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Quarto Vuoto

Rock Progressivo Italiano

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Quarto Vuoto Illusioni album cover
4.10 | 34 ratings | 2 reviews | 24% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2017

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Nei Colori del Silenzio (5:31)
2. Coscienza Sopita (6:50)
3. Impasse (11:31)
4. Apofis (11:03)
5. Due ° Io (9:15)
6. Tornerò (4:57)

Total Time 49:07

Line-up / Musicians

- Luca Volonnino / guitar
- Mattia Scomparin / keyboards
- Edoardo Ceron / bass
- Nicola D'Amico / drums

- Giulio Dalla Mora / tenor sax (3,4)
- Mauro Spinazzè / violin (6)

Releases information

CD LIZARD - CD 0129 (2017, Italy)

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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QUARTO VUOTO Illusioni ratings distribution

(34 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(24%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
Good, but non-essential (21%)
Collectors/fans only (15%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

QUARTO VUOTO Illusioni reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by andrea
5 stars Illusioni (Illusions) is the second album by Quarto Vuoto, a talented band from Mogliano Veneto, in the province of Treviso. It follows the excellent eponymous debut work from 2014 and was released in 2017 on the independent label Lizard Records with a renewed line up featuring Edoardo Ceron (bass), Nicola D'Amico (drums), Mattia Scomparin (keyboards, piano) and Luca Volonnino (guitar) plus some guests. In fact, in 2015 Federico Lorenzon (vocals, violin) left the band and wasn't replaced but during the recording sessions Giulio Dalla Mora (sax) and Mauro Spinazz' (violin) gave their contribute to enrich the sound on some tracks. The new album is completely instrumental and the images provided by Lorenzo Giolin's wonderful art work in some way take the place of the lyrics in describing the concept behind the music. According to the band, all the pieces have a meaning, a story to tell, but the listener is free to interpret them with the help of his own imagination and sensitivity' Through our music we want to tell and describe the perception that men have of the reality that surrounds them... The six tracks represent different phases of human perception...

The dreamy opener 'Nei colori del silenzio' (In the colours of silence) is calm and nocturnal. The music tries to evoke the innocence of childhood and the power of imagination typical of that age. An animated cartoon video directed by Lorenzo Giolin himself was shot to comment this piece and to represent its magic...

The following 'Coscienza sopita' (Asleep consciousness) is nervous and tense. It tries to depict the spirit of rebellion of youth and the awareness of maturity, when the daily grind begins to produce its effects and starts to wear you out. The picture in the booklet portrays the lights and shadows of a big city at night. Behind the window of a lighted office there's a bent man, he seems tired. That office might be his cage...

The long, melancholic 'Impasse' tries to evoke the difficulties that you have to tackle in your life, the obstacles that you have to overcome. In the booklet, in the picture chosen to comment this piece you can see a bizarre world of flying rocks connected by ropes and crumbling bridges...

The title of the following 'Apofis' (Apophis) refers to the ancient Egyptian deity who embodied chaos and was thus the opponent of light and Ma'at (order/truth). This piece starts with sudden bursts of energy, the mood is dark and seems to mark the explosion of a deep crises. Then a calm jazzy passage follows with a sax solo evoking nostalgia and regret. As the music flows, there are many other changes in rhythm and atmosphere where you can perceive growing tension, rage but also positive memories. Here the picture in the booklet with its explosion of colours on a spectral background evokes a world falling apart in an infinite space...

The reflective 'Due io' (Two I) seems to evoke the wisdom and calm of the old age. The atmosphere here is almost mystical while the picture in the booklet marks the contradictions of the life in a big city where lighted skyscrapers contrast with the hidden underground net. This piece comes like the calm after the storm...

The closer 'Torner' (I'll come back) begins by a beautiful soaring violin passage and a nice melodic pattern. It's a wonderful track that marks the come back to the origins, a reflection about the sense of a life that is coming to an end. What will remain of us in the afterlife? Of course, there's no answer. It's just a starting point for a reflection while the world is turning upside down' Set your imagination free!

On the whole, I think that this is a really good album!

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Back in 2014, young Italian band Quarto Vuoto released a short self-titled half-hour debut in the bold symphonic sound of the Seventies RPI legends, and the lovingly retro-flavoured album embraced the same flavours as classic Italian prog legends Quella Vecchia Locanda due to the way the music was dominated by elegant violin. The fairly small number of RPI fans who heard the EP felt it was very special, but that it only hinted at the potential that the band could show if they delivered a full-length work. Well, three years later we have that proper follow-up, and it's likely to be perceived as quite a controversial release, sure to either disappoint or very much excite, depending on which way you look at it and/or your history with the band.

Right from the start of the new CD, it's pretty clear that `Illusioni', and the band themselves, are no longer your `Dad's Prog'. Mostly gone are the retro flavours, the overt soloing and pretty much any connection to the Italian prog masters of old, and it's probably no coincidence to find that the first album's vocalist/violinist Federico Lorenzon has departed in the years since that debut. The remaining players have opted to carry on in an instrumental form, and 2017's `Illusioni' is a distinctly modern sounding mix of post-rock reaches, ambient atmospheres and psychedelic improvisations, with the band favouring subtle and careful build over flashy soloing show-boating this time around. Moments of it resemble King Crimson, Steven Wilson, Porcupine Tree or even Diagonal, but this is really the sound of Quarto Vuoto forging their own unique sound and ready to pick up plenty more followers for their winning efforts.

Heavenly breezes flit in and out of opener `Nei Colori del Silenzio', laced with arching Post Rock- flavoured guitar chimes, sweetly murmuring bass, ethereal synth caresses and only the lightest of cymbals and percussion to exquisitely tease the most restrained of dramatic pinpricks. `Coscienza Sopita's jagged electric piano splinters and thrashing drum tantrums are attacked at every turn by spiky electric guitars that seamlessly shift between shimmering strums, muscular bursts and ragged wailing space-rock soloing, and there's an unease and tension to the piece that wouldn't have sounded out of place on a `Moonloop/Signify'-era Porcupine Tree album.

`Impasse' unfolds over almost twelve minutes, stark electronic droning white-noise and faraway lurking drum rumbles that almost take on a tribal-like hypnotic intensity one moment, whirring kaleidoscopic soloing and fuzzy guitar ruminations laced with a defiant joyous freedom the next. Despite being punctuated with gutsy Anekdoten-like blasts, `Apofis' quickly captures a similar ragged gloominess to the metallic guitar ringings, rattling percussion and darkly lit jazzy sax wafting of King Crimson's `Islands' period before it diverts into a beautifully melancholic piano solo climax.

Psychedelic ambience that channels early Pink Floyd with dream-like guitar ripples float through `Due'Io' whenever it's not being attacked with crunching heavy Riverside/Porcupine Tree-like driving riffing guitars, with the band ably navigating a range of quick-change tempos back and forth in the second half. Finally, dignified and graceful violin (although not courtesy of the above mentioned former member Lorenzon) swoons beside uplifting guitar soloing in `Tornerò', with icy synths holding just the lightest touch of the Eighties Neo-Prog sound, and all up it makes for a very pretty and genuinely emotional close to the album.

It's a bit of a shame that Quarto Vuoto now in no way resemble that promising RPI group of their beginnings, but initial disappointment of what once was can be turned around if the proper time is taken to really explore what these young musicians are now doing (and if you're new to the band, none of that will matter anyway!). In many ways the situation mirrors the approach taken by fellow modern Italian proggers Ingranaggi della Valle - by ditching the slavish fascination to prog sounds of old after nailing it on their first recording, they instead branched out in their own style on the follow-up in not only a completely different manner, but diverted in numerous directions at once and are now brimming with a new and thrilling approach in its place.

But in the end, all that matters is that `Illusioni' is a sublime modern progressive rock album from a talented bunch of musicians, one that came be easily embraced by younger audiences and fans not wanting a mere rehash of the classic prog era, who enjoy exploratory improvisations that never aimlessly meander, and it can easily be placed among the standout Italian, and purely instrumental, works of the last twelve months.

Four stars.

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