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GOBLIN

Rock Progressivo Italiano • Italy


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Goblin biography
Symphonic band from Italy who adapted their music to the movie industry, mainly horror movies from the 70's. The outstanding keyboard work performed by Claudio Simonetti is a trademark of GOBLIN. Most of their stuff is really heavy and moody, with a Floydian progressive feel, and generally pretty good.

Beginning with their first "Profundo Rosso" GOBLIN were obviously better suited to soundtrack music than as a studio offering and the majority of their work was in this vein. Their excellent second "Roller" is a very nice album of traditional symphonic progressive rock from the Italian group. Newcomers to the group will want to investigate their heralded soundtrack albums first, particularly "Profondo Rosso" and "Suspiria". The "essential" GOBLIN works. Highly recommended for fans of soundtrack music.

The band is again active with more releases and touring.

Goblin official website

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Buy GOBLIN Music


Profondo Rosso AKA Deep Red [Vinyl]Profondo Rosso AKA Deep Red [Vinyl]
Soundtrack
AMS Music 2013
Vinyl$26.57
$25.00 (used)
ZombiZombi
Import
Cinevox Italy 2013
Audio CD$10.28
$18.79 (used)
Goblin Tour 2013 (180 Gram Colored Vinyl 45rpm EP)Goblin Tour 2013 (180 Gram Colored Vinyl 45rpm EP)
EP
Death Waltz Recordings 2013
Vinyl$9.82
$17.08 (used)
Zombi AKA Dawn Of The Dead [180 Gram Vinyl]Zombi AKA Dawn Of The Dead [180 Gram Vinyl]
Soundtrack
AMS Music 2013
Vinyl$36.48
$43.28 (used)
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DAWN OF THE DEAD "Unreleased Soundtrack.." LP Zombi Trunk Goblin George Romero US $48.29 [0 bids]
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GOBLIN (Simonetti Morante Pignatelli) "Tenebre" CD suspiria dawn of the dead US $16.10 [0 bids]
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GOBLIN "La Via Della Droga" CD suspiria zombi john carpenter US $32.20 [0 bids]
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GOBLIN - Patrick (Soundtrack) - 180 gram vinyl LP US $40.41 Buy It Now 1 day
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Goblin "Suspiria" Original Soundtrack Lp EMI 1977 UK Copy "Factory Sample" US $40.23 [0 bids]
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Goblin "Tenebre" Original Soundtrack Lp Dagored Records US $32.18 [1 bids]
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Goblin "Profondo Rosso" Original Soundtrack Lp Cinevox Records US $32.18 [0 bids]
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GOBLIN: Suspiria OST + 4 (SS/OOP/1997/ITALY/12 TRACKS) US $29.95 Buy It Now 1 day
GOBLIN roller Japan MINI LP SHM-CD US $35.00 [1 bids]
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GOBLIN Buio Omega (LP) (180 gram vinyl) (film soundtrack) US $33.00 Buy It Now 1 day
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GOBLIN Non Ho Sonno (LP) (180 gram vinyl) (soundtrack to Dario Argento film) US $33.00 Buy It Now 2 days
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GOBLIN Amo Non Amo (LP) (180 gram vinyl - gatefold sleeve) (film soundtrack) US $33.00 Buy It Now 2 days
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More places to buy GOBLIN music online Buy GOBLIN & Prog Rock Digital Music online:
  • AmazonMP3: Search for GOBLIN DRM-Free MP3 Downloads @ AmazonMP3 (USA Only) | AmazonMP3 (UK Only)

GOBLIN shows & tickets


  • Suspiria Live on 31 Oct 2014
  • Claudio Simonetti's Goblin plays Suspiria on 2 Nov 2014
  • Claudio Simonetti's Goblin plays Suspiria on 7 Nov 2014
  • DRILL: Brighton on 4 Dec 2014
  • Suspiria Live on 6 Dec 2014
  • Roadburn Festival 2015 on 9 Apr 2015

GOBLIN discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

GOBLIN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.88 | 104 ratings
Profondo Rosso O.S.T.
1975
4.05 | 169 ratings
Roller
1976
3.51 | 23 ratings
Perché Si Uccidono (O.S.T. with the name Reale Impero Britannico)
1976
3.63 | 89 ratings
Suspiria
1977
3.48 | 60 ratings
Il Fantastico Viaggio Del Bagarozzo Mark
1978
3.52 | 35 ratings
Zombi - Dawn of the Dead
1978
2.95 | 9 ratings
Amo non amo
1979
2.00 | 10 ratings
Squadra Anti-Gangsters
1979
2.55 | 11 ratings
Patrick
1979
2.66 | 15 ratings
Contamination
1980
1.36 | 10 ratings
Volo
1982
3.24 | 18 ratings
Tenebre
1982
2.06 | 7 ratings
Notturno
1983
2.62 | 15 ratings
Phenomena
1984
2.58 | 7 ratings
La Chiesa
1989
3.00 | 3 ratings
Solamente Nero *
1996
3.07 | 10 ratings
Phenomena - The Complete Soundtrack *
1997
3.19 | 16 ratings
Buio Omega *
1997
3.04 | 10 ratings
La Via Della Droga
1999
3.37 | 13 ratings
Non Ho Sonno (O.S.T.)
2001
3.86 | 14 ratings
BackToTheGoblin 2005
2006

GOBLIN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

GOBLIN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

GOBLIN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.93 | 6 ratings
Greatest Hits
1979
4.50 | 2 ratings
Goblin (French compilation)
1982
3.60 | 5 ratings
Greatest Hits (1987)
1987
4.00 | 2 ratings
Zombi / Tenebre
1990
3.41 | 9 ratings
The Goblin Collection 1975-1989
1995
3.22 | 11 ratings
Profondo Rosso - The Complete Edition
1996
0.00 | 0 ratings
Eccitante! Goblin *
1997
4.00 | 4 ratings
Soundtracks Vol. II 1975 - 1980 *
1998
4.00 | 1 ratings
Soundtracks Vol. III - 1978 - 1984 *
1998
0.00 | 0 ratings
Italian Horror Showcase *
1998
1.00 | 1 ratings
The Original Remixes Collection Vol. 1 *
1998
1.00 | 2 ratings
Claudio Simonetti Compilation (Profondo Rosso)
1999
3.10 | 2 ratings
The Best Of Goblin Vol.1
2002
4.08 | 4 ratings
The Fantastic Voyage Of Goblin
2007

GOBLIN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

GOBLIN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Il Fantastico Viaggio Del Bagarozzo Mark by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.48 | 60 ratings

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Il Fantastico Viaggio Del Bagarozzo Mark
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

4 stars In 1978 the reduced four-piece Goblin line-up recorded another album for Cinevox, but this was one of the rare cases this had nothing to do with a film.It was a regular Prog effort under the title ''Il fantastico viaggio del bagarozzo Mark''.Strange concept and front cover, as this had to do with a flying bug.

Musically I think this was the strongest work by the band throughout the 70's.Propably because they had added a full lyrical content in this work and the music had no particular specifications for an upcoming film, thus ''Il fantastico viaggio del bagarozzo Mark'' offered the very best balance the legendary band could achieve.The music displayed comes as a nice example of Prog's transitional period from the 70's to a new era, featuring a more pronounced synth performance and less emphasis on organ.You even get the feel of an Italian pre-Neo/Symph atmosphere during the listening, later to be met in the works of HOPO, GUERCIA or even SITHONIA towards the end of the 80's.It's the most symphonic album ever produced by the band, based on the Classic Italian Prog principles, which were the expressive or even theatrical vocals, the dramatic and romantic textures and the impressive, symph-oriented arrangements, even if none of the tracks exceeded the 6-min. mark.The sound is driven by Simonetti's varied keyboard work, characterized by the Classical background, the grandiose orchestral material and the soaring synths with Morante filling the gaps with his lovely electric and acoustic moves.Morante was also responsible for the neurotic vocal lines of the album, which was actually the only element crossed with the previous, more dark sound of the band.As expected, the album contains also some great melodic themes and even some electronic beats in the process, resulting a beautiful music document of the era.

The next few years were rather inconsistent for the group with line-up changes and more conventional works, always linked with Italian movies.They fell in hiatus around early-80's to reform in 2000 with old member Maurizio Guarini retaking the keyboard lead from Simonetti.In 2009 they were split in two bands, New Goblin (with the comeback of Simmonetti) and Goblin World.Another side project appeared in 2013, named Simonetti's Goblin, these attempts only hurt the band's long and succesful story in my opinion.

Anyway, if you're stuck in the 70's ''Il fantastico viaggio del bagarozzo Mark'' is among the best Italian Prog Rock documents and a must-have for all fans oif keyboard Prog.Very nice and clever transition from the vintage stylings to more modern sounds, keeping an impressive composing quality.Highly recommended.

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 Tenebre by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1982
3.24 | 18 ratings

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Tenebre
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Seen by some as Argento's last great film before his long, slow decline, 1982's 'Tenebrae' features American actor Anthony Franciosa as a successful horror novelist promoting his new book in Rome, only to discover that the book is influencing a rather nasty copycat killer. Very much a return to the director's giallo roots, 'Tenebrae' finds the Italian director blending slasher elements(a sub-genre then in it's infancy) with a murder mystery plot, though his trademark flourishes, such as the stylish, fluid camerawork and yet more brutal and bloody violence, are still very much in check. Curiously, much of 'Tenebre' is filmed during the day, with most of the action set in either harsh, brightly lit interiors or outdoors during natural light . As a result, 'Tenebre' features a rather unsettling tone, but like much of Argento's work, this carefully-constructed design is sadly marred by some rather weak acting, some genuinely atrocious dubbing, and, once again, the director's almost complete disregard for the convetions of plot and narrative. Therefore, despite the lofty claims of some esteemed film writers, 'Tenebre' proves a genuine mixed bag, even for long time fans like this very writer, with excellent technical craft spoiled by lazy writing and bad acting. The same, however, canot be said the soundtrack from three of the members of Argento's usual soundtrack aurthors Goblin. Issued under the moniker of Simonetti-Pignatelli-Morante, 'Tenebre' has become something of a fan favourite over the years, even hittng the mainstream thanks to its sampling by the french dance duo Justice on their excellent 2007 debut album 'Cross'. The title-track, with it's whirring synth lines and bouncy melody, belongs to that small group of iconic Goblin theme tunes that beautifully sum up the feel of their respective movies, though here there is a slightly modernistic, almost dancey edge to the music. The rest of the album is made up of the usual instrumental pieces, some better than others, but like all soundtrack albums the key is to listen to it all in one go. Only then can you grasp the fundamental dynamic of both movie and album. So, not quite in the same class as the real Goblin classics - read 'Suspiria' or 'Deep Red' - but 'Tenebre' certainly has it's moments. The film may prove disappointing, but don't let that put you off, this is still vintage Goblin. STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2014

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 Non Ho Sonno (O.S.T.) by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.37 | 13 ratings

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Non Ho Sonno (O.S.T.)
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Zahler

4 stars Non Ho Sonno is one of my favorite Goblin albums. Although I adore their soundtracks for Profondo Rosso, Tenebrae and Zombi, I feel that Suspiria has essentially one great track (the main one) and a bunch of things that work well for a movie and some funky lounge music that bores me, and all of the albums without Simonetti and Morante (such Patrick and Contamination and Buio Omega) are interesting jazz/progressive scores, but not as good as the Simonetti driven stuff.

This album reunites one of the greatest rhythm sections ever--Marangolo (drums) and Pignatelli (bass) with Simonetti (keyboards) and Morante (guitar) and the classic Goblin feel is here. Sure, the drums have a different, more modern "big studio" feel (rather than the "traps" of old), but the way this band operates is the same--four instruments that alternately take center stage while crafting creepy, lush progressive rock.

The only real complaint I have about Nonhosonno is that (like many albums made in the CD era) it simply has too much material. The first six cuts are all good or great, especially Death Farm Animals, Killer on the Train, and the lush title cut with its floral ivory arpeggios, oscillating riff from Morante, and great stuttering drums fills by Marangolo. Had the album ended there or had another song or two of this caliber, it would probably be my second favorite Goblin record ever, right behind Roller, but that is only the halfway point of the album. So, since this is a soundtrack, most of the melodies in the first six songs are then revisited in shorter, less compelling variations that were needed for the movie. All of these reprises are pretty good--but with the exception of the porcine lurker, The Pig, the material was done best the first time Goblin gives it to you and this stuff feel like bonus track material, not part of the album proper. Additionally, you'll hear some of the themes repeated three or four or five times in a fifty minute experiences, which is a reprise or two or three too many.

Still, this album is highly recommended. Non Ho Sonno has about twenty minutes of music that compares to the best stuff on Zombi or Phenomenon or Tenebrae (not reaching the peaks of Roller or Profondo Rosso), and is superior to all the Goblin stuff without Simonetti, though Back to the Goblin, which has everyone but Simonetti, is almost as good as this. Nonhosonno is an admirable and worthwhile (and brief) reunification the RPI masters...

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 BackToTheGoblin 2005 by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.86 | 14 ratings

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BackToTheGoblin 2005
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

4 stars It's a relief to find a modern comeback album by a vintage progressive band that doesn't sound like an uninspired group of old men merely going through the motions! 2005's `Back To The Goblin' features the members of Italy's premier horror soundtrack group who recorded one of my all-time favourite progressive albums `Roller' (only missing keyboard maestro Claudio Simonetti here), and although this work doesn't come quite so close to the perfection of that record, there's more an enough quality musicianship and experimental textures to be of much interest to fans of the bands and darker tinged progressive rock. It has all the usual traits that highlight most of their albums, with a couple of absolute knockout pieces. Guitarist Massimo has never sounded so wild and excited, bass player Fabio Pignatelli never so loose, Maurizio Guarini employs a great variety of keyboard sounds and styles that pushes the band into previously unexplored directions, with drummer Agostino Marangolo perfectly complementing everything perfectly.

One thing you won't see coming is the music on the first track that opens the album `Victor'. Not only is it nothing like what you'd expect from Goblin, but it more resembles an epic symphonic Rick Wakeman-styled orchestrated piece (although performed on keyboards). It's pompous and grand, triumphant and whimsical, and I was quite put off by it on my first few spins as it sounds barely anything like Goblin. But I've come to find it's still very cinematic, which means it's really just the band experimenting with a different type of soundtrack work. Fellow Prog Archives reviewer Nick (Progbethyname) pointed out in conversations that it would make the perfect accompaniment to a `Legend of Zelda' or fantasy videogame, and I completely agree. It's pretty amazing to hear keyboard player Maurizio Guarini arranging such a piece like this.

`Dien Dion' will reassure fans right away, as it's full of typical Goblin twinkling synth mystery, churning heavy guitar, crashing drumwork and imposing organ blasts, and well as a few slight nods to their previous classic works, especially the opening cut of `Profondo Rosso'. `Hitches' is a bombastic horror blast that sees Massimo tearing his electric guitar through a child's lullaby over punchy synth stabs and bashing drumwork. It even reminds me slightly of the comeback albums from Italian occult icons Antonius Rex (as do many little moments scattered around the album), and I'm certain that synth solo in the outro reminds me a lot of ex-Dream Theater keyboard player Derek Sherenian. `Sequential Ideas' runs through pounding synth/dance pop, 70's club/funk, orchestrated grandiosity and intimidating heavy shredding, really moving through a range of many styles the band has covered in their 40 plus year career. `Lost In The Universe' combines emotional piano tinkering punctuated with heavier guitar sections and stomping percussion outbursts.

But like all Goblin albums, there's several superb tracks that highly impress. I was totally blown away by `Bass Theme in E' on my first listen, and it shows a looser, more ambient and thoughtful band that we don't see too often on their studio works. Gorgeous floating, pulsing bass from Fabio weaves around gentle washes of synths and chirping keyboard soloing, gradually building in mystery and tension as it moves back and forth in tempo. My absolute favourite part of the album is `Japanese Air', a deeply Tangerine Dream- influenced ambient piece that ebbs and flows with the gentlest of orchestrated synth waves and reflective piano before a hugely passionate electric solo solo that not only ranks up there with his best, but would almost give David Gimour a run for his money.

The band wraps on the dominating, aggressive yet impossibly catchy `Magic Thriller'. Just listen to how well the two keyboard players here Fabio and Maurizio pile on skittering synth patterns that scrape at the nerves, maddening jazzy piano soloing, and uptempo pulsing synth runs over stalking heavy guitar tension and tormenting dramatic orchestration, not to mentions Agostino's stomping drumming. Anyone who has seen the band open their recent shows with this number will know how great it is, and it's a classic Goblin track as good as any of their most loved 70's pieces.

`Back To The Goblin' is overall another winning addition to the band's fascinating discography that fans of the group shouldn't hesitate to snap up. Although this particular line-up has splintered, with Goblin figurehead Claudio Simonetti now back in the band, and assisted by his Daemonia cohorts Bruno Previtali and Titta Tani who now serve as live touring members, there's so much potential for the band to make the most of their current status in progressive circles and the goodwill they have from horror audiences and record again. Hopefully we'll eventually get another studio album from them yet, but if not, this is a very respectable, varied and successful work for them that means they can exit with their heads held proudly high.

Four stars.

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 BackToTheGoblin 2005 by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.86 | 14 ratings

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BackToTheGoblin 2005
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by progbethyname

5 stars Celebrating 30 years in fine form, Goblin take heed and create a lovely, concise album with the release of 'Back To The Goblin.'

Dating back to the year 1975, Goblin released their very first studio effort with 'Profondo Rosso' and in my eyes the album was a huge success, and is still a giant land mark in the Horror/film scoring genre today as well as the RPI music scene as well. Amazingly 30 years later, being the year of 2005, Goblin still show no signs of rust or age for that matter with the album release of 'Back To The Goblin' which represents beautifully, a thirty-year tenure fully equipped with diverse soundscapes. 

'Back To The Goblin' was a project that was conceived a couple of years before the year 2005, in order to prepare and honor 30 quality years in music making. 2 years? For the making of an under 40 minute album? Well, in my opinion, it paid off and made sense. For this reason, it wasn't easy given the fact that both Guitarist/composer Massimo Morante and Bass/Keyboard virtuoso Fabio Pignatelli lived in Italy while the legendary keyboardist Maurizio Guarini was residing in Richmond Hill, Canada where he assumed studio control in 'Bedford Studios' While his other bandmates Marangolo, Morante and Pignatelli would write and record at the 'Pignatelli Studio' in Rome. I guess the band couldn't deal with the travel expenses or hassle of flying back and forth to compose and complete an album at their own leisure? Ummm? Nonetheless, the Goblin team would prove victorious given their geographical differences by making excellent use of 21st century technology, which is that new-Fangled thing called the Internet.  Compositions and sound sequences where thrown back and forth in Cyber like fashion from the Goblin machine, and it all started with the inception of Guarini's 'Victor' which, in my humble estimation, is a perfect lead off track opener to incite the direction Goblin were taking with this album and that direction was difference. 'Victor' is completely composed/recorded by Guarini himself and 'Victor' is not in any way, a typical sounding Goblin track. You could say that 'Victor' could be an opening theme to a very adventurous play or maybe even I would go so far to say that Guarini's creation could be used as a video game score. Furthermore, 'Victor' is a very clever track, but for the hard-core Goblin listener it may take some getting used to since it carries no moody or ominous dark nature to it. 

Meanwhile, back in Italy, Morante and Pignatelli were hard at work recording and laying down solid ground for the rest of the tracks on the album.  Specifically, Morante was working on his intial compositions like 'Bass theme in E minor' which is a thumpy and grumpy bass line that persists and pulsate's throughout the entire track and is an excellent track overall. I love it when the 'bass' is the featured instrument in a prog song. Also, I thought Pignatelli would have wrote that one! Another track that was being worked on, and my favourite on the 'Back To The Goblin' album is 'Dlen Dlon.' This is a song where you will be immediately hooked into an extremely catchy and edgy guitar riff followed up by Guarini and Pignatelli's amazing soft, ambient like keyboards while 2-minutes in, the track speeds up with Morante playing faster and Pignatelli crushing those Hammond pads to give the track the edge it deserves. All in all, a wonderful track and as I said my favourite on the album. The next Morante pieces to follow were 'Lost In The Universe' which starts off with a beautiful piano intro about 1 minute in, a light guitar performed by Morante seals the deal for a delicate beginning that would last to the 2min mark and then Bam!! Morante kicks his guitar up into high gear performing a nice little speed riff accompanied by the cymbal high hat crashing of Agostino Marangolo's drumming. A nice little Crescendo I might add. To continue,' Lost In The Universe' is actually a track you can get lost in because it is a perfect blend of Drums, keys, Bass and Guitar. Something that we all love and appreciate from that vintage Goblin sound.  Lastly, Morante's 'Hitches' which is a track that has some light vocals on it similar to the track 'School at Night (lullaby mix)' off Profondo Rosso special edition. To be honest, the vocals performed by 'Arden Smith' is something I really can't get into and it's borderline distracting for me, as a listener. The vocals are sparse on the track, which is a good thing cause they are performed as if a 10 year old child is having a bit of fun with a microphone. Mainly, I felt 'Hitches' lost major points here because i think Goblin should just stick to being the great Pantomimes they are, especially on this album. My guess is that the vocals on 'Hitches' were for diversity's sake, but I can't see or hear how it fits on this album. It's a mistake I think, but on a higher note and Morante's last major contribution to the album is the 'Back To The Goblin's closing track 'Thriller' and it is nothing for short of pure gold. Guarini's keys start slow and frightening while Pignatelli picks up the synth slack by fashioning such a beautiful, cleverly upbeat and fast melody that's around 6 or 7 notes in the making. The 'Thriller' track is full of many twists and turns with regards to the style and tempo of the track. It's a fantastic conclusion indeed. 

Moreover, Fabio Pignatelli was concocting his own creatively written and composed tracks with 'Sequential Ideas' and 'Japanese Air.' I must say that both of these tracks are so very well done and are more electronically driven than the Morante vision of song crafting. 'Japanese Air' starts off like it could be that of a Tangerine Dream song from the 80's Blue years catalogue. The intro reminds me of a lot of Hammond synths sequences taken from Tangerine Dream's 'Live Miles' track, especially near the end of the song. 'Japanese Air' is the most emotional song on the album and focuses on the more serious side of Goblin's playing style and character rather than being dark and Moody as most Goblin veterans know them to be. On the contrary, 'Japanese Air' is a soft, kind of ambient song with very touching and romantic melodies attached to it. I was deeply moved, especially since I've never heard Massimo play his Guitar in a David Gilmore and Steve Rothery like fashion. A soft touch by Pignatelli to have Morante play like that for this particular track. In any case, 'Japanese Air' is a complete winner and rounds out the album's overall diversity so incredibly well. On the another hand, 'Sequential Ideas' is an up beat, kind of in your face track that could belong in a Dancehall. Pignatelli created a beauty here, getting Guarini to play his keys like they belong in a Dracula movie while instilling a light disco beat to go along with the bass playing and drums.  A very creative track that most Goblin fans are really going to appreciate because it's really like nothing they've ever done, and from my experiences it's 'Diversity' that usually wins over the prog hearted individual. 

Thus, 'Back To The Goblin' is a fine representation to mark a historic land mark of 30 years of creating some of the very best and most unique music in progressive rock in general. 'Back To The Goblin' also depicts such character from the band, by how well Goblin work together as a team/unit. They are a beautiful team of musicians at that and I thought it was really neat how they worked so well together without not being in contact as an entire cohesive unit working together in the studio. The power of technology, and it just goes to show you that 'Goblin' as a band, are not afraid to adapt to any differences in terms of not having the total complete convenience of being able to write and compose an album together in the studio. Now that is musicianship baby! To continue, and given the light of all these circumstances, I cannot find much fault with this album at all. I really can't other than the fact as I mentioned earlier,  the vocal parts on 'Hitches' were deeply annoying for me and I felt the album was a tad too short. I would have loved to had at least one 10min epic showcasing the classic Goblin skill with the basis of a really dark atmosphere because after all, 'Back to The Goblin' is a pretty light and listening friendly album that showcases a ton of diversity while minimizing the famous dark and ominous scores they are trademarked for doing in Dario Argento horror pictures. Goblin really terrifically showed a different side to what kind of music they can create and surprisingly did it all without Claudio Simonetti, who was Goblin's leading Keyboard virtuoso from when they started back in 1975, but Pignatelli and Guarini have stepped up big time to fill some pretty big shoes left by Simonetti in the keyboard/synth department as well as other additional programming. 

Above all, I have to award this album a perfect rating even if the album doesn't include one of Goblin's most highly decorated band members in Claudio Simonetti. Regardless of that, the album is still a masterpiece that is full of character, diversity and clever song writing/composition. I would even recommend 'Back to The Goblin' for a Goblin newcomer, who wants to explore the wonderful music they have to offer by going beyond just horror picture scores. 'Back To The Goblin' is an album that is a quick listen (39min) and sadly it will leave you wanting a bit more, but I do see the point as to why Goblin kept this album to be a very tight, efficient and concise album cause when you embark on new territory in terms of sound, you may not want to go overboard. Goblin, certainly didn't do that and I admire them for that. They walked before they ran. 

5/5

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 Perché Si Uccidono (O.S.T. with the name Reale Impero Britannico) by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.51 | 23 ratings

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Perché Si Uccidono (O.S.T. with the name Reale Impero Britannico)
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by coasterzombie

4 stars Released under the pseudonym "Il Reale Impero Britannica," Goblin's soundtrack to the controversial 1976 film Perche Si Uccidono is very different from most of their material. The individual songs are varied and distinctive, giving the album a compilation feel; every track sounds like a possible single, largely abandoning Goblin's trademark mystery, and instead hearkens back to their days as a backing band on Gamma. Though this is the same group that simultaneously recorded Roller, Perche Si Uccidono sounds nothing like it. It's almost as if Goblin used the anonymity of Il Reale Impero Britannica as a vehicle for these compositions that didn't necessarily fit the Goblin mold; I doubt this is the case as the name change was primarily due to Cinevox and their blocking of the Goblin name because of the movie's subject matter. Ridiculously obscure and hard-to-find for years, the album is now readily available as a digital download and is highly recommended for soundtrack collectors, Goblin fans and even instrumental music lovers.

The introductory "Epopea" is announced with a gong crash and Claudio Simonetti's keyboard onslaught. As on Cherry Five and Roller, Simonetti plays a key role, providing most of the melody single-handedly. Nowhere is this more apparent than the gentle "Ammoniaca," as Simonetti trades in the Moog for electric piano, amply assisted by swathes of tape synthesizer. "Kalu" adds real orchestration to a sleazy, funky backdrop; imagine "Barney Miller" meets Ennio Morricone. "Edda" is the first track with vocals, sweetly provided by namesake Edda Dell'Orso, who also worked with Morricone. Again Simonetti is all over this thing, dishing out tons of Mellotron and Fender Rhodes in equal measure. "Epopea (Reprise)" is a jaunty shuffle version of the album opener.

Cherry Five singer Tony Tartarini makes a guest appearance on the album's only other vocal track. "My Damned Shit" is lyrically kitschy but is still strong melodically. A symphonic tone describes "Docici E un Quarto," my favorite on the album, sounding somewhat like early Procol Harum. "Block" sees guitarist Massimo Morante step out of Simonetti's shadow, asserting himself after more of a support role. "R.I.B." is vintage Goblin, heavy on the theatrics and atmosphere. "Apotheke" previews the urban sound Goblin would adopt on many of their late-seventies soundtracks like La Via Della Droga. Lastly, "Distrazoni" offers a killer analog synth solo atop a tasty funk foundation. Perche Si Uccidono is hardly the most representative Goblin album and may not please everyone but it is one of my favorites, and I heartily recommend it.

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 Volo by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1982
1.36 | 10 ratings

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Volo
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by coasterzombie

1 stars Volo is so bad Cinevox has never bothered to issue it on CD, but for some reason the MP3s are now available for digital download. Short of lighting a ten dollar bill on fire, I couldn't think of a worse way to waste your money. Goblin (if that's what you want to call this) had completely abandoned prog by 1982. I wouldn't even call this rock music. Volo is completely disposable pop music of the worst sort; instead of evolving and integrating 80s tech with 70s musicality like Yes, King Crimson and Genesis, Goblin completely loses the plot here and sells out unabashedly. Even Goblin collectors cannot be bothered to click Buy, and other than sheer morbid curiosity, there is no reason to hear Volo.

Fabio Pignatelli was the only original member of Goblin by this point, as Agostino Marangolo had left ship for New Perigeo, and Simonetti and Morante were off collaborating with Dario Argento. Goblin alums Maurizio Guarini and Derek Wilson were welcomed back into the fold, and new members Marco Rinalduzzi and Mauro Lusini were recruited for guitar and vocal duties respectively. Rinalduzzi has a very polished, session-man technique not totally adaptable to the trademark Goblin creepiness. Yes pulled a similar stunt with Trevor Rabin and had slightly more successful results. Lusini actually has a really nice, smooth vocal quality and manages to sing in tune most of the time, which is more than I could say for Massimo Morante. This professionalism does not necessarily translate to anything pleasing however, as his uptight delivery never ventures outside a limited dynamic range nor is the material difficult enough to challenge him. Volo is nothing more than 1980s pop, pure and simple.

Highlights include "Fortuna," which features a female vocal and some interesting harmonized guitar work courtesy of newbie Rinalduzzi. The title track, which was apparently used as the theme song for the Italian broadcast "Discoring," has a hilariously awesome keyboard solo by Guarini which uses a synthesized guitar sound. "Est," which would later be used on Notturno, sounds unlike anything else on the album and seems out of place as the album closer. Everything else is forgettable dross, from the Toto-esque "Giornata Isterica" to the syncopated disco leanings of "Punta Di Rottura." If you need a soundtrack for your Italian-themed Eighties party, look no further than Volo. If not, I encourage you to avoid it at all costs.

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 Contamination by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1980
2.66 | 15 ratings

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Contamination
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

3 stars `Contamination' sees Italian progressive and cult soundtrack band Goblin add a refreshing dose of other wordly sci-fi sounds to their usual creeping horror atmospherics, and it makes for a mostly consistent and successful album.This time the soundtrack to a science-fiction film, It's a shame that the album is another mostly unnoticed and somewhat ignored work from the band, because in addition to a number of suspenseful and moody numbers, it contains the classic Goblin track `Quiet Drops', one of the most delicate and subtle pieces the band ever wrote.

`Connexion' gets things off to a great start, with it's intimidating drum-beat and classic Goblin church organ mixed with swirling spacey sound effects and slightly computerized sounding funky bass. Extra points for the `Alien choir' Mellotron too! `Withy' shares the moody guitar melody and plodding bass-line from Pink Floyd's `Another Brick...part 1' off `The Wall', playing over ghostly synth melodies, icy winds and booming drums that constantly creep closer and louder. `Bikini Island' is a highly kitsch upbeat disco/jazz-fusion commercial throwaway, but it's something of a guilty pleasure. Of course the album would work better without it, but it is full of lovely bass playing, catchy guitar runs and varied percussion sounds. Back to the nightmare for `Flood', which has Alan Parsons Project style chiming guitars, washes of spasmodic synth notes and harsh single drumbeat interruptions all playing over a tense metronome style ticking beat. `Pillage' has murky and darkly funky bass with dramatic fusion style guitar soloing over a repetitive stop-start arrangement with bashing drums. At least these last two tracks work towards creating the chilly mood again!

Side B's `The Carver' offers more light jazz and Latin percussion with slightly bent and unnerving wavering keyboards with driving bass. `Rush' unsurprisingly has a tense and haunted stalking quality full of ambient droning synths and a repetitive guitar melody that plays over and over. `Fright' is one of the most effective pieces on the album, with harsh electronics drifting amongst oppressive massive drums and a looped alien cry. Not much of a tune, but an experimental attempt at a moody soundscape that has more in common with bands like Tangerine Dream. `Time Is On' abruptly fades in from the previous track, and is a nightmarish echoing piano and electronic piece filled with distorted devilish wailing. Some parts of this sound a little like Rick Wright's frightening avant-garde contributions to the `Ummagumma' Pink Floyd album. `Ogre' by comparison is a reflective wilting sax, piano and bass diversion that lulls you into a brief respite of comfort before the album centrepiece.

`Quiet Drops' is a lonely and highly emotional piano piece with a very somber and sad melody. Impossibly fragile and low-key, with very restrained and stirring gentle string washes over the second half. It will truly bring you to tears, so don't listen to it on a broken heart. I was first aware of this track from the Morte Macabre cover on their album `Symphonic Holocaust', which in itself is an amazing interpretation. But the sparse original is a very moving beautiful piece, and ranks among the very best work of the Goblin band.

The CD reissue adds some curios in the form of alternate takes, unused fragments and unreleased pieces from the film. They don't exactly add anything to the album, but don't detract from it either. Just nice additions to an already effective album. I chose the vinyl reissue because that format makes it feel a little more special, with lovely vibrant artwork and the album presented the way it was always meant to be. If you do decide to get the CD, go for one with the dark cover feautured on this page, not the horrid blue washed out photo one.

This album shares some tracks from the `Buio Omega' soundtrack, so rather than grumble and moan about inconsistency or record company (and/or band?!) laziness in padding out already short albums with recycled/reused pieces, I just decided to review what is on here for it's individual strengths and weaknesses. You can go crazy trying to figure out what piece appears on what album sometimes with this band! Just enjoy, I say!

Although there's some occasional late 70's/early 80's disco and commercial jazz funk elements that not only the band, but many horror soundtracks in general were incorporating at the time, `Contamination' can still stand perfectly well alongside their string of fascinating and consistent lesser-known soundtracks. It is still easily recognizable as a work of Goblin, with all the usual strange atmosphere, tasteful playing and inventive arrangements. Definitely not one to dismiss or ignore.

Three and a half stars!

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 La Via Della Droga by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.04 | 10 ratings

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La Via Della Droga
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

3 stars `La Via Della Droga' is another mostly unknown and forgotten soundtrack from Italian legends Goblin. I was lucky enough to pick up a CD of this years ago at a record fair, where I paid WAY more than what it was worth, but it's not exactly a dud album. Although not a horror soundtrack, rather from my understanding a police/drug/crime film, it still has typical Goblin characteristics and trademark sounds scattered amongst the low-key and tasteful jazz/fusion playing and arrangements. Special mention must go to the Fabio Pignatelli's murmuring dank bass playing and Agnostino Marangolo's ton of varying percussion sounds, but of course Claudio Simonetti and Massimo Morante are reliable as ever.

Although the CD tracklisting would pass the album off as one single 13 part piece, it's really a collection of separate isolated chunks that don't have individual song titles. Sorry, prog fans, no album-long piece or multi-part epic suite here!

The album begins and ends with the main theme, featuring lovely subtle synths (or is that Mellotron mixed way back?) with a typical wailing Massimo guitar solo. The next few tracks have hypnotic looping electronics with metallic percussion and droning male wordless vocals, slightly funky repetitive jazzy percussion with lovely murky sliding bass and tense electric piano. Nice wavering synths and Latin percussion pop in too. Like most of the pieces on this album, these bits usually run about two minutes.

But finally a longer track, and it begins rather like a more typical Goblin piece - more please! `Sequence 5' begins with very eerie shimmering synths and random loopy electronic effects with numbing plodding drumwork and nimble acoustic guitar, before fading out as very harsh and violent stabbing percussion enter, with aggressive bass and wild acoustic guitar strums over colourful dancing synth runs. Going by the theme of the movie the music is based on, perhaps it's meant to represent a disorientating drug-trip? Anyway, it's far and away the standout track on the album, and one more casual Goblin fans will probably appreciate most.

Sequence 6 onwards has bashing electronic abrasive percussion and cold computer effects assaulting the listener over hypnotic near-tribal beats, before returning for a run of loose jazzy sections full of busy drumming, funky driving guitar and more of that supremely dirty bass playing! Lots of different percussion sounds through these moments as well. Sure, it's disjointed, but full of lots of different sounds and ideas to keep you interested. The final part is a downbeat and slightly sinister movement with slowly unwinding dark guitar lines.

It's a shame that most of the pieces are so short, because pretty much every fragment has enough musical potential that would have been even better if they'd been worked on a little more and expanded. This music was probably never even meant for a proper album, but the demand for more Goblin product resulted in this product. Goblin have a few of these sort of belated CD releases, and I think it would be better if they could be packaged together on a few multi-disc sets to keep the costs down and make them more attractive and affordable. It would be nice having them all in one place too, and opposed to searching them down individually.

As it stands, `La Via Della Droga' is a perfectly laidback, subtle and restrained instrumental album that probably occasionally drifts into the realm of forgettable and a little unremarkable from time to time. Certainly don't pay a high price for it like I did, but if you do come across it cheap and happen to be a Goblin fan who appreciates their lesser known work as well as their classics, by all means give the album a try. It makes for a perfectly rewarding background light prog instrumental album played by great musicians.

Three stars.

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 Notturno by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1983
2.06 | 7 ratings

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Notturno
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by coasterzombie

2 stars By 1983, Goblin had split into two camps: The "Real" Goblin, featuring core members Claudio Simonetti and Massimo Morante; and The "New" Goblin, led by drummer Agostino Marangolo and assisted by Maurizio Guarini among others. Bassist Fabio Pignatelli would straddle both lineups, and provide both guitar and bass on this spy thriller soundtrack. This incarnation of the group would keep not only the Goblin name, but hearken back to a sound not heard since its heyday. While Simonetti-Pignatelli-Morante still had ties to Dario Argento, their work on 1982's Tenebre was hardly representative of the Goblin tradition, but instead featured the electronic sounds of the day and some repetitive themes. The score to Notturno is arguably better, and among the best of Goblin's output in the entire decade. However, Notturno is definitely not RPI, and really not even prog, and can only be rated as such - 2 stars.

The title theme "Nocturne" sounds immediately familiar, as the similarity to Dawn of The Dead is apparently obvious. Regardless, this derivative track reminds me of what Goblin does so well, and that is score films. I must admit I have never seen Notturno (aka "Spy Connection"), but one can imagine a high-speed chase or action scene set quite easily to this music. "Bass Theme" is exactly what it sounds like, a chance for Pignatelli to show off some of his fretless bass chops. The tone here is decidedly "eighties," but not unlike King Crimson circa side two of Beat. The creepy synth pads also remind us this is Goblin, but are also reminiscent of Libra's soundtrack to Schock. "Landing Strip" is a ballad more akin to what Goblin was doing on Amo non Amo, and "Helycopter" also echoes those soothing sounds. This goes a little too far on "Est," which careens into Grammy Jazz territory as we are treated to more fretless bass. The original LP would end here, after a reprise of the "Landing Strip" cue.

Notturno was issued on CD once by Cinevox in 1998, and this version features seven variations on the "Notturno" theme. None of these outtakes really add any value to the album as a whole, but do display the commitment Cinevox has to keeping the Goblin catalog as complete as possible, and are a treat for fans in that regard. But it is those Goblin fans alone that will be bothered to track this down, as I can't recommend Notturno to anyone else, really.

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