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Perigeo Genealogia album cover
3.91 | 83 ratings | 10 reviews | 22% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1974

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Genealogia (8:25)
2. Polaris (5:00)
3. Torre del lago (3:06)
4. Via beato angelico (4:55)
5. (In) vino veritas (6:45)
6. Monti pallidi (3:31)
7. Grandi spazi (3:36)
8. Old Vienna (3:22)
9. Sidney's call (4:55)

Total Time: 43:35

Line-up / Musicians

- Bruno Biriaco / drums, percussion
- Franco D'Andrea / acoustic & electric pianos
- Claudio Fasoli / Alto & Soprano saxes, percussion (7)
- Tony Sidney / acoustic & electric guitars, bongos (9)
- Giovanni Tommaso / vocals, bass, double bass, Moog (1-4-8), percussion (2)
+ Mandrake / percussion (2), congas (4)

Releases information

Lp. RCA Records TPL1-1080 / Cd. RCA Records ND 71935 (1989)

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PERIGEO Genealogia ratings distribution

(83 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(22%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(48%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)

PERIGEO Genealogia reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Andrea Cortese
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Of the big three italian jazz-rock bands from the seventies (along with Arti & Mestieri and Area), Perigeo is certainly the most average. They don't blend jazz and symphonic; they play only instrumental tracks; they don't show particular political ideas. For these reasons, they are considered the least interesting of the big three; probably the less italian musically. They even seem to be completely overlooked by many fans of the genre. And it's a real pity 'cause the band is composed by very talented musicians who play a very elegant and refined jazz rock. They even know very well how to go wild and crazy at times.

Genealogia (1974) is their third record and follows the classic Abbiamo Tutti un Blues da Piangere (1973). The 1974 album sounds to me more varied but unfortunately the band leaves behind any vocalising. On the other hand, fortunately, they manage to create an unique atmosphere with the addition of acoustic guitars and saxophones. The most interesting track is the fantastic self titled opener which sounds a lot like a medieval dance, somehow unusual in the jazz rock genre. Other highlights are the explosive Polaris with its light crescendo and excellent work on electric piano and the strong (In) Vino Veritas (the longest track of the album being over 6:40 mns) where they give you a taste of their electric guitar playing. Pretty good the harder sound of this intrument and the slightly dissonant arrengements. The most proggy performance here.

The closing numbers Old Vienna and Sydney's Call are the least relevant while Via Beato Angelico is a nice soft tune opening with keys liquid effect and then enter a pleasant quasi-latin incursion thanks to congas.

Not a masterpiece, perhaps. Sure it is one of the band's crowing achievemts. Rockier than anything from their past.

Review by Sean Trane
4 stars This third album from the Rome band Perigeo is probably the most acclaimed, and indeed it deserves its reputation. Unlike their first two album, the still-unchanged line-up (let's count the percussionist Mandrake a guest) was careful not too repeat too closely the formula of Azimut and Abbiamo, and Genealogia is certainly quite different, although it's clear from the start that we're still in the lovely Perigeo realm. Released in late 74 on the same Italian RCA branch, it sports a very contrasting bare- land white artwork. Although leader/bassists Tommaso is still the main songwriter, he's now letting over half the album for the rest of the group to write their own pieces and keyboardist D'Andrea writing two, while drummer Biriaco, guitarist Sidney and blower Fasoli one each.

I don't really agree with my friend Andrea Cortese about his assessment of Perigeo, 1- not only does bassist Tommaso sings on a few tracks of their early albums, but he does it so excellently well also, 2- of the three groups he mentions, Perigeo is probably the most jazzy, but has a penchant for Canterbury-type of JR/F (Area being too eclectic), 3- it depends from which angle they are seen as "least interesting", for among the three he cites, Perigeo is the one that fascinates me most.

Opening on the longest and title track, its starts out quite quietly on a dronal fuzz-organ that both Ratledge or Sinclair wouldn't renege, but soon enough the track veers between Soft Machine and John Coltrane, especially D'Andrea 's piano evoking McCoy Tyner. There are moments when you'd swear there is a violin, at others it's clearly Tommaso with a bow on his contrabass, but overall, this title track is a bit Perigeo's finest hour. Polaris is more RTF-inspired; while Torre Del Lago is a slow piano piece that slowly englobes the sax and the-said piano and Via Beato present a more Latino feel with added congas.

On the flipside, In Vino Veritas (my fave with the title track, and one of the great truth in life), a piano- laden piece that could be Nucleus or Soft Machine, the D'Andrea-penned Monti Pallidi (a quiet affair) and Old Vienna (a red-hot Mwandishi-like fusion track that builds-up with successive instruments) are sandwiching the Fasolli-penned sonically spacious (I didn't say spacey) Grandi Spazi with an excellent bass work underlining Fasoli's sax. The closing Sidney's Call is a track that allows a guitar exposition, a drum solo and some wordless vocals from Tommaso

Definitely Perigeo's most Canterbury-like album, Genealogia is as fine an introduction to the group's music, but ultimately, you'll probably have the first five or six, including this one, so you might as well start chronologically.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars It's been a joy listening to this album this past week. It's one of those records that gets my full attention as I try to take in all the flavours and sounds.This reminds me of some of WEATHER REPORT's more atmospheric songs, but also there is a definite Canterbury flavour here. Check out the fuzz organ and there's also some wicked guitar at times, while the bass player uses a bow once in a while making you think someone's playing violin. It's a very unique sounding recording that at first may seem to be nothing more then breezy jazz music. Far from it. Lots of sax, electric piano and bass as well in this one.

"Genealogia" opens with lots and lots of atmosphere. It changes after 2 minutes as piano, sax, fuzzed out organ and light drums take over. Great sound here. The fuzz leaves after 3 1/2 minutes as sax, bass, light drums and electric piano create wonder. Some bowed bass after 5 minutes continues for a couple of minutes then the fuzz returns. Amazing song. "Polaris" opens with a good rhythm as electric piano comes in and then sax. This is such a pleasure just listening to the way these guys play. Fantastic ! So much going on. Some fuzz late. "Torre Del Lago" is led by piano throughout although sax comes in before 1 1/2 minutes. Beautiful track. "Via Beato Angelico" takes a while to get going as we get some outbursts and strange synths sounds,lots of atmosphere. It changes to a catchy soundscape before 3 minutes,very jazzy. Some excellent guitar 4 minutes in as sax plays along.

"(In) Vino Veritas" opens with piano, drums, guitar and sax before we get fuzz.The drumming and sax work is outstanding to follow as the bass throbs.The guitar starts to rip it up. Fuzz is back 6 minutes in and it ends with some dissonance. Nice. "Monti Pallidi" features lots of piano,sax and drums. Gorgeous track ! "Grandi Spazi" opens with lots of atmosphere and sparse piano melodies. Bass comes in and sax after 2 minutes. Mellow tune. "Old Vienna" sounds like Canterbury with the electric piano, bass and light drums. Great sound ! Sax comes in, and then the guitar starts to make some incredible noise.The bass is prominant. "Sidney's Call" sounds so good once the bongos and guitar come in. Sax plays over top. Drums come pounding in at 2 minutes and sax joins in as we get a new melody. Drums and sax take turns in the spotlight. A calm 4 minutes in as we get some vocal melodies with gentle guitar and sax.

A solid 4 stars for sure, this is a band that needs to be checked out by Jazz fans.

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Even if not my personal Perigeo favorite, Genealogia is a very fine album with Perigeo's typical delicate melodies and lightly sad atmosphere. The main source of inspiration is still Weather Report with an occasional flash of Mahavishnu frenzy, and everything is played with a tender flair that can only be Italian.

As usual on Perigeo's albums, the compositions are well played and memorable but unfortunately, the vocals, which were one of the main elements I enjoyed on their first two albums, are not here anymore. Giovanni Tommaso is still credited for vocal duties and indeed Torre Del Lago and the last few seconds of Sydney's Call have a few bars of oohs and ahs, but that's no sufficient use of such a unique characteristic of their sound. It makes the music loose some of its edge and personality.

I also find the album to be a bit safe, it performs some of their earlier ideas quite well but doesn't offer many new insights. Not a show stopper of course but still, it's always appreciated if an artist keeps developing new ideas along the way.

Genealogia has 9 graceful songs that are all performed very tastefully, with excellent interplay between the members and with a lot of diversity in-between the songs. A bit too safe maybe. A big 3.5 but somewhat below the first two albums.

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars I came across this album totally by surprise at a recent record fair, thinking I may have snapped up a bit of a highly regarded Italian progressive classic! I was initially hugely disappointed to find that, although Perigeo are an Italian band, they don't play the usual sort of passionate and emotional prog associated with that country, rather an intoxicating and captivating form of jazz-fusion, highlighted by electrifying performances and a manic Canterbury styled touch of sophistication.

At first I found this album to be a little by-the-numbers and quite charmless. Everything sounded in the right place, competently played by a bunch of great musicians, but I just wasn't clicking with it. Then on a drive into work on my nightshift, through sheer lack of inspiration and with nothing else to listen to, I put the album in the CD player and suddenly, it all worked for me. Like `Soft Machine's black and moody `5', an album I feel is quite similar to this one, it was the colder weather and dark night ambience that made more sense with the music I was hearing. There's a frequent sad and reflective tone to the music that made perfect sense so late in the chilly night.

`Genealogia' is best taken as a complete piece, all the wonderful instrumental compositions shifting between ambient electronics, driving sax, jazz-rock fusion, varied electric piano/fuzz organ/moog, and lovely emphasis in some parts on warm acoustic and searing electric guitars solos. There's a subtle and restrained touch, with occasional noisier outbursts picking up the pace when needed. Always prominent bass player Giovanni Tomasso also performs some effective wordless vocals on three of the tracks. I also thought there was a few sections with wild violin, but from what I understand that's actually him using a bow along his bass! Highly original, and gives the album a truly unique sound all it's own.

Strange electronics (moog?) begin the 8-minute title track on side A, before piano and commanding saxophone enter. I'd swear that was a violin throughout the constantly repeated grand theme, sounding very medieval! The sax becomes more fiery, sounding like something performed by the various Canterbury bands (probably why this album reminds me so much of Soft Machine's `5'). Very repetitive track, it becomes dizzying, with a real wild abandon. Jazzy drumming, catchy sax melody and shimmering electric piano on `Polaris', with throbbing bass and harsh electronic effects swirling around. There's a real explosive urgency to this one! `Tore Del Lago' has delicate piano and mournful sax. With gentle sighed wordless vocals, it's one of the most beautiful pieces on the album. `Via Beato Angelica's sweet acoustic guitar and pulsing electronics give way to an upbeat Latin- styled Santana groove, especially with the hot electric guitar solo and effective use of the congas.

The dirty drama of side B's `(In) Vino Veritas' has maddening Canterbury electric piano, out of control wailing sax, and tearing electric guitar! Listen for the knockout bass playing and furious drum-work on this one too, the band completely loses it! The gentle comedown of `Monti Pollidi' is a relief from the previous track, alternating between an evocative sax theme and whirling electric piano/bass/percussion subtlety. `Grandi Spazi' is an ambient dark-jazz piece with a very dank bass sound and somber sax. More Soft Machine-like urgency on `Old Vienna' with a fuzzy electric guitar and piano showdown, frantic bass playing and percussion, before a slightly abrupt ending. The album finishes on the initially sedate `Sidney's Call' with eerie sighs, gentle congas and lovely acoustic guitar before turning into a sax heavy workout in the middle, complete with drum solo. It then falls away into a wordless enveloping lullaby to finish the album on.

Housed in a bare plain-white sleeve with a pleasant and simple illustration on the cover, with music performed by a talented and inventive group of musicians, `Genealogia' is wonderful late-night jazz-rock/prog with a darkly immersive ambience.

Latest members reviews

4 stars My nostalgic celebration of 1974 continues and the Italian "Perigeo" became the fortuness band this time. They started their carreer 1971 and played jazz rock during the years 1972-1981 and released eight studio records. "Genealogia" is their mostly and highest ranked album which of course not n ... (read more)

Report this review (#1299768) | Posted by DrömmarenAdrian | Sunday, November 2, 2014 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I am at a bit of a loss at what more to add to previous reviews of this album. Pretty much everything has been said before, so my little piece is largely for the purpose of a reminder for those who happened to miss previous inputs. If you appreciate Jazz-Rock, Canterbury (the British approach ... (read more)

Report this review (#921523) | Posted by BORA | Saturday, March 2, 2013 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This album was the first I heard from jazz group Perigeo, from my point of view, one of the italian masters of jazz, arbeit being below AREA, this guys in this album produced a masterpiece! Yeah! This album is actually aun pair with any AREA album. The tracks flow really well together, the theme ... (read more)

Report this review (#131504) | Posted by LeInsomniac | Friday, August 3, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars :-O ... This was my face when I've heard this album for the first time. Real an excellent work. But who knows Perigeo and who likes jazz fusion knows the emotionship that a big band like that can give to the listener. Not an essential prog masterpiece (but jazz masterpiece, in my opinion) but ... (read more)

Report this review (#35537) | Posted by dodaro | Tuesday, June 7, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Perigeo were a typical jazz band. In my opinion, one of the best coming from Italy, along with Agora' and New Trolls Atomic System. They have strong elements of prog also, which results in delicious albuns. I have all of the records, and this is the strongest, with "La Valle dei Templi". The c ... (read more)

Report this review (#23153) | Posted by Melos | Monday, October 4, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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