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LaZona Le Notti Difficili album cover
3.35 | 23 ratings | 8 reviews | 9% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2002

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Solitudini (10:15)
2. Il Babau (10:46)
3. Il Sogno Della Scala (15:16)
4. Equivalenza (8:25)

Total Time: 44:42

Line-up / Musicians

- Stefano Marelli / guitars, e-bow, Fx, loops
- Agostino Macor / MiniMoog, Crumar synth, Mellotron, Theremin
- Fabio Zuffanti / bass, bass pedals, effects, harmony vocals
- Marco Cavani / percussion

- Michele Nastasi / trumpet

Releases information

CD Mellow Records ‎- MMP 433 (2002, Italy)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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LAZONA Le Notti Difficili ratings distribution

(23 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(9%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(39%)
Good, but non-essential (30%)
Collectors/fans only (22%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

LAZONA Le Notti Difficili reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
4 stars This probably my fave coming from Mr Zuffanti. This is post-rock in the same vein than Tarentel and Godspeed You Black Emperor and its side project(Do Say May Think). Although GYBE is being very secretive about the concept behind their albums , this Post-rock definitely worthy to be considered higher than most progheads do. Along with the direction that Paatos took on their first album this might be a hint for prog to progress.
Review by Mellotron Storm
3 stars Fabio Zuffanti is like the Steven Wilson of Italy. He has so many side projects it's hard to keep track of them all. My favourite band of his is LA MASCHERA DI CERA. With LAZONA he delves into new territory, the genre of Post-Rock.

The first two songs "Solitudini" and "Il Babau" seem like one song when you listen to them as they blend into each other and nothing seems to change until half way through the second song. I must confess these two songs are a tough listen.They start so slowly with no real melody at all, just various sounds coming and going. There is some trumpet before 5 minutes but man if you thought NO-MAN was slow going check this out. 5 minutes into the second song we finally get an actual melody. With drums, guitar and synths reminding me of PORCUPINE TREE. Trumpet comes back before this song ends.

The highlight of this record and the reason you need to hear this album is the next song "Il Sogno Della Scala". The first 5 minutes start slowly with electronic noises etc. until we start to get some absolutely scorching guitar melodies and pounding drums. Mellotron comes in and the soundscape is amazing. The guitar is on fire after 8 minutes as the waves of mellotron flow so beautifully through the violence of the guitars. Trumpet comes in before it's over. The final song like the first two is rather forgetable. With the distracting sound of people talking in the background as the trumpet and other sounds are heard.

I don't think I have heard another Post-Rock band use mellotron like LAZONA does.They also use the electronic theremin, e-bow and mini-moog. If only the other songs were like "Il Sogno Della Scala" then we might have a masterpiece on our hands. Still worth a listen though.

Review by Prog-jester
2 stars LAZONA was described to me as GYBEish post-rock from LA MASCHERA DI CERA’s bassist. This is not true actually, and leave alone my tastes and impressions. “Le Notti Difficili” consists from 4 tracks and lasts almost 45 minutes. The first tracks is an ethereal intro filled with radio samples (on Italian mostly) and a trumpet solo. The second one and the third one are 2-3 chords jams reminding me of PORCUPINE TREE’s ambient and experimental spacy stuff a-la “Metanoia” and “Voyage 34”. The last track is actually the same as the opening one but without this trumpet solo. This is a kind of music one can record daily just for fun, IMHO – not even close to TANGERINE DREAM or any other band of that kind.

After all – nice yet a bit dark background for everything, but this music is hardly connected with Post-Rock in my book, this is rather average (if not boring) Space/ Ambient Rock. Hate to be a basher, but this is not what I expected to hear and this is not much to stuck to at all. For fans mostly.

Review by memowakeman
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The non-symphonic side of Zuffanti!

If you are familiar with his works, then you know that this side-project is actually very different to the music that Zuffanti "normally" does with his other bands, with LaZona, he went to a more experimental side where we will hardly notice that this is an Italian band, while we are used to enjoy some Maschera`s or Finisterre`s symphonic music, suddenly we find ourselves listening to something totally different, and believe me that this can be done only by superb musicians and composers like fabio Zuffanti.

He is one of my personal favorite musicians nowadays i really like all of his projects, having obviously a personal scale, i mean i like some of his projects more than others naturally, LaZona is not my favorite of his projects at all, but believe me that it is a very nice post-rock oriented record.

You have to be patience while listening to this album which is composed by 4 songs and a 45 minute lenght, the songs as you can imagine are long songs but actually they are related to each other so it could be a one-song album divided in 4 parts, the album is pretty good, but let me advice you that you should not listen to it if you are tired of do not have a good humor because it progresses very slowly and you may find it boring, in the other hand, if you are open and feel the will of listening to it, you may find it great.

"Solitudini" is a difficult first song, if you can manage to get this song, then you will probably enjoy the whole album, it lasts 10 minutes and begins very slowly with some guitar here and there, atmospheres and bass as background , actually the first 5 minutes are pretty alike without a considerable variation, then we can listen the ntrance of trombone wchich makes a wark sound, the second half of this song shows some drums apassages and the trombone still playing. "Il Babau" is the following song and hardly noticeable that is another song, it changes suddenly if you dont pay attention to the tracks lenght you will think that it is still the same first song, but a couple of minutes later you will recognize at last some notes, i mean those parts that you will remember of a song, it is like this, it sounds like that, this song agains has a little change until minute 5 when drums and keys appear, very experimental song. "Il Sogno Della Scala" is without a doubt the best song of this album, the longest with 15 minutes and the most enjoyable of them all, here we can listen to a sudden change, bass lines making the rythm and after the 2nd song`s fade out it continues with electronic sounds and noises, nice effects, the beauty of this song is the way its progressing, i am noly expecting that moment when it turns more agressive and faster and yes, finally after the fifth minute it changes to a powerful song with the magnific sound of mellotron included, here the guitar is more intense and we can recognize what the song is about, great melody and atmosphere,this song alone is a very worth listening, the sound of mellotron in this experimental album makes it even better and more interesting the mos powerful part is featured in the second third of this song, then the 3rd part returns to a more calmed and relaxed sound. "Equivalenza" is the last, shortest and less good song of the album, despite it continues with the same style of the previous one, you will know its another song due to the voices or conversation there. The guitar notes are the same and it is becoming more slowly through the minutes, not the besto song to finish the album but anyway not that bad, this is the one which finished this nice "1 song divided in 4 parts album" from Italian project called LaZona.

I personally would give it 4 stars because i like it a lot and play it very often, but since you either could enjoy it or get bored, the final grade is 3 stars.

Enjoy it!

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars At the time of its release (2003) this album ranges to the very short formatted works. Less than fourty-five minutes. This is of course not a handicap if only the grandeur of the music would compensate this. I really like several projects of the band leader (Fabio Zuffanti) but this one is frankly out of my musical scope.

This has nothing to do with Italian Symphonic music which was the genre in which Fabio has excelled for some time. It is almost space-rock oriented at best but without ANY spirit for most of the four songs featured on this album. The improv style will also remind some KC work.

If ever you have taken heavy ecstasy or very strong coffee (which is probably healthier) and you couldn't fall asleep, this CD might well be the antidote. It is boring to death during three out of the four tracks.

OK, "Il Sogno Della Scala" which is the longest one from this album is excellent. At least one third of this work deserves some recognition. A great space-rock song. It really kicks off after a slow start. Wonderful keyboards and some great guitar work makes this song a masterpiece. It is the only track that is worth listening here. But what a great discovery! On par with some of the best "La Machera Di Cera" work.

But when you will listen to "Equivalencia" and its dual language "vocals" (of which one is French and the other one is unknown to me). Most of the album ("Solitudini" and "Il Babau" combined since there are really not distinction between these two) just sounds as a loooooooooong and boooooring improvisation.

Thanks to the lenght (over fifteen minutes) and the quality (five stars) of "Il Sogno", I will rate this album with three stars. But IMHHO, the remaing three songs are just worth one star. Still, if I do the math (which I almost never do), I can go as far as three stars for this album.

There are definitely too much difficult notes for me here.

Review by Cesar Inca
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars LaZona is the vehicle for the ever-prolific Fabio Zuffanti's post-rock orientations. His colorful curiosity as a writer and performer eventually had to drive him to a project such as this one, and here it goes, LaZona's album "Le Notti Difficili". This is essentially a post-rock album, no way around it, but you can tell that the musicians involved have a solid prog rock pedigree , since the repertoire is far beyond a mere copycat of what Sigur Ros, Mogwai or Tortoise do: it has a very stylish finesse that can only come from a serious concern of bringing a sense of majesty to the standard of post-rock. 'Solitudini' kicks off the album with an extremely low-pitched synthetic layer, gradually becoming a source of cosmic introspection as the guitar states Spartan chords. The soft cosmic atmosphere turns quite steady through the almost unnoticeable crescendo that is taking place, and it is only when the trombone's first lines show that the increasing momentum is quite explicit. Once the trombone and the eerie keyboard layers settle in for good, the whole atmosphere resembles an integral combination of Cluster and Sigur Ros' majestic side, with a proper touch of musique concrete used for good effect in terms of ambience (not disturbance). The multiple guitar ornaments and the spaceship-like synth sounds enhance the concrete element in a very controlled fashion as the trombone displays its final evocative lines right into the starting point of track 2, 'Il Babau'. This one has a more defined framework to it, while retaining the cosmic connection with the opener. It takes 5 minutes before the drummer stops providing occasional cymbal whispers and states a proper rhythmic dynamics, and that is when the main motif blossoms in a most captivating way. This one might as well described as David Lynch OST- meets-Mogwai, with a touch of dense electronics a-la Experimental Audio Research. 'Il Sogno della Scala' is the longest piece in the album, lasting a little more than of an hour. It is also the most patently intense track: it has a slowly growing crescendo - as usual - marked by a solidly pounding bass line - which is unusual by now -, eventually leading to a storm of sound properly dominated by the guitar and built up by the mellotron washes. During the intro part, the choir effect brings a Romanic-meet-s Gothic mood to the overall atmosphere, as if it were the announcement of something ceremonious that is about to happen. Once the rocking section settles in, you can tell that the ceremonious event that was waiting to happen turned out to be quite explosive, with a magnetism that doesn't counter but refurbishes the album's general introspection into a different level. When it's the turn for the trombone solo, the energy of things tones down a bit of its explicitness, gradually as always, within the atmospheric flare developed in the integral instrumental delivery. There is even some flirtation with jazzy stuff in the rhythm section's department. This detail is in fact important for the connection intended between this track and the following one, the closure 'Equivalenza'. Lasting a tad less than 8 minutes, this one is heavily focused on a double set of monologues with the instrumental work serving as some sort of background. It is not totally a background, really, since the elaboration of layers and the development of spacey moods trace a meticulous musical work all the way through. A majestic variation of post-rock, this is what you can expect from LaZona.

Latest members reviews

5 stars What an excellent improvement on Experimental/post rock, a unique album that gathers heavy guitars and spacy keyboards to a GYBE! on acid... The music is very special, the best track by far is Sogno Della Scala wich has this trumpet moddy final ending after a wah wah guitar mind blowing solo, ... (read more)

Report this review (#81951) | Posted by OvergroundMusic | Sunday, June 25, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars [Rare Italian album] Well like sean trane said this is post rock like goodpseed You black emeperor! the only Difference is that this guys don't have cellos and violin's. they use keyboards, and sometimes this stranges sounds are Inconvinient with the overall feeling that they are trying to do ... (read more)

Report this review (#76833) | Posted by bamba | Monday, May 1, 2006 | Review Permanlink

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