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Accordo Dei Contrari

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Accordo Dei Contrari UR- album cover
4.19 | 53 ratings | 3 reviews | 38% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2021

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Tergeste (9:00)
2. Così Respirano gli Incendi del Tempo / Thus They Breathe, Time's Fires (7:45)
3. Più Limpida e Chiara di Ogni Impressione Vissuta (Pt. III) / More Limpid and Clearer Than Any Lived Impression (Pt. III) (4:23)
4. UR- (10:50)
5. Secolo Breve / The Short Century (4:35)
6. Contrari ad Ogni Accordo / Opposed to Any Agreement (5:53)

Total Time 42:26

Line-up / Musicians

- Marco Marzo Maracas / electric guitar & 12-string electric guitar
- Stefano Radaelli / alto saxophone
- Cristian Franchi / drums
- Giovanni Parmeggiani / Steinway piano, heavily overdriven & phased Fender Rhodes, organ, Minimoog

- Alessandro Bonetti / violin (with Rambaldi Amplifier) (1-4)
- Patrizia Urbani / vocals (4)
- Sergio Papajanni / electric bass (4)
- Carlo Facondini / electric guitar (6)
- Francesco Guerri / cello (6)

Releases information

Label: Cuneiform Records
Format: CD, Digital
November 19, 2021

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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ACCORDO DEI CONTRARI UR- ratings distribution

(53 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(38%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
Good, but non-essential (12%)
Collectors/fans only (6%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)


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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Heavy Prog & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
5 stars Italian jazz-rockers set forth a goal of achieving Birds of Fire-like power and ecstatic energy. Result: Mission accomplished. Especially on the first two and last songs.

1. "Tergeste" (9:00) opening three minutes reminds me of FIVE-STOREY ENSEMBLE if Olga & Co. continued their meteoric development that began with RATIONAL DIET. When drums and electric guitars and bass join in, it starts to sound heavier than I've heard before. By the middle of the fifth minute, I'm totally immersed in MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA territory. Love the slow sonic and compositional fade in the eighth minute that leads to an organ drone over which bass, sax, and slowly re-build the complex riffs that the keyboards started in the first three minutes. Perfect execution of a perfect composition--complete with a guitar arpeggio at the very end that comes straight out of MO's Birds of Fire. (20/20)

2. "Così Respirano gli Incendi del Tempo / Thus They Breathe, Time's Fires" (7:45) inspiration is one thing, imitation another, but here we get almost too-close-to-differentiate replication: the song's chords, melodies, dynamics, and even sound engineering of the instruments sound too close to MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA--could be, in fact, lifted from particular songs from 1970s records. Don't get me done: It's masterfully done, with impeccable skill and virtuosity, but I was hoping for/expeciting a little more originality from this band. At least the directional change in the fifth minute takes them into different, more jazzy territory. And then the piano interlude in the sixth minute has a its own originality to it--like a Rachmaninoff étude, but then the Rick Laird-like violin sound joins in... It's gorgeous- -incredible melodies on multiple levels making for a weave of compositional mastery, but? But I don't know what! These are just mind-blowing skills being dispayed in the form of beautiful music! Man! that went by fast! My favorite song on the album! (15/15)

3. "Più Limpida e Chiara di Ogni Impressione Vissuta (Pt. III) / More Limpid and Clearer Than Any Lived Impression (Pt. III)" (4:23) More clean power jazz-rock, this time with a little more Italian/ADC feel to it (until the Rick Laird violin enters to shred). It's the piano and clean whole-band power chord structures that make it ADC--especially that gorgeous piano-guitar-cymbal interlude at the end of the second minute. Sax solo in the third minute reminds me of some early KING CRIMSON, but then dirty organ solo brings us into different territory. Maybe MUSEO ROSENBACH, BIGLIETTO PER L'INFERNO, or even OSANNA? (8.7510)

4. "UR-" (10:50) Are they really? Are they really taking us into the hallowed ground of their own countrymates, AREA? or is it BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO they're trying to honor here? Whatever it is, the opening 90 seconds of this are truly captivating--even when they start to feel like their tip-toeing through GOBLIN territory, it's great. Then the sax-and-electric guitar join in to introduce the main melody--sounding like Cervello's CORRADO RUSTICI (who was imitating and inspired by John MeLaughlin) and Corrado's brother, Danilo's band, Osanna's ELIO D'ANNA (who would later team up to form the great NOVA lineup). The odd, repetitive motif that is played out over the next few minutes sounds more like Van Der Graaf Generator or Norway's wonderful SEVEN IMPALE. What great sound! What a wonderful tribute to so much of the best of avant prog and 1970s jazz-oriented Rock Progressivo Italiano! (17.75/20)

5. "Secolo Breve / The Short Century" (4:35) Here we get a complex jazzy rock tune that feels more avant garde and yet follows some standard jazz and rock rules and forms. Again, the talents of these instrumentalists--especially the keyboard player, but even the bass and drums--are on full display here. Not as engaging or "beautiful" as the previous two. (8.75/10)

6. "Contrari ad Ogni Accordo / Opposed to Any Agreement" (5:53) piano and plaintive sax perform a duet that almost sounds like a VINCE GUARALDI jazzed up a little but still maintaining that deep, timeless beauty in its melodies. Violin and then drums and bass join in during the third minute bringing us back to Mahavishnu territory (reminding me that some Mahavihsnu songs often had a very simple foundational chord structure--this while the soloists went bat-ape [&*!#] crazy over the top). Great tune; great work by all, somehow managing to keep that understated Vince Guaraldi essence throughout. (It was the piano, of course!) (9.25/10)

Total Time 42:26

Well, if capturing the magic of Birds of Fire was their goal, then, mission accomplished--only, with modern day production values, they may have surpassed any of Johnny Mac's early 1970s expeditions--especially in terms of sound clarity/quality.

A/five stars; an indisputable masterpiece of progressive rock music. Composition and performance of the VERY highest levels. In my humble opinion, this is the BEST album of 2021.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars ACCORDO DEI CONTRARI were a band I followed almost from their start enjoying their Jazz flavoured sound. Then came "Violato Intatto" in 2017 and everything changed. This album was on another level, in fact it was my album of the year for 2017. So here we are with the followup "UR-" which is a prefix meaning "original". Still a four piece with keyboards leading the way and we get five guests adding violin, vocals, bass, guitar and cello. Besides keyboards the band consist of drums, sax and guitar. I laugh at the description of the fender rhodes as "heavily overdriven and phased fender rhodes". Oh yes it is! Others have mentioned MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA and I did hear that too and we get that violin on the first four tracks. Released on Cuneiform Records with Udi Koomran mastering it this is a feast for the ears. Giovanni the keyboardist and leader says in the liner notes that this album was mostly composed during his frequent travels by train to Trieste and back to Bologna. It conceptually deals with "roots" or ancestors.

So first of all props to the band for creating something powerful like the last album but different. I still prefer that 2017 release by quite a bit but I must also admit that I feel this one is still growing on me after more than a week of listening. Much respect for this one though as I feel it's a top three album for 2021. So much amazing music! The opener "Tergeste" opens with that tension of the relentless piano and it doesn't let up until after 3 1/2 minutes. It turns powerful again around 5 minutes in and the guitar leads the way 6 minutes in. Another calm late before it kicks back in with violin, sax and more. "Thus They Breathe, Time's Fires" opens with outbursts of violin and drums that come and go for a couple of minutes as organ, sax and guitar join in. They amp it up big time at 3 1/2 minutes. Sax solos over top then it's all piano.

"More Limpid And Clearer Than Any Lived Impression(pt. III)" has some good contrasts on it between the lighter and heavier passages. Piano and violin lead the way but sax shows up around 2 1/2 minutes. Growly keyboards late. The title track is awesome with the guest female singer adding vocal melodies to great affect. And at 11 minutes in length the longest song on here. Lots of sax and power on this one and piano early. Guitar late. Nasty keyboards to start "The Short Century" then drums and sax hit us hard. Guitar at 1 1/2 minutes as the tempo picks up. Electronics after 2 minutes then drums join in along with growly keyboards. Sax too as we get that KING CRIMSON spirit here. Great stuff! "Opposed To Any Agreement" ends it and this starts off so mellow and laid back with piano and sax. Sax is replaced by the cello after 1 1/2 minutes. Cymbals then beats as it turns powerful and the guitar replaces the cello around 3 1/2 minutes. Intense until it settles before 5 minutes.

This doesn't blow me away like the previous album did but man this is one impressive album and this is a band who is a force right now.

Review by andrea
4 stars "UR-" is the fifth studio album by Accordo dei Contrari and was released in 2021 on the Cuneiform Records label with a confirmed line up featuring Marco Marzo Maracas (guitar), Stefano Radaelli (sax), Cristian Franchi (drums) and Giovanni Parmeggiani (Steinway piano, Fender Rhodes, organ, Minimoog). According to the liner notes, like the previous one, this work was recorded live at Le Dune studio in Riolo Terme, a small town in the province of Ravenna, with the help of some guests such as Alessando Bonetti (violin), Patrizia Urbani (vocals), Sergio Papajanni (bass), Carlo Facondini (electric guitar) and Francesco Guerri (cello). The recording sessions took only a few days (from January 30 to February 2, 2020), with some overdubs in 2020-21. The album conceptually deals with roots and was dedicated by keyboardist and composer Giovanni Parmeggiani to his ancestors and to his son. The particular, colourful artwork was provided by Dario D'Alessandro...

The title of the opener, 'Tergeste', refers to the ancient name of Trieste, a city where Giovanni Parmeggiani often had to commute by train when composing the music for the album. It's a beautiful track that starts by a piano solo ostinato pattern and then goes through many changes in rhythm and mood. In my opinion, this piece might be a perfect score for a spy film set on the Orient Express...

'Così respirano gli incendi del tempo' (Thus they breathe, time's fires) is a long, complex track that blends jazz rock and classical influences and every now and again reminds me of Area and Banco del Mutuo Soccorso while the following 'Più limpida e chiara di ogni impressione vissuta (Parte III)' (More limpid and clearer than any lived impression - Part III) brings an emotional storm with its tense, frenzied passages and calmer parts...

As written in the liner notes, the title of 'UR-' refers to a prefix meaning 'original'. This long, articulated piece begins by a nocturnal piano pattern and the soaring vocals of the guest Patrizia Urbani used as an instrument to to add tension and colours, then the rhythm gradually rises with a martial pace as sax and electric guitar draw disquieting shadows...

'Secolo breve' (The short century) could recall again Area, with its revolutionary rage and frenzied pace. The title refers to The "Age of Extremes: The Short Twentieth Century, 1914-1991", a famous book by Eric Hobsbawm, published in 1994, where the author comments on what he sees as the disastrous failures of state socialism, capitalism, and nationalism and offers his sceptical view on the progress of the arts and changes in society in the latter half of the twentieth century...

'Contrari ad ogni accordo' (Opposed to any agreement) ends the album and begins by a calm, dreamy atmosphere with the piano and cello in the fore, then the rhythm section begins to pulse, sweeping away the dreams and introducing a more aggressive, uncompromising mood...

On the whole, an excellent work!

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