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Montefeltro Il Tempo di Far la Fantasia album cover
3.82 | 59 ratings | 10 reviews | 22% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1992

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Canto No. 1 (lettera ad un amico del 1400) (22:36) :
- i. Musicis instrumentis sonans humanos affectus
- ii. Siarade serale
- iii. La corsa contro il tempo
- iv. Pioggia di stelle
- v. La tua immagine
- vi. Il walzer dei ricordi (per anatre e vecchi balocchi)
- vii. Sciarada notturna (al lume di candela col temporale oltre la finistra)
- viii. Prendi la foglia
- ix. Il duello
- x. In quel sole interiore, la nave a l'artificio
2. Il prescetto (6:39) :
- i. Nella sala del trono
- ii. Dopo la pioggia
- iii. Con il viso controvento
3. Cielo di carta (2:51)
4. La collana riffletente (5:33)
5. Nel labirinto (il regreto del sole) (8:31) :
- i. La casa di Asterione
- ii. Un addio in silenzio

Total Time 46:10

Line-up / Musicians

- Attilio Virgilio / lead vocals, guitar
- Piergiorgio Ambrosi / keyboards
- Giampiero D'Andria / bass
- Pierpaolo Ferroni / drums

Releases information

CD Musea Records FGBG 4272.AR

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MONTEFELTRO Il Tempo di Far la Fantasia ratings distribution

(59 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(22%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(42%)
Good, but non-essential (32%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

MONTEFELTRO Il Tempo di Far la Fantasia reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by loserboy
4 stars Simply drop dead essential progressive rock with that classic Italian symphonic influence. MONTEFELTRO is really the genius of 2 men who wrote and performed much of the material with 2 guest musicians as well. Chords are heavily symphonic and passages lush with superb musicianship... what else could you ask for ? Although I love the entire album, the opening epic track is delicious "Canto" which clocks in at around 22 minutes and manages to cover a wide range of themes and ideas. Vocals are excellent and are full of great expression with lovely melodies and harmonies. Guitar expressions are also very well sequenced into the music and is played with great feeling and musicianship. This is yet another one of Musea's great contributions to the genre of Progressive Rock .
Review by lor68
4 stars Well this Roman couple of clever musicians has been the most pleasant surprise of the recent history of the Italian Neo-Prog in the early nineties, and despite of deserving an inferior score in a few circumstances only (talking about for instance a tepid episode regarding the arrangement of the keyboards within "La Collana riflettente", although the rhythmical section is good yet), generally this concept about the Duke of Montefeltro and his own picturesque Ducal Palace of Urbino (a long suite divided into ten movements) is remarkable and often over the average: the 22 minute-long first suite "Il Canto n. 1" is a delicious game among the acoustic and the electric guitars, as they are able to alternate fast excursions to delicate passages: those are the direct harmonic solutions by Attilio Virgilio,well supported by means of short vocal parts...instead "Nel labirinto" -the last track-is characterized by a great lyricism, according to the tradition of the best Roman bands, such as Banco and Ezra Winston, making this album a very interesting "small jewel" and a piece of poetry as well!!

Check it out!!

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Symphonic music is a difficult beast to master as it requires not only a mastery of the individual instruments but also the ability to weave them into a multi-partitioned opus that has substance as well as body. With the progressive element, the "orchestra" is replaced by massive use of analog and digital machines (sequencers, synths, mellotrons, computer software) as well as hopefully and ideally, real drums and percussion and some crafty electric and acoustic guitar work. Montefeltro's debut is a singular achievement in the annals of Italian Symphonic Prog, with an effort that evokes distant shades of Ezra Winston and marshalling in the continued tradition of magical compositional ability. The only drawback is the slightly muddy production but, hey, it adds to the charm. As the musical curtain is drawn aside, it reveals a first act of gigantic proportions, an enormous 22 minute extravaganza "Canto no1" (a letter to a friend in 1400), a ten-part suite that expresses the gentleness of the Renaissance with all the modern accoutrements of the progressive arsenal. This velvet euphoria hypnotizes like a lyrical anesthetic, plunging the listener into the plush romanticism of orchestral seduction, hard to imagine not smiling at all the craftiness. Singer Attilio Virgilio has an expressive voice that shirks operatic professionalism, offering up instead some entirely fragile singing that suits the suite perfectly. He also adds some diverse acoustic and occasional haunting electric guitar that both adorn instead of disturb. The bass and drums are provided by hired guns and they shoot straight without any overkill (Okay, drop the mafia innuendo!). Lots of organs, assorted massed string synthesizers, mellotrons, grand piano and plenty of ravishing harpsichord. Grandiose, unpretentious and majestic, this is prog that exudes genuine beauty and grandeur. The next 4 tracks are actually sonically more of the same, with plenty of choir, some outright guitar Hackettry that surges and sways, with real Genesis flair. Nothing really comes close to that opening salvo, though! Is this a masterpiece? No, not really but it is a most definite quality addition to any ISP collection. 4 roman candles.
Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Elegant, keyboard-rich Italian with just a slight Neo touch

"Il Tempo" is an interesting 90s Italian prog release. The band is closer to the lighter and prettier sounds of Mindflower or Willowglass than it is to a bolder band like Finisterre. The album is as drop-dead gorgeous as the album cover advertises: beginning to end it is chock full of stately keyboard play, mostly synths and piano, drenched in reserved and nuanced electric and acoustic guitars. This is an album for people looking for romantic, pretty, pastoral prog. I think it's an enjoyable album that blends a classical symphonic feel with a distinct neo-prog feel but my rating stops well short of some fellow reviewers. I think there is too much sameness throughout the album in the overall sound. It's a bit too pleasant at times, a bit too John Tesh, in need of a little more drama or darkness if simply for some contrast. There is some variety in the composition as mentioned below, but not enough in the sound.this album could use more variety in instruments and participants. I notice this on most albums by a single musician or even duos with guests as is the case here; there is little substitute for a true band with a wide variety of talents.

"Canto" is the highlight of the album, a 10-part suite covering 22 minutes. The first vocals begin after a brief intro and it is quickly obvious they are not the strength of the group. Certainly not bad, just soft, fragile, without much confidence. The keyboards quickly establish dominance with a lush organ and synth backdrop for which the electric guitar lays down some nice soloing, using the volume pedal to good effect. The electric guitar use is noteworthy in the way it is melded into the sound, rarely out front, more aurally blended into the actual keyboards so as to be sometimes indistinguishable. Then we have some tasty piano and flashy drumming. The piece moves through a wide variety of compositional territory with some upbeat sections, some dreamy lighter sections. (Again note the distinction between composition which is quite good, and sound which could use more variety.) It is mostly instrumental using vocals as just more texturing as opposed to a significant role. "Il Prescelto" begins with the mentioned Neo-sounding mood, upbeat, light, friendly. Lush keyboards abound with acoustic guitars and pleasant vocals. The drum work is certainly proficient, sometimes even a bit busy for the material being supported. "Cielo di Carta" features fragile falsetto vocals over acoustic guitar with light synth background. There is also some piano sprinkled lightly in the mix. This track has a longing vibe to the music. Flashy little keyboard solo at the end. "La Collana" is similar to "Il Prescelto" but with some breezy electric guitar in places. "Nel Labirinto" begins with a strange vocal collage that is a bit scary, but soon gorgeous acoustics begin playing and there is delicious flute-sounding synth and beautiful piano. The bass comes through a bit more towards the end which is welcome. Abrupt fade-out end..ouch.

Not bad but not a title to get super-excited about. If you are relatively new to Italian prog do not start here. After a thorough sampling of the '70s classics you may wish to try this someday. When you get to the 90s I would suggest sampling Finisterre's wonderful "In Limine" before trying Montelfeltro.

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars This band is categorized as genuine Italian symphonic prog music; which means splendid and melodic vocals, superb musicianship, and wonderful soundscapes.

A glorious definition, should I say. The honesty though leads me to warn some (most?) of you: these "Watcher Of The Skies" lines have been so many times borrowed already. What's the need to duplicate the feeling, please???

The epic "Canto" is so much filled with these sounds that I can hardly be thrilled: too much is too much. Of course pleasant, yes. But no more. Sounds more as a neo-prog hymn than anything else.

Keyboards are quite encouraging and pleasant. They are definitely providing a deep emotion and imprint the minds. Still, there aren't any development Ó la "Apocalypse in 9/8" from the magnificent "Supper's Ready". But I admit that the model is hard to match so; no what's the need to try out?

The closing part is bombastic and powerful, for sure. A good piece of prog, that's not the question. Is this essential? That's another question. My answer is : no.

Most of the other songs featured do confirm the initial feel: a very strong borrowing item. This is my opinion. Played with skills. Sung with care. My fave moments being the instrumental parts though (no guitar, but gorgeous keys).

This "Tempo Di Far La Fantasia" is a good album. Three stars. Too much a copy of whom you might know. I'm just walking across the sitting room?

Review by seventhsojourn
4 stars I first came across the name of Montefeltro a number of years ago via an Open University course on the Renaissance in Europe that included an examination of the court of Federico da Montefeltro, Duke of Urbino. Until I looked at the booklet that accompanies this CD I never really gave the band's name a second thought but, lo and behold, whose familiar profile should be there on the inside page but the bold Duke's. (Just thought I'd share this bit of trivia!) Federico was one of the leading condottieri of the age and never lost a battle yet this album sets off with the 22-minute 'Canto No.1', an epic piece that's given shape by a letter written by Federico to his muse/wife. It reveals the cultured side of Federico's nature - literally and figuratively a man of letters.

English translations of the lyrics appear in the booklet but they don't always make a whole lot of sense; mind you Vladimir Nabokov argued that translations should sound like translations, that they should be faithful to the language of the original rather than read smoothly, so he would doubtless approve of these texts. The lyrics delight in the fantastic and borrow heavily from literature and fables; Montefeltro's musical world is peopled by warrior gods, ancient mariners and mythological creatures, and by images of the stars, Time and Nature. Multi-layered keyboards and 12-string guitars provide scope for the Hackett-inspired lead guitar to emerge like great shards of light through distant blankets of clouds. While Montefeltro don't remotely come close to matching the achievements of their fellow Italians of the Renaissance, this is nonetheless an ambitious piece and I reckon the band must have had a hearty helping of Genesis porridge before they recorded it.

The final track 'Nel Labirinto' was inspired by a Jorge Luis Borges story, 'The House of Asterion', which explores questions of personal identity and personal existence. Borges turns on its head the traditional story of the killing of the Minotaur by the Athenian hero, Theseus. The labyrinth of the title hides Asterion, the mythological Minotaur, and is symbolic of doubt and perplexity. Weary in his solitude within the labyrinth, Asterion longs for 'a place with fewer galleries and fewer doors' and he is killed when he throws himself onto Theseus' sword in the belief that he is embracing his redeemer. Despite its melancholic subject matter this song has something of a festive atmosphere that conjures images of children scurrying off to bed to dream of La Befana, the witch of Italian folklore who delivers their Christmas presents.

Montefeltro basically recorded this album as a two-piece of Attilio Virgilio (vocals, guitars) and Piergiorgio Ambrosi (piano, keyboards), with a pair of guest musicians providing the bass and drums. Their favourite abode is undoubtedly chez Genesis, so if that's your bag you can put on the stretchy pants and prepare yourself for an absolute feast. They're not in the same league as Genesis of course. In fact they're not even in the top echelon of RPI bands but their music is some of the prettiest you'll hear, an aural panacea against life's suffering that sounds like a cocktail of PFM and Genesis infused with glucose. If you don't enjoy sweet and harmonious symphonic music you might want to bang your head *here* rather than listen to this. The remaining three tracks are much of a muchness and that lack of variety is my only concern with the album, otherwise this might have been worthy of the elusive fifth star.

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars 1970s-sounding Neo Prog produced in the 1990s from Italy imitating (lifting?) those Genesis sounds beautifully but nearly too closely. Think BABYLON's 1980 album Babylon and you'd have hit the nail on the head.

1. "Canto No. 1 (lettera ad un amico del 1400)" (22:12) so much (too much?) like the BABYLON sound palette and recording engineering reinterpretation (recapitulation?) of Peter Gabriel-era GENESIS (mostly Foxtrot). It's done extremely well--with great instrumental and compositional quality; it's just so frickin' close to the original! The only instruments that shine through as being different are the ancient pre-piano sounding keyboards (clavichord? psaltry? celeste? Celtic harp?) and fretless bass as well as a couple of the effects used on the guitars. The ethereal vocals (heavily reverbed to sound as if they're coming from inside the cavernous marble walls of a large cathedral-- like EMERALD DAWN does for Tree Stewart's voice). A lot of this song reminds me of the sound and style of Spanish band GALADRIEL's Muttered Promises from an Ageless Pond from 1988 as well as those of Canadian band HECENIA's 1989 album, LÚgendes. Despite its clone-like feel, this is an excellent and beautiful symphonic suite, beautifully--one might say "lovingly"--composed. (41/45): I) musicis instrumentis sonans humanos affectus II) Siarade serale III) La corsa contro il tempo IV) Pioggia di stelle V) La tua immagine VI) Il walzer dei ricordi (per anatre e vecchi balocchi) VII) Sciarada notturna (al lume di candela col temporale oltre la finistra) VIII) Prendi la foglia IX) Il duello X) In quel sole interiore, la nave a l'artificio 2. "Il prescetto" (6:28) Wow! So BABYLON--right out of the starting blocks! The quick and frequent changes in time signatures over the opening minute are a bit much. The theatric Italian singing that starts in the second minute sound like a German Kommandant barking orders. but then it goes slow and soft as the annoying 1980s computer synth horns fill the soundscape. And then I hear the sound of horses on cobblestones and think, "This is about some mediŠval thing!" hich makes me even more curious and engaged. The ensuing high energy insrumental weave is so Phil Collins-era GENESIS that I get goosebumps. Then there is a jazzy vocal section with super-funk bass plucking alternating with majesterial mediŠval motifs leading down into a pastoral finish. Wow! Great theatric song! If one can get past the sound (and "Dreamfish" familiarity) one would things this a 10/10 song! (9.5/10): I) Nella sala del trono II) Dopo la pioggia III) Con il viso controvento

3. "Cielo di carta" (2:44) complex 12-string strumming within cheap synth washes over which gentle voice sings lead. (4.5/5)

4. "La collana riffletente" (5:31) sounds very much like an early solo career Steve HACKETT or Mike OLDFIELD song (only, in the demo form--or live--due to the poor sound quality). Great, compositionally, and as a demonstration of collective performance skill, and the Robert Wyatt-like voice is enjoyable (as opposed to so many of the bombastic operatic types)--giving it a quality similar to the more delicate moments of early PFM--while the music prove to be very much something from the melodic/syrupy side of Tony Banks and Steve Hackett (with parts that seem as if they were lifted directly off of the BABYLON album). (8.75/10)

5. "Nel labirinto (il regreto del sole)" (8:23) this mostly-instrumental song feels like the soundtrack to a museum exhibit or YouTube picture montage depicting some period of history. The music is good, definitely proggy, but more in the jam/unfinished category. (15.5/20) : I) La casa di Asterione II) Un addio in silenzio

Total Time: 45:11

It is beautifully and quite competently done. I can't think of much true prog coming out of Italy in the 1980s or 1990s--unless you count the Italian-sounding work of Japanese bands Pazzo Fanfano di Musica, Mr. Sirius, or Asturias--so this album is impressive as well for this fact. Again, were the sound production on this better, we would hold this set of impressive and sincere compositions higher in our esteem.

B+/4.5 stars; an excellent addition to any prog lover's collection--this despite the muddy sound production. (Oh, what could/could have been!)

Latest members reviews

4 stars An Italian Band of the 90 decade but with a seventies sound. In the vein of the classical Italian bands of seventies dÚcade, have a nice sound with lots of keiboards and piano parts, that mimicking an orchestra featuring the classic sound of this time. Lyrics are in Italian but with a long i ... (read more)

Report this review (#413804) | Posted by JoŃo Paulo | Wednesday, March 9, 2011 | Review Permanlink

5 stars What I can say? Emotive, symphonic, inspirative... Attilio Virgilio (vocals, guitars) and Piergioirgio Ambrossi (keyboards) did a great job with this superb album which gather maybe the vest inffluences of the classic Italian Prog. "Canto" it's a long composition splintered with great keyboard ... (read more)

Report this review (#40974) | Posted by progadicto | Saturday, July 30, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars There is no disagreement with my fellow reviewers! Montefeltro is a great band. It offers italian symphonic tunes in the vein of the bands that we all like. The use of keyboards is liberal, and the singer does a fine a job. In short, I suggest you get this record if you are fond of this genre. ... (read more)

Report this review (#40050) | Posted by Dan Yaron | Saturday, July 23, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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