Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography


Deus Ex Machina

Jazz Rock/Fusion

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Deus Ex Machina De Republica album cover
3.96 | 70 ratings | 9 reviews | 24% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

Write a review

from partners
Studio Album, released in 1995

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Exordium (9:15)
2. Res Publica I (2:01)
3. Res Publica II (5:55)
4. Res Publica III (10:11)
5. Macte Aequitatem (4:56)
6. Foederis Aequas Dicamus Leges (5:51)
7. Aeterna Lex (1:05)
8. Perpetua Lux I (2:03)
9. Perpetua Lux II (5:56)
10. De Oraculis Novis I (4:29)
11. De Oraculis Novis II (3:32)
12. De Oraculis Novis III (2:15)
13. Dittatura Della Mediocrita (8:42)

Total Time: 66:11

Line-up / Musicians

- Mauro Collina / guitars
- Marco Matteuzzi / drums
- Alessandro Porreca / bass
- Alessandro Bonetti / violin
- Luigi Ricciadello / keyboards
- Alberto Piras / vocals

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
Edit this entry

Buy DEUS EX MACHINA De Republica Music

DEUS EX MACHINA De Republica ratings distribution

(70 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(24%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(49%)
Good, but non-essential (23%)
Collectors/fans only (1%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

DEUS EX MACHINA De Republica reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by lor68
4 stars OK perhaps the righter score is 4 stars or also a bit inferior (3 stars and an half) cause of the lack of originality, being too much harsh as well, in some circumstances... nevertheless this album is strong and for sure it's their best effort, even though - apart from their excellent skill - this band produced by Raul Caprio (Kaliphonia Records) and some years later by Cuneiform Records, from the point of view of the harmonic solutions and the composition too, made a strong hidden emulation of some 70's Prog-bands. For example you find references to "AREA", "MAGMA" and also some of the Italian bands within the Heavy-Progressive tradition, like "CAMPO DI MARTE", "BIGLIETTO PER L'INFERNO" & "IL ROVESCIO DELLA MEDAGLIA". The vocalist Alberto Piras has got a good range during his vocal excursions, trying to emulate Demetrio Stratos, but he sings in Latin, and this can be a problem at last!! The output is very much interesting anyway, despite of being very "cold" and close to their formal perfection, sometimes without emotion or never minds, this is their most jazzy and experimental progressive album, the best one for whom is already into their most complex stuff!


Review by Peter
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Do you have "brave" ears? Do you like your progressive rock to be challenging? Have you ever wished that the efforts of artists like Zappa, Gentle Giant and Echolyn were just a tad less staid and predictable? Do you often find yourself enjoying "difficult" music that sends your mate, family, and/or pet howling from the room? Does the idea of an Italian prog band who dramatically deliver their vocals in Latin, and play uncompromisingly eclectic, avant-garde music which draws heavily upon jazz fusion elements intrigue you?

If you've answered "yes" to the above, then have I got a band and album for you! Italian sextet Deus Ex Machina, with their wildly original 1995 release DE REPUBLICA, are a bit like the starship Enterprise under Captain James T. Kirk: they boldly go where few men (or bands) have gone before -- then annex the territory! Listening to this CD is to undertake a journey to exotic new places, with many exciting side trips and diversions along the way. Sometimes the trip can get a bit intimidating, even scary; but just try to relax, take it all in, and be comforted in the knowledge that you are in the hands of a highly accomplished and capable crew.

(Indeed, the artistry and musicianship displayed on DE REPUBLICA is uniformly superb, but there is one somewhat sour note: a few of the thirteen songs on the album end with jarringly fast fade-outs -- much as they all tend to do when my wife enters the room....)

Mere adjectives and musical antecedents are woefully inadequate to impart a sense of what is contained here, so I'll turn to the visual arts to try to "draw" my parallel: The music of DE REPUBLICA is the aural equivalent of a pastiche of paintings by Bosch, Picasso and Dali, with a hearty dose of Jackson Pollock thrown in for good measure.

Just as the sometimes disquieting, experimental works of those artists are not suited to all tastes, so is Deus Ex Machina's music decidedly not for the "faint of heart." Don't say I didn't warn you! If you're still interested, check out the sample MP3 available here, then seek out this album. You may well come up with many words to describe DE REPUBLICA, but I very much doubt if "boring" or "bland" will be among them!

Caveat emptor! Highly recommended -- but only for the highly adventurous!

Review by James Lee
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars My father will drive 45 minutes to attend a Latin mass rather than go to the church around the corner. Why? Because the aesthetic experience of the mass is so important- why do you think they use all that incense and stained glass? To separate the transcendant experience as much as possible from the outside world- to delineate the sacred and the profane. DEUS EX MACHINA knows this- Latin lyrics are just one element in their palette used to provide a transformative journey out of the normal world...but only for the faithful. If you believe in "De Republica", it will reward you with a musical experience like no other. The instruments and musical elements are familiar, but everything is put to unusual uses to create an exotic texture. You will try to grasp at the things you know- the violin which begins "Republica II" seems just about to resolve into a distinct melody when the band kicks in with something completely different than anything you could have expected. The rocking jam in the middle is one of several parts of the album that seem almost ZAPPA-esque, but Frank never sang like this- to me, Alberto Piras sounds a little like Bjork, if she was an italian man with the hubris to sing in a dead language. The tightly synchronized heavy guitar sections of "Macte Aequitatem" and "De Oraculis Novis II" remind me very keenly of similar passages on MR. BUNGLE's first album (which in turn reminded me frequently of Zappa). It seems incredible that the musicians could have learned these songs so perfectly; the meter and modes fly fast and contrary to most musical standards, like samples from MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA or KING CRIMSON sped up and randomized. Indeed, there's certainly a bit of KC in "Dittatura Della Mediocrita" and especially "Foederis Aequas Dicamus Leges", which is possibly the most accessible of the songs on the album. It is then followed by the least: "Aeterna Lex", the misfit even in this collection of oddballs, where the vocal madness and processing brings Gibby Haynes to mind (the demented genius lead singer of the BUTTHOLE SURFERS). "Perpetua Lux I", in contrast, is actually pretty in a STEREOLAB/ KRONOS QUARTET sort of way, and Part II acually rocks like a 70s anthem (and/ or 70s fusion a la McLaughlin), as does much of "De Oraculis Novis" - except for the third section, which is a sort of chamber-music jam! "Dittatura Della Mediocrita" sometimes follows this structure, but just as often dives into a moody break with very little warning. I really can't criticize the players- all of whom are impossibly disciplined- or the production, which is clear and detailed. The strings (what, you mean that's just one guy?) are a highlight, and the guitar playing is often full of meltdown precision. The rhythm section is astoundingly tight, but the keyboards only work for me about half the time; the synth sounds and lead lines sometimes bug me, but it is difficult to say that they don't fit when I can't be sure how everything is supposed to fit. It may sound like chaos at first but it spurs a nagging desire to understand the inner logic that keeps me following it from start to finish- over and over again. It's not going to instantly appeal to a lot of people, and the hardcore jazz/ prog/ fusion folks still have the extremely unconventional vocals to deal with. Do I like "De Republica"? I don't know for sure. But I keep going back again to see if I really do, and that's a lot more than I can say for most albums. For amazing musical craft, two stars. Another star for being so unique and adventurous. That leaves me agonizing over the fourth...I just can't do it. In a week, or a year, I may change my view, because I think this one will be with me for some time.

added 8/8/04: I must add a star after further listens. The energy on this album is outstanding, and the vocals are better than I originally gave them credit for. This keeps getting better every time I listen, so even if the music doesn't grab you immediately, keep it around- sooner or later you'll start to feel it. Highly recommended!

Review by Hibou
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I remember coming out of the theater years ago, after watching the Monty Python movie "The Meaning of Life" with my husband. Our brains totally out of kilter, our eyes almost popping out of their sockets and our bottom jaws scraping the ground, we stood on the sidewalk, shaking our heads and gaping at each other for almost a full minute. Then hubby finally blurted out : What the h.... was THAT??? We then burst into a fit of laughter that never totally died out, as the same giddiness grabs us every time we recall the genial excesses of those mighty Python sketches.

That's exactly the kind of lunacy DEUS EX MACHINA delivers on "De Republica": strange, bizarre, excessive and absolutely genial. The entire album is a roller-coaster ride of frantic be-bop, jazz-rock, fusion, classical, even operatic sounds. It's KING CRIMSON on steroids, Jean-Luc Ponty on speed, Jan Akkerman gone completely wacko.

This music is intricate, jerky, even chaotic, but never improvised. Its furious tempo and constant turn-abouts create a tension that is both unnerving and exciting, and the album is full of incredible melodic hooks (this, coming from a symphonic prog lover, should tell you something about its melodious merits). And the musicianship is as tight as can be: from the blazing guitars, incendiary drums and killer bass down to the feverish violin (so Ponty like) and the less noticeable but so appropriate keyboard interventions, eveything gels perfectly. A veritable molotov cocktail of demented prog.

As for vocalist Alberto Piras - call him a prog Pavarotti - some of you will undoubtedly want to whack him over the head (preferably with a heavy object). A real 'in-your-face' type of voice, if you know what I mean - something like a shrieking human saxophone blasting straight into your ear canal. In other words, you either like him or loathe him; but you'll have the admit the man has incredible vocal skills and talent to boot. From begining to end, he is totally in control of his art. He sings in Latin, you say? Oh, my, I'm always too overwhelmed by those vocal pyrotechnics to actually notice 'what' he is saying.

Like a freight train roaring through a china shop, the music of "De Republica" simply can't be ignored. It definitely takes some getting used to (readers beware: this is not your easy-listening, Camelogue type of prog), but the trip is well worth it. I am totally enamoured with this album and convinced I'll still be listening to it with equal pleasure many years ahead. Definitely worth looking up: "De Republica" really cooks! Worth a full 4.8 stars, the remaining 0.2 due to the unforgiveable fade-outs on practically all but the last track.

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This album succeeds first in being adventurous, second in having very accomplished playing, but there is the third issue: connecting with or grabbing the listener on an emotional level. For me they didn't nail the third one.

Highly adventurous music mixing Italian progressive jazz like Area with modern near-metal sound, amid violins and Latin vocals. Wild and crazy, this is music guaranteed to make your spouse produce divorce papers if played too often. They sound like a modern Italian Gentle Giant on steroids.

But like I said, emotionally it just didn't happen for me after many plays. The sound is quite cold and not organic, and leaves me watching the clock when I'm listening to it. Perhaps I'm not cerebral enough as this title has gotten much praise but I need the music to move me, not just impress me. But 3 stars for the acknowledged highly accomplished playing and unique sound.

If you think you'd like a mix of Gentle Giant with Area but with a modern hard edge, by all means try this.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars I've felt for a lomg time now that DEUS EX MACHINA have continued where AREA left off. That adventerous style of music with a vocalist who can dominate any time he feels like it. This particular album is where they came into their own and they haven't looked back. "De Republica" is rated as DEUS EX MACHINA's second best album on the Gnosis site and I agree that this album is without question a must have.

This first track "Exordium" is unlike any song i've heard from this band. It's stunningly beautiful with rare laid back vocals with acoutic guitar leading the way early. Gorgeous. It kicks in briefly after 2 minutes with organ, then before 3 minutes violin and drums come to the fore as vocals stop. Heavy guitar and organ follows. Incredible ! And a top three track. "Res Publica I" kicks in right away with vocals and a full sound. Horns a minute in after the vocals stop. "Res Publica II" opens with violin then the vocals join in. Drums and a full sound after a minute. It settles a minute later then the violin starts to dominate. Organ, drums and guitar after 3 minutes. Hell ya ! Vocals are back. Organ dominates late. "Res Publica III" has a Fusion flavour to start as keys then drums lead. I love how this sounds then we get a change after 3 minutes as the tempo picks up and vocals join in. Nice guitar 4 minutes in and the bass is prominant. Keyboards are back then the violin arrives. It's very AREA-like before 5 1/2 minutes. A top three tune. "Macte Aequitatem" features pounding drums as the guitar attacks. Vocals then violin follows as it settles briefly.

"Foederis Aequas Dicamus Leges" has some good bottom end to it when it gets going. The tempo continues to change here. Check out the vocals 5 minutes in and the guitar that follows. "Aeterna Lex" is an experimental vocal piece. "Perpetua Lux I" opens with acoustic guitar as violin joins in. "Perpetua Lux II" is the other top three song for me. The acoustic guitar to open is beautiful as vocals join in. Organ floats in then drums. Amazing sound. Synths before 3 minutes then the tempo picks up with guitar ripping it up. Then it settles with acoustic guitar and vocals like the intro. Organ and drums follow. Nice. "De Oraculis Novis I" opens with quite the instrumental display.Vocals before a minute. It settles when the vocals stop and the violin comes in. Vocals are back later. "De Oraculis Novis II" is heavy with vocals. Uptempo too.Check out the drums 2 minutes in. "De Oraculis Novis III" is a bit of relief after all the intensity. Vocals and violin stand out. "Dittatura Della Mediocrita" is uptempo with guitar,organ and drums standing out. This is great. Violin then vocals around a minute. It settles before 3 1/2 minutes. It's building. The vocals sound excellent when they kick in a minute later. Violin and guitar follow.

Challenging, yet oh so enjoyable.

Latest members reviews

5 stars This is the album to get. Unpredictable, Challenging, Fresh, and it clearly shows their musichianship. Talent is something that this band definetly does NOT lack. As far as the Jazz rock element goes. They have elements of Avant Garde and Post-Rock which makes for and interesting and alive album ... (read more)

Report this review (#127820) | Posted by fungusucantkill | Saturday, July 7, 2007 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Having not heard Area before this band, this album seemed like nothing I'd ever heard before. And in many ways it is quite unique. But I should point out that if you don't like Area, you won't like this band for sure. Not that these guys are some sort of copy or tribute, only that the influenc ... (read more)

Report this review (#127011) | Posted by infandous | Thursday, June 28, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars First place, the excellent vocals of Alberto Piras. Terrific! Second place, great arrangements, with some prog, some fusion, little drops of avant garde and big symphonic explosions... At last, a very good example of what italians still can do with prog music. Every song is unforgetable specia ... (read more)

Report this review (#40026) | Posted by progadicto | Friday, July 22, 2005 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of DEUS EX MACHINA "De Republica"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.