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HOMUNCULUS RES

Canterbury Scene • Italy


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Homunculus Res picture
Homunculus Res biography
Founded in Palermo, Italy in 2013

Another wonderful band who had its initial exposure on the excellent AltRock label, HOMUNCULUS RES is a Sicilian band centered around songwriter/guitarist/keyboardist Dario D'Alessandro. Other members currently include keyboardists David Di Giovanni and Federico Cardaci, bassist Domenico Salamone, flutist Dario Lo Cicero, and drummer Daniele Di Giovanni. A featured guest on the band's debut is YUGEN keyboardist Paolo Ske Botta.

The primary inspiration for the band is PICCHIO DAL POZZO, the best Canterbury-influenced Italian band from the 1970s. They seem likewise, as did PICCHIO DAL POZZO, to derive inspiration from other Canterbury bands, particularly CARAVAN and SOFT MACHINE. But HOMONCULUS RES is far from being a simple clone--they have taken the light, breezy, humorous Canterbury feel and mixed it with the early material from PREMIATA FORNERIA MARCONI and even LE ORME. They have combined these influences, spinning the whole in their wonderful melodic sensibilities, in the process creating one of the more unique and memorable entries into the crowded field of modern excellent Italian progressive rock bands.

The 2013 debut album Limiti All'eguaglianza della Parte con il Tutto demands to be heard and enjoyed and portends of wonderful things to come from this delightful ensemble.

[Todd]

See also: HERE

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HOMUNCULUS RES discography


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

3.95 | 66 ratings
Limiti All'Eguaglianza Della Parte Con Il Tutto
2013
3.88 | 61 ratings
Come Si Diventa Ci Che Si Era
2015
3.80 | 109 ratings
Della Stessa Sostanza Dei Sogni
2018
3.94 | 84 ratings
Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco
2020

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

HOMUNCULUS RES Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

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

HOMUNCULUS RES Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.94 | 84 ratings

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Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars While you wouldn't normally associate Italy with Canterbury just don't tell that to PICCHIO DAL POZZO, THE WINSTONS or this incredible band HOMUNCULUS RES. The latter have had a consistent five piece lineup since their second release and they offer up this happy, melodic, sophisticated, whimsical brand of music that softly screams Canterbury. This album is so uplifting and while I feel the first two records are slightly better, this one is a keeper.

I just feel the first two were more consistent and it's interesting that this is their first album of the four they have released not to have Ske on here helping out as he did on their first three. Lots of guests still, in fact ten adding viola, clarinet, oboe, french horn, vibes, bassoon, sax, flute, electric piano and more. Ten tracks over 48 minutes and I did feel it waned somewhat early in the second half but this is a solid 4 star recording all the way.

By the way it was interesting having Dave Newhouse from THE MUFFINS and Jarrod Gosling from REGAL WORM helping out on that second record which at the time I reviewed it I said I liked it slightly better than the debut. Well in doing my favourite Canterbury albums of all time it was the debut I picked for that list so in my opinion both are essential. I love the cover art for this one and have found their album art to always be at least interesting.

All the lyrics are in Italian including all the info in the liner notes. That opening number might be the most joyful song they've created. Everyone is just so happy. The dissonant sax is a nice contrast to this. I like the vocal melodies after 6 minutes on the third tune and while that fourth song might sound the most Canterbury it also features viola, oboe and french horn. One of my favourite opening sounds is the sixth track and the guest electric piano on the ninth song is really good.

A solid 4 stars and for Canterbury fans.

 Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.94 | 84 ratings

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Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by DangHeck

4 stars If you need any evidence that the Canterbury Scene is alive and well, of all places you can look here, in a newer, still-active Italian Prog band. Amazing. The quirk is here, mostly from the sort of carefree vocals (at least to me, an ignorant English speaker). The skill is very much present, and present in everyone here. From the keyboards to the guitar, from the drums to the (thankfully featured) horn section. Compositionally very tasty as well, with fast and slow sections, and fun verses and well-performed solos. A must-hear for fans of the Canterbury Sound.

There's a more modern approach to things, which is very refreshing. Bright and clear classic-sounding instrumentation, too. This approach reminds me most immediately of BEARDFISH. Most tracks are light and upbeat, yet skillfully presented. And being inspired by the Canterbury Scene, everything is so well balanced, each part distinguishable immediately. Another phenomenal current Prog band that comes to mind (see also my note below for "Tetraktys") is ONCE AND FUTURE BAND. [Please, nobody tell my buddies who introduced them to me how "low" their ratings are.]

The surprise banjo on "Buco nero" is so nice! Very unexpected. The featured banjo performer is also responsible for some guitars, double bass and vibraphone, all on this same track! Amazing.

Other sort of surprises to me include "Supermercato", which sounds like if Caravan had even more of a Pop Rock slant. The static vocal melodies even remind me of something that we might expect from Richard SINCLAIR early on in his career. In the least, a fun track. It's been a while for me, but couldn't the end of this track be a sort of callback to GRYPHON? Sort of Canterbury-meets-Ren'-Prog? On "La spia", the backend picks up with a very... unexpected Island(?!) vibe? It sounds pretty good. Just surprising. In other news, "In girum" is... just kinda weird lol. Pretty good though, I guess haha. Not a bad song on here. The middle of the album is a bit weak compared to the top and bottom.

And speaking of the bottom, things swing back into form, I think, on "La Luccicanza" to start the end to the album. Great melody and chord changes. Really, very nice. Again, classic Canterbury! And a weird, reharmonized homage to "Hey Jude"?! I'll take it! "Tetraktys" continues this positive swing back to "great" with what feels like EGG. I love me my Dave STEWART, so I'm all for it.

Personal Standout Tracks: T1, T3, T9

 Limiti All'Eguaglianza Della Parte Con Il Tutto by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 66 ratings

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Limiti All'Eguaglianza Della Parte Con Il Tutto
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by Beautiful Scarlet

3 stars This is a solid debut by Homunculus Res that shows their style, chipper video game esque keyboards, full Italian vocals, subdued yet effective percussion/bass/guitar and development in short songs. I like that despite most of the 18 songs sounding similar (very pastoral) at some times the music can get hectic like on track two.

On the flip side I find the songs to be to short, far to many songs in the 1-2 minute range and to the best of my knowledge they don't segue into another so their just really short songs. The songs sound to much like a rough sketch, like the music is compositionally incomplete. I definitely think some of the songs should have been strung together to form longer complete pieces rather then the brief pieces to often presented here. I also don't think the singer is quite as good as on follow up efforts, it's less confident, might just be the mixing.

Overall this is a solid album but I think some of their later albums are a lot better though.

 Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.94 | 84 ratings

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Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by Beautiful Scarlet

4 stars 4/5*

Most of the songs are pretty good, though I find many to be in indistinct and forgettable. Generally speaking the songs are short, maxing out at 6:43 but this time is spent pretty well, the songs all have vocals, done in a manner reminiscent of Richard Sinclair without going so far as to be considered imitative.

Overall while this is a good album, I find if a few tracks had been removed, extended and some redone as instrumentals the album would be a lot better. If you like chill bands like Supersister or Hatfield And The North then give this a spin. Canterbury Sound Score 5/5

 Come Si Diventa Ci Che Si Era by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.88 | 61 ratings

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Come Si Diventa Ci Che Si Era
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by Ferralp

4 stars I strongly believe this is the band's best effort (at least to date)

"Come Si Diventa Ci Che Si Era" is an overlooked gem and to me is a must listen to any Canterbury scene lover out there beacuse the whole Homunculus res discography grabs lots of inspiration from this group of musicians yet they sound so unique and special.

The absolute highlight of the album is the 18 minute long epic "Ospedale civico" (their longest by far) in which I can find so much fun, so many good moments, i think magical it's the right word to describe this song and the album aswell. Last but not least I wanna talk about the amazing cover art by Dario D'Alessandro which to my surprise is also a member of the band, in my opinion, the art style matches perfectly with the Homunculus res sound.

Some amazing sound over here, t's a shame that this guys dont get the fame they deserve!

 Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.94 | 84 ratings

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Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by felonafan

5 stars The album titled "Della stessa sostenza dei sogni" by the Italian - more precisely, by the Sicilian - band Homuncuus Res, released in 2018, turned out to be Album of the Year for me, along with the debut release of the project organized by the bass player of Anglagard (by this project I mean All Traps on Earth) ... On July 23 this year, the fourth full-length studio disc of Italians was released - with an even more intricate title "Andiamo in giro di notte e ci consumiamo nel fuoco". And again we hear songs, Canterbury "in spirit", but sung in Italian. And again, these songs are built mainly on jazz harmonies and are characterized by a complex structure, odd and changing time signatures and frequent changes in musical patterns, but at the same time they sound relaxed and even pop, if the word "pop" is not taken as a "curse". In general, it is believed that the first "Italian response to the Canterbury" was made in the second half of the 1970s by the Picchio Dal Pozzo, but the music of Homunculus Res is prettier, brighter, more pleasant, more accessible, and, I must say, almost does not look like the work just the mentioned ensemble. So if they tell you somewhere that Homunculus Res is almost the same as Picchio Dal Pozzo - don't believe it! At the same time, the music of the heroes of the review is not at all perceived as secondary - in comparison, say, with Hatfield and the North - the quintet from Palermo led by composer, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Dario d'Alessandro has its own face, claiming uniqueness, not without reason! The main point is the following. What Homunculus Res is doing is by no means reduced to "Canterbury". Musicians are open to different influences. Their compositions organically "include" both vocal chants a la Yes ("La Salamandra"), and a direct quote from "Hey Jude" by the Beatles ("La Luccicanza") and elements of music that could easily become a soundtrack for films by Fellini or other Italian directors ("Non Dire No"). Complexity, beauty, jazz, sensual melodies, irony, detachment - everything is combined into a single whole in this work of Homunculus Res. The musicians approach the development of the compositions, perhaps even more carefully even in the 2018 album, as a result of which they turn out to be longer and, possibly, "unified". This is in stark contrast to the first two Homunculus Res albums - 2013 and 2015 - which were full of short pieces, often lasting 1-2 minutes - the music was very interesting, exciting, but often unnecessarily fragmentary. The new disc contains no songs shorter than three and a half minutes. True, the detailed "elaboratedness" of the opuses often turns out to be boring, which the first three albums of the Sicilians were almost deprived of. Some fragments in some compositions are somewhat tiring. Therefore, at the moment I like the new disc a little less than the previous one, but it still "catches", and with each listening it gets stronger. Among the best pieces here, along with the aforementioned "La Luccicanza" and "Non Dire No", I would include the brilliant "Supermercato" with a gorgeous ending played by a whole ensemble of musicians playing wind and strings. These people are mostly guests. And once again I will say about the concluding track "Non Dire No" - you will not find anything like it in releases by Soft Machine, National Health or Hatfield and the North - this is a very beautiful, tender, sad and lyrical song in the form of a waltz, very Italian in spirit. Summary: The album "Andiamo in giro di notte e ci consumiamo nel fuoco" is excellent, one of the candidates for the title of the best in 2020!
 Limiti All'Eguaglianza Della Parte Con Il Tutto by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 66 ratings

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Limiti All'Eguaglianza Della Parte Con Il Tutto
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars When it comes to Italian prog there is no doubt that the majority of bands that have come and gone since the genre's nascency in the early 1970s have been loyal traditionalists and followed in the footsteps of the pioneers such as Premiate Forneria Marconi, Banco del Mutuo Soccorso, Museo Rosenbach, Quelle Vecchia Locanda or Le Orme but every once in a while certain artists were more interested in casting their gaze towards lands far away for inspiration. Area was one of the first totally off the wall and unorthodox bands to emerge on the scene but as time went on some bands were more interested in the English sounds than anything close to the Mediterranean. Nothing screams bloody England more than the idiosyncratic jazz-rock style of the Canterbury Scene but yet this warm and inviting technical wizardry laced with absurdities and whimsy has appealed to many bands from well outside the pastoral English countryside.

While Italy has not exactly been a hotbed for the Canterbury sounds that made bands like National Health and Hatfield & The North some of prog's most beloved acts, the Genova based Picchio dal Pozzo was the first to put Italy on the map for with its strange blend of avant-prog and Canterbury charm rolled out into some of the most unique sounds in the musical universe. Picchio dal Pozzo was the oddball in the Italian prog scene since its debut all the way back in 1976 with virtually zero interest from other Italian bands but finally in 2013 in the city of Palermo on the island of Sicily another band caught the Canterbury bug. HOMUNCULUS RES is another oddball prog band. Musically sounding like a mix of Caravan, Soft Machine along with a bit of avant-prog from fellow countrymen Yugen and their knotty, sinewy technicalities, HOMUNCULUS RES stuck to the Italian tradition of keeping lyrics in the mother tongue as well as adopting a few touches of the passionate operatic vocal style of the Italian greats.

LIMITI ALL'EGUALGLIANZA DELLA PARTE CON IT TUTTO ( Limits To The Equality Of The Part Of The Whole) is the band's debut album which was released in 2013 and immediately set the band apart from virtually every other Italian prog band that came before. With the playful pop-infused hooks of Caravan, HOMUNCULUS RES also displayed a firm command of those complex playful jazzy chord workouts found all throughout the Canterbury universe whether it be from the English stock a la Hatfield, Egg or Matching Mole to the foreign exports such as Supersister and fellow countrymen PIcchio dal Pozzo especially in the electronic deliveries however one can also hear traces of the experimental art pop antics of Stereolab especially with clever electronic atmospheres and the light and airy vocal harmonies that are slightly off kilter. The band at this point were the four D's: Dario D'Alessandro (guitar, vocals, keyboards,) Davide Di Giovanni (piano, organ, synth, vocals), Daniele Di Giovanni (drums, percussion, vocals) and Domenico Salamone (bass) but six collaborators and guests contributed flutes, wind controller, minimoog, memotron, organ, more guitars, more electronics and even a trumpet.

The beauty of LIMITI is that it changes things up fairy often offering both progressive pop tracks easily digestible in the vein of Caravan's "In The Land Of Grey And Pink" to nasty prog angularities that offer some bombast as in "Rifondazione Unghie." Add to that the more traditional melodic symphonic prog cuts like "La ballata dell'amore Stocastico" and the experimental electronica of "Sintagma" and chances are that you'll never be bored for a second on this one. With a firm foot in the Canterbury sounds of England, HOMUNCULUS RES manages to add enough spice in the form of space rock, electronic experimentation and traditional Italian prog sounds to keep their sound somewhat unique although the band never strays from the Canterbury oddball jazziness for too long with only brief intermissions of true avant-garde splendor. Overall this is a beauty of a debut that allowed this Palermo band to become a prog fave of many and has continued to release excellent albums up to the present day.

 Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.94 | 84 ratings

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Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by Kaelka

5 stars Ciao tutti, the Sicilian boys are back in town and once again they make you an offer you can't refuse ! D'Alessandro, the Di Giovanni brothers and their mates are back to the roots, and this time it really sounds as if Palermo has been removed to Kent. As usual, the band chose an extended album title la Caravan (this time an Italian translation of a famous medieval Latin palindrome verse 'In girum imus nocte ecce et consumimur igni'). Quirky pop songs that the late Pip Pyle wouldn't have denied, adorned with brilliant instrumental parts, odd meters, jazzy solos, and witty lyrics. In fact, from the very first notes of "Lucciole per Lanterne" to the last ones of "Non Dire No", you constantly feel as if the only thing required to make this a Hatfield album would be English lyrics instead of Italian ones. Superb musicianship all the way through too!

This is the second Canterbury pearl released this year, after the Zopp one, and for me the top album of 2020 so far. Bel gioco ragazzi!

 Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.94 | 84 ratings

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Andiamo in Giro di Notte e ci Consumiamo nel Fuoco
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars My wife and I just sold our farm (happy/sad). We just returned from two days of cleaning out and driving to storage the family valuables (happy/sad). But then I opened up my computer after a couple days of absence to find that one of my favorite bands of the 21st Century had released its new album--on my mother's 85th birthday (happy/HAPPY). AUTO-BUY! I have to report that the band has (finally) returned to the (full) form of sophisticated Canterbury quirk of their 2011 debut> I am SO HAPPY to be listening to this beautiful yet happy music-especially in these COVID times. Thank you, Dario & company! And thank you for releasing your album on my mother's 85 birthday! It will always make this album feel so special--like it was just for me.

Full, more detailed review in the days to come (as I will, no doubt, be listening to this album non-stop throughout the weekend). The PERFECT SUMMER ALBUM! If you want happy, melodic music to play on your days by the water, I could not think of a better one than this.

1. "Lucciole per Lanterne" (4.54) Canterbury and Homunculus Res perfection! (10/10) 2. "Il Carrozzone" (3:42) Two in a row! Different lead vocalist. (10/10) 3. "Buco Nero" (6:44) odd tempoed rhythm jazz guitar chord play opens this song before singer joins in. Nice vocal melody (in the best of HR tradition). Fun when Steely Dan-like quirky synth joins in during second verse to noodle alongside the vocalist. Cool, intricate weave that is brought together perfectly by the vocal. Electric guitar solo in the instrumental sections sounds so much like Jeff "Skunk" Baxter-era of Steely Dan! Slow down section in final third sounds so much like classic STEREOLAB (even with the banjo). (8.75/10) 4. "Supermercato" (6:21) after a rather banal opening lyrical half, the music goes chamber instrumental with full complement of strings. Very interesting for HR! (8.75/10) 5. "La Spia" (4:36) (8.75/10) 6. "La Salamandra" (6:25) (9/10) 7. "In Girum" (3:37) sounds more like The Winstons' debut album (and, therefore, Matching Mole/Robert Wyatt). (8.5/10) 8. "La Luccicanza" (4:27) (8.75/10) 9. "Tetraktys" (3:33) (8.75/10) 10. "Non Dire No" (3:45) opens as if a teacher/parent singing to (or for) children. When flute supplants vocal it becomes more rich and though still community feeling. Cool, different song. (9.25/10)

The album starts out on a real high with the first two fast-paced joy-fests, but then then tempos settle into the middle inviting the listener to tune in more carefully to hear the clever and quirky nuances that the band throws in.

A-/five stars; a minor masterpiece of progressive rock music and such a refreshing addition to my (so far) rather weak 2020 collection.

P.S. How could ANYONE call this music anything but Canterbury???!!!! This is NOT a RPI band!

 Della Stessa Sostanza Dei Sogni by HOMUNCULUS RES album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.80 | 109 ratings

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Della Stessa Sostanza Dei Sogni
Homunculus Res Canterbury Scene

Review by felonafan

5 stars "Della Stessa Sostenza Dei Sogni" ("About the same essence of dreams") is the third studio full-length album of the band from sunny Palermo, playing music deeply rooted in stylistics and "in spirit" in Canterbury scene. If Hatfield and the North and other similar groups were created by the Italians and sang in Italian, then perhaps they would sound like Homunculus Res. Also it is worth mentioning the group with whom people compared, compare and probably will compare Sicilians - Picchio dal Pozzo. This Italian ensemble released two studio albums in the second half of the 70s / at the turn of the 80's (and again at the beginning of zero), apparently inspired by the "classic" Canterbury bands, but sounded more jazzy, a little slower and much more "more seriously" than the heroes of this review. The leader of Homunculus Res - singing composer and multi-instrumentalist Dario d'Alessandro - was able to attract a large number of musicians to the studio work. These include not only the regular members of the group - all of them, together with the leader, five - but also approximately 15 guests, performing vocal parts and playing various instruments, from guitars and keys to numerous wind instruments. There is also a "guest composer". He is the leader of the group Brezhnev Fun Club Rocco Lomonaco, dragged (in varying degrees) in creation of two works on the album. Homunculus Res, like the legendary representatives of the Canterbury scene, embody the compositional ideas built on jazz harmonies and complex/changing measures in very short songs with almost pop tunes. All tracks last less than 5 minutes, and the musicians managed to "lay" 12 such tracks in the "format" lasting about 42 minutes. Among them, it is difficult to mark the highlights (for me at the moment it is "Bianco Supreme"), but everything in general leaves a pleasant impression by its 'laconicism' and relaxedness. Comparisons of some critics and listeners with Henry Cow and Magma are not clear to me: the creativity of Homunculus Res is absolutely not gloomy or "stressful". Complicatedness does not "stick out on the surface". At the same time, a rich and varied sound, coupled with frequent changes in musical events, can strongly entice lovers of the "complex prog". "Della Stessa Sostenza Dei Sogni" is one of the best releases of the AltrOck Productions label for the last few years.

p.s. Many times I re-listened to this album and came to the conclusion that it is (almost) essential opus.

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

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