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ROZ VITALIS

RIO/Avant-Prog • Russia


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Roz Vitalis picture
Roz Vitalis biography
Founded in Saint Petersburg, Russia in 2001

ROZ VITALIS was created by composer and keyboardist Ivan Rozmainsky in 2001. Primarily it was one-man band. In 2003 ROZ VITALIS had become trio and included also Nadezhda Regentova (keyboards, voices) and Vladimir Polyakov (keyboards). In 2005 line-up experiences expansion. Now the band includes also Klara Metelkova (flutes, harmonica, vocals) and Yuri Verba (clarinet). Style of ROZ VITALIS is RIO/Avant-Prog/Symphonic Prog/Psychedelic/Space Rock. The main influences are LE ORME, GENTLE GIANT, KING CRIMSON, YES, ELP, SUPERSISTER, JETHRO TULL, DEPECHE MODE, AFTER CRYING. Music of the band was compared by prog-reviewers with GENTLE GIANT, UNIVERS ZERO, BRIAN HIRSCH, KING CRIMSON, TRIUMVIRAT, KRAFTWERK etc. In short, music of ROZ VITALIS can remind KING CRIMSON and GENTLE GIANT, but is keyboard-based, with rare female voices and electronic drums. It is "chamber electronic prog" rather than "rockish music".

The best recordings are the following. "Lazarus" (2003) - RIO with ethno and electronic elements. see reviews at www.progressiveears.com & www.proglands.com ; "Das Licht Der Menschen" (2004) - concept album including three 20-28-minute epics devoted to the "theological idea of Trinity". It is very polyphonic album, difficult for listening. "Enigmarden" (2005) - almost instrumental prog-music with flutes and clarinet solos. EP-albums "Painsadist" (2003) and "The Threesunny Light Power" (2004) also can be recommended. More early albums are characterized by low quality of recording. All albums are self-released ones.


Why this artist must be listed in www.progarchives.com :
The band makes original and interesting prog-music, which has a lot of progradios' rotations and good reviews at prog sites.

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ROZ VITALIS Videos (YouTube and more)


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Buy ROZ VITALIS Music


Hidden Man Of The EarthHidden Man Of The Earth
Lizard 2018
$14.36
$17.97 (used)
Lavoro D'AmoreLavoro D'Amore
Lizrad Records
$19.99
$25.72 (used)
Patience Of HopePatience Of Hope
Mals Limited
$17.99
CompassionizerCompassionizer
Self-Produced
$26.32
RevelatorRevelator
Mals Limited
$17.99

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ROZ VITALIS discography


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

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

3.29 | 19 ratings
L'Ascensione
2002
2.99 | 17 ratings
Lazarus
2003
3.88 | 13 ratings
Das Licht Der Menschen
2004
2.74 | 18 ratings
Enigmarden
2005
3.56 | 26 ratings
Compassionizer
2007
3.73 | 36 ratings
Revelator
2011
3.93 | 44 ratings
Patience Of Hope
2012
3.56 | 19 ratings
Overcoming-Up
2014
3.88 | 84 ratings
Lavoro D'Amore
2015
4.10 | 146 ratings
The Hidden Man Of The Heart
2018

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

4.50 | 6 ratings
Live Autumn '05 In The Ad Lucem Studio
2005
4.12 | 6 ratings
Live At Mezzo Forte, Moscow, September'09
2009
3.18 | 3 ratings
Live 2013-08-31 + Bonus
2014
4.00 | 5 ratings
Live in Kirishi
2016
4.04 | 13 ratings
At Last. Live
2017
4.13 | 10 ratings
Elephant Live
2018
4.17 | 10 ratings
Great Expectations Live
2019
3.96 | 12 ratings
Daybreaking Live
2020

ROZ VITALIS Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

3.86 | 7 ratings
Lazarus Abridged
2009
2.08 | 5 ratings
The Selected Of Enigmarden
2015

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

0.00 | 0 ratings
Excerpts from Early Demo Recordings 2001
2001
3.18 | 2 ratings
Painsadist
2003
3.09 | 2 ratings
The Threesunny Light Power
2004
5.00 | 1 ratings
Live At ESG-21, February 13th 2010
2010
5.00 | 2 ratings
Beyond the Limits of Spring. Live at Kitayskiy Letchik Jao Da, May 10th 2011
2011
5.00 | 2 ratings
Live Summer 2012
2012
4.09 | 3 ratings
Live At Saint Peter Prog Fest #5
2013
4.25 | 4 ratings
Live 14-11-14
2015
3.41 | 23 ratings
Psalm 6
2016
5.00 | 2 ratings
Amaryllis / What Are You Thinking About? (with Vespero)
2018
3.50 | 2 ratings
Mille Te Ne Cadranno Al Fianco
2019
4.33 | 3 ratings
Cadence and Cascade
2019

ROZ VITALIS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Daybreaking Live by ROZ VITALIS album cover Live, 2020
3.96 | 12 ratings

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Daybreaking Live
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Kempokid
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

4 stars Another non descript period of time, another request to review a Russian instrumental prog album, which is something I'm almost always glad to do, given the relatively consistent high quality I've found between them, this one especially. There's often a fairly common thread between these albums such as the Rozmainsky and Mikhalov Project, which I guess is only to be expected given the fact that many of these acts seem to be somewhat related in terms of common members between them. Out of all of these however, Daybreaking Live is almost certainly the album I find to be the most well realised of the bunch I've heard, with tight interplay combined with memorable melodies with a prominent worship of electric pianos and synths, keeping this core identity found throughout many of these Russian prog bands, while thorougly refining it and honing in on its strengths.

Once again, I find an extremely commendable aspect of the band to be just how well produced and mixed these albums are, given the fact that they're live performances, everything sounding crisp and distinct while having the appropriate amount of power that each instrument should have. Wides demonstrates the atmosphere this can create very effectively, the electric guitar providing some edge to the music, which works especially well when combined with the fairly intense drumming that's definitely one of the main focuses on this section, all before many elements of the track fade away, leaving a somewhat eerie bassline to perpetuate the tone of the track. The multifaceted nature of the band is then shown in full force as a graceful flute melody weaves its way into the fray seamlessly, eventually being backed up by the electric piano to create a steady, fun groove that becomes gradually more defined as each instrument comes back in, one by one. Daybreaking tones the intensity down through having far more focus on more subtle elements, interplay between the flute and guitar forming the basis for the majority of the track in order to create an extremely lush sound, further demonstrating the versatility of the band, with some moments sounding quite similar to some of the more eventful post rock bands such as Magyar Posse. Talking about Magyar Posse, Nepsis starts off in an incredible way, the frenetic electric piano and electric guitar creating a real intensity that sounds like you've been dropped right into the middle of a massive crescendo, where even after things have died down somewhat, there's still a certain chaotic nature to everything, none of the rhythmic components feeling quite right, leaving the listener slightly on edge. I love the switch up this song has near the end where it begins to centre around a singular rising riff while everything surrounding it gradually becomes more and more insane, and is overall one of my favourite moments on the album as a whole.

Fret Not Thyself Because of Evildoers is without a doubt what I consider to be the best song on this album, almost exclusively for the superb melodies featured throughout, and the structure of it, constantly returning to the same motifs but sounding more warped with each repetition, more distortion and off key aspects of the music appearing as the prominence of electric guitar continuously rises, once again demonstrating how Roz Vitalis con confidently make intense music, while also being able to have more beautiful, melodic cuts like Mother of All Rain. Strangers and Pilgrims on the Earth contains melodies that definitely have baroque influence, but also highlight one complaint I do have with the album, that being that the electric piano can often sound a bit out of place in moments like this, almost having a chiptune aethetic to it, which starkly contrasts with the rest of the music, and not in a way I find particularly good either. That said, I find this an overall minor complaint given how it makes up a relatively small part of the album overall, especially of this track, although this comes with some other complaints regardless, that being that while the brisk pace is very welcome, giving everything some lovely energy, I still feel like there's some retreading that's done here, and it overall sounds a bit too similar to other tracks here. Psalm 6 fortunately brings the album to a close in a strong way, the heavy guitar work making way for the prettiest moments on the album, as the sound of an organ comes in and helps to create a moment of absolute serenity that gradually evolves over the course of the song into an amazingly evocative guitar solo that brings the album to a close in an excellent way.

As previously mentioned, I find this to be one of my favourite of the live Russian prog albums that I've listened to and reviewed, taking the melodic sensibilities that form the core of this sort of music and then having everything feel much less like a jam and more like tightly structured, multifaceted compositions. I love how this album is able to comfortably convey so many tones as it progresses while rarely feeling as if it's missed the mark, ranging from pastoral symphonic prog pieces, to eerie atmospheric experiments to even incorporating vague elements of post rock into the mix during a couple of songs, making for a largely engaging album. While occasionally forgettable, I cannot deny that this is a high quality album with a lot of depth to it.

Best tracks: Wides, Nepsis, Fret Not Thyself Because of Evildoers

Weakest tracks: Loro Con Dolcezza E Cortesia, Strangers and Pilgrims on the Earth

Verdict: A very worthwhile album overall in my opinion, covering a wide array of tone and atmosphere as the album progresses, leading the listener through a collection of wonderful tracks that almost never fail to entertain. Definitely an album I recommend to those who enjoy some good, complex instrumental prog.

 Daybreaking Live by ROZ VITALIS album cover Live, 2020
3.96 | 12 ratings

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Daybreaking Live
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Collaborator Eclectic Team

4 stars Roz Vitalis continues to expand their studio and live discography making their band widely known not just in their native land, but worldwide. Their brand of RIO/Avant Prog has become a sound that is recognizable as their own, a mix of instrumental fusion utilizing a improvisational, yet melodic sound that is at once pleasant to the ear and at other times dissonant with occasional use of microtonal harmonies.

Their 8th live album 'Daybreaking Live', released in January of 2020, is probably one of their tightest live performances yet. Most of the tracks on this outing were composed between 2018 and 2019. There is also the addition of 3 tracks that come from a few of their past albums done in the same setting. The show for the album was at Babooinumfest in St. Petersburg (November 4, 2019), which is a mostly annual, progressive rock festival. The line-up is the usual bunch of talented musicians, namely Ivan Rozmainsky on electric piano and synth, Vladimir Semenov-Tyan-Shansky on guitar, Ruslan Kirillov on bass, Vladislav Korotkikh on flute and Evgeny Trefilov on drums.

The album opens quite appropriately with a moderate tempo on the track 'Wides' (8:26) which soon opens up into a faster tempo which brings up the intensity and excitement levels, getting the listener moving and involved in the music. 'Daybreaking' (5:57) on the other hand, slows things down to a more pastoral level with a softer sound and a lot of interaction between the flute and other instruments. 'Nepsis' (7:26) drives the intensity up several levels with a hard, driving guitar bringing in the more dissonant sound to the music. This is soon contrasted with the playful keys which twinkle around as they tease anger out of the guitar, creating some interesting textures. The music turns even more progressive and unpredictable when the flute comes fluttering around, then dark when an organ brings the guitar back in. By now, you have been exposed to several styles in only 3 tracks, and this is probably the best example the band has made of their dynamic style on their live albums.

Next comes the short, almost baroque sounding 'Loro Con Dolcezza e Cortesia' (1:34), a simple piano and synth duet. This transforms into the next track 'Fret Not Thyself Because of Evildoers' (6:54), which comes from their last studio album 'The Hidden Man of the Heart'. This takes the simplicity established on the previous track and the rest of the band continues to come in, as they do so, the intensity quickly builds as the theme is established and embellished. Rozmainsky quickly moves from organ to synth smoothly, and the guitar responds to the textural changes in the different keyboards. The music moves from soft to heavy a few times, always generating a great amount of pulse-pounding intensity, with the keys and guitar moving from melodic passages to dissonant sounds smoothly.

'Mother of All Rain' (4:17) comes from the 'Patience of Hope' album. This is a nice and soft track with the flute taking over again, but this time not in a pastoral feel as much as a 'smoother' jazz feel, probably the most accessible track of the set. About halfway through, the signature guitar sound comes in giving the track a more sinister feel and again driving up intensity. 'Strangers and Pilgrims on the Earth' (8:47) begins with a naivet' feel as a fugue style is brought in between the different keys and then interchanging with the guitar. This goes on for a while, then suddenly is interrupted by a sinister sounding guitar creeping in. Eventually the keys bring in the light theme again, but the guitar continues to generate the unsettling feeling underneath it all. The rest of the band comes and goes, bringing up the volume and then diminishing it again. At the 6 minute mark, the track changes direction as the drums become steadier and drive the song to a frantic new level and bringing in a variation on the main theme. The last track 'Psalm 6' ends the album. The track originally comes from 'The Hidden Man of the Heart' and is a concert favorite. It flows from a dramatic and progressive beginning to a quieter middle section and back again and can really ratchet up the excitement of the crowd.

This is definitely the bands best live album to date as the recording is top-notch and the bands transitions are tighter than ever. There is also a lot more variety on this album as the textures of each track are unique and variable. I definitely hear a lot of improvement in the bands sound on this album, at least in a live setting, as, at least for the most part, the sound is well balanced and the musicians are probably the tightest I have ever heard them. The band's time together has really made their sound much more cohesive and on point. There are a few times when this tends to slip, but for the most part, it is definitely one of their better live albums. Personally, I tend to have more issues with live albums and usually have a hard time giving them a perfect rating as I find it is always better to experience the live setting actually being there in the crowd. It's hard to bring that excitement to the recorded format. I'm not saying that it can't happen, because I have rated some live albums at the maximum rating before, but it is very rare. However, there is a marked improvement evident in this recording and, even though it is at 4 stars, it is in my opinion their best live album yet.

 Daybreaking Live by ROZ VITALIS album cover Live, 2020
3.96 | 12 ratings

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Daybreaking Live
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Naida Regent

5 stars After listening to "Daybreaking Live" album I had discovered for myself new Roz Vitalis, although previously I listened to this band time and time again. At the present moment compositions are perceived as more mature and "grow" with musicians both physically and mentally. The sound became more heavy and dense. Due to more heavy guitar and more heavy rhythm-section "approach" of the band comes closer to progressive metal. But, at the same time, Roz Vitalis's style remains true to oneself and recognizable. Evidently, the group wants to take from prog a little bit of everything and, at the same time, to be distinctive and original. As before, there are baroque-and-medieval motives. In "Nepsis" and "Psalm 6" motives of dancing heaviness transform into tranquil transcendence. In each composition there are memorable and hit melodies. "Mother of All Rain" remains the most melodic one. The flute sounds remarkably, but I would like to hear more winds like in "The Hidden Man of the Heart" album. In general, in the future it would be better to increase quantity of wind instruments (clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, French Horn). The same wishes concern use of string instruments (violin, cello, double bass, viola). The main recommendation is to move to symphonic style of music.
 Daybreaking Live by ROZ VITALIS album cover Live, 2020
3.96 | 12 ratings

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Daybreaking Live
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Mortte

2 stars This is the first album I've heard about Roz Vitalis. Really haven`t got any knowledge about Russian prog, only heard Autograph that came to play to Finland in the eighties. The band says it's influences come for example from King Crimson & Gentle Giant and they're heard in this album. Maybe earlier albums have also some rio/avant-styles, but they're not represented in this. Composition style seems to be to put really different pieces into same composition, that I think has been common both in Gentle Giants music and also modern prog.

'Wides' starts in a very strong KC-atmosphere reminding 'the Devil's Triangles' some parts a bit. But in the middle it changes into beautiful, little bit mediocre and more rhythmic. In the end intensity rises and I really like psych sounding organ in it. Next 'Daybreaking' is beautiful in the beginning but changes into middle kind of gloomy funk and in the end back to the beaty. 'Nepsis' is my least favourite reminding KC:s eighties albums. 'Loro Con Dolcezza e Cortesia' is a short duet to piano and synth. The piano sound reminds me a 'Tetris'-game sound from the nineties. Anyway the most sympathetic piece in this album.

All the way album goes better direction in the end. Next 'Fret Not Thyself Because Evildoers' is my favourite and reminds a little bit Pekka Pohjola's music. It's also the most consistent piece. 'Mother Of All Rain' is a beautiful, but although lasting only four minutes there is not happening much. 'Strangers and Pilgrims On the Earth' has at least four parts. First two are not very interesting but I like the darker last ones. 'Psalm 6' is also one of the highlights in this album. It has most original of the compositions, but it is too long.

I think the main problem in this album like also many today's progalbums is that there isn't enough great material. Specially when it's instrumental music, it really needs good melodies and/or very interesting structures. Also more variation of the instruments might keep up the interest. Now this is same kind of package album, as the most today's albums sadly are. Sure it is heard there are great musicians, but really hope drumplayer Evgeny Trefilov got more passion into his playing, now he sounds like he plays all the time from the notes, sometimes others players intensity rises but not his. Also have to say this is not recorded well, overall sound is quite thin. The picture I got from this album I don't think I will ever get back into Roz Vitalis. But I believe those who want to listen fresh prog and are KC & Gentle Giant fans, will enjoy this album.

 Great Expectations Live by ROZ VITALIS album cover Live, 2019
4.17 | 10 ratings

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Great Expectations Live
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars Recorded in St. Petersburg at the end of May 2018, this was only the second gig for drummer Evgeny Trefilov, who had replaced Philip Semenov who had held the seat for the previous ten years. The gig itself was to publicise the new album, 'The Hidden Man of the Heart', but the band were already looking forward so as well as featuring some older numbers, there were also some new ones which have yet to be recorded, including the first ever performance of "Bait of Success". The line-up is of course led by pianist and keyboard player Ivan Rozmainsky, and as well as Trefilov he is joined by Ruslan Kirillov (bass), Vladislav Korotkikh (flute), Leonid Perevalov (bass clarinet) and Vladimir Semenov-Tyan- Shansky (electric and acoustic guitars).

Roz Vitalis are an unusual band, as while songs such as "Passing Over" contain passages which are extremely delicate and melodic, with refrains moving from piano to flute to synth, there are plenty of others when the band is working far more in the avant garde and eclectic fields. They have always been experimental and combine a modern approach with keyboard sounds which have far more in common with bands from fifty years ago than the present day. The woodwind instruments come in and out as the music demands it, not playing all the time, so the band may be performing as a quartet, quintet or sextet, whatever is right at the time. The guitar may be gently picked or strummed hard, and again the movement between acoustic and electric is seamless. The arrangements are complex, layered, incredibly intense and over the top or delicate and refined.

Roz Vitalis continue to release music that is both challenging and engaging, and this has been produced so the sound is probably as it was in the venue where this was recorded as opposed to having been cleaned up an enhanced. The applause at the end of each song is cut very short, and it would have been better to have this appear more as a seamless concert, but this is really nit picking on my part when the band are providing songs such as "Thou Shalt Tread Upon the Lion and Adder (Trampled Version)" which has a superb introduction. They continue to be one of the most exciting and invigorating bands coming out of Russia.

 The Hidden Man Of The Heart by ROZ VITALIS album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.10 | 146 ratings

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The Hidden Man Of The Heart
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams

4 stars I love the sound of cello. It's accompanied by violins in the intro of this ROZ VITALIS album. A very good piece of chamber music which lasts only two minutes, but the main theme is reprised by the piano in the second track. The mixture of rock and classical instruments is not new in the prog world, especially the flute, but "Passing Over" alternates several sections and in the middle of the track it has a CAMEL flavor. An excellent beginning. In less than 10 minutes there's a bit of everything, including a short section which justifies why this band is in the RIO/Avant section of Progarchives. Anyway it's very melodic and not challenging at all. In the final part of the song the sound of trumpet, familiar to who follows this band arrives and it's a pity in my opinion, that the song ends fading out.

"Rhapsody of Refugees" is between Wakemanian keyboards and a trumpet reminding of the Goran BREGOVIC style (not so much Goran Bregovic, don't worry). It's another high-level track in which the ethnic element is mainly grotesque.

A short strings chamber interlude of few more than one minute follows. Like the intro, it's excellent and leads to the next track. Those strings interludes make me think to Colin BASS and his "An Outcast Of The Islands". "Thou Shalt..." features a great guitar and behind it a classical mood can be heard. Piano, bass, flute and what apparently is a harp make a break in the middle.

A two minutes piano solo, again with a classical flavor, but with the sembiance of a studio for beginners is followed by anoter 1 minute piano interlude, then we enter the "Jungle Waltz". On this track, the flute is played in a Ian ANDERSON style in order to enhance the "wild" and dark atmosphere. If the intention was to give the listener the idea of a dark jungle, Roz Vitalis succeeded. Then pauses, trumpet and an unusual sequence of chords, vaguely dissonant are perfect in keeping it dark. The final crescendo would have been great if not faded out.

Strings again. "Wounded by the Lion..." occupies three gorgeous minutes. I'm not very expert in classical music, but I think the reference may be Gustav MAHLER with a touch of J.S. BACH. I'm not sure, but I suspect that the Lion is representing St. Mark, as it's the christian symbol representing that evangelist.

"Fret Not Thyself..." has a Crimsonian feeling and reaches its heights when the music becomes compulsive and the trumpet takes the lead. Anyway every single part of this complex track is at an excellent level.

It's time for the title track: Flute and acoustic guitar first. It's a very melodic track. Very enjoable in which there's room for all the instruments without being a "box for solos". I'm not sure if it's really the best track of the album, but it's surely a candidate.

"Some Refugees passed over" is another string quartet which reprises the main theme which is recurrent throughout the album, then "Psalm 9" which has previously been released in an EP. It's a true progressive rock track, more on the rock side of the thing. It's also the longest album track, featuring more than 8 minutes.

It's a pity for the fadeouts which make me round down the 4.5 stars that in m opinion it deserves. It's a great album.

 L'Ascensione by ROZ VITALIS album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.29 | 19 ratings

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L'Ascensione
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams

4 stars I don't know where the passion for Italian titles is from. "L'Ascensione" (the Ascension) is the debut album of Ivan Rozmainsky's creature "Roz VITALIS". Listening to the band's more recent output many wonder about why they are placed into the RIO/Avant subgenre. I wasn't around when the band was debated and added, but this album is very experimental even if not too far from the soundscapes of King Crimson and Gentle Giant. The first track changes mood several times and the russian sung final reminding of a horthodox mass with a Vangelis like background belongs to the genre.

Many people thinks that Avant rock is made of free jazzy improvisations, noise and unpredictable sequences of notes and chords. Well, it's also this, but this is not the case of Roz Vitalis, whose tracks have a well defined structure and don't leave much room to improvisations. "From Heaven Th Earth" is an organ base with a classical mood counterbalanced by a drone percussion riff. Very unusual. Later the organ fades out leaving it to electronics and percussion. more or less in the half of the 11 minutes of this track, there are some passages when the percussion stop for a while leaving harpsichord and xylophone the duty of the base. Signature changes, dissonances, electronic noises don't destroy the various melodies in the background. I think it can be called a Crimsonian track with the structure of a nightmare: starting from a quite regular piece of music and ending into a very dark ambience.

"The Unpurified Substance Of A Soul" starts not too differently. It's a good follower of the previous one, but turns immediately into a Gentle Giant like track. The style of percusssion programming is similar to that often done by Senmuth. Also this track has very dark moments. It closes with a short part of organ and Nadezhda Regentova's vocals.

"Through a spiral...." is again a dark mixture of drone percussion and keyboards, but I hear a classical music influence. Debussy comes to mind.

The mood doesn't change much with "Dreamy Memories" A strange section of vocals and "doohs" can be called contemprary classical in the vein of Giorgy Ligeti. I think it's similar to the instrumental things of Nichelodeon.

The longest track "Ascension Dream" is more melodic. It's a hint of the future tendencies of the band which will later abandon the experimental side and will concentrate more on the melodies. With the many changes and the strange "mass like" vocals it's like watching a movie or reading a book. You don't know what will follow but it's everything very consistent. The melodic piano base comes and go throughout the whole track. Desscribing it further is useless, also because it changes a lot of times. It has to be listened to, and it's a good listen.

A short interlude of one minute and half full of bells leads to the last track: "L'Ascensione 2". As often in the prog world, the last track closes the circle with the first, so it's church organ again, but it's more dreamy and a bit psychedelic, too. This is an album that requires headphones and the right environment and mood. An excellent debut by a band which has released and still releases a huge quantity of material, and honestly I haven't listened to their whole output, but up to now I haven't found anything bad.

Mainly (this album) for who likes Gentle Giant and King Crimson.

 Elephant Live by ROZ VITALIS album cover Live, 2018
4.13 | 10 ratings

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Elephant Live
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars Roz Vitalis have been one of the most consistent progressive rock bands out of Russia for many years now, always stretching boundaries with avant garde and jazz inspired music, and this their latest album definitely shows them playing to their strengths. Recorded at two different venues in Saint Petersburg and Narva in 2018, the line-up now has a new drummer in Evgeny Trefilov, while band leader keyboard player Ivan Rozmainsky has also brought in saxophone player Ilya Belorukov which also allows the band to spread their wings even further. While four pieces are from their most recent studio album, 'The Hidden Man of the Heart', the other three are new compositions.

It is completely instrumental, and while Rozmainsky is at the heart of everything which is taking place, the use of sax on five of the numbers and clarinet on the other two has the band combining jazz, avant garde and elements of VDGG to create something which is sometimes challenging, always fascinating and certainly never boring. No one can accuse Roz Vitalis of wanting to follow the prog mainstream but instead are out there attempting to push boundaries and create something which is truly progressive and not another clone. This album has been released through Bandcamp, and I urge you to discover not only this but also the back catalogue of one the most interesting and enjoyable prog bands around.

 The Hidden Man Of The Heart by ROZ VITALIS album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.10 | 146 ratings

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The Hidden Man Of The Heart
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Vanamonde

5 stars One of the things I always liked about Roz Vitalis is how they never stop and always struggle for finding new paths in music. And no surprise, this persistent search for a new sound sometimes pays off, and it is why a number of the band's melodies, those combining originality and inner harmony, render a rare sense of discovery of ever existing but just previously unknown treasuries in the Platonic world of musical ideas. And their last album "The Hidden Man Of The Heart", may be the high-water mark of their creative development, perfectly represents the essence of their inventive quest. Of course, RV's works were never everyday easy music for pure distraction, yet it is very far from boring and monotonous, and the listener can enjoy a good diversity in the mood and sound in the album: from a bright, springy melody of Passing Over through a subtle and beautiful meditation of Some Refugee Passed Over to an apassionata of Thou Shalt Tread Upon the Lion and Adder.

Highly recommended for any lover of sophisticated, intelligent music.

 Great Expectations Live by ROZ VITALIS album cover Live, 2019
4.17 | 10 ratings

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Great Expectations Live
Roz Vitalis RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Collaborator Eclectic Team

4 stars Roz Vitalis is a jazz fusion avant garde prog band from St. Petersburg, Russia, who started out as a one man band back in 2001, and over the years has grown into an impressive full fledged band over the years which includes guitarists, keyboard, flute and bass clarinet players. Ivan Rozmainsky is the leader and keyboardist and the band has released several studio and live albums over the years making them one of the most impressive progressive instrumental bands from Russia making an impression in the genre all over the world.

This live album, 'Great Expectations Live' takes several of the tracks from the bands most successful album 'The Hidden Man of the Heart' and puts them into a live setting along with classics from other albums from the band and even a few brand new tracks. The band is most impressive in a live setting in that the listener who doesn't get a chance to see the band live can still experience the level of musical professionalism first hand in this setting, especially in their improvisational passages. This concert was recorded live on May 26, 2018.

'Premonition' starts off the album with a somewhat pastoral flute solo before developing more intensity after bringing in the full band, with guitars and keyboards standing out from everything. As the track develops, things go from accessible jamming to more dissonance showing the band's experimental side that often comes up during their jams. Soon, a guitar solo backed by a swirling organ takes over, then things calm down as the percussion breaks down and a flute takes the lead as the band slowly plays a relaxing background which follows into a lovely guitar solo. Very nice!

Next we get a electric piano solo provided from Rozmainsky in a somewhat short track called 'La Gentilezza'. This leads into the next track 'Bait of Success' which is a more rocked-out track with the flute and guitar taking turns providing the melody as the piano and a complex bass line give support and intensity builds as it continues. This is the first performance of this track ever.

A long extended version of 'Annihilator of Moral Hazard' appears next at over 12 minutes in length. Starting with sparkling keys and nice effects, it soon morphs into a steady, churning beat and builds with an almost industrial feel. When the percussion breaks down, the track becomes mysterious and floats along in a psychedelic feel before it explodes into a heavy guitar supported by a flute improvising off of the guitar riff, almost feeling like a jazzy Jethro Tull vibe. The clarinet starts to go wild as things get more intense and the guitar continues to increase that intensity. At the end, the main theme takes up the accumulated power and pushes it to the climax.

'The Hidden Man of the Heart' starts with a pastoral feel with flute and acoustic guitar and tinkling cymbals before the drums come in and establish a mid-tempo rhythm. During the last half of the song, the beat changes to a Bolero-like rhythm with an organ pushing things ahead. 'Fret Not Thyself Because of Evildoers' starts off somewhat mysteriously and then soon settles into a more upbeat rhythm and then quickly crescendos sounding similar to early 70s psychedelic rock with the right mix of guitars and keys and complex moods and rhythms.

'Springnight City' is another short track fades quickly in with mellotron, bass clarinet and howling guitars creating a avant- garde kaleidoscope of sound. This gets cut short, but quickly goes into 'Jungle Waltz' which sounds as if it was developing from the previous free form track. There are still odd textures going on here, but now there is percussion added to help adhere the sound together, which is what happens as a nice jam results based on the structure that gets created. 'Blurred' is a quick track that features improvised clarinet trading off with keys, then flute and lastly guitar. The track sounds like it was edited from a longer improvisation.

'Passing Over' features the flute in a mid-tempo lilting jam. The middle section suddenly turns more free form as the clarinet starts to wail and screech and we get some other-worldly sounds for a while before it returns to the original theme again. 'Thou Shalt Tread on the Lion and the Adder (Trampled Version)' begins with a solemn organ and heavy guitar playing against each other with no rhythm. Suddenly a quick pattern picks up the tempo while the guitar plays off of the pattern in a descending pattern later adding variation and then running away with the track all together. Halfway through this turns pastoral when the flute takes the center stage backed by keys playing an arpeggio pattern and the bass clarinet playing a quick and staccato-like bass pattern. The guitar takes it all back again later and then it all churns dramatically to a climatic ending.

'What Are You Thinking About?' builds off of a repeating guitar pattern and uses this to create intensity and excitement not unlike 'Run Like Hell' from Pink Floyd. Last of all is 'Ascension Dream'. This is a nice pastoral track that works as a cooling down track after the fast paced previous track.

This is another great album illustrating the improvising talent of Roz Vitalis and the excitement generated in their improvised and sometimes free flowing music that is even more impressive when seen or heard in a concert setting. The music is great, but there are times when the recording suffers a bit sounding sort of flat or stuffy, but for the most part it is a good record of the band. It may not necessarily be the best place to start if you are interested in the band, but it is a good album for those looking to explore the band in more depth.

Thanks to felonafan for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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