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PICCHIO DAL POZZO

Picchio Dal Pozzo

Canterbury Scene


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Picchio Dal Pozzo Picchio Dal Pozzo  album cover
4.06 | 200 ratings | 30 reviews | 37% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection


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Studio Album, released in 1976

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Merta (3:18)
2. Cocomelastico (4:23)
3. Seppia (10:16)
a)Sottotitolo
b)Frescofresco
c)Rusf
4. Bofonchia (0:51)
5. Napier (7:23)
6. La Floricultura Di Tschincinnata (4:22)
7. La Bolla (4:29)
8. Off (4:49)

Total Time: 39:51


Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Andrea Beccari / bass, horn, percussion, voice
- Aldo De Scalzi / keyboards, percussion, voice
- Paolo Griguolo / guitar, percussion, voice
- Giorgio Karaghiosoff / percussion, voice

Guests:
- Fabio Canini / drums on 5,6, percussion on 3,5,7
- Vittorio De Scalzi / flute on 3,8
- Leonardo Lagorio (CELESTE) / contralto sax on 5,7
- Gerry Manarolo / guitar on 7
- Carlo Pascucci / drums on 5,7
- Ciro Perrino (CELESTE) / xylophone on 3


Releases information

KICP 2822

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Kazuhiro for the last updates
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  • Merta Picchio Dal Pozzo , 1976

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PICCHIO DAL POZZO Picchio Dal Pozzo ratings distribution


4.06
(200 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(37%)
37%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
38%
Good, but non-essential (17%)
17%
Collectors/fans only (6%)
6%
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)
2%

PICCHIO DAL POZZO Picchio Dal Pozzo reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by lor68
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars The Italian reply to HATFIELD & THE NORTH: such a pity for the weak production, but the compositions are remarkable, always regarding the school of Canterbury.

Recommended, even though of course it is not a masterpiece!!

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Send comments to lor68 (BETA) | Report this review (#18721) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, April 03, 2004

Review by philippe
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Content Development & Krautrock Team
4 stars In this self title album, Picchio Dal Pozzo made interesting jazzy improvisations, sometimes psychedelic with a constant use of acoustic elements (flute, sax, horn) next to the rock based structure. The mood is rather melodic, relaxed, dynamic with traces of Zappa's influences for humorous, "hilarious" passages. Their sound doesn't evoke the traditional 70's Italian symphonic rock music. This is more a fusion, tasteful exhibition of avant prog influences melted with jazz rock and folk. The introduction is a floating piece with repetitive xylophone parts covered by horn lines. "Cocomelastico" is a pure jazzy tune in the register of Soft Machine (for sax / electric organ dialogues). "stupid", humorous vocals are added to the mix. "Seppia" is the most interesting tune. This is a pleasant, "hypnotic" repetitive exercise made of loops, electronics and doom, "apocalyptic" "fuzz" guitars. A rather "cosmic" experience. "Bofenchia" is a calm, humorous interlude followed by a strange, acoustic trip. "Off" which closes the album is a nice, peaceful melodic tune for piano and flute with a little romantic accent. A convincing, optimistic album.

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Send comments to philippe (BETA) | Report this review (#43639) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, August 21, 2005

Review by oliverstoned
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars One of the most cosmic records from Italy, which combines obvious Canterburian influences, (evoke "Rock bottom" at times), a Zappaïan humorous/collage side and a good dose of space cosmic rock ("Seppia" being quite reminescent of Gong/"You"). Plus a typical Italian style, through a warm pastoral mood. Each piece creates a unique atmosphere."Off" is a delicate evanescent piece. A superb neo canterburyan effort and a must from Italy !

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Send comments to oliverstoned (BETA) | Report this review (#115330) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, March 16, 2007

Review by OpethGuitarist
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Strong powerful Italian Canterbury.

A wonderful release that has always kept me on my toes and been quite an inspiration, Picchio dal Pozzo's self-titled release is a hidden gem in the Canterbury scene, filled with inspiring lines and one of the most wonderful psych tracks these ears have come across. Although perhaps not as essential as Gong's most famous of works, this is wonderful material.

Essentially, I am drawn to this album from the psychedelic Seppia, which has a groove for about 4 minutes that I quite simply call the coolest groove ever. Man, is it fun. Think of it as a musical high, with cosmic influences and effervescent vocals and a pounding distorted line that you can't help but move along with. This differs quite much from other famous Italian works and so it should be noted as soon, as this shares much more connection to bands like Gong and the like than it does to Le Orme, Museo Rosenbach, and etc.

The variety of instruments, stunning effects, and sense of style are more than enough to make this record something to hold onto. I can almost guarantee that those with a love of Canterbury and an ear for experimentation will be enthralled with this release. Give it a try, I'm sure you'll be impressed.

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Send comments to OpethGuitarist (BETA) | Report this review (#117435) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, April 05, 2007

Review by laplace
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars The Pozzo's first and most immediately accessible release shows a quartet of versatile musicians influenced by the psychedelic and canterbury jazz-rock scenes, and applying their own motif to these roots.

It's an album that starts slowly, with acoustic twangings sneaking into the listener's perception, soon highlighted by twinkling percussion (metallophone?) and underlined by an electronic basswave. Ninety seconds in and we're introduced to the crux of the PdP sound - layered horns and saxes that pick out and hold positive notes, together forming perfect melodies never too busy or too lazy. Most songs in evidence are vehicles for the wind instruments (which get far more stage time than the humourous vocals ever do) but the music is textured and delicately underpinned by any amount of assorted instruments, the electric piano being the most notable of these. The comparison to Hatfield and the North is obvious and well-founded - think of the excellent suite "Mumps" by that band, shelve the deliberately trite lyrical winks and add italian sensibilities and you have a close approximation of Picchio dal Pozzo's self-titled debut, albeit with a new selection of songs strong enough to hold their own identity.

The exception to this rule is track three, "Seppia", which is far less subtle - after the Oldfieldian introduction, listeners find themselves swept away by interleaving cosmic soundwaves slipping through a fuzzed-out bass riff that could have been borrowed from Jannick Top's repertoire. This would be a wonderful addition to a darker disc, but here we have an album that is otherwise breezy and ironic to some extent, making "Seppia"'s inclusion questionable. Of course, this ceases to be a relevant complaint if you prefer variety to consistency - in any case, it's hard not to gain great enjoyment from such a crazy and primal piece of music. Additionally, if you're listening carefully here you will learn how to correctly pronounce the band's name, which is not as intuitive as it looks.

Assuming that you like Hatfield, Robert Wyatt et al, here is an album that would fit well into your collection - if you prefer the denser sounds of Henry Cow and National Health's approach to composition, you may wish to investigate the more challenging album that follows this one.

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Send comments to laplace (BETA) | Report this review (#119341) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, April 22, 2007

Review by Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars PICCHIO DAL POZZO sound at times like the Italian version of SOFT MACHINE. And so it's not surprising that they dedicate this album to Robert Wyatt. For the most part we have slow moving songs with spacey synths and various sounds coming and going. One look at the album cover and you know these guys have a sense of humour. ZAPPA is a definite reference point and perhaps GONG. Not much in the way of vocals although there are lots of vocal melodies (male and female) and some strange ones at that, including somebody gargling. Animal noises can be heard at one point too. I guess you could say this is zany Canterbury music with a psychedelic vibe.These guys can sure play though and xylophone, flute, sax, acoustic guitar, piano, light drums and synths lead the way. The keyboard player is the key to the band's sound and he is also the brother to the great guitarist for NEW TROLLS.

"Seppia" is my favourite song on this album and it stands out because it's so different from the rest. It has a heavier sound and the xylophone playing from Mr.Perrino (CELESTE) is outstanding ! The male / female vocal melodies seems to answer the instrumental outbreaks. The cymbals clashing, flute and synths all add to this unique song. I like "Off" as well with the nice piano melodies to open that are joined by the flute and eventually vocal melodies again. "Napier" opens with flute and is very pastoral but not for long as various instruments come crashing in. There is actually singing on this one.

The first three minutes of "La Floricoltura Di Tschincinnata" are good with a nice full sound before we get back to the experimental sounds again. "La Bolla" is another favourite of mine. Female vocal melodies to open in this slow paced song with spacey sounds. Some good sax from another member of CELESTE who is guesting on this record. "Merta" opens with guitar melodies and what sounds like chimes. Vocal melodies follow then sax. Great sounding tune. So is "Cocomelastico" with the sax early then we can hear this party going on as electric piano plays on with bass and drums. Nice.

Just a killer album from these Italians who have their own take on the Canterbury genre and it's very refreshing.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#119638) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Review by Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk
5 stars Rarely has an Italian group ever managed to fool most progheads into Canterbury soundscape, into thinking it was possible so far away from Kent county. Indeed if The Netherlands had Supersister, Belgium had Kandahar (and Cos to a lesser extent), France had Moving Gelatine Plate (and Travelling), the US had The Muffins, what could have prepared the unsuspecting proghead discovering Italian group PDP's eponymous debut album. I must say that only Area is close to their sound from the 70's groups, while Stormy Six and Deus Ex Machina are more resembling of their other two later albums. Hailing from Genoa (as did fellow Celeste and pop band Mandillo), the group was an integral part of the local scene and recorded their first album in 76, and graced it with a Gong-like pixie-esque artwork and dedicated to Roberto Viatti (Wyatt). The quartet is lead by keyboardist De Scalzi (the brother of New Trolls' guitarist) and they joined by friends from the cross-town rivals Celeste, and they returned the favor also by playing on theirs.

The least we can say is that this album look northwestbound towards Canterbury for their inspiration. Right from the first side's start (called Hay Fay) on the opening track Merta with its You-like Gong dronal crescendo, leading almost immediately in the impressive Cocomelastico (and its Hatfield meets Soft Machine ambiances) through to Seppia's Master Builder-like groove (complete with hysterical space whispers) getting broken by a RIO vibraphone and flute in the second movement Frescofresco, before segueing into the third movement Rusf (and its Hatfieldian chants and noodlings), the album's start is astounding and outstanding, Bofonchia being a bit of electronic doodling to exit.

The flipside (baptized Fay Hay) is not to be outdone either, as it starts with the amazing Napier where Hatfield meets RIO (a bit the first Henry Cow album with Krause on vocals), and veering a bit National Health. Floricoltura starts out with a jazzy guitar and Fender Rhodes and dissonant chants and singing, before the group enters a strange world where some strange synth layers play a lead role. La Bolla is the slowest track on the album but returns somewhat to Gong's cosmic soundscapes with a Wyatt improve scat. Closing the album is the aptly-titled Off and it does mellow out the mood quite a bit and is a fitting cosmic outro, even if the weaker link on the album.

Definitely a UFO in Italy's sky, this album seems to be coming from Planet Gong's Radio Gnome Invisible and it is an outstanding album that deserves to be heard and owned by Italian progfans as well as by Canterburyheads. Possibly my fave Italian album with Celeste's Giorno and Jumbo's two masterpieces and QVL's two albums.

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Send comments to Sean Trane (BETA) | Report this review (#126520) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, June 22, 2007

Review by Prog-jester
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Again my Lugansk bargain store had some surprises for me. One was PICCHIO DAL POZZO and their wonderful self-titled debut album. Italian Canterbury? For sure, I ain’t the first to tag that term on them. With rare splashes of Avant and no signs of English bands’ derivation PDP delivers one of the best Canterbury records I heard. The mood of going slightly mad, tight musicianship and unpredictable musical turns and twists – it’s like watching an Italian movie without a translation :) Highly recommended for Italian Prog lovers/ Canterbury aficionados/ Fusion fans/ Avant freaks. It seems PDP managed to cover any musical area they could!!!

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Send comments to Prog-jester (BETA) | Report this review (#135731) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, September 01, 2007

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Picchio Dal Pozzoīs debut album is a really great Canterbury prog rock album. They prove here that Italians can make Canterbury prog rock with style. This is really a great surprise for me as I had never heard of Picchio Dal Pozzo before.

When listening to the album it doesnīt take long before you recognize the Canterbury jazzy prog rock style. I also hear traces of Zappa in the sax playing, but it is only traces. The music is mostly instrumental, but there are some strange vocal performances in some of the songs. Shrieks and noises mostly, but it sounds great.

The album starts with the two great instrumentals ( well almost) Merta and Cocomelastico which are really great songs. Especially Cocomelastico is a favorite of mine with the fantastic keyboard flowing through that song. The rest of the album continues much in the same style with pleasant and intriguing keyboards, sax and flute playing. Really pleasant but intricate enough to be called prog rock. The song Seppia stands out from the rest as it is a bit longer and a little more repetitive than the rest of the songs. Itīs a very great song though.

The level of musicianship is very high, and itīs always enjoyable to listen to music where you can hear that the musicians are having fun while playing.

The sound quality is beyong great on the album. I would say it is one of the best productions I have heard from a Canterbury band. Really pleasant and with all instruments clearly visible in the soundscape. I really enjoy the many rather spacy keyboard sounds and the way they are produced. Itīs a real treat.

This album is an excellent Canterbury prog rock album and deserves 4 stars and given time I might even have to upgrade this one to 5. This one comes highly recommended to fans of the genre. Curious prog heads who normally wouldnīt be excited about Canterbury should give this a try as I think it is instantly likable and worth a try.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#161820) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, February 15, 2008

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Italian Canterbury?

Picchio dal Pozzo is a very interesting and popular title among jazz fans with a penchant for the avant garde, psych, and Italian flavors. The band from Genova were looking to make sophisticated music with some humor and succeeded amazingly well, drawing comparisons to Robert Wyatt, Hatfield, and Soft Machine but with injections of very strange psychedelic flavors and Italian influence. You can hear the same sort of experimental tendencies that brought forward diverse and crazy works from Pierrot Lunaire, Area, Opus Avantra, and Stormy Six but in the jazz field. The traditional meets the bizarre as these talented players and special guests like Ciro Perrino and Leonardo Lagorio of Celeste deliver an album that should satisfy the most adventurous music fan.

Progweed and Gnosis reviewer Greg Northrup calls the band "a refreshing treat to those somewhat burned out on the classic Italian progressive sound, but still willing to mine the depths of the country's scene in search of one last undiscovered gem. Picchio dal Pozzo come from a completely different wing of influences than the typical vaguely orchestral, pastoral, flowery melodicism of many of the country's bands, looking towards jazz, RIO, Frank Zappa, Gong, and especially, Robert Wyatt and the Soft Machine as major influences. Funnily enough, the result is just as beautiful, as angular melodies coexist with fuzzed out guitar, churning horns and soothing, seemingly free form song structures. The tempo is always slow, as sax, piano and otherworldly vocals just float above the mix, creating a exquisite, emotional atmosphere, with just a dash of dissonance, angularity and off-beat sensibility to keep things interesting." [G. Northrup]

Beginning with the intricate, layered guitar picking of "Merta" followed by percussion and strange wordless vocals, it is apparent that this is not your father's jazz album. Soon the keyboards are filling in the space with a phased effect. A rather stock jazz beat begins "Cocomelastico" but the horns play notes in an odd leap-frog manner, like in two parallel scales. There's probably a formal term for it that I'm not aware of but it is pretty cool. More odd, absurdist vocals are sprinkled in on top of the relaxing rhythm. "Seppia" is a 10 minute juggernaut that grabs everyone who hears it. No drums early on, just a melding of keys and horns in a gorgeous tapestry. The drums finally come in with a repetitive guitar riff, rather terse sound, while all around it the lunatics are running the asylum with strange howls, moans, and general singing from the straightjacket choir. Somehow it works, assuming you love strange music. Suddenly everything cuts to what sounds like clarinet and xylophone playing some odd quiet melodies alone. Then a guitar loop ushers in these strange spoken children's voices and for a moment I swear I'm listening to Pierrot Lunaire's "Gudrun." The piece ends with simple light and breezy melody followed by the guitar/flute interlude "Bofonchia." Side two begins with "Napier." It opens with a brilliant dissonance of flute followed by strange sax and keyboard murkiness. Enter some piano and more upbeat percussions and things are getting very busy, but the arrangements are well done so the piece remains tasteful. There are a few average vocals but it is mostly heavenly instrumental space jazz. It gets quieter near the end with delicate cymbals and the lightness of e-piano. Nice track. "La Floricoltura" tones down the weirdness (a little bit) and alternates nice instrumental workouts with enthusiastic vocal harmonies. By the end it again slides into madness with a trainwreck of playing. "La Bolla" is more laid back, with gentle horns over rolling piano notes, percussion, and acoustic guitar. A few electric leads pop into the background. As the guitar licks heat up there are some gentle "la la la" vocals laid on top. Finally, we get to "Off' which drops the weirdness again in favor of pastoral piano landscapes with delightful flute on top. Mellow wordless vocals, guitar, and bass come in and all is peaceful with no drumming all the way through.

PdP is a great album and recommended title for Italian, Canterbury, and psych-space-jazz fans. The Vinyl Magic CD-067 reissue sounds pretty good but has only a two-page booklet with credits and a brief bio.

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Send comments to Finnforest (BETA) | Report this review (#168529) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Review by Atavachron
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars A band divergent from their homeland scene in 1976, Picchio dal Pozzo seemed more at home with the roomy sounds of American jazz and the space it provided to develop spontaneously, and less with the formalities of the cherubic Italian prog canon. Consequently this debut claims its own territory, separate even from the Canterburian identity they're given, a record more in common with Zappa's exploratory surgery or Pink Floyd's sound-striding than any grand operas.

Guitarist Paolo Griguolo's overdubbed nylon arpeggios are soon joined by the synths of Aldo de Scozi for 'Merta' [a cut also featured on Cherry Red's indispensable compilation Prog is Not a Four-Letter Word], graduating into 'Cocomelastico', its clashing horns, dreamy Fender piano and the sounds of an Italian family starting the day. Downright space age is 10-minute 'Seppia' with more sickly brass as it moves into a mean groove led by Andrea Beccari's heavy bottom and the sting of Griguolo's fuzztone, all backed with a playful xylophone [by guest Ciro Perrino], a young man's cantori and the band's Yes-like chorale. The carnivals of 'Napier' disintegrate into an astral trip with touches of Herbie Hancock, several flutes, and distinct English pastorals in 'La Floricoltura di Tschincinnata' ending with an Italian argument of epic proportions. Erik Satie's softness is imbued for 'La Bolla', finishing with the jazz vocalizations of 'Off'.

An unexpected and welcome fork in the Italian prog road, and an album less likely to scare away newcomers to what Italy was offering in the mid-1970s. Recommended.

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Send comments to Atavachron (BETA) | Report this review (#221243) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, June 14, 2009

Review by obiter
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Not to have this in your collection is like having a monopoly set without the hat: it's crap but it's not monoploy without it. OK so there a bunch of gnomes in purple sweaters and yellow hats running around the cover. If you've got a problem with that you're n the wrong website. (No purple gnomes ..no good in my book).

I lerve Merta (it's totally platonic depite the rumours)., However Cocomelastico has that jazzy feel (together with nonsense warble ... alwys good to have a warble ... clinking glasses ... gargling etc) maybe i've a chip on my shoulder but jazz has makes me feel like the band are going "look we're so class we understand and FEEEL these off key bits .. you are actually too stupid to appreciate this .. now please go back and listen to Britney".

Seppia starts out a bit pants (sorry i meant to say it has an iconoclastic envelope pushing freedom). However it progresses to merely annoying: play this nowadays and you'd be locked up. I've got to say I marvel sometimes at how anything like this actually gets support from a record label. But then I don't do drugs.Seriously you've got to listen to this just to realize how mind-bogglingly dreadful it is. It firmly puts Amon Duul one of the bottom of the pile.

Bofonchia is quite sublime. having said that scraping a blackboard would sound great after Seppia. Unfortunately our respite is short.

Napier. Discordant circus music. OK if I'm one of the thicky twins and just don't get it then fine. But I don't get it. La floricultura is sufferable jazz. Bliss in comparison to the foregoing but hey it's not my bag.

I actually like La Bolla (despite the jazzy overtones). Off they manage to get through without faffing about.

Why oh why would anyone do this??

BTW Camere Zimmer Rooms is great .. this still remains pants.

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Send comments to obiter (BETA) | Report this review (#260984) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, January 15, 2010

Review by Kazuhiro
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars The establishment of the music that derived from Canterbury had the flow that indeed stuck to various regions in the world. The flow of the music character that derived in the especially 70's gives the impression that spread almost at a simultaneous period.

Deriving at almost the same time when thinking as time when the derivation of the original music character sent from Canterbury announces the work and having been announced might be the points that should make a special mention. And, the music character that had been digested to each country might have been digested while taking the culture and the root that the country indeed had.

The part of the sense and the sensibility in addition to the construction of the idea with the original theory might have acted on the music character that derived from Canterbury for the 70's, too. A lot of bands that the composition and the directionality of the tune looked like existed. However, the work of the band that absorbed it respectively considerately might have offered an original work that was as a result. These music characters where a pastoral element in addition to the humour was had both might have succeeded as establishment of indeed one.

The music character that this Picchio Dal Pozzo constructs aiming as a band that influences it from the music character sent from Canterbury that derives to the world might show the directionality very remarkably. The content of the work that is reminiscent of the consistent music character of the work and directionality that risked and Canterbury had shot might be indeed valuable. In the part, Picchio Dal Pozzo is 1972 already. Or, it can be considered that it was formed in 1973 for a fact.

Picchio Dal Pozzo was formed in Genova in Italy. Aldo De Scalzi of the member of this band is famous as the younger brother of Vittorio Di Scalzi. Of course, being known as a member of New Trolls is a well-known fact in Vittorio Di Scalzi. And, this band announced the album from "Grog" that Vittorio Di Scalzi had established. The band with high qualities such as Celeste and Corte Dei Miracoli was offered though the Grog label stopped acting in the short span of time. Time was necessary by the time the upcoming album was announced because the activity of the Grog label had stopped after they had announced this debut album. And, after announcing this album, Giorgio Karaghiosoff of one person of the member of the band has left the band. Having appointed it as a guest of a lot of musicians in addition to the member of the band in the album it has acted as a good direction. Point to have appointed member of Celeste of the same label. And, zeal to construct the content of "Camere Zimmer Rooms" for the period until they announce 2nd album. The music character at which they had been aiming and directionality might have been established with an original theory already.

"Merta" puts out atmosphere with a good melody of the glockenspiel and the guitar. It shifts to the part of a good chorus while mixing the rhythm of 7 and 9 with eight rhythms. Making the sound that the keyboard is distorted and the anacatesthesia of the wind instrument might be splendid.

"Cocomelastico" is taken a legato rhythm of cymbals of four rhythms and progresses. The melody with the wind instrument is completely reminiscent of a good part in Canterbury. Melody and transparent feeling that flows slowly. And, the obbligati of a glossy keyboard. Solo of the song and the keyboard also contributes well.

"Seppia" is a tune composed by the part of three. The sound of the band that attempts the construction of slightness from the keyboard that plays the melody of six notes progresses in union. It shifts from the introductory part that produces a transparent feeling to the part of a completely heavy melody. Xylophone that Ciro Perrino plays. Collage of enchantment melody and voice. Part in space that keyboard produces. The band has an oneness. When six minutes are passed, the tune shows suddenly different respect. The construction of the melody that the xylophone and the flute make expands the width of the tune. Coming in succession of the sound produces a good part. And, it advances from child's narration further attended with a chorus and a pastoral melody. Especially, the chorus's construction is complete.

"Bofonchia" has the part of the connection as the entire flow of the album. The flute twines with the part of the keyboard that invites confusion from the melody that the guitar makes.

"Napier" is succeeded from the construction of two or more melodies with the flute to the part of the tohubohu by the rhythm and the melody of two rhythms. The tune flows chaotically. Part of piano and Sax as it is. And, the flute and the keyboard pull the tune. The melody that twines round the complexity accompanies the song that completely produces the anacatesthesia. The melody of the song suddenly receives the complete top. There might exactly be one impression. The band is integral.

The song and the melody of "La Floricultura Di Tschincinnata" that is reminiscent of the part of Hatfields are impressive. Melody, song, and chorus of glockenspiel. This anacatesthesia and a transparent feeling are perfect. And, it is the chorus chaotic partial. Sound of keyboard in close relation to it. The tune increases a transparent feeling further. And, it reaches the peak by the melody of the keyboard and Sax.

Beautiful piano Chord and a good scat put out atmosphere to "La Bolla". A transparent feeling and the anacatesthesia are complete. Part where voice of Robert Wyatt is reminiscent. And, the melody of glossy Sax. Sound that flows in space. The composition is complete. The guitar also ..good part.. contributes.

"Off" might have decided the flow as an extension of the width of the content of this album and a good composition. Melody moving with piano and flute. Pastoral element. The melody of the scat and the progress of Chord are moving.

Their of this debut albums might have splendidly digested a good part in Canterbury in various bands with the atmosphere of Canterbury. It is very a beautiful music. It is music that it wants you to be going to keep being being loved in the future.

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Send comments to Kazuhiro (BETA) | Report this review (#262813) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams
4 stars Not long after this album was released, I heard Cocomelastico on a local college radio station. Being a Zappaphile, I loved the song, and put Picchio Dal Pozzo high on my list for albums to search for. Back then, I never found any. Years later, I mentioned that to a fellow prog lover I met while working in a record store. It turns out that he was the DJ who played the song (he is also the guy called "clueless and slightly slack" by Fripp in one of the King Crimson boxed sets - a label he is proud of). He gave me a tape of the album. Was I surprised. This band didn't just create Zappa-like music, the created Canterbury prog as good as anything out there.

Song after song, this album compares favorably to the best of the Canterbury groups: National Health, Hatfield & The North, Egg, and all the rest. The music is jazzy and cool, and even the vocals, in Italian, seem to work well in the songs. I am particularly fond of Paolo Griguolo's guitar playing. Especially when he reminds me of the great FZ.

I have since purchased the album on CD (thank you, Internet), and intend to eventually get their other releases, as well.

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Send comments to Evolver (BETA) | Report this review (#341101) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, December 02, 2010

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Metal Team
4 stars Canterbury prog from Italy, what's in the name? This music has indeed the flavour of Canterbury: mellow, lightly jazzy, slightly spacey and just a teasingly bit avant. It's heavily inspired by the Soft Machine but not a mindless copy. The album shows a very mature band, musically confident and never hiding its Italian roots, adding finesse, subtlety and an almost scrupulous perfection to the known Canterbury style.

I thought about reviewing this little gem after a recent and dreadful experience with an album claiming beauty without delivering it at all, as if it is a word to be taken lightly. Picchio Dal Pozzo don't have to claim beauty, they truly embody so many possible meanings of it, by combining emotive playing and rich harmonious chords with a level of complexity that comes easily and without pretense. This is music that can evoke a variety of moods that all feel truthful and natural.

There are some occasional quirky vocals that remind us of Soft Machine's Robert Wyatt but they are scarce and shouldn't frighten anyone off. Most of the vocals are rather innocent anyway, a bit jazzy and schoolboy-ish, much like PFM I'd say. Also Perigeo comes to mind.

A diverse but consistent listen showing many shades of Canterbury with an Italian flair. Possibly a masterpiece in the style but I'm far from an expert in this area so don't take my word for it.

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Send comments to Bonnek (BETA) | Report this review (#350457) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, December 12, 2010

Review by seventhsojourn
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR RPI
4 stars The idea that 'genius' and 'insanity' are somehow interwoven has been around for a long time, at least since the time of Aristotle, and it arguably reached its zenith with Romanticism's elevation of the 'madman' to the status of hero. The subject has even been argued in the PA forum on more than one occasion, no doubt much to the chagrin of long- time members of the site, and while any evidence for a link between creativity and mental illness is at best anecdotal, and my personal belief is that there is nonesuch, I still think it's interesting to speculate on what music might reveal about the musicians who produce it. If the madcap music of Picchio dal Pozzo is any kind of representation of the group members' personalities then words like 'pot', 'head', and 'pixies' might sum them up; they were certainly influenced by the Canterbury mainstays.

Being a largely instrumental work makes this album a genuine feast for the imagination, unconstrained as it is even by the track titles that mostly seem to translate as nonsense words. Imagery-wise there's nothing too dramatic with the opener 'Merta', a track that sets the tone with acoustic guitar, saxophone and droning synthesizer. The leisurely mood continues with 'Cocomelastico', the first part of which is in keeping with Maxophone but then the sax stomps in like a bowler-hatted John Cleese from the Ministry of Funny Walks. The saxophone's echolalic side-kick, the guitar, tries in vain to keep pace and the overall effect is akin to listening to the talkative nymph who could only repeat the last words spoken by someone else. Some nonsense vocals follow - 'la-reri-bapa-mebe!' - then I think we must be in a Dutch coffeeshop listening to a Capuchin monk gargling on his namesake beverage.

If that wasn't strange enough 'Seppia' sounds like a step into another world, a lucid nightmare in which saxes proclaim a frantic signal of alarm, of the lighting of warning beacons on hilltops and the sighting of the rectangular sails of approaching Norse longships. The track gives way to incoherent cries, a thunderous riff and a golden shower of electronics and xylophone which together possess all the confusion of mortal women being fecundated by irreverent deities amid the bones of their fallen husbands - 'peek-yo dal pot-zo'. 'Napier' is a big top themed cacophony of electronics and sax that suddenly shifts into a recorder and sax duet, and from this unpredictable alluvium comes a 'song' with actual words. A song that is as eclectic as a New Zealand bar that delights in combining dwarf throwing with lesbian jelly wrestling; and there I was thinking the Imperial Romans were decadent! 'La Bolla' meanders like one of Sleep's thousand sons floating on the river of forgetfulness, with its wordless vocals rather incongruously recalling songs from 'Pet Sounds'. Later, the mood darkens with the saxophone sounding like the squawking of the Pelican of fable that revives its dead brood with its own blood.

All in all, a stunning and unique Italian take on Canterbury.

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Send comments to seventhsojourn (BETA) | Report this review (#526460) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, September 18, 2011

Review by Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Plenty of Italian bands adopted symphonic prog-influenced sounds in the 1970s, others took on a major dose of jazz fusion, and some took their sound in an avant/RIO direction, but Picchio dal Pozzo might be the only one I'm aware of which launched themselves into the Canterbury sound so thoroughly - and with such obvious skill to it. With vocal performances reminiscent, in part, of a cross between Robert Wyatt and Jon Anderson, and excellent keyboard work by Aldo De Scalzi, the album more than earns a place amongst the great releases of the late 1970s Canterbury scene. I wouldn't prioritise it above National Health, who I consider the kings of the Canterbury style in this half of the decade, but it's certainly on a par with the output of Bruford and others operating in the Canterbury style around this time.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#552624) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Review by LinusW
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Italian Prog Specialist
5 stars An irreverent little bundle of fun this one.

Approaching music in much the same way as the Canterbury-style bands of Britain, Picchio dal Pozzo forges a unique fusion of relatively free-form jazz-tinged progressive music with a healthy dollop of melody and motifs from the Italian tradition and a handful of psychedelic excursions. All in all it creates a loose, breezy and inviting atmosphere full of attention to minute details and first and foremost, a sense of creative joy.

A more general defining sound is hard to single out here, but I guess that the basis is best described as jazz-based somewhere underneath all that is going on, with familiar rhythms and motifs of that genre popping up here and there to varying degrees in different songs. But they rarely stay like that for long, serving more like anchors or links in the ever-shifting soundscape here. Just as often songs descend into near-symphonic or folk territory, with melodious and delicate flute, guitar and keys that feel pleasantly Italian. Another time perhaps into a darkly cerebral space-rock passage; rhythmically disciplined and oppressive and hazy with strange electronic effects and percussion. A playful avant sound collage via Area-like free-jazz improvisation, an atmospheric passage of understated, whirling synthesizer topped with the most delicate of percussion. Breezy lounge-jazz bit for balance. A bit of the more menacing and earnest sides of RPI. Leave to simmer for forty minutes. Et voilā!

It is a fairly eclectic album, as you might have guessed, which is always interesting and rewarding for the listener, but its main strength is how these disparate influences and styles seep into each other and how organically they all come together. It is a beautiful fusion, where contrasts and surfaces of friction serve to underline each other and enhance each other's qualities. Songs are rich, to say the least, and rather busy - because even though most of them move about in a rather leisurely pace they are brim-filled with detail; spindly guitar, nimble percussion (especially some beautiful xylophone work, which adds a delicate, crisp almost frail timbre of utter loveliness and sometimes even hints of Gentle Giant), savoury brass instruments and keys used in all sorts of manners (piano like falling rain, buzzing, jagged electronic noises, warm and wholesome organ - the list goes on).

Permeating all this instrumental prowess and stylistic fusion is a warm form of zaniness, a kind of chaotic lack of respect and a will not to approach the music so seriously. An embrace of cheerful insanity if you will, or downright flippant, and perhaps that is one of the likenesses to Gong some reviewers have pointed out. Although I think it is always there, the most apparent expression is found in the vocal department, where voice is used as just another instrument. Fitting that to some of the various atmospheres on these songs make for rather interesting and humorous end results.

With the exception of the darker sounds on the track Seppia and a willingness to dive into murkier experimental waters here and there, Picchio dal Pozzo's debut is a warm, sunny and surprisingly accessible affair. Charming, even a bit quaint, one might say, but never boring or trite. Quite the opposite. It is one of the finest musical experiences out there.

5 stars.

//LinusW

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Send comments to LinusW (BETA) | Report this review (#645603) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, March 04, 2012

Review by Neu!mann
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars It would take a lifetime of dedicated listening to sample and sort the vast array of music pigeonholed as Rock Progressivo Italiano, but even a casual visitor can see that this oddball ensemble was doing something unique: hence their relocation on this site to another subcategory altogether. In truth the style of music on their debut LP was more Zappa Jazz than Canterbury (despite the dedication to ROBERT WYATT), with an inventive Avant-Prog flavor not often heard in RPI circles.

This was an album that refused to sit still, blending equal measures of symphonic grandiosity, Rock in Opposition weirdness, Canterbury Fusion, RPI romanticism, and even a little interstellar Space Rock. But, unlike the efforts of too many '70s Prog Rockers with short stylistic attention spans, the album is never erratic, even at its most haphazard change in musical direction.

For example, there's the delicate acoustic guitar and multi-tracked flute interlude of "Bononchia", fighting some unlikely space-synth interference over its brief 0:51 length. Which leads directly (on compact disc, at any rate) to the demented big-top soundtrack of "Napier"...which in turn morphs into what sounds like a crazy modern ballet score...which (somehow) becomes an actual song, with a widescreen instrumental chorus of astonishing beauty and scale. All that in a single five-minute stretch of music, without a seam showing .

The album was apparently more a critical than a commercial success in 1976, hardly surprising with music so far ahead (actually, so far removed) from its time. One of the shorter numbers is actually the most distinctive: the hypnotic album opener "Merta", rolling forward on a groovy but precise (and molto Italiano) acoustic guitar melody. But hardly far enough for my tastes: it's too bad the track ends after only three minutes instead of thirty. The more polite Fusion of "Cosmelastico" is almost a letdown afterward, although the added mouthwash gargle was an inspired non-sequitur.

The last two cuts dial back the eclecticism for some blissful piano / voice experiments, completing a singular experience well worth investigating. But enough said: you get the point, and newcomers should be allowed the joy of discovery for themselves.

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Send comments to Neu!mann (BETA) | Report this review (#897428) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Review by Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars I bought this one fooled by its name and by several praising e-mails I read on the ProgBrasil forum, that I pehaps should have read more carefully about the groupīs style of music. I thought they would the average italian symphonic prog (and the acoustic introduction was quite misleading), but they are clearly not. Itīs definitly Canterbury sound, with all that jazzy stuff, plus some avant guard leanings and "humor" elements, which are not my cup of tea. However, being italian, they still have some nice melodic passages here and there (Sepia is a good example). The production is far from perfect, but I guess it was adequate for that time.

Obviously the musicians are skillful and inventive, but again this is not the kind of music that moves me. I still think Italy did much more better with their "proper" classical influenced progressive scene. But if you like Canterbury bands, I strongely recommend you listen to this group. After all, all that praising by so many reviewers here prove that fans of Canterbury sound may find an interesting and different gem with Picchio Dal Pozzo. But only them. For followers of italian prog in general my advice is listen before buying this one.

Final rating: 2,5 stars. Good, but for fans only.

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Send comments to Tarcisio Moura (BETA) | Report this review (#905435) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, February 03, 2013

Latest members reviews

5 stars Perhaps the only known instance of the Canterbury Scene to come out of Italy, Picchio dal Pozzo's brilliant debut sits quietly among the classics of the genre. As the Canterbury sound was primarily a term derived from the bands that came out of that region (Soft Machine, Caravan), describing PdP as ... (read more)

Report this review (#491574) | Posted by coasterzombie | Thursday, July 28, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars By the first 2 minutes you already have the feeling that something special is going on. Guitar, voicings, keyboards, vibraphone, saxophone and all with a unique and "unusual" sound. "Merta" is an introduction which melts into "Cocomelastico" and by the end of it, you can tell that you are deal ... (read more)

Report this review (#292832) | Posted by Astryos | Saturday, July 31, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars A revelation. It has taken me some time to fully appreciate this record because of it's complex jazz, avant- garde and Canterbury structures. My words is not adequate enough to describe this album either so feel free to read the other reviews written by more intelligent persons than me. No o ... (read more)

Report this review (#258448) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Wednesday, December 30, 2009 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I donīt like italian prog to much, but when i heard about this band, I thought that maybe a canterbury style italian band could sound diferent to the others, so I checked it out!! and what a sorprise, this record is just amazing, great keyboards and atmosphere, It makes you travell to a paralle ... (read more)

Report this review (#248186) | Posted by jerome | Wednesday, November 04, 2009 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Yup, Hatfield and the North trips on Italian Mushrooms and tries to sound like Gong. Still a phenomenal album and worthy of all five stars. I haven't heard other PDP albums, so I can't compare; but this one is supposed to be their best. Seriously, PDP's s/t reminds me more of the HTN s/t album t ... (read more)

Report this review (#163155) | Posted by kabright | Tuesday, March 04, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars The first work released in 1976 "Picchio Dal Pozzo". A beautiful, warm melody and an exact ensemble are delicate jazz-rock of the feature. It is an intellectual sound. It is a Canterbury sound. It is jazz-rock and there is classical construction, too. The technique like minimalism and the coll ... (read more)

Report this review (#71806) | Posted by braindamage | Monday, March 13, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I would say this album is nothing more then a combination of boring instumental passages and poorly composed music. But I would be BLATENTLY lying. I can't express the amount of sheer originiality here. What an album! Wonderfully symphonic at times, yet perfectly RIO at others. Obviously influ ... (read more)

Report this review (#47105) | Posted by | Sunday, September 18, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Dedicato a Roberto Viatti, huh? These little Italian pygmys were a bit more selective with their musical forefathers. Instead of Yes and Genesis, one can distinguish influences from canterbury bands like Hatfield and the North, traces of Gong and especially Robert Wyatt, the mysterious Signor ... (read more)

Report this review (#18724) | Posted by | Wednesday, December 01, 2004 | Review Permanlink

5 stars A quite amazing album, and definetly warranting 5 stars. The saddest thing about this band (like Hatfield) is their relatively meagre output - the scope of their talent seems enormous and yet it remains caged within 4 albums - I really would rather hear another 20 minutes of this band than a ... (read more)

Report this review (#18723) | Posted by Wrath_of_Ninian | Wednesday, November 10, 2004 | Review Permanlink

5 stars A masterpiece! There are more so-called "Canterbury" bands in Italy (Area, Dedalus), but Picchio dal Pozzo are the only one that combines the musical side of Canterbury with its intellectual and ironic side. Comparisons have been made with Hatfield and the North, and that is correct: these ar ... (read more)

Report this review (#18717) | Posted by | Thursday, May 27, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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