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Consorzio Acqua Potabile

Rock Progressivo Italiano

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Consorzio Acqua Potabile Robin Delle Stelle album cover
3.72 | 52 ratings | 10 reviews | 15% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1998

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Signori del Tempo (14:00)
2. Robin delle stelle (12:52)
3. Lontana Lucia (11:11)
4. Soli sull'Olimpo (18:05)
5. Robin ....Again (9:42)

Total Time: 65:50

Line-up / Musicians

- Maurizio Mercandino / lead vocals
- Massimo Gorlezza / guitars
- Enrico Mercandino / guitars
- Romolo Bollea / keyboards
- Fabrizio Sellone / keyboards
- Maurizio Venegoni / MIDI controller (electronic winds)
- Luigi 'Gigi' Secco / bass
- Luca Bonardi / drums

Releases information

Artwork: Luca Bonardi

CD Kaliphonia ‎- KRC 012 (1998, Italy)

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CONSORZIO ACQUA POTABILE Robin Delle Stelle ratings distribution

(52 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(15%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(42%)
Good, but non-essential (37%)
Collectors/fans only (6%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

CONSORZIO ACQUA POTABILE Robin Delle Stelle reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Marcelo
4 stars Another wonderful effort from this band. CAP continued the same path: Music based on the Italian classic sounds (specially BANCO), beautiful melodies and excellent instrumental performance. Again, long compositions are highly elaborated and without weak points, showing a very professional band. However, "Robin Delle Stelle" is a half step behind their first album, but it's a gem after all.
Review by Prognut
4 stars Vintage Italian progressive rock textures, with English symphonic touches. Great amazing band that features dual-keyboards ala Banco with the mellow passages ala PFM. A must for any Italian prog music collector....lyrics are in Italian and by the way the CD package will make you drool!!!
Review by lor68
3 stars These guys from Magenta (near Milan-Italy) participated a couple of Prog Fests, organized by Lethe, in between 1997-1999, and have been discovered by Raul Caprio by Kaliphonia(former producer of Deus Ex Machina): cause of these reasons I know them quite well, but my opinion is not affected by this fact...that is usually I don't like such progressive bands characterized by a derivative sound and vintage keyboards too,without any modern touch, even though I can make an exception here!! Certainly the sound of Hammond Organ is the symbol of a great Era (along with the introduction of Mini-Moog Synthezisers), but now We are fitted into 21st century and every Progressive band should have to "work in progress"...however their typical construction of suites (anyway remarkable here) works well, but the sense of "oldness" is hidden behind the corner (the same defects within the albums by H20, always produced by Kaliphonia). Nevertheless, apart from my considerations above, the album is pleasant and a bit prolix too, however being one of the best Italian albums of the recent times. Usually I'm in the habit to give a suggestion to the fans of vintage or analogical keyboards: that is I should like to hear either to a mix of vintage and digital sounds (listen to the albums by Kalaban) or to a "vintage" album only, but with a modern touch, like those ones by A Triggering Myth, in order to see a real music exploration, that could not be finished into the old 70's...this is my opinion and then I like also to give another piece of advice: listen to such a fine album like that one by Il Trono dei Ricordi and you understand what I mean!!

Make your own choice!!

Review by loserboy
4 stars The story of CAP is a bit of an interesting one for this band from Novara Italy who were around in the 70's yet never released anything from this era and were discovered in the 90's by Kaliphonia Records. 'Robin Delle Stelle' (Robin Of The Stars) is a beautiful album full of progressive arrangements and expressions. Essentially this album is composed of 5 epic tracks which cover quite a range of moods. from calm passages to heavier parts all offering great melodies and instrumentation. This music of CAP is pretty much guitar and keyboard driven with some great supporting bass and drum interplay. There is also quite a range of instruments/sounds on this alum with piccolo, flute, piano, breath taking beautiful operatic vocals on title track. Vocals are handled mostly by Maurizio Mercandino who sings in native Italian and brings a certain operatic feel to their music. Other musicians include Romolo Bollea and Maurizio Venegoni (keyboards); Massimo Gorlezza and Enrico "Chicco" Mercandino (guitar); Luigi Secco (bass) and Luca Bonardi (drums). Overall album is very solid from start to finish and may fit in more with the wave of more recent Ital-prog bands like GERMINALE, FINESTERRE and H20.
Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars The magical wonderland of "Robin delle Stelle" (Robin of the Stars) is a wholly original example of the much vaunted and still very much vibrant Italian school of progressive. In fact, CAP are a bit the Italian Marillion, as they forged on in those troubling early 80s when punk, new wave and disco conspired through the corporate music media to assassinate the progressive icons of the 70s (who then were forced into prostituting their craft into pop idioms: "Love Beach" & "Follow Me, Follow You" says it all). CAP had launched their initial masterpiece "Nei Gorghi del Tempo" in 1983 and returned in 1998 with this striking work, a total progressive package with lush artwork loaded with Breughel reproductions, sterling production and masterful pieces well anchored in the classical prog mould, where fertile arrangements are chock full of massive dual keyboards, incisive dual guitar attacks, first rate Italian language vocals and some truly inspired material. CAP are not a bunch of ego-crazed professionals but rather fan-musicians who chose career paths in various business trades that forced them to make music out of desire and not greed. This generosity is clearly reflected in the genuine feeling emanating from the grooves. The 14 minute "Signori del Tempo" opens the proceedings with their trademark dizzying orchestral bombast, full of pleading operatic vocal work from the amazing Maurizio Mercandino, rousing organ, synthesizer and piano work, crunchy guitar underpinnings and sudden contrasting serene passages courtesy of leader Maurizio Venegoni's midi-powered wind instruments ( particularly a booming trumpet sound that is his signature). The alternating fury and calm is intoxicating, keeping the listener constantly on the knife's edge, breathlessly awaiting the next salvo with obvious nods and winks to the prog greats as well as the strong Italian classical-folk song tradition. The title track is another 13 minute powerhouse, with a decidedly spacier theme, wind blown atmospherics building into a stop-start extravaganza with a massive hook, bombastic keys setting sparks galore until the glorious main melody kicks in, Merchandino's crying plea begging to be heard and then a subtle piano motif that takes it all to the stars as the massive choir mellotron sweeps in an upward crescendo that is jaw dropping intense. Fiery symphonic prog this is, my friends. A soft lull is only brief respite until a slide guitar coloring reboots the piece with some Celtic riffing, grandiose vocal work and finally a soprano wailing voice effect that is chillingly uplifting (again similar to Floyd's "Great Gig in the Sky") that introduces the simply magnificent 11 minute "Lontana Lucia", a piano-choir synth- led melody with a vocal aria to die for, an instantly engrossing slice of musical splendor. It is soon redirected by a medieval flute/bagpipe mid-section before exploding into a full fledged main theme upgrade (level two) , abetted by organ, guitar and full rhythm section alliances, slowly expanding in emotion until the surging orchestrations kick the theme to a third level. The vocal effort is simply spell binding and this piece is arguably one of prog's finest moments with a bombastic coda that oozes passion, with electric guitars underlining the main theme in counterpoint with the keyboards. Applause... "Soli sull'Olimpo" is an 18 minute romp that prefers pointing the spotlight on the various symphonic attributes this band has so much of, where complex piano colorations blend with organ darts, romping guitar phrasings and delicate Midi-fueled wind flurries that add a jazzy tinge to all the sympho-operatic melodrama. Masters of contrast, a series of sizzling synth solos set fire to the whole thing and testy guitar flights put them out, back and forth until the Olympic fire licks its last flame. This prized disc ends on a title track extended reprise "Robin.again" which, as promised, reintroduces that sparkling main theme for a last hurrah. A supremely suave vocal aria revives all the previous highpoints, in a more relaxed, less controlled bubble, giving even more expanse to that monstrous mind numbing chorus. Only a smooth band like CAP can end this masterpiece with a tingling "a capella" coda. From all my endless drooling, I think you can guess how many Stelles this is getting. Non sono pazzo! Cinque.
Review by Andrea Cortese
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Consorzio Acqua Potabile is one of these curious italian bands whose history started during the seventies but failed to produce anything official until the eighties and, mostly, nineties. With this 1998 release they clearly show a strong influence of the classic italian symphonic (keyboards-based) production. BANCO above all.

The album (appreciable cover art) is builded up on five extended tracks between 9 and 18 minutes long. The general atmosphere is majestic and pompous. Massive use of keys thanks to the two keyboardists Sellone and Bollea as it was for other famous bands from the seventies CORTE DEI MIRACOLI and IL VOLO (BANCO apart). Emotional vocals for adventurous textures really make the five tracks five epics. Just listen to the catching opener Signori del Tempo and you'll understand what amazed other enthousiastic reviewers. The title track is even more involving due to its vocal crescendo.

Lontana Lucia has a more romantic feel with an interesting medieval approach thanks to the use of flute and bagpipes. Perhaps their most peculiar contribution here. It doesn't help to break the continuous sad atmosphere that permeates the whole record.

Soli sull'Olimpo is the longest work (over 18 mns) but probably the less adventurous. More soft in its middle parts, more ethereal. The opening and the closer sections are more aggressive with remarkable interplay between organ and classic piano.

Robin...Again is thought as the perfect farewell song with more accent to vocal parts and less use of drums.

The only problem with this album is the too much long running time (over 65 minutes) that makes uneasy a completely satisfying listening session. It's not really essential, I think. Excellent, though, if you really love rich and bombastic retro symphonic prog.

3.75 rounded up.

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars CAP is a band who produces vintage Italian symph from the seventies . in the nineties. All the characteristics that you might search are present on this album; but they are distilled too scarcely here.

Emotional vocals, lush keyboards, crafted melodies are at times present, still I would have liked some more guitar play, but this is more a keyboards oriented album. The shortest track lasts for about ten minutes, so epic lovers should be delighted.

The title track features some Floydian guitar to open. But ''Robin Delle Stelle'' is on the hard edge I would say. The whole hesitates between melodic and harder vocal passages. This work is fine but I am somewhat disappointed. The first two songs are lacking some truly convincing parts. They also have little consistency and change from theme too often; which leads to some confusion. Pleasant music but without guidelines.

My favourite moment of this work is ''Lontana Lucia''. It is a passionate track (mostly due Maurizio Mercandino on the lead vocals). After a short medieval interlude, some sweet piano is wrapping you and leads to the bombastic and vibrant finale. This song is my highlight from the album.

The longest track (just over eighteen minutes) ''Soli Sull'Olimpo'' also combines pastoral atmospheres, impressive vocals and fine keyboards (piano, synths), but I am not totally under influence I should say. Three stars.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Six years of absence from studio discography and Consorzio Acqua Potabile return with a totally different line-up with only keyboardist Maurizio Venegoni remaining in his place compared witheir debut's line-up.With three keyboardists and two guitarist what we can expect is an album rich of sounds and balanced between guitar and keyboard sounds.Again the new release ''Robin Delle Stelle'' came out under the umbrella of Kaliphonia Records.

A new line-up but the same good and sensitive musicianship is the conclusion after listening to this album.Five long tracks of excellent sensitive and romantic Italian Symphonic Rock with heavy vintage influences,mainly coming from BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO's style.The new singer Maurizio Mercandino has a beautiful warm voice,ready to cover succesfully the band's music.Organ,synths and classical piano are everywhere,offering mellow passages of strong symphonic content,combining nicely with the melodies coming out of Massimo Gorlezza's and Chicco Mercandino's guitars.A range of different soundscapes covers every song,from vocal-/piano-driven acoustic parts to extensive sensitive solos and Classical- inspired light interplays.

Six years from a release to another album are too much but in this case it was definitely worthwhile.''Robin delle stelle'' is exactly the record a devoted Italian Symph Prog follower needs and every listening ends up as a beautiful experience.To be discovered by the majority of prog fans.

Review by Warthur
3 stars The first Consorzio Acqua Potabile album had decent compositions but lacked the production to really bring out their best aspects; Robin delle Stelle, the followup, has the reverse problem, whereby the album has a pretty good production but the compositions aren't so hot this time around. Don't get me wrong, they capture the golden age of Italian prog wonderfully in a sort of Banco del Mutuo Soccorso meets Emerson Lake and Palmer sort of a way. It's just that they don't really find anything interesting to do with that sound once they've captured it, so they just noodle around with it a bit before they set it free again.

Latest members reviews

3 stars Released in 1998, sounds like 1973. This band was active in the 1970s, but never came around to release anything. Thankfully, they released three studio albums and one live album in the 1990s. I very much like their ambient, pastorial sound. It is a mix of Genesis and PFM. It is also very ... (read more)

Report this review (#261553) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Tuesday, January 19, 2010 | Review Permanlink

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