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BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO

Rock Progressivo Italiano • Italy


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Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso picture
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso biography
One of the most important progressive rock bands to come from Italy, BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO, along with LE ORME and PFM are regarded as the big three of the RPI genre. This is not only because of their longevity and the level of success they achieved in their own country, but also because each were able to make considerable inroads abroad, something which didn't happen for most of their contemporaries.

Despite not releasing their first album until 1972, the band actually formed in 1969, their sound centering around the virtuoso dual keyboard work of the Nocenzi brothers, Gianni and Vittorio. The early line-up fluctuated with various members coming and going before any recorded output was released, including drummers Franco Pontecorvi and Mario Achilli, bassist Fabrizio Falco and guitarists Gianfranco Coletta (ex CHETRO & CO) and Claudio Falco. This early incarnation of the band did, however, record some material but this wouldn't surface until 1989 (see the "Donna Plautilla" album).

Joining the Nocenzi brothers for a more stable line-up in time for their first album was ex-FIORI DI CAMPO guitarist Marcello Todaro and three members of LE ESPERIENZE, vocalist Francesco Di Giacomo, drummer Pier Luigi Calderoni and bassist Renato D'Angelo. Their eponymous first album was a remarkably mature piece of inventive symphonic progressive rock with classical influences, featuring excellent musicianship and the emotionally charged vocal delivery of Di Giacomo. This was quickly followed up by the equally highly regarded "Darwin" and "Io Sono Nato Libero," forming a trio of albums that are essential listening for anyone with even the most casual interest in the RPI genre.

A change of guitarist followed shortly after the recording of "Io Sono Nato Libero," when Todaro left and joined CRYSTALS and was replaced by Rodolfo Maltese, formerly of HOMO SAPIENS. Around this time the band attempted to make inroads outside their native Italy and released the English sung "Banco" on ELP'S Manticore label. In reality this was largely a compilation, as it consisted of re-recorded songs from their first three albums with the exception of one track. To promote this they toured the USA and UK with limited success. "Banco" was followed in 1976 by the film soundtrack album "Garofano Rosso," and in the same year two versions of the same album, one Italian and one English, "Come In Un'Ultima Cena" and "As In A Last Supper" were released. 1978 saw the release of anoth...
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DarwinDarwin
Import
Sony/Bmg Italy 1999
Audio CD$4.00
$3.99 (used)
Banco Del Mutuo SoccorsoBanco Del Mutuo Soccorso
Import
Sony/Bmg Italy 2010
Audio CD$3.36
$3.35 (used)
Io Sono Nato LiberoIo Sono Nato Libero
Import
Sony/Bmg Italy 1998
Audio CD$4.69
$4.68 (used)
Donna PlautillaDonna Plautilla
Import
Imports 2014
Audio CD$5.18
$5.17 (used)
Canto Di PrimaveraCanto Di Primavera
Import
EMI Music Italy 1995
Audio CD$7.82
$6.29 (used)
Banco Del Mutuo SoccorsoBanco Del Mutuo Soccorso
Import
Sony Import 2012
Audio CD$16.02
$16.01 (used)
Di TerraDi Terra
Import
EMI Music Italy 1995
Audio CD$7.43
$7.42 (used)
Seguendo Le TracceSeguendo Le Tracce
Import
Imports 2005
Audio CD$11.90
$11.89 (used)
Un Idea Che Non Puoi FermareUn Idea Che Non Puoi Fermare
Import
Imports 2014
Audio CD$11.07
$11.06 (used)
Come in Unultima CenaCome in Unultima Cena
Import
Imports 2007
Audio CD$7.77
$7.76 (used)
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LP 40 anni
BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO
~ USD $55.48
LP banco del mutuo soccorso
BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO
~ USD $21.01
CD darwin
BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO
~ USD $17.98


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BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO discography


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

BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.29 | 693 ratings
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
1972
4.38 | 905 ratings
Darwin!
1972
4.38 | 841 ratings
Io Sono Nato Libero
1973
4.09 | 205 ratings
Banco
1975
3.45 | 135 ratings
Garofano Rosso
1976
3.97 | 200 ratings
Come in un'ultima cena
1976
3.17 | 55 ratings
As In A Last Supper
1976
3.75 | 184 ratings
...Di Terra
1978
3.74 | 137 ratings
Canto di primavera
1979
1.58 | 46 ratings
Urgentissimo
1980
2.08 | 37 ratings
Buone notizie
1981
2.02 | 43 ratings
Banco (1983)
1983
1.27 | 41 ratings
...E Via
1985
2.27 | 35 ratings
Donna Plautilla
1989
2.18 | 26 ratings
Non Mettere Le Dita Nel Naso
1989
3.59 | 34 ratings
B.M.S. (Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso, 1991 version)
1991
3.45 | 68 ratings
Darwin (1991 version)
1991
2.27 | 30 ratings
Il 13
1994

BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.02 | 39 ratings
Capolinea
1979
2.09 | 4 ratings
Live
1993
2.23 | 12 ratings
Papagayo Club 1972
1994
3.81 | 38 ratings
Nudo
1997
3.38 | 8 ratings
Nudo - Live In Tokyo
1998
3.60 | 23 ratings
En Concierto, May 1999 - Mexico City.
1999
3.90 | 23 ratings
No Palco
2003
4.24 | 45 ratings
Seguendo Le Tracce
2005
3.25 | 8 ratings
Quaranta (Live Prog Exhibition 2010)
2012

BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.39 | 19 ratings
In Concerto: Cio' Che Si Vede È
1992
3.92 | 7 ratings
Live 1980
2007

BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.19 | 24 ratings
Da qui messere si domina la valle
1991
3.00 | 7 ratings
La Storia
1993
2.21 | 5 ratings
I Grandi Successi
1993
1.75 | 4 ratings
Banco d'accusa
1996
3.95 | 3 ratings
Le Origini
1996
2.15 | 4 ratings
Antologia
1996
2.50 | 2 ratings
Nudo (Japanese version)
1997
1.00 | 1 ratings
Musica più
1997
3.88 | 7 ratings
Gli Anni 70
1998
3.75 | 4 ratings
Made In Italy
2004
3.82 | 2 ratings
I Miti Musica
2005
0.00 | 0 ratings
Collezione Italiana
2006
2.00 | 1 ratings
D.O.C.
2006
2.00 | 2 ratings
Le Più Belle Canzoni Di... Il Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
2006
0.00 | 0 ratings
Il Ragno
2008
4.50 | 6 ratings
Banco del Mutuo Soccorso - 40 anni (Debut album 40th anniversary Deluxe Edition)
2012
0.00 | 0 ratings
Essential
2012
5.00 | 3 ratings
Darwin!
2013
3.86 | 7 ratings
Un'idea che non puoi fermare
2014

BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.50 | 2 ratings
Non Mi Rompete
1973
2.00 | 1 ratings
Canto Di Primavera
1979
2.00 | 1 ratings
Niente
1979
2.00 | 2 ratings
Paolo Pa / Ma Che Idea
1980
2.00 | 1 ratings
Paolo Pa
1980
2.00 | 1 ratings
Il Ragno
1980
2.00 | 1 ratings
Baciami Alfredo
1981
3.50 | 2 ratings
Lontano Da (DJ - Special Mix)
1983
2.00 | 1 ratings
Moby Dick
1983
2.00 | 2 ratings
Grande Joe
1985
2.00 | 1 ratings
Vedo Il Telefono
1989

BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.29 | 693 ratings

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Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Modrigue
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Rock Progressivo e Classico

3.5 stars

First album of BANCO DEL MUTUO SUCCURSO, this self-titled opus combines the majesty of classical music and the power of early 70's hard rock, with a touching proper Italian sensibility. The disc is strangely structured, as it features three long songs with different durations and three short passages.

Beginning in a mysterious atmosphere, "In Volo" is in fact a pleasant medieval theme played at the flute, introducing the best song of the record, "R.I.P.". Lifely and catchy, the track presents a good balance nervous guitar and piano, with a beautiful melancholic interlude. One of the best compositions from the RPI genre! "Passaggio" is a short transition simply consisting in keyboardist Vittorio Nocenzi entering the room, playing harpsichord, and leaving the room by slamming the door!

The mini-epic "Metamorfosi" is quite interesting. Its first half is instrumental and features a powerful combination of seventies' hard rock and classical keyboards. This part surely shares similitudes with ELP. The second half is softer and more delicate, and the finale is haunting. This song has some weaknesses, but is overall pretty cool. Unfortunately, although it mixes the same musical elements, the same cannot be said for the 18 minutes uneven "Il Giardino Del Mago". Not as convincing, the longest track of the disc contains a few nice moments, however these can get a bit repetitive at times. "Traccia" concludes the record with a baroque hard rock theme.

At first sight, by looking at the instruments, "Banco del Mutuo Succurso" may look similar to symphonic prog acts. Nevertheless, the approach is very different from English bands such as ELP or GENESIS, and the sensibility is typically Italian. Some passages are powerful whereas others are touching. Despite lengthy moments on "Il Giardino Del Mago", this debut album remains my favorite from the band, maybe because this is their rock-iest effort from their "classical" prog period.

Recommended if you want to discover the Rock Progressivo Italiano, and a good entry point to the genre for 70's hard rock fans.

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 Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.29 | 693 ratings

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Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Jazz-Rock/Fusion/Canterbury Team

5 stars Ever since re-entering the music scene in 2008 after an absence of nearly twenty years I was overwhelmed by many international music scenes of which I had previously been relatively unaware. Rock progressivo Italiano is one of these. And with my enthusiastic interest drawn to the amazing number of modern artists contributing to what has proved to be quite an exciting revival of my once-beloved progressive rock music, I have not always given older albums the time and attention necessary to truly familiarize myself with them much less appreciate them. Still, I have slowly acquired the much revered "classics." (This one has 663 ratings/reviews on PA alone!) Banco has impressed me from my initial listens. The maturity and sophistication of songmaking is astounding. And to put into the formula the fact that this album and Darwin! (both 1972 releases) predate many of the most cherished masterpieces of the Golden Age only increases my appreciation and awe. The dynamic range, confidence to be quiet and subtle and then be bold and loud, all the while using thoughtful not-whimsical constructs and virtuosic command of all instruments is a wonder to behold. While the sound of lead vocalist Francesco Di Giacomo's voice is one that has still not grown comfortable or favorable to me, I find nothing but musical excellence throughout Banco's first album. It's display of musical and instrumental mastery is undeniable. Where it may lack slightly is in memorability. After several years of owning this and occasionally spinning it through my brain I still find little or no connection with the music--it has not penetrated my soul in the way that many of the 'less sophisticated' masterpieces of the era have. Not the way Darwin! and especially Io sono nato libero have done. Hence, a rating is very difficult for me to render as I do not rate this one on the same par as the two aforementioned classics, yet it is such an amazing collection of constructs it is difficult for me to give it anything less than the five stars it truly deserves. To me, it is an excellent addition to any prog rock music collection but in terms of its contribution to music history I cannot deny that it is probably essential and is definitely a masterpiece of progressive rock music . . . just not as great as either Darwin! or Io sono nato libero.

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 Grande Joe by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1985
2.00 | 2 ratings

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Grande Joe
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Guillermo
Prog Reviewer

2 stars The first time that I listened to BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO was to their very good "...di terra" album from 1978 which was lent to me in 1985 by a friend and musician who was one of the keyboard players in a band in which I was playing then, called "Argos" (of course, it is not the same band which is included now in the Prog Archives database, as I realized a few days ago). The band on which I was playing the drums then had eight members!

Also in 1985, one saturday evening I was watching TV, and in one of the channels of the Mexican TV there was the broadcasting of the "Sanremo Music Festival 1985". I watched to the TV programme for some minutes, not really being a fan of this kind of music festivals. But I was very surprised when BANCO appeared in the TV screen playing live, or more likely doing a playback, to a very Pop Rock song, which after doing some research in Wikipedia and in youtube, thirty years later, now I know it was called "Grande Joe", the song which is in this single. I was very surprised to see BANCO on TV in 1985 playing this song after liking a lot their "...di terra" album.

After finding it now and listening to this song several times in youtube and watching to a video of them doing a playback of this song in front of an audience (maybe it is an official video for this song, or maybe the scenes, with some edits and added visual effects, were also recorded at the Sanremo Music Festival, but I can`t remember very clearly now if they are the same scenes that I watched on TV then...maybe not...I watched to them on TV thirty years ago!) now I know the reason I was so surprised by this song. This "Grande Joe" song is a very Pop Rock song in the very typical style of the eighties: programmed drums, electronic drums, very typical eighties keyboard sounds (maybe also some programmed keyboards), the use of some reverb,...

The song is not bad. In fact It is a good Italian Pop Rock song, with good vocals by the late Francesco Di Giacomo. But the change of musical style (in comparison to their musical style of the seventies) was very drastic for me in 1985, and it still is today. As I don`t speak, read and write in the Italian language, I can`t understand the content of the lyrics. Who is "Grande Joe"? I don`t know. I also don`t know if this song was a Hit Single for the band in Italy or in other countries.

It seems that the eighties was a time for change in musical style for a lot of the Prog Rock bands of the seventies . It also happened to some Italian Prog Rock bands, like BANCO, P.F.M. and LE ORME.

For collectors and fans only.

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 Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.29 | 693 ratings

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Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

5 stars Much like Gentle Giant who were an inspiration, the Italian group BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO (Bank Of Mutual Rescue) was founded by musical brothers, in this case Vittorio and Gianni Nocenzi. In the early 70s at the peak of the first golden age of progressive rock but unlike many contemporaries who needed an album or two to get their feet wet, these guys hit a major home run on their eponymous debut album in 1972, which has become one of the most revered albums in all of progressive rock and for good reason. This album is absolutely BRILLIANT!!!

Although they had already formed in 1969 they found no reason to revisit the psychedelic 60s and instead channeled their energies into a highly artful form of symphonic prog that not only borrowed some of the lightness from Genesis, but also included energetic keyboard outbursts like ELP as well as the folk inspired sounds from their homeland inspired by Jethro Tull as heard on clarinet and a kind of trumpet called the clarino. BANCO adeptly blended acoustic and electric instruments with daring vocals in Italian and mastered the art of lulling you into an addictive melody that simultaneously hooked you in while stunning with sophisticated musical wizardry. This album delivers the absolute perfect ratchet effect and never lets me drift away for a second.

This is a highly complex album delivering classically derived compositions put entirely into a rock context. Massive sprawling tracks like "Metamorfosi" and "Il Giardino Del Mago" are so stuffed with musical ideas that they never let the listener's attention stray from their path. While BANCO does let loose on occasion and really rock out, they are much more adept at spending long periods of time with subtleties and delicate passages that take their time to make the journey an interesting one before coming to a conclusion.

This era of Italian prog is notorious for poor production and i highly advise getting one of the newer remastered versions of this release, for even on these it is not perfect but a huge improvement over some of the weaknesses of the original, however it is the music that overpowers any production complaints. This is one of those few touched-by-God albums where unearthly energies conspired to make something magnanimous beyond the sum of the parts. I have tried and failed to find any flaws in this music. It is a timeless as a Mozart symphony, as daring as "Dark Side Of The Moon" in a totally different way and although many a prog band would borrow from this style, BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO was revolutionary when it was released easily separating itself from contemporaries like PFM.

Wending from sophisticated piano runs to complex guitar runs, BANCO delivered an outstanding debut album that is one of those albums i can really put on replay and never tire of. If you're new to this band, this is the perfect place to start but don't expect to be able to take this in quickly because the true beauty of this album is how it unfolds slowly and demands that you put it on again and again. Don't waste your time on all those fraudulent derivatives and mortgage scams, put your money in an investment of greatness that delivers musical satisfaction time and time again.

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 ...Di Terra by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.75 | 184 ratings

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...Di Terra
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Argonaught

5 stars It's with great pleasure that I declare ... di Terra one of the best albums I have ever had.

Normally, I am not a huge fan of RPI; I used to have half a dozen to a dozen albums by PRM, Banco, and a number of albums and/or bands whose names had a word 'Locanda' in them. Some were good, others were not so good. All in all, I thought I'd moved on.

And then came ... di Terra, which I somehow had been escaping my attention for a few decade. So praise me to the PA brethren who pointed in the .. di Terra direction.

There is absolutely nothing on this album that I do not like. I classify this kind of musical as contemporary classical, which can sound like nu jazz in one place, like fusion or jazz-rock in another, and even like a Debussy composition elsewhere on the album.

In the same category, I list Viljans Öga and the latest live album by Jaga Jazzist (with Britten Sinfonia), but .. di Terra, I think, is even better.

The musicianship is flawless, as expected. The compositions are tasteful, mature and complex, but without being too convoluted or lengthy to enjoy.

Special bonus for refraining from singing, although some folks will disagree with this postulate. An extra special bonus for the length of the album that is neither too short, nor too long.

Also importantly, the .. di Terra has passed the rigorous "car test" with flying colors, which means it sounds pretty good even in mildly "audiophob" circumstances of a moving budget compact :)

I can't say I quite get the album art, but this "offence" will not cost ... di Terra half a star :)

Recommended to all those who like the late 20 century's take on romantic classical and symphonic music.

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 ...Di Terra by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.75 | 184 ratings

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...Di Terra
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

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

5 stars Banco del Mutuo Soccorso are a defining Italian progressive band from the early Seventies, with their first three albums (at least) being absolute classics of the R.P.I field, as well as hugely daring and adventurous works. They were a combination of very talented musicians and the grand bellowing near-operatic croon of Francesco Di Giacomo, however, from time to time, the band would deliver a purely instrumental album (the previous one being the soundtrack work `Garofano Rosso'), and this resulted in 1978's `...Di Terra'. A real one-off that sounds like no-other album they ever delivered, the group were joined by an orchestra here, and despite Italian bands working with orchestration not being an especially new idea (the New Troll's `Concerto Grosso' series instantly comes to mind), here the two forces gelled together and complimented each-other successfully with frequently very experimental and exciting results, with plenty of welcome darker and edgier moments as well.

Banco make an impossibly grand statement of intent right from the start with the purely orchestral overture `Nil Cielo...'. Faraway piano and eerie orchestration quickly turns reflective, then gradually grows in triumph as if sound-tracking the sun rising and announcing a new day. `Terramdare' brings relentless maddening drumming, clanging metallic percussion and maniacal piano that sounds like a cross between `Ummagumma'- era Rick Wright from Pink Floyd and the schizophrenic sci-fi jazz of Vangelis' `Hypothesis' which spirals in circles around droning bombastic horns, chasing bass and disorientating synth effects. Despite opening with more whiplash percussion and moments of chest beating Moog fanfares that sound like a call-to-arms, `Non Senza Dolore' offers groaning vocal drones that stretch into infinity and almost ambient stirring respites. The violin slices, grumbling bass and repulsive malevolent piano of `Io Vivo' bring spastic eruptions of violence, insane hostility and stalking tension, strangely in a similar fashion that bands like Present and Dün would deliver!

Gorgeous solo piano dazzles away throughout `Né Più' to open the second side alongside wavering pretty synths full of positivity and life, before the piece movies into slinking cool jazz/fusion grooves with electric piano, flute and saxophone, mostly leaving any orchestral pomp for the final minute. Chamber rock and Univers Zero-styled darkness consumes the gothic `Nei Suoni...'. Drifting electronics, a heartbeat pulse, tiny little Hammond organ ripples then gorgeous melodic bass bursts through over eerie violins and intimidating cinematic strings, with a very ice-cold chilling piano finale that descends into clawing tension. The closing title track lets a little light back in. Frantic and urgent for the first half, a very up-tempo beat drives chugging bass and strident acoustic guitar strums over thunderous orchestration before a powerful and uplifting final electric guitar solo...but those final piano notes tease a hint that more melancholy is never too far away...

Without question, `...Di Terra' is a hugely divisive album from this Italian band. Purists who cannot imagine the Banco band without the charismatic powerful voice of Francesco may be likely to dismiss it altogether, others may be put off by the knowledge of the band using an orchestra. But this is not some straight-forward rock band with syrupy cliched strings slapped over the top of their music, or lazy interpratation of a traditional classical piece. This is experimental rock music with avant-garde daring that offers plenty of edge, mystery and exciting darker flourishes, and is as far from the easy-listening dreck that rock and orchestra combinations usually present. It's a lively, thrilling, even occasionally uneasy atmospheric work, and it defiantly stands on it's own in the fascinating discography of Banco del Mutuo Soccorso.

Four and a half stars, rounded up to five.

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 Darwin! by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.38 | 905 ratings

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Darwin!
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Sanki

5 stars Cento was one of the first songs I learned from the progarchives some years ago. I did not know that Italian groups made great music in the 70s; I had no idea what RPI was. So, a big thank you to progarchives for introducing me to RPI. I now seek Italian groups in particular (book by Andrea Parentin is very useful). Banco, along with Quella, Le Orme and PFM, remains a favorite. I like the operatic voice of Francesco, and use of the peculiar Italian instruments for sure but there is also great compositions, wonderful harmonies and rhythm in these pieces. Slow passages and fast (almost manic) paced parts are interwoven perfectly. L'Evoluzione and Cento Mani stand out but there are no weak moments in this album for my liking. I can certainly pick up and listen to this album any time with no regrets.

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 Banco by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.09 | 205 ratings

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Banco
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by DrömmarenAdrian

5 stars I haven't listened so much to Banco del Mutuo Soccorso before, just some pieces here and there and of course liked what I heard but now I bought the vinyl "Banco"(1975) which is the band's fourth studio album and have listened to it some marvelous times. This is really so fantastic music you could guess it to be. The wonderful cover with the singer looking at a shining shoe on a brown background. The time of music on this record is very long, fourty six minutes which is totally perfect because all the tunes here are so amazing.

We must thank Pier Luigi Calderoni(drums, percussion), Gianni Nocenzi(grand piano, clarinet, synthesizer), Renato D'Angelo(bass, guitar), Rodolfo Maltese(guitars, trumpet, vocals), Vittorio Nocenzi(organs, synthesizers, strings) and Francesco di Giacomo(vocals) for the music they give us.

I have written it already but it couldn't be said too many times. This is incredible music, amongst the best prog that exists on planet earth. From the lovely classical intro "Chorale" to the end with "Traccia II" they deliver so good music that you become exhausted. I think I like "Metamorphosis" and "Nothingäs the same" the two longest most but of course it's best to hear it all on the same occation. The inspiration there comes from many direction, the classical world, rock music, folk and another prog of course. This music and band makes my happy and fileld with joy and I hope the rest will bring me just as satisfied as this. A highly recommended record which is in masterclass! Five stars!

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 Darwin! by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.38 | 905 ratings

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Darwin!
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Utnapishtim

5 stars The intimate rivalry between so many bands in Italian musical landscape of '70 has created some Music Giants. Banco de Mutuo Soccorso? a Unique Band. I love Concept Albums. I think they transmit to the listeners a more complete musical experience. Is the case of RPI that often give to us some examples of Concepts. This one explain in artistic terms the Darwin's theory of evolution. Listening to it, you might materialize in a primordial past, when everything was still forming. The atmospheres in opening song "L'evoluzione" makes order between elements of primordial soup that will create the first forms of life. The song goes to fixing the idea of no creation by gods, leaving free space to natural evolution order. Surely the value-added of the album is the combination between two Nocenzi brother's keyboards which create perfect synthetized atmospheres that with elegance turn to fascinating piano executions. A crescendo of men goals in "La Conquista Della Posizione Eretta" creates in my mind clear images of a primitive men leaving the position to 4 feet and run free between the trees. Finally the visions of brushwood and stones go away from this new man that look at the horizon. Like an intermezzo the song "Danza Dei Grandi Rettili" play for many dancing dinosaurs, while Francesco Di Giacomo's voice seem to make "noise" from the depths of the soul when sing about hunting time whit other men in "Cento Mani E Cento Occhi" . His voice can let be beauty, fascinating, pure, every "ugly love" in "750.000 Anni Fa... L'amore" "Miserere Alla Storia" philosophically offers men's constructions, which arrives until the Star of Sirius, between millennial glories and perfect insistent rhythms. "Ed Ora Io Domando Tempo Al Tempo Ed Egli Mi Risponde... Non Ne Ho!" is their way to conclude this wonderful album. Apparently does not seem to belong to the same theme, but personally I think with this song they want to express a kind of reflection about time which all in all dominates everything, in the same way that a holy law dominates evolution.

5 Stars - NECESSARY TO KNOW PROG, NECESSARY TO LOVE PROG!

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 Garofano Rosso by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.45 | 135 ratings

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Garofano Rosso
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars It's pretty obvious that Garofano Rosso is not your typical Banco album, simply because of the astonishing non-presence of lead singer Francesco di Giacomo, so why even bother making this a cause celebre, criticizing for no more reason than it not fitting the comfort zone?

I love this album and always have, a soundtrack that showcases the incredible instrumental talents of the players especially the upfront bass meanderings of Renato D'Angelo and the work of drummer Pier Luigi Calderoni, who does some admirable percussive work throughout but also the incredibly varied orchestral arrangements that add a completely non-prog element to the music. Here the French horn, trumpets (clarino and tromba ), vibraphone and timpani take up a large musical storefront , even though the Nocenzi brothers still lather on the keyboards with sizzling gusto.

All the pieces save the intro "Zobeida", which is the weakest track here, are astounding slices of Italian-flavored prog-rock, with liberal doses of expressive intent, veering into jazz, experimental, symphonic and orchestral with unabashed ease.

From "Funerale" on, the music starts evoking some heavenly realms, dreamy passages that suggest cinematographic images (pealing church bells), trumpets leading the fanfare with swirly organ as the piano leads the merry escapade. Romanticized and elegant, the melodies are purely dazzling.

"10 Giugno 1924" begins with a furious cavalcade, all guns blazing intensely, Calderoni's drums beating a marshalling drive. Sounds like some escape scene from a wild Italian film, slightly dissonant and hyperactive, with Maltese's electric guitar the only supplier of melody.

Veering into the quasi-medieval and the all too brief "Quasi Saltarello", a little ditty that shows a myriad of baroque essences and aromas that point playfully towards the core trio of essential pieces: "Esterno Notte", the title track and "Suggestioni di un Ritorno in Campagna", the vivid music surely serves cinematographic necessities that can also be selfishly enjoyed by closing one's eyes and imagining another gripping silver screen scene. Starting off with a surreal synth medley involving splendid acoustic guitar, a nascent melody that is serenely elegant and tasteful as the piano takes over. Brooding stuff! The title track relies on a more typical Banco premise, piano, guitar and synths carving out a multi-phased assault on the senses, held together by that solid rhythm section. The Nocenzi brothers understand ivory interplay (presumably learnt in the womb), complementing each other impeccably. This is something ELP fans wold gulp up in a jiffy! On the final piece of the triad, the majestic piano interplay with Maltese's lead guitar is an album highlight, another Banco speciality at its finest, this piece recalls "Metamorphosis" for its bouncy and nervous piano tones but in a perhaps more subtle style, jazzier, cooler and less bombastic. Simply stated, this is RPI of the highest order, complex interactions between the gifted musicians, common melodic vision and this album's icing on the cake.

The disc ends with 5 easy little pieces, each between 2 and 3 minutes and all fascinating mosaics of sound: "Passagieta in Biccicleta" is slightly more playful and childlike, trumpets galore pushing along a basic rhythmic pulse, this piece sounds like an Italian version of UK jazz-rock legends Nucleus, erupting drum attacks propulsed by a demonic bass, synth adornments and lots of atmospherics! "Tema di Giovanna" is piano central, the grandiose keys interweaving with synthesized flutters and D'Angelo carving a solid bass furrow. Very pretty! "Siracusa" is carousel time, you can imagine the Fellini clowns eating their sopressata sandwiches as their buffoons prance around them playing their leisurely instruments in a hot piazza somewhere in the boot! "Notturno Breve" is spooky melody featuring mostly synths and organs, in a dapper baroque style, evoking times gone by and keeping the mood solid and entertaining. Finally, "Lasciando la Casa" puts this puppy to bed, another splurging symphonic rendition with just the right amount of fanfare, bombast and bravado. The electric guitar sizzles among the phased arrangements and settles this into the night sky.

Perhaps not the finest Banco recording ever but Garofano Rosso is one of the best instrumental packages from the 70s progressive rock scene and should be seen as the latter and not the former. As such and especially because of its unique qualities, this is a prog collector's dream album. While some may lament Di Giacomo not presenting his dramatic voice, the music simply stands all the tests and proves once and for all, the mammoth talents of the musicians involved.

4 Red Carnations

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