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ALPHATAURUS

Rock Progressivo Italiano • Italy


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Alphataurus biography
Alphataurus is one of those legendary RPI bands who are obscure in the annals of general progressive rock, but much appreciated by Italian prog fanatics who venture beyond the more well-known groups. Not much is known about the group from Milan who sprang on to the scene with a great album before vanishing in typical RPI fashion. A second album was partially recorded and later released by Mellow in the '90s as part of their archival projects. Our original site Bio summed them up like this:

"Expressive Heavy prog band from the classic early 70's Italian prog scene, very similar to MUSEO ROSENBACH and IL BALLETO DI BRONZO. Just like their contemporary 'sister' bands they mix very well the heavy parts with soft melodic passages, with exquisite contrasting strong voice. The keyboards are superb and their long thematic developments alone would merit an interest in their albums. They released two albums, the first one "Alphataurus" considered by many as a masterpiece of the 70's Italian scene. They are an unparallel heavy prog classic to my ears."

They did mix well the light and heavier sections and sometimes even a bluesy, jazzy, or spacey edge. I believe they probably had both English and Italian influences with the former being perhaps VDGG or even Deep Purple. I would say if you enjoy the heavier side of Italian, such as De De Lind, JET, or Museo Rosenbach, you will need to check out Alphataurus. Tragically the band split in 1974 while working on their second album, leaving it unfinished. It was released posthumously but was not even close to finished. Drummer Giorgio Santandrea went on to work briefly in Crystals, and Pietro Pellegrini collaborated with both Riccardo Zappa and PFM.

[Jim Russell/Finnforest]

Alphataurus official website

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AlphataurusAlphataurus
Import
Ams Italy 2011
Audio CD$14.56
$14.55 (used)
Atto SecondoAtto Secondo
Import
Ams Italy 2012
Audio CD$15.24
$15.25 (used)
Prime NumbersPrime Numbers
Import
Imports 2014
Audio CD$26.69
$31.78 (used)
Live in BloomLive in Bloom
Import
Ams Italy 2012
Audio CD$14.08
$22.61 (used)
Atto Secondo by Alphataurus (2012-10-01)Atto Secondo by Alphataurus (2012-10-01)
Ams Italy
Audio CD$86.68
Live in Bloom by Alphataurus (2012-03-09)Live in Bloom by Alphataurus (2012-03-09)
Ams Italy
Audio CD$82.80
Alphataurus by Alphataurus (2011-04-08)Alphataurus by Alphataurus (2011-04-08)
Ams Italy
Audio CD$78.98
Prime Numbers by Alphataurus (2014-03-07)Prime Numbers by Alphataurus (2014-03-07)
Imports
Audio CD$125.90
Live in BloomLive in Bloom
Light in the Attic 2014
Vinyl$29.96
$85.00 (used)
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ALPHATAURUS discography


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

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

4.11 | 287 ratings
Alphataurus
1973
2.83 | 60 ratings
Dietro l'Uragano
1992
3.92 | 104 ratings
AttosecondO
2012

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

4.05 | 28 ratings
Live In Bloom
2012
3.69 | 11 ratings
Prime Numbers
2014

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

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

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

ALPHATAURUS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Alphataurus by ALPHATAURUS album cover Studio Album, 1973
4.11 | 287 ratings

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Alphataurus
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Hrychu

3 stars A collection of predictable and unexciting tricks

I really want to enjoy this album.... but everytime I try I fail. In my presonal opinion, there's just nothing "uniquely cool" about the album that makes it enjoyable in its own special way (Genesis pun intended). The chords, melodies and arrangements are very very similar to just about any prog album from that era. And on paper everything works. You've got an amazingly proggy album with a ton of sweet little flavors. Except... you've heard it before. You know the drill. You know where this is going. The music doesn't subvert any expectations. Playing with the rhythm - check... synth and guitar solos - check, mellotron and hammond - check, flanger soaked drums - check... yadda yadda yadda. Let's take for example CHERRY FIVE (released later during that decade) It's the same checklist elements.... however that band made up for it with being ridiculously catchy and sort of romantic with touches of star quality. You could hear they played around the the formula. Here you've got all the cliches done in a safe and classicistic way that does neither take any risks nor take you on a musical adventure.

 Alphataurus by ALPHATAURUS album cover Studio Album, 1973
4.11 | 287 ratings

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Alphataurus
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

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

5 stars URIAH HEEP made Italian! In a good way! Not the most complex or instrumentally challenging album of the era but a solid representation of a solid band.

1. "Peccato d'orgoglio" (12:26) a wonderful song with lots of power and emotion and beautiful melodies, without a bad section in its long construction. One of the two best songs on the album. (10/10)

2. "Dopo l'uragano" (5:06) I'm not quite sure where the band was going with this one. Led Zeppelin? (8/10)

3. "Croma" (3:17) is an instrumental that opens with harpsichord sounding keys, chunky bass and surprisingly quiet drums. In the second minute a second theme is introduced for a brief time before going back to the opening theme. Buy the end of the second minute we are fully committed to a full blown version of the opening theme. Nicely done in a kind of traditional classical music construction. (9/10)

4. "La mente vola" (9:21) I really like the tight rhythm section and foundational construct to this one. Almost Tangerine Dream-ish but truly rock'n'roll. The song builds in the third minute, with synths soloing over the opening foundation. At 3:25 everything shifts into more of a four-chord blues-rock ballad format--just before the vocals enter--doubled up by the same singer. The melody is okay, the song foundation is not as catchy or mesmerizing as the opening section. Synth and vibes soli are interspersed between the vocal verses and chorus. The descending chord progression used for the verse section reminds me of the awesome and climactic music from Andrew Lloyd Weber's "Gesthemene" from Jesus Christ Superstar. I love the first section, am not blown away by the second. (8.5/10)

5. "Ombra muta" (9:44) feels like a powerful Uriah Heep song. Great song composition and instrumental and vocal performances throughout--especially the multiple keyboards. Also, incredible rendering of all of the instruments in the engineering mix: so clear and defined and yet cohesive. Even the wild and psychedelic final three minutes. I like that the tension is not fully resolved in the end. It seems fitting. The best song on the album. (10/10)

A masterpiece of classic and true progressive rock music.

 AttosecondO by ALPHATAURUS album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.92 | 104 ratings

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AttosecondO
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Right from the first spin I just wasn't "getting" this latest album from ALPHATAURUS, and many listens later I'm still not "getting" it. Maybe my expectations were too high after enjoying their "Live In Bloom" cd from 2010 and feeling like they had captured the spirit of their debut album an album I consider to be a top two in the RPI field. Two of the tracks on "AttosecondO" are from the unfinished second studio album "Dietro L'uragano".

"Progressiva-Mente" sounds pretty cool to start with the dark guitar expressions as the drums and synths join in. A calm with floating synths after a minute as the vocals and piano arrive. It kicks back in after 2 minutes but the tempo will continue to shift. I really like the prolonged calm after 3 minutes. It's around 5 1/2 minutes before it kicks back in. I'm not a fan of the vocal harmonies to end it. "Gocce" starts off really well with the organ and that heavy sound. Some FLOYD-like guitar early on as well. A calm with piano 2 1/2 minutes in as reserved vocals join in. More of that guitar before 3 1/2 minutes along with mellotron. The tempo picks up with synths and prominent bass as the vocals continue. Good song! "Ripensando E..." and the next song were both on the "Dietro L'uragano" record. Deep bass, synths and drums standout early on in this lone instrumental. The tempo picks up big time after 2 minutes before settling back a minute later. Love those nasty synths after 4 1/2 minutes as we get a great sound right to the end.

"Claudette" is mellow to start as fragile vocals join in before 1 1/2 minutes. It kicks in a minute later with lots of keys and drums. A catchy sound 3 minutes in as it changes again and the vocals return. Guitar before 4 1/2 minutes and I love that rhythm with keys 5 minutes in as the vocals continue to come and go. Another calm before 8 minutes with piano and fragile vocals like earlier. Strings too but I'm not a fan of the sound before 12 minutes or the ending. "Valige Di Terra" opens with atmosphere and drums as keys and more join in. It calms right down with piano and reserved vocals as the organ also joins in. It does pick up some until we get a calm with piano 3 minutes in. It builds during this instrumental section. Great sound 6 minutes in and we get passionate vocals before 8 minutes but they are brief. Some nice guitar work 8 1/2 minutes in then the vocals return. Check out the bass 9 1 /2 minutes in!

Clearly I'm in the minority here with my rating but this really does pale when compared to the majestic debut.

 Prime Numbers by ALPHATAURUS album cover Live, 2014
3.69 | 11 ratings

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Prime Numbers
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Son.of.Tiresias

5 stars The mighty Alphataurus the Dove is back !

A few years back completely out of the blue the impossible happened. The triumphant return of the mighty Alphataurus, The Dove had came back and was very alive & kicking ! I have always loved and preferred the heavier & darker side of Italian Prog, namely bands like Alphataurus, Il Balletto di Bronzo, Banco del Mutuo Soccorso, Campo di Marte, Il Biglietto per L´Inferno, De De Lind... and I bought the Live in Bloom 2010 album without hesitation immediately I saw it for sale online four years back. So did my friend as well after having had realized the so long awaited comeback of a true legendary Italian band. And there were great videos on YouTube of their return on stage.... but we had to wait for another thousand years to see the whole gig... and here it is !

This is funny but I never thought that it could be nothing but good, at least. Actually I wasn´t surprised as it proved to be a perfect live album from a Legend. Altough the original vocalist Michele Bavaro with his very very powerful voice isn´t with anymore. So the new singer has a mammoth task to complete the sound, to fit the boots of great Bavaro. I must admit, he does it surprisingly well. Of course Claudio Falcone´s voice is not as impressive as Bavaro´s but actually is just excellent and it fits the music perfectly. Anyway, he must have been the best available and sings the tunes so competently and beautifully. He also adds some theatre in his very funny way of own to the songs. Still a bit shy but a showman and a frontman already. Bravo Claudio !

Also the new bass player Fabio Rigamonti surprises with sheer musicality and fits the band´s sound just nicely as well. And his not too long bass solo is nothing but perfect and adds virtuosity with sweetness to the song. Bravo ! And with the original drummer Giorgio Santandrea´s very competent percussion work and a very distinctive soft and fat sound of his very own the rhythm section anchors the heavy foundation of this new yet so familiar Alphataurus sound. Guido Wasserman´s very economical style has emphasis on song structures by following the music itself rather than long soloing, a style close to Rodolfo Maltese´s and Steve Hackett´s. And Pietro Pellegrini with a new keyboardist Andrea Guizetti complete the original Alphataurus´bold and colourful textures. It´s a perfect RPI sound, as it can get. And most importantly they are loyal to the original analog textures and atmosphere as close as possibly as it could be with today´s technology. Perfetto ! The band performs its magnificent debut album in its entirety plus a new tune in between the songs. Luckily it is not a filler, it just slows down the performance for a short while. The return could not have been any better. Also the venue is just small enough to catch this perfect sound on record with an enthusiast Italian audience that don´t make annoying noise but actually listens to this classic prog band from their very own, special culture. It´s the Italian way. Nothing but perfection and respect to the music. Grazie, Alphataurus !

Ah, there´s also a CD with new songs. Well, they are good and the heavy almost tortured violin adds something new to the sound but that´s nothing important for me really.

I bought this is only for the DVD concert. Their first live gig, now a legendary performance is captured on video and that´s enough for me. This DVD alongside the Prog Exhibition 4 DVD set filmed earlier that year documents what is the very finest of classic RPI today with the best artist still in incredible vital form, like BMS, PFM, Osanna and Le Orme giving their very best. For me, the return of Alphataurus is the greatest thing in today´s Italian scene. Alphataurus proudly continues carrying the Italian torch ! Prog is saved again from boredom :)

 Alphataurus by ALPHATAURUS album cover Studio Album, 1973
4.11 | 287 ratings

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Alphataurus
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by MyDarling95

3 stars This one's pretty wierd to me, and I know I am in the minority. Alphataurus' debut is one of Italy's best ever isn't it? I mean, compositions are awesome, instrumentation too, vocals are also fantastic and god look at that cover art. That is what most say about this album. Well, I don't know, it is not that special to me, I really have trouble trying to appreciate this album. The only song that I really like is Dopo L'Uragano, but the rest doesn't really do nothing for me, they fail to excite me, to captivate me. Peccato D'Orgoglio begins well but the whole instrumental part is kind of dull. Croma is short with keys. Side 2 hast two 9-minutes songs and, as side 1, they don't apear to be excellent for me. I'm sorry, but this has become more of a disappointment the more I listen to it, I give it 3 stars because of its (I have to admit it) fantastic art. I think there are many classic RPI albums better than this one.
 Prime Numbers by ALPHATAURUS album cover Live, 2014
3.69 | 11 ratings

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Prime Numbers
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Finnforest
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars RPI legends return with live CD/DVD

Alphataurus' many PA fans (looking at you John!) are going to be salivating as they crash the Villa. The legendary Alphataurus are treating fans to a unique limited edition release in the form of a live CD entitled "Prime Numbers", featuring three long cuts recorded live during their reunion performances of 2011-2012. There is also an edit of a studio cut that has not been released on album. Making this more exciting is the second disc, a live DVD of the 2010 Progvention event of a few years ago. A limited edition vinyl is also available for the vinyl hounds.

Reaching back to their first album is an extended long version of "Dopo L'uragano" with a tortured, wild violin guest spot by Mietek Glinkowski. Plenty of jamming key solos on this one as well. The short track "Gocce" is lovely with repeating piano motif and some gorgeous vocal work. A buoyant and ascending keyboard part fills this out, it is uptempo and engaging, would be a great prog "single." The meat of the disc comes from the second album oddly, which is the album that was left unfinished when Alphataurus dissolved in 1974. Here they sound finished and fleshed out, finally coming to life as they were intended to back in the day. "Claudette" finds the band in top form, effortlessly blending their chops across the finely aged if somewhat typical "prog rock". I love some of the richly layered keyboard parts here, and again, Falcone's vocas are more than an able substitution for Michele Bavaro. "Valigie di terra" begins with a spirited drum solo and some spacey guitar that in a few mysterious places remind me of Tales snippets. Then the warm vocals enter again followed by a melodic chorus section. Even some jazzy piano and a wicked bass solo, this eclectic track is my favorite in this set as it takes more chances. It's a welcome return from an old friend and despite them not being my favorite RPI band by a long shot, it is really a treat to have them together again and still performing.

I've not viewed the DVD so I cannot comment on the sound/picture there but the CD portions sounds very good. I may edit this review later if I get a chance to view the DVD portion. Go get it John!

 Alphataurus by ALPHATAURUS album cover Studio Album, 1973
4.11 | 287 ratings

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Alphataurus
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Mr. Mustard

4 stars Yet some more inspired Italian prog manifests itself in Alphataurus' eponymous debut. Like most RPI albums at the time, the music strongly recognizes the importance of drama, intensity, and melody as musical elements. Taking influence from Black Sabbath and Deep Purple, the band reaches heaviness typical of the genre. Fortunately, this stunning debut is able to balance this with some superb and innovative melodies, deep atmospheres, and generally dynamic sound.

The opening track is evidence for this enough, containing slow bits, fast bits, gentle interludes between heavy metal riffing madness, and strong vocal melodies all while portraying a solid song structure.

'Dopo L'Uragono' showcases the more classic rock/heavy metal aspect of the album, with some riffs that could have been coined by Black Sabbath. 'Croma,' however, utilizes keyboards to great effect to create a simple, but flowing, beautiful melody.

'Le Mente' is surely the highlight of the album. Opening with a laid back, rhythmically lead motif, it slowly develops and builds over the course of four minutes into what I could only describe as one of the best atmospheric build-ups I have ever heard. But it doesn't disappoint thereafter, cycling through memorable vocal melodies and creative riffs with gradual tempo changes and solid instrumental work sprinkled on top.

'Ombra Muta' is a fitting closer to a great album, encapsulating the general sounds and styles heard throughout the album.

Alphataurus is certainly one of the strongest debut albums in all of progressive rock, and unfortunately, like many of strongest albums in the genre, their output doesn't extend far beyond this. Regardless, this perfect addition to any RPI collection, and shouldn't fail to impress.

8/10

 AttosecondO by ALPHATAURUS album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.92 | 104 ratings

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AttosecondO
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by andrea
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Alphataurus began life in Milan in the early seventies and in 1973 released an excellent eponymous début album on the independent label Magma Records. Unfortunately, soon after their first work was released and while they were working on a second album, they split up. The result of the unachieved recording sessions was released by Mellow Records in 1992, under the name "Dietro l'uragano", but this can be hardly considered an official album. In fact, it wasn't until 2008 that two of the original members decided to have a new start and gathered a new line up to complete what they had begun long time before. In 2010 the band began playing live again and in 2012 released a new studio album on the independent label AMS/BTF, "Attosecondo", with a line up featuring, along with the two veterans Pietro Pellegrini (organ, synth) and Guido Wasserman (guitars, keyboards, vocals), new members Fabio Rigamonti (bass, vocals), Claudio Falcone (vocals), Andrea Guizzetti (piano, synth, vocals) and Alessandro Rossi (drums, percussion).

The art cover was painted by the old friend Adriano Maragoni, the same painter who was in charge of the wonderful art cover of their début album. It tries to catch the spirit of this new work, rooted in the past and projected towards the future with a sense of rebirth and perpetual change. The album was produced with the help of the off-stage Alphataurus' member Gianpaolo Santandrea who also contributed to the song-writing of two tracks. In my opinion the result is excellent, the overall sound perfectly blends vintage instruments and new technologies, good musicianship and genuine feelings.

The opener "Progressiva-mente" (Progressive Mind / Progressively) is a kind of manifesto of Alphataurus' new deal and invites you to look for new rules and to leave behind the old clichés and the ideas that someone else chose for you. The music alternates some aggressive parts with delicate, dreamy passages and a strong sense of melody. If you can avoid all the thoughts that can make you feel uncomfortable you might overcome obstacles such as false ideologies and religions and you will be able to climb up on you personal stairway to heaven... "It is not easy, it never will / Just live it at the right speed... Progressively you'll become aware / Suddenly you'll recognize yourself... Progressive mind, open mind that creates, imagines, improvises...".

The following "Gocce" (Drops) deals with environmental issues. It draws in music and words an apocalyptic picture featuring dark colours and some touches of hope. You're lying under a starry sky and you feel helpless in front of the immense power of nature, you have never felt so small before and you reflect about the merciless greediness of the human race. Melodic vocals soar like a prayer... "Mother earth, sooner or later you will collapse under the blows of your children / We are drops in the sea of immensity, the wasted sweat of civilizations / We are the blood of a world that doesn't have a soul any more...". To overcome this sense of loss you have to fight. But now it could be too late and perhaps you would have better to think of leaving this planet and embark on an interstellar journey through the stars to find a new source of life, a stream that would make you strong.

Next comes "Ripensando e..." (Rethinking and...), a beautiful instrumental track, a bright collage of musical colours and classical evocations that takes you back to the seventies on the footsteps of the days when it was originally composed. It leads to "Claudette", a long, complex track describes in music and words a dialogue between an old man and a little child. It begins softly, the mood is dreamy and melancholic... "I would like to be like you, go back to your age / A clean mind that sees everything for what it is / But life will forcefully change us / If I could save you from the truth!...". But you can never go back in time, you have to grow up quickly while the contrary winds of life rage on you. The rhythm rises while the music underlines how ever changing is everything on this earth. You have to deal with all the challenges of life while the ideal world of the fairy-tales crumbles around you. You have to learn, you have to study, everyday you become more and more conscious of what reality is. Finally you'll understand that you can't change a destiny already written and you'll follow the mercilessly rules of power. But even then, you would had better to remember the purity of your childhood.

The music of the last track, "Valigie di terra" (Suitcases of land), tells in music and words the need to set off following a dream to live, the need to move on breaking the borders of a unsatisfying reality looking for a new life and a spiritual rebirth. Now you're on the road again with nothing but a few suitcases containing your past, land for your roots. But you might have to buy other suitcases along your journey because you know that the future will give you better things to care for... "I won't stay here / I made up my mind, this is not my reality / I will follow the way that will stir my emotions / So I will come to a new life...". Well, a great conclusion for an excellent album!

 Dietro l'Uragano by ALPHATAURUS album cover Studio Album, 1992
2.83 | 60 ratings

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Dietro l'Uragano
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by coasterzombie

2 stars This collection of unfinished demos from 1973 demonstrates the potential Alphataurus possessed, but the absence of vocals and poor sound quality relegate Dietro L'Uragano to collector-only status. The majority of these song structures would finally be fully realized some forty years later on AttosecondO, which also lacks the vocal duties of Michele Bavaro; his iconic wail is the main attraction of Alphataurus' stunning debut, and one which this flawed release is sorely missing. Dietro L'Uragano is about half as good as that debut album, and earns two stars accordingly.

Though far from bootleg standards, Dietro L'Uragano is not exactly studio quality either, the first half sounding slightly more listenable than the second. To make matters worse, these recordings were sullied with the use of NoNoise Sonic Solutions, a digital noise reduction tool which has notably compromised the catalogs of David Bowie and Jimi Hendrix, among others. This 1992 archival release had the life sucked completely out of it, but you cannot degrade its importance or historical value because of these mastering choices. If anything, Ciro Perrino is to be applauded for his tireless attention and hard work for Mellow Records in the 1990s and beyond, salvaging and publishing many such recordings. On the flip-side, these releases were usually limited in nature, and the now-ridiculously-rare and overly expensive Dietro L'Uragano would not be a worthwhile pursuit for the average prog fan, or even the casual RPI fan.

Regarding the actual music: "Ripensando E..." is the most complete of the four tracks, not suffering terribly from lack of vocals; this actually allows more space around the instruments, particularly keyboards, and permits the band to shine on its own merits. Although the songwriting is not quite the same caliber as on the self-titled album, there are definitely some good ideas here. "Valigie di Terra" is less successful, taking almost five minutes to find a groove before finally capturing that elusive Alphataurus magic. I especially love the nasty cluster chord, previously used in "Peccato D'Orglio," courtesy of organist Pietro Pellegrini. Unfortunately "Idea Incompiuta" and "Claudette" do nothing for me, despite the appearance of vocals in the latter. Dietro L'Uragano displays a group at the peak of its powers, and though I still prefer these original recordings to the studio versions on AttosecondO, I can't really recommend either.

 Alphataurus by ALPHATAURUS album cover Studio Album, 1973
4.11 | 287 ratings

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Alphataurus
Alphataurus Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Offering up a heavier than average brand of Italian prog, it's no surprise that Alphataurus' debut album was a comparative success in an Italian market which back in 1973 was crammed with high-quality releases - alas, they split partway through the process of making their second album, though happily they seem to have made a triumphant comeback. The sound here reminds me of some of the more energetic moments of Meddle/Dark Side of the Moon-era Pink Floyd combined with a bit of organ-based bombast from Pietro Pellegrini which manages to avoid ELP-esque showboating whilst still being a raw and dangerous presence. Definitely one for fans of heavy Italian prog such as Il Balletto di Bronzo, this album presents a fascinating contrast to the more pastoral side of the Italian scene.
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