors/fans only (6%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO Canto Di Primavera reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Prog-jester
5 stars One of my favourities from them,terribly overlooked and underrated sophisticated album.Very much Canterbury/CAMEL-related, it contains such classics like "Sono la Bestia" (emotional and complex), instrumental "Circobanda" and such ballads like "Niente" and "E mi veine..."(what a melody!). Highly recommended if you're not quite satisfied with early stuff of them (as I am). Don't get me wrong, I like BANCO very much, but every early album contains few weak tracks and worth 4+ stars only.This one is flawless!
Review by Andrea Cortese
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars With "Canto di Primavera" Banco closes the era of the seventies giving their music a touch of late CAMEL sound, as it evident in the opener instrumental "Ciclo" (4,21 mns). We are far from the richness and complexity of albums as "Io Sono Nato Libero", "Darwin" or even "Come in un Ultima Cena" but there are still some excellent moments of excellent contribution to the italian progressive scene. The sound is more polished and song-based with relaxing and melodic ballads enriched by nice keyboards parts, acoustic guitars, sparse sax touches and even madolin.

The album has been well crafted, I admit it. Delicacy is the key as in the soft "E Mi Viene da Pensare" (3,20 mns). We are not in front at another masterwork as some other reviewers has pointed out. In fact I think this albums is a little bit overrated. It is still a very good effort, considering it was 1979 when classic prog rock was already gone.

The most convincing tracks are: the title-track "Canto di Primavera" (5,39 mns) which reminds me of, somehow (in the sung part), a certain Angelo Branduardi (and it's not only my impression); "Sono Io la Bestia", the most famous track from this album, in a similar vein to "Il Ragno" from the above mentioned 1976 record and the instrumental "Circobanda" (6,22 mns), another live favourite (as you can see in the latest Banco 1980 DVD release).

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars "Banco" has started its descent into the abyss witht their previous album "...Di Tierra". A mix of classical orchestra stuff and some jazz elements. Awful.

For this album, Francesco is back on the vocals. IMO, he is the one who has inspired the band. So emotional and poignant. It is so easy to figure out. Just listen to the boring instrumental opener ("Ciclo") followed by the title track. Not that this one is a great song, but at least some passion perspires out of it. Thanks to Francesco.

"Sono La Bestia" is a more complex song. Too much horn to my taste but not too bad. My fave is "Niente". A marvelous melodic track (thanks again Francesco). Sensational feeling, beautifully light. Some nice mandolin as well but the song is fully dominated by sublime vocals. They really provoke the shivers out of me. The short (but most of the songs here are on the short side) "E Mi Viene da Pensare" also has its goods. The duality piano / vocals works perfectly well.

The mood is a little jazzier for "Interno Città". Off-beat tempo, invading sax and complex structure. Not the best (but the longest) track from this album. The subtle and light "Lungo il Margine" is more sensitive and pleasant. Maybe a bit too mellow, but I far much prefer this style of songs than several other ones featured on this album. Extremely peaceful but not boring.

The closing instrumental number won't convince me : too much sax, no melodic passages. Just another jazzy stuff.

"Canto Di Primavera" is not a great album. Of course when you compare it with "...Di Terra" it might sound great.I would say, five out of ten. So, let's upgrade it to three stars. IMO, this album is totally overrated.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars This is the last BANCO album of the seventies and they go out on a high. Fans need to know that the fire and dynamics of their earlier works is not here, this is more subtle yet nonetheless very impressive. It's all about expectations really. As long as you don't expect another "Darwin!" styled album I think you'll have to acknowledge that this is a really good album, just different from their glory days. Maybe that's why i'm excited about this record because I wasn't expecting to be this impressed. Except for two tracks this is all gravy for me.

"Ciclo" is a song where unless you knew this was an RPI band you would have no clue from the music. An instrumental that opens with keyboards then a second keyboard joins in. A fuller sound after a minute. I like the horns 3 minutes in and the piano that follows. Great start. "Canto Di Primavera" is Italian sounding all the way especially when the vocals come in, but even before that you know. This song moves me for some reason. Nice bass and better singing. "Sono La Bestia" features percussion early before it kicks in with vocals. Horns follow. This is uptempo with so much going on until it settles beautifully 2 1/2 minutes in. Back to that full sound to end it. Great tune once again.

"Niente" is laid back with reserved vocals. There is more passion 1 1/2 minutes in but this track along with the next one "E Mi Viene Da Pensare" are my least favourites. Both are too relaxed and mellow. "Interno Citta'" opens with piano and vocals. Such a good sound after 1 1/2 minutes when it gets fuller sounding. It does settle some 3 minutes in then the horns come in. Back to that fuller sound to end it. "Lungo Il Margine" is spacey to start then piano and horns arrive in a subtle manner. Vocals after a minute. Love the atmosphere here. "Circobanda" kicks in before a minute with keys, drums and bass. Horns before 2 minutes. This song reminds me of the opening instrumental. Just a pleasure.

A solid 4 stars.

Review by lor68
4 stars An unforgettable and underrated follow-up to "Di terra" (this latter an experimental and more progressive album, but nevermind...), whose peculiarity is the simple but impressive approach of their arrangements, but also a kind of accessible poetry inside their lyrics, which make the present album well worth checking out at least!!

You won't find any long suites here (a-la "Darwin", I mean) and you can get an inkling of their modern style (more mainstream and popular) that in this case does not disturb us, as purists of prog music...their epic style is expressed by means of some shorter songs and the album is quite sophisticated anyway, regardless the splendid vocal approach by F. Di Giacomo!!

The compositions are various, according to different moods, going from the prog counterparts, to the melodic unplugged songs in the soft "Canterburian" style and still passing through the atmospheric tunes, which is a typical "trademark" of the band.

The reissue by Virgin is good- above all talking about the quality production- and after all (as an easier album) can complete your collection regarding one of the most important Italian Prog Bands ever!!

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The end of the 70s have arrived but Banco continues to release consistent progressive albums. It seems this was the last time though, just one year later they would hit rock bottom. The imminent decline is nowhere to be found here though and I believe this to be their best album since Io Nato Libero.

The songs have changed to more traditional lengths and accessible structures, but the material is very strong, very melodic and choke-full of emotion and catchy hooks. The arrangements are very original, subtle and very sober for progressive rock, with lots of acoustic classic wind instruments, piano and percussion complementing the tasty synths.

Next to the classical influences, the music also reminds me of the Ange albums from around 75-76, Banco also incorporates much influences from traditional chanson, folk and vaudeville. But the material is much better and more consistent then the music Ange released in that period, the instrumental sections are very well developed and each vocal line is a keeper. The music is delicate, nothing like the energy boost of the first two albums, rather dreamy and soft-jazzy even, it makes the album sure a recommended title for fans of PFM and Le Orme.

With not one weak song I could certainly recommend this as the first post-1973 Banco album to get, followed by the entirely different instrumental album Di Terra.

Review by Warthur
4 stars Though concentrating on shorter material, the return of Francesco Di Giacomo on vocals means that Canto di Primavera ends up a much more appealing proposition than the preceding ...di Terra. The band's sound had evolved somewhat from their classic symphonic- inspired style, with heavy doses of traditional jazz and Italian folk music taking a prominent place in the mix. Whilst I wouldn't call it a full-on classic like the band's first three albums, Canto di Primavera is a charming and beautiful disc which will delight fans of the band's warm and emotional brand of RPI. Whilst the band would take an even more mainstream direction in future releases, the album retains enough of their former progressive spirit to be of interest to prog fans.
Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Last gasps

As the 70s drew to an unceremonious close for many rock fans, Banco seemed as stylistically lost as anyone. Coming off an instrumental affair which found them benching one of the greatest singers in prog, and prior to slipping into a decade (or more) of musical horrors like their peers in Yes and Genesis, they had one more decent album in their hip pocket. "Canto di Primavera" is far from the prog nirvana peaks of their early 70s releases and yet it is a nice collection of shorter, more accessible tracks. Some fans consider this on par with their best work and while I can't go quite that far, it is pretty enjoyable.

About half of the album consists of sort of an uptempo jazz-rock that is sophisticated and nimble, reminding me very much of what Joni Mitchell was doing in the late 1970s. Aside from the obvious difference in presence between the two vocalists, there are lots of cool bass sounds and guitar chords that recall Pastorius and Metheny in that era. The other half of the album features some stately and refined art-rock with Ital-pop tendencies, and the melodious canzone feel of the lovely title track. Overall the album is beautifully produced and immaculately played as you'd expect from these legends. The sound has changed considerably with the prog "excesses" gone, replaced by more up-front percussions and breezy brass additions.

"Canto di Primavera" is not the Banco I truly love (the first three) but it's worth hearing and for some listeners this one will really connect.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Closing to the end of the 70's and the fading of the prog movement, Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso would face the first departure in six years.Renato D'Angelo left the group, being replaced by Gianni Colaiacomo, the last bassist of Kaleidon.A new album was recorded at the CAP Studios in Milano, entitled ''Canto di primavera'', marking the return of Di Giacomo's vocals.It would be released in 1979, as expected on the Ricordi label.

This would be more or less the last interesting work by these Italian Prog giants, although there seems to be a turn towards less complex and experimental rock forms, as proposed by the limited length of the eight tracks on the album.The jazzy flavor, that has been following Banco since their third album, is again present with Rodolfo Maltese's trumpet and trombone, guest player Luigi Cinque's sax and the clarinet of Gianni Nocenzi always in evidence, offering intersing Jazz/Orchestral Rock tunes, while there are tons of smooth electric piano lines, performed by Gianni Nocenzi.Of course the structures remain in a rather typical Italian Prog path, sometimes close to the jazzier side of MAXOPHONE, with good melodies and the comeback of Di Giacomo adding the needed Italian romantic vocals, which are more than welcome.For the first time the folky vibes are so strong in a Banco album.Lots of acoustic guitars and even a couple of charango and bouzouki performances by Maltese strengthen the more Ethnic side of the group.A couple of Classical-inspired sweet ballads with Di Giacomo's voice in full shape offer dreamy and ethereal soundscapes, while the symphonic touches are not absent either, especially in the more complex tracks, through they are delivered mostly through the use of the rising synthesizers of Vittorio Nocenzi than the forgotten but powerful organ or harsichord of the recent past.

Regarding its prog value, the band took the downfall, entering the 80's, with several studio albums in a Pop/Disco/Rock vein, most of them released on their new record label CBS, in a search for commercial success and only a couple of great live albums hold some interest from this point on.Gianni Nocenzi left Banco in 1983 and released some solo albums (as his brother Vittorio also did), before returning in 2002.The most interesting work by a classic Banco member though came in 1987 and it was Maltese's 'Il gabbiano Jonathan''.'Many important figures played with the group since the 80's, like multi-instrumentalist Gabriel Amato, who afterwards released a few solo albums, guitarist Filippo Marcheggiani from the Prog Metal band Scenario and the expert of wind instruments Alessandro Papotto, member of Nodo Gordiano and later Periferia del Mondo.From the live albums, the 2005 ''Seguendo le tracce'' is propably the best, while the DVD ''Ciò che ci vede e'' from a 1992 reunion of the group is the best optical documentary of a great Italian Rock legend.

With ''Canto di primavera'' Banco say farewell both to the 70's and Progressive Rock with a more than decent work.Propably one of the most atmospheric albums of the band, including smooth interplays, deep lyricism and interesting Italian-flavored melodies.Recommended.

Latest members reviews

3 stars Review #191 "Canto di primavera" was the last album by Banco del Mutuo Soccorso in the seventies and I'd dare to say it was their last Progressive Rock album until "Transiberiana" came out forty years later (this is considering only the official studio albums). The album is filled with very s ... (read more)

Report this review (#2668906) | Posted by Uruk_hai | Tuesday, January 4, 2022 | Review Permanlink

3 stars The last really good BDM album that was released and still distinctly bears traces of progressive rock, in this case, rock progressivo italiano and a handful of Jethro Tull. Giacomo is back and he is inspired as ever. The vocals are passionate and operatic as usual and the keyboard duo has a lead ... (read more)

Report this review (#2271380) | Posted by sgtpepper | Sunday, October 20, 2019 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I love italian bands.I love BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO.I love this album.Great harmonies,wonderful vocals, very colorful music.The title song Canto di Primavera my personal favorites.Francesco Di Giacomo the best singer the 70's scene!Sit down,close your eyes and listen.Higly recommended to all ... (read more)

Report this review (#66512) | Posted by | Tuesday, January 24, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Work released in 1979 "Canto Di Primavera". The sound became software overall. However, the performance is splendid. The variety of the style is rich like "Ciclo", "Circobanda", "Interno Citta", and "Lungo Il Margine", etc.The ensemble is very colorful. There is not violent of the performance ... (read more)

Report this review (#64674) | Posted by braindamage | Saturday, January 14, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This album marks the end of the best period of the musical adventure of Banco: this is the last studio album of the seventies and also the last one that has something to say. Although not a concept-album it has a fil-rouge that joins all the songs, whose melodies are sometimes simple and pasto ... (read more)

Report this review (#12586) | Posted by | Tuesday, December 7, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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