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Sithonia La Soluzione Semplice album cover
3.99 | 28 ratings | 3 reviews | 25% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2011

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Treni di passagio (8:02)
2. Tornando (9:07)
3. Cronaca persa (22:02)
4. Il tram del topo (1:09)
5. La soluzione semplice (6:03)
6. Passeggiata (1:31)
7.Il vento di Nauders (11:38)

Line-up / Musicians

Oria Cenecchi / Drums
Oriano Dasasso / Piano, Synth
Marco Giovannini / Vocals
Roberto Magni / Mandolin, guitars, programming
Paolo Nannetti / Mellotron, Organ
Valerio Roda / Accoustic and electric bass

Thanks to toroddfuglesteg for the addition
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SITHONIA La Soluzione Semplice ratings distribution

(28 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(25%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(46%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

SITHONIA La Soluzione Semplice reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Full circle

Sithonia are a band of long time friends from Bologna, some of whom began playing in the mid 70s. As Sithonia the story begins in the 1980s and like so many other Italian bands their albums have become something of a diary of lives and friendships. The period prior to this album was that long hiatus where members go their own way for a while, after a busy 1990s they were pretty much off for over a decade, walking life's other avenues. And thus "La Soluzione Semplice" (The Simple Solution) sounds very much like the reunion of old friends that it is. The band sounds fresh and reinvigorated, enthusiastic, and playing music for the love of it more than anything else. The songs came to life quickly and the recording process was smooth. Lizard Records wisely grabbed this 2011 release from Mellow and it will prove a nice addition to their high quality catalogue, one that will grow in popularity over time as prog fans find it.

Musically Sithonia is an amalgam of 1970s English and Italian symphonic prog influences (Genesis and Banco oft mentioned) with Euro folk music flavors. Despite the 70s leanings there is also a hefty sheen of Neo-prog evident in the pacing and accessibility of certain sections, just as the occasional snarls of electric power chords suggest a modern and heavier influence. But mostly Sithonia seems to possess their own knack for beautiful, melodic prog that will satiate fans of similar 90s/00s RPI like Il Castello di Atlante, Eris Pluvia, Lost Tales, Nuova Era, and Prowlers.

From short interludes to 20-plus minute epics it's all here: grand upbeat synths and warm melancholic piano pieces, lofty mellotrons, drop-dead gorgeous passages of Ant Phillips-like acoustic guitar, rippin' melodic electric leads, and hearty Italian vocals. The combination of the earthy sunset mellotron and the bucolic acoustic guitar segments give the album a truly gorgeous feel, contrasted with occasional feisty elements. The opening of the title track is such a hauntingly beautiful wash of keys and acoustic, it soon develops into an organ groove that has a sinister growl! Sithonia break no new boundaries and seek not to impress via technical ecstasy, instead, this is an album of lovingly crafted tales which seep into you over time. More than anything else this is progressive rock with tons of heart, a passionate pastoral world of folksy musical storytelling and vibrant rock. Their website has English translations and photos suggesting the lyrical themes play on the passing of time, the changing of seasons. This is my first Sithonia experience and while I've not heard their early material, I strongly suspect that this album is their pride and joy. Sure sounds like they'd feel that way. Recommended to fans of RPI, Symph, and Neo of the pastoral/folk vibe. 7/10

Review by andrea
5 stars La soluzione semplice (The simple solution) is the fifth studio album by Sithonia, an Italianprog band from Bologna whose roots date back to the mid-eighties. It was released in 2011 on the independent label Lizard Records, after a long hiatus and a hard studio work, with a line up featuring Paolo Nannetti (organ, Mellotron, synth, backing vocals), Roberto Magni (guitar, mandolin), Oriano Dasasso (piano, synth), Orio Cenacchi (drums), Valerio Roda (bass) and Marco Giovannini (lead and backing vocals). The final result of their efforts is a good mix of vintage atmospheres and new musical flavours and I'm sure that fans of Italian prog will appreciate this concept album about dreams and time passing by, where the music and lyrics draw an imaginary bridge across past and present. But maybe the art work by Roberto Magni describes the content of the album better than my words...

The opener 'Treni di passaggio' (Passing trains) begins by some hypnotic piano notes and the noises of a railway station in the background. Then the music and lyrics depict a commuter who is coming home after a working day. All according to routine, it's just another day in his life. But suddenly something happens and you can experience a kind of emotional short circuit: the man has always fought against his dreams but now he realizes that he might be wrong while time is passing by... Then the rhythm rises and whirling waves of vintage keyboards draw him in the past where he gets lost for awhile like a child in a fairy-tale wood. After the instrumental middle section the vocals come back and the atmosphere becomes calmer... The commuter comes out from his dream with a new awareness: now he can accept his dreams and get along with his present life. Now he runs to catch his train, a new day can't separate what we are from what we were or what we had wanted to be... 'But we live, it's sure / There's nothing to dream / I'm running fast, there's a train waiting for...'.

What kind of magic made change the protagonist's mind? The second track, 'Tornando' (Coming back), is a beautiful short instrumental that starts with the sound of a tape in reverse. Now you have to set your watch back forty years, you're in a time warp... The following 'Cronaca persa' (Lost chronicle) is a long, complex suite divided into six parts that tells about a lost summer full of music, colours and glances towards the sky. An obsessive voice repeats that those days can't come back and that you can't go back in time. Nonetheless there are moments that seem everlasting, imagines that you can't forget, memories that can't melt into the mist of the daily grind and dreams that keep on flying through the clouds of a rainy day... 'The music goes, can't you hear it? / It soars through the brambles, it dances among the flowers and then it will remain... It comes from afar and plays with us / It won't go away...'. Those lost days now seem be running along the banks of a river, searching for a bridge to cross it while time is just a face on the water... Now you look in a mirror and see just a stranger, but sometimes memories come back with an overwhelming force and you have the illusion to be back there, just for a last time, just for a last stolen look... 'The last time, just a last time / I do not want to ask for more... Nothing can change if you can't change a bit...'.

The short, evocative instrumental 'Il tram del topo' (The tram of the mouse) leads to the title track that tells in music and words of a clash between different feelings in front of a difficult choice. The protagonist is now on the edge of an immense abyss and he's going to take a risk that he has never taken before... 'I will not be asking from you the simple solution / You will not be the one who will look with me for all the answers we have never asked...'.

The short, delicate instrumental 'Passeggiata' (Walk) leads to the conclusive 'Il vento di Nauders' (The wind from Nauders), another long, complex track that conjures up the memories of a beautiful day of music and friendship spent in the Alps (Nauders is a lovely place in Austria, near the border with Italy and Swiss). Now the air is redolent of the smell of the woods and you get lost among sweet sounds and warm colours... Then the dream comes to an end, the mist of time disappears and you can listen again to the same hypnotic notes of piano that opened the album. The circle is closed, the protagonist is back to reality on the train that takes him home...

On the whole, I think that this is an excellent album, a real must for Italian prog lovers!

Latest members reviews

4 stars Another find from Italy. Where is the end of this long and plentiful smorgasboard ? Sithonia is back again from a 13 years long album break. I bought a couple of their earlier albums some months ago when I interviewed them (see interview). I have yet to listen to them. But if they are in the s ... (read more)

Report this review (#521100) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Monday, September 12, 2011 | Review Permanlink

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