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The Italian Prog Appreciation den

Printed From: Progarchives.com
Category: Progressive Music Lounges
Forum Name: Prog Bands, Artists and Genres Appreciation
Forum Discription: Discuss specific prog bands and their members or a specific sub-genre
URL: http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=69541
Printed Date: April 24 2014 at 10:11
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 9.69 - http://www.webwizforums.com


Topic: The Italian Prog Appreciation den
Posted By: Finnforest
Subject: The Italian Prog Appreciation den
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 15:43
Welcome to the new Italian Prog Appreciation thread.  Bring your own vino, we'll supply the red sauce, music, and cigars.

The old thread, with its vast quantity of album suggestions and discussions, can be found by http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=36487 - clicking here!




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Replies:
Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 15:52
And while it is tragic to see the previous thread's 5500 posts of suggestions and good will fade into the night, we on your new and improved RPI team will continue to feed your addiction and celebrate the web's best prog music resource. 

We are in the process of improving out of date/undercooked bios, we have already corrected many errors in the genres band lists, and we have many new reviews and band additions on the way. 

The future is bright, there is more and better to come. 

With that, the new Appreciation thread is christened.  As I've been doing the vault picks for a quite a while, our new members will now be contributing some of their own.  And of course, our thread readers are encouraged to join inThumbs Up


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Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 22:01
And just as I discovered the old appreciation thread!  Not necessarily new to the site, but somewhat new to the forums...  For what it's worth (that is, not much), my first few reviews, all RPI, are up.  Feel free not to critique, as I'm very sensitive... Tongue


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 22:09
Hey Andrew!  I saw your reviews and was wonderfully surprised, not just to see a new enthusiast, but with the depth of your choices!  If you've got those fine gems you must have quite the collection.  Welcome to this thread and to forums, you'll find many RPI friends in these parts.  Smile

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Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 22:23
Honestly, I scoured the reviews here when I first caught the Mellow Records sale through Greg Walker.  A few definitive favorites from that lot, including (in addition to Bondage and Stefano Testa) Campo di Marte, Cooperative del Latte, Germinale, Murple, and Sithonia (Confine).  Mary Newsletter, too.

Other favorites - Alphataurus' debut, Cervello, I Giganti (which I just got a hold of), Ibis - Sun Supreme, Museo - Zarathustra, Osaanna - Palepoli, Rocky's Filj...  To think I knew nothing of RPI until early early last year!

Looking forward to hanging around (hopefully participating and not lurking) - I could learn something, methinks.


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 22:41
Wow, great taste!  I'm looking forward to your reviewsClap

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Posted By: Dellinger
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 22:45
Hey, I just saw the old RPI thread around this very week, how is it now it's considered fallen into oblivion?


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 22:48
Originally posted by Dellinger

Hey, I just saw the old RPI thread around this very week, how is it now it's considered fallen into oblivion?


It has only to do with the size it had grown to (good news, it means people enjoy it!)

Once a thread reaches a certain size in terms of posts/size, it is locked to make the forums more responsive in terms of speed, if I understand correctly.  The same thread can be opened again and continued....which is what this thread is!

So fear not, nothing has fallen away!Big smile


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Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 22:53
Perhaps a perma-link to the thread is in order, else it could slip away into obscurity lacking new posts...

http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=36487


Posted By: SaltyJon
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 23:02
Yeah, that's what I was going to suggest, editing a link to the old thread in the initial post so everyone could check out the older discussions if they want to. 

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http://www.last.fm/user/Salty_Jon" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 23:07
DoneThumbs Up

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Posted By: SaltyJon
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 23:14
Awesome!

Now, on topic...even though they're under Canterbury Scene, I feel it's appropriate to mention Picchio dal Pozzo here.  I'm sure they've been mentioned before in the old thread, but I'm not going to look through 5500 posts tonight to find out. LOL  They're probably my favorite Italian band at the moment, followed by Area.


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http://www.last.fm/user/Salty_Jon" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 23:22
Oh yeah, that's an album many people just go nuts about.....I've only heard their most popular one....I need to hear more.

If you go for classical Jon, have you checked out Opus Avantra?  Another great band. 




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Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 23:28
I have to say, Canterbury doesn't seem to be my thing, based on what little I've heard...  So, I've shied away.

That said, I just filtered the Top Prog list by country (Italy, obviously) but excluded RPI.  There are quite a few there that I haven't heard of - what are some favorites?  (Very interesting to see some Italian Zeuhl!)

The only ones in my growing collection are J'Accuse..!, Sensations' Fix (Portable Madness), Arti e Mestieri (Tilt) & Mary Newsletter (Del Perduto & L'Attenzione - I'm partial to the former).

Looks like I really should spend some time and rake through the previous appreciation thread...


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 23:41
Oh there's lots of great stuff out there, I'd have to do a list! LOL 

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Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 23:45
Originally posted by Finnforest

Oh there's lots of great stuff out there, I'd have to do a list! LOL 


Yeah, I realized that might be a rather BIG question...  I'll spend some time going through those on the Top Prog.  It looks like my next order will be a bank-breaker!  sigh


Posted By: SaltyJon
Date Posted: July 24 2010 at 23:55
Universal Totem Orchestra is some Italian Zeuhl if I remember right.  Same with Runaway Totem.  I've got a couple Runaway Totem albums, which by the way are mostly available free on the band's website.  Not bad, but not amazing.  I haven't listened to any Universal Totem Orchestra yet. 

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http://www.last.fm/user/Salty_Jon" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 00:01
Originally posted by SaltyJon

Universal Totem Orchestra is some Italian Zeuhl if I remember right.  Same with Runaway Totem.  I've got a couple Runaway Totem albums, which by the way are mostly available free on the band's website.  Not bad, but not amazing.  I haven't listened to any Universal Totem Orchestra yet. 


Very good reviews here on PA - I am curious.  I love the Zeuhl I have, just don't listen all that often...  And thanks for the tip on Runaway Totem - I'll check their site.


Posted By: SaltyJon
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 00:04
No problem.  Just so you know, the downloads aren't the greatest sound quality, but still...it gives you a chance to get a bit familiar with almost all of their albums for free.  

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http://www.last.fm/user/Salty_Jon" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: Todd
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 00:25
Universal Totem is FAR better than their parent band Runaway Totem in my opinion.

Picchio is wonderful, and Canterbury is hit or miss for me.

Andrew, welcome! It will be great to rub shoulders with you in the coming months! Such a short time but such a collection! There are some great adventures ahead!

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"A good album should always be much more about questions than answers." Bill Bruford

http://gnosis2000.net/ratertodd.shtml" rel="nofollow - My Gnosis Ratings


Posted By: SaltyJon
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 00:28
Originally posted by Todd

Universal Totem is FAR better than their parent band Runaway Totem in my opinion.

That's what I've heard, but I've not checked out UTO yet since their albums cost more than $0.00 and I've got too much stuff to buy anyway. LOL


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http://www.last.fm/user/Salty_Jon" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: Todd
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 00:28
By the way Andrew, if you like Arachnoid (great band!) give Areknames a try. Their new album is particularly good.

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"A good album should always be much more about questions than answers." Bill Bruford

http://gnosis2000.net/ratertodd.shtml" rel="nofollow - My Gnosis Ratings


Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 00:38
Originally posted by Todd

By the way Andrew, if you like Arachnoid (great band!) give Areknames a try. Their new album is particularly good.


I love the Arachnoid album.  And Rocky's Filj!  Personal expression through avatars. Smile

I'll definitely check out Areknames - I believe I caught some comments on the previous appreciation thread.

Alas, I'll be stepping away for a couple days for some brief travel, just as I start to get acquainted here.  Will catch up soon...


Posted By: TheGazzardian
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 01:01
Out with the old, in with the new. I've got a few newer RPI albums on my stack (Algebra - JL and Eris Pluvia - Third Eye Light) and recently I've listened to RRR's new one and Maxophone. I've also been enjoying the work of Zu who is Italian as well, if I recall correctly...

I must admit that the Italian albums packed as mini-LPs are quite appealing!

Also, Andrew made a good point about that mellow records sale, I saw that on Greg Walkers site but just scanned it for bands I know. Any recommendations from there?


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Posted By: seventhsojourn
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 05:58
Originally posted by Pirx the Pilot

And just as I discovered the old appreciation thread!  Not necessarily new to the site, but somewhat new to the forums...  For what it's worth (that is, not much), my first few reviews, all RPI, are up.  Feel free not to critique, as I'm very sensitive... Tongue
 
Andrew, I just left a post on your newbie thread, recommending that you come here... but you obviously beat me to it! Very nice reviews btw... look forward to reading more and to seeing you around here. Tongue  


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Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 08:49
Originally posted by seventhsojourn


Andrew, I just left a post on your newbie thread, recommending that you come here... but you obviously beat me to it!


I'm sneaky that way...

Grabbing a few CDs for 6-7 hours in the car.  The kicker is, we have to appeal to my better half (but not really since I'm driving Big smile).

SO -
Alphataurus, personal favorite.  Travels with me wherever I go
Germinale's  e il respiro...  I think I'll review this one next!
Il Volo - Essere, since it's very new to me
J'Accuse - I mentioned it last night and realized it's been a while since my last listen

And some non-Italian, since she's less of a fan (but a very tolerant listener)... Sloche, SBB, Rush, and maybe a little Atheist and Zeppelin to appease.

Whoops - looks at the time.  I'm off.


Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 12:04
Goodbye old thread Cry and hello new one Big smile


Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 12:20
Vault pick - For the first of the new thread a modern day (relatively speaking) classic.....
 
Nice one Andrea Clap
 
album.asp?id=1017"> Il Passo Del Soldato  by NUOVA ERA album cover Studio Album, 1995
4.35 | 47 ratings

album.asp?id=1017#buymusic - BUY
album.asp?id=1017 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=2304 - andrea
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Nuova Era were formed in 1985 in Firenze, on the initiative of keyboardist Walter Pini. Their music was heavily influenced by Seventies prog and, going against the stream in a period when prog was completely out of fashion, the band managed to release some very interesting albums. Their fourth one, "Il passo del soldato", released in 1995 for the independent label Pick Up Records, is usually considered their best work. The line up here features Wlater Pini (keyboards), Enrico Giordani (bass), Gianluca Lavacchi (drums) and Claudio Guerrini (vocals). Claudio Guerrini took the place of former singer and guitarist Alex Camaiti but only on vocals so, on this album there's no room for guitars and the overall sound is extremely keyboards driven. Nonetheless the result is excellent. "Il passo del sodato" (The soldier's step) is a concept album about war, every war in every time. Lyrics were written by Ivan Pini, poet and brother of the keyboardist and yhe excellent art work by Riccardo Di Stasi tries to describe their content, showing soldiers of every era fighting each other like marionettes, manipulated by the hands of power... As you can read in the booklet as an introduction to the concept, "weapons always play the only role they know from the script of hatred, the audience will be always formed only by winners and losers, but no one but the Death will applaud".

The opener "All'ombra di un conflitto (La dichiarazione)" (In the shade of a conflict ? the declaration) begins with an insistent and obsessive military marching beat, then music and intense high pitched vocals express the anxiety for the impending drama. Lyrics describe two great nations that are divided by hate while powerful men are sharing out death... "White hands upon Destiny / Draw wars like in a play / Ancient songs will be anthems / And the strained blood will be violated... Today's dawn, please do not ever rise!".

"Lo spettro dell'agonia sul campo (Costernazione)" (The spectre of the agony on the field ? consternation) begins with a frenzy rhythm where you can imagine the Dark Lady dance foretasting her harvest, then the atmosphere becomes darker and heavier. Time is running out but some people can't stand the change and are scared by the gloomy clouds of war that are gathering on the horizon... "In my contracted body a fear shines through / The purity of the dreams lies in a background never seen before / My life floats in the wind with a sword into the soul...". Then there's a touching comparison between the war games that children play and the cruelty of a real war underlined by music before the final explosion...

"La parata del simboli (La truppa)" (The parade of the symbols ? the troop) is a beautiful short instrumental evoking troops manoeuvring and marching to the front that leads to the long and complex epic "Il passo del soldato (Verso la battaglia)" (The soldier's step ? towards the battle), more than twelve minutes where the battle rages on leaving death and destruction behind... "Armed ghosts defeated by Fate / Slow agony on the buried faces / Nobody seems to see the dying soldiers... And now they look just as deadly relics...". The void erases forever dull banners while the instrumental finale evokes a ghost dance...

"Armicrazia (I pensieri di un cecchino)" (Weaponcracy ? The thoughts of a sniper) describes the thoughts of a sniper wondering about the thin thread of one man's life. "I was ordered to kill / And I have many hours left to die...". The middle section features a delicate and intense passage with piano and vocals.

Next comes "L'armistizio (Le decisioni dei generali)" (The armistice ? the decisions of the generals) that after a thundering start becomes melancholic and describes a silent battlefield... "Harmless eyes in a truce / Hands up towards the sky to pray...". The survived infantrymen invoke peace...

"Riflessi di Pace (Oltre il fronte)" (Reflections of peace ? beyond the front) begins with a joyful sound of bells and keyboards, light starts to shine through the dark clouds... "When peace will grow along the days / Like a sincere tear / Springtime will come back on the first steps / And everywhere you'll go / You'll find true looks... The sky is not so dark after all...".

"Epitaffio (La morale)" (Epitaph ? the moral) sounds like an ominous warning and is dedicated to memory of an unknown soldier that sacrificed his life fighting at the front among other unknown men. Recitative vocals tell that only behind the marble of his grave he could find back the peace that he had before...

"Nuova Era atto secondo" (New Era Act Two) is a beautiful instrumental finale that tries to evoke a new era where peace can rule overdubbing hate and incomprehension. Well, an excellent conclusion for an outstanding album. I'm sure that if you like bands like Le Orme or Banco del Mutuo Soccorso you'll love it as well...



Posted By: Alberto Muñoz
Date Posted: July 25 2010 at 17:46
Great... new thread...

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Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: July 27 2010 at 13:50
Vault Pick - A really lovely album as Jim will tell you. Thumbs Up
 
album.asp?id=23712"> Racconto dinverno by ARPIA album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.64 | 6 ratings

album.asp?id=23712#buymusic - BUY
album.asp?id=23712 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=12042 - Finnforest
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator / RPI Specialist

4 stars Understated, elegant, wonderful!

In 2009 this band from Rome known as Arpia celebrated their 25th anniversary with the release of the splendid "Racconto D'inverno." The three core members have been together all that time: Leonardo Bonetti (vocals, bass, keys, and brilliant composer), Fabio Brait (guitar), and Aldo Maria Orazi (drums). While I have not heard their earlier recorded works, it is written that the band have moved through different stylistic phases of progressive rock, including symphonic, heavy prog, metallish, gothic, and certainly some classic RPI influences exist. Past work has been noted to be of a heavier and darker element. In the earlier days the music and performance were linked to theatrical presentation as well, sometimes employing actors or mime (which reminds me of the vocalist from Officina Meccanica in the '70s). Over the years music definitely became the emphasis as their discography of cassette and CD releases grew. A few years ago the band was assisted by percussionist Tonino De Sisinno and vocalist Paola Feraiorni. Around 2006 Paola would become the fourth permanent member of Arpia and the band were ready for the new work "Racconto D'inverno." It is quite difficult to find comparisons that sound like this album and doing so is always my least favorite part of the reviewing process, but I'm usually game to give it a try: Think of "unplugged" Italian prog mixed with elements of Dead Can Dance; think of Joni Mitchell's great instrumental intuitions of later years; perhaps bits of Mazzy Star, Roxy Music, Delirium, Cat Power, and Kristen Hersh. Confused? You should be, for Racconto sounds like Arpia 2009 and no one else really...read on!

Even hearing just a few samples of older work from their website, it is obvious that Racconto is a sound shift for the band. Described as a marriage of music and literature, it was a dual release of the novel by Bonetti and this conceptual album by the band. (The book is also available through their website.) For a band with a history of rough and heavy music, this new album is an amazing change-up. It comes across to me as a highly sophisticated yet toned-down progressive sound, emotionally evocative, and darkly romantic....a musically conceptual, cohesive work. I dare to say it comes closer to mature progressive-pop than "prog-rock" but it certainly is NOT saccharine, mainstream pop music. Rather it is a sound all its own, very tightly controlled, perfectly-produced, and yet passion-filled. Very beautiful. There is no electric guitar and the keyboards play only a background role in most cases, providing the atmosphere, the mood. The main element throughout is an acoustic guitar played in a unique way, tightly and often briskly strummed, most of the time not allowing the chords to ring out. It is an intensely focused acoustic guitar rather than any kind of laid-back or folksy acoustic you might expect when talking "acoustic music." While completely different in finished product obviously, the guitar style itself reminds me of Syd Barrett's playing on some of his solo stuff. I think of tracks like "Opel" where the acoustic is played so personally, so guarded, the strokes so consistent it sounds like he plays them to keep a boat afloat. Here, as there, it gives the songs a truly distinct sound, which is aided by a similarly masterful drum playing. Very crisp and defined, perfect without being flashy. Subtle rhythmic shifts combined with the understated play give the tracks a light and airy feel in one way, which makes for fascinating contrast with the moodiness of the songs themselves. Then there moments which break away to a refined yet imaginative interplay of guitar, bass, and drums....not really jamming as much as complimenting the others....these moments are just savvy and delicious examples of musicians taking their craft to a completely different place.

And then there are the outstanding vocals which are the emotional ebb and flow, alternating male and female by Leonardo and Paola. They are nothing short of breathtaking. Modest but passionate, sometimes pleading, aching....other times more narrative in feel. Paola's vocals on "Casa non mai vista" will take you straight to heaven. They are all perfectly balanced and integrated into the nimble instrumentation, never overbearing or contrived. The combination of these various forces, and without even understanding the lyrics as an English-fluent-only boy, I find the album one of the year's loveliest releases. (And it was a great choice for them to use Italian language rather than attempt the English conversion---keep singing in Italian!) Further, they did not make the modern era mistake of forcing every album to be 70 minutes long. At 43 minutes the album is the perfect length and will keep you spellbound throughout. With my highest compliments to the band members, "Racconto D'inverno" will make my yearly list of best Italian albums, and perhaps flirt with my overall best of 2009 list at ProgArchives. The folks at Musea were wise to latch onto this band. Enthusiastically recommended to fans of Italian progressive and sophisticated pop-rock music. 4 ½ stars. (Might eventually round it up rather than down, will have to see how it holds up over more time.)



Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 27 2010 at 14:30

Yeah, that was one of my favorites from last year....though definitely not a typical RPI release.  Tongue



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Posted By: moshkito
Date Posted: July 27 2010 at 19:10
Originally posted by Finnforest

And while it is tragic to see the previous thread's 5500 posts of suggestions and good will fade into the night, we on your new and improved RPI team will continue to feed your addiction and celebrate the web's best prog music resource.  
 
To be honest with you, I gave up on it a long time ago ... it's impossible to keep up with the discussions and suggestions and get anywhere with it ... and no one remembers what page they were in yesterday!
 
I'm almost wanting to make a suggestion that instead of a thread for Italians that we could easily easily combine other threads and realign the board a little. I think it would be nice to have a German area, and then an English area and an American area, instead of endless threads.
 
There are a lot more ideas and thoughts and discussions that could be had about Italian prog, from its connections to classical musics to other influences ... and those kinds of nice things just get lost and ... never read!


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... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, and forego lousy heroes or Guru's!

www.pedrosena.com


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 27 2010 at 19:49
I'm not sure how I can help you there Moshkito.  I don't deal with the layout/design of the forums, my job is trying to better the content of the site, which I do my best at with the time I have available. 

For me personally, I love the forums here, and I do read through the threads that interest me.  Smile


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Posted By: American Khatru
Date Posted: July 28 2010 at 16:08
Originally posted by moshkito

Originally posted by Finnforest

And while it is tragic to see the previous thread's 5500 posts of suggestions and good will fade into the night, we on your new and improved RPI team will continue to feed your addiction and celebrate the web's best prog music resource.  
 
To be honest with you, I gave up on it a long time ago ... it's impossible to keep up with the discussions and suggestions and get anywhere with it ... and no one remembers what page they were in yesterday!
 
I'm almost wanting to make a suggestion that instead of a thread for Italians that we could easily easily combine other threads and realign the board a little. I think it would be nice to have a German area, and then an English area and an American area, instead of endless threads.
 
There are a lot more ideas and thoughts and discussions that could be had about Italian prog, from its connections to classical musics to other influences ... and those kinds of nice things just get lost and ... never read!
Sounds like a great idea.  When you get it up and running let us know!  Build it and we will come.

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Why must my spell-checker continually underline the word "prog"?



Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: July 28 2010 at 18:02
Vault Pick - An absolute classic and essential RPI album.
 
Clap
 
album.asp?id=223"> Biglietto Per LInferno by BIGLIETTO PER LINFERNO album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.19 | 60 ratings

album.asp?id=223#buymusic - BUY
album.asp?id=223 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=18649 - toroddfuglesteg
Collaborator Interview Team

4 stars Like a windy day in the autumn......

This album have been reviewed here in in PA by far more intelligent people than myself so I will be brief.

This band from Italy made complex progressive rock full of contrasts. You will find elements of early Rush, Deep Purple and Uriah Heep together with the likes of Gentle Giant, Genesis and the Italian giants like Le Orme, PFM and Banco. Most of all; this album reminds me about a cold windy autumn day where the trees are being thrown around by the wind....... with some eerie silence between the gusts. This album a lot of pretty epic and calm pastorial parts inbetween some hard rock parts too. It is the pastorial parts I will remember most fondly. They are almost like church music. There are some really stunning music on this album. The vocals are good. The tangents parts are excellent. The music is so full of contrasts that it is easy to get into unless you give it time. Which I have done. I dismissed it out of hand when I listened to it for the first time though. The very heavy pieces here put me off. But they are an integral part of this album.

This album is almost a proto type Italian Progressive Rock album in it's elegance, complexity and beauty. Quality wise, it is among the better albums. As usual, I miss the really killer track here. But this is still an excellent album and a worthy investment for all symphonic prog lovers.

4 stars



Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 28 2010 at 18:24
Great album.  And Il Nevare is the killer track!


Posted By: seventhsojourn
Date Posted: July 29 2010 at 05:40
Looks like this Castello album is deleted... so I'll probably have to pay a king's ransom if it crops up on eBay!
 
[tube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EExoS4BbpU[/tube]


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Posted By: toroddfuglesteg
Date Posted: July 29 2010 at 05:44

I paid £ 20 for it from Music For Penguins or The Royal Society Of Dull Men (cannot remember). I also believe I can organize something for you from the band......... but no promises.  

Btw a Biglietto Per L'Inferno interview is long in the tooth, but has been promised from the band. 



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Posted By: seventhsojourn
Date Posted: July 29 2010 at 05:53
Ahha, thanks torodd... I can save my shekels for the re-issue then! Thumbs Up
 
Looking forward to that interview.
 
EDIT: Oh, I would appreciate that thanks!


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Posted By: toroddfuglesteg
Date Posted: July 29 2010 at 05:59

PM me in four-five days time to remind me about it if you have not heard anything from me. I will get in touch with the band.......... but I also have some upcoming RPI interviews to sort out today + my daytime job.

 



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Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: July 29 2010 at 06:02
A Biglietto Per L'Inferno interview would be great. Smile


Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: July 29 2010 at 09:21

PROG OR NOT PROG? THIS IS NOT A PROBLEM...

 
http://www.progarchives.com/forum/album.asp?id=20765 - Prog Related

album.asp?id=20765"> Non al denaro non allamore nè al cielo by DE ANDRÈ, FABRIZIO album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.40 | 6 ratings

album.asp?id=20765#buymusic - BUY

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=10853 - octopus-4

I'm quite surprised to see that this album doesn't have any review. This album (Not at Money, not at Love neither at Heaven) is less intense than his previous masterpiece "La Buona Novella" and even if based on the concept of Edgar Lee-Masters' Spoon River is more a collection of songs than a concept album. Defining it prog is hard but it contains some of the most famous songs ever written by "Faber".

Based on classical and acoustic guitar, with many influences which go from the acoustic country-rock on "Un matto" and "Un Giudice" to the French Medieval flavour of "Un Blasfemo" has its strength in the highly poetical lyrics, and it shouldn't surprise being the poetry of Lee- Masters the concept. If you really want to appreciate this album manage to get a translation of the lyrics.

The opening track "Dormono sulla collina"(They sleep on the hill) is a summary of what you can expect in the album. It briefly mentions some characters not so important to have an entire song based on them apart of "Jones the musician". The music is based on minor chords with an orchestral arrangement that make it sound like a movie soundtrack until it turns into acoustic.

 
[TUBE]2YrV6o4eGIg[/TUBE]
 
"Un Matto" (A Fool) is a slow country-rock song based on acoustic guitar and violin. Probably the easier listening of the whole album.
 
[TUBE]buVG8QnkSgA[/TUBE]

"Un Giudice" (A Judge) is the most famous song of the album, mainly becaus eof a very hard sentence "A dwarf is a b*****d for sure because his heart is too close to his a****le". The dwarf is the Judge who in life was used to send people to death as revenge against people who considered him a half-man. Musically is another country piece with a non- country tempo, based on acoustic bass and guitar.

 
[TUBE]qtM2fgfiaIE[/TUBE]
 
"Un Blasfemo" (A Blaspheme) goes back to the "La Buona Novella" themes. About religion and intolerance. "They killed me because I said that God fooled the first man" and "Not God, bot somebody who invented him, constraints us to dream in an enchanted garden". The song starts with flute and acoustic bass, then voice and classical guitar, finally cymbals. The flavour is medieval with a bit of French a-la-Brassens. My fav on this album.
 
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"Un Malato di cuore" (A heart-illed) is a sad slow song about an illed boy who dies while kissing his first love. Keyboard, bass and classical guitar for a mixture of French and country.

 
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"Un Medico" (A Physician) has a grotesque start with violins on a melody that reminds to XIX century's Italian Opera (I mean Rossini). The chords are everything but trivial with sudden changes in scale and pitch.
 
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"Un Chimico" (A Chemist) is Dylanesque, based on finger-picking acoustic guitar.

 
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"Un Ottico" (an Optician) starts Frenchy, then goes into a sort of psychedelia as the subject of the song is a metaphor of drugs and acid allucinations. The lenses sold by the opticians are clearly referred to acid. The lyrics of the psychedelic part are just descriptions of allucinations but with a lot of references. Back to France on the final.
 
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Finally "Il Suonatore Jones" (Jones the Musician) is another sad slow song full of regret for the past (even if he says "it ended with no regret at all). The best lyrics of the album, maybe. The track is based on classical guitar and flute.

 
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I can't give it 5 stars because even if it's clearly a masterpiece, this is not progressive rock, but I think that anybody who looks for good music full of contents can be happy to have it in his collection.

4 stars.

NICE REVIEW...


Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: July 29 2010 at 14:44
A LOOK TOWARDS THE SKY
 
This is not exactly an album review, it's a kind of awing celebration of a song... A great song!
 
- - - -
 
album.asp?id=2301 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=23775 - CorSard58

We all were small children in those days. We played football. In A.Ş. Villasor. After years (three) in college interned by Salesians (large religious group for young people). I was playing defense, I was the stopper. Meshes of the team were beautiful yellow and black colors. Ie: the sun and the sun off the peak. Something that is regenerated each day and is annihilated. Well, this team where we would play had a home. It was a sort of porch with walls of mud raw (Mexicans call adobe, instead we "ladiri".) With a jukebox. There were many laps 45 Anglo-Americans in those days that turned into the pot. We rather liked only one: Look at the sky (to look Toward the sky) Le Orme. That song kept and showed a lot of energy. Without electric guitars. With a lot of melody and rhythm. And small words where we all hoped we would recognize adolescents.
 
"Waiting for the morning start (waiting for morning to re- iniazilize Ourselves). Or: The joy of singing, the desire to dream the way to achieve what you have notLa gioia di cantare , la voglia di suonare il senso di raggiungere quello che non hai ecco un altro giorno come ieri , aspettare il mattino per ricominciare . La forza di sorridere , la forza di lottare la colpa d' esser vivo e non poter cambiare come un ramo secco , abbandonato che cerca inutilmente di fiorire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . La maschera di un clown in mezzo a un gran deserto un fuoco che si spegne , uno sguardo verso il cielo uno sguardo verso il cielo , dove il sole è meraviglia dove il nulla si fa mondo , dove brilla la tua luce . here is another day like yesterday, wait until morning to start over. The strength to smile, the strength to fight the fault of 'being alive and not being able to change like a dry twig, abandoned trying in vain to flourish

The mask of a clown in the midst of a great desert a fire that has stopped, looked skyward a look into the sky where the sun wonder where nothing is done the world where your light shines.

This text seemed to speak to us and our hidden aspirations. But what we liked most was their music. With the mandatory moog and happiness going Hammond organ (or Farfisa?): Not sharp, sweet and sharp as a blade that makes you enjoy). But most of all was the sense of beauty and energy.

- - - - -
WELL, THE TRANSLATION OF THE LYRICS IS NOT PERFECT BUT LET'S LISTEN TO THIS BEAUTIFUL TRACK NOW...
 
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AN ALTERNATIVE "VINTAGE VERSION"...
 
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Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 30 2010 at 08:57
Very nice Melos review, Andrea.  That's one of my desert island picks, no question.


Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: July 30 2010 at 11:18
Originally posted by Pirx the Pilot

Very nice Melos review, Andrea.  That's one of my desert island picks, no question.
 
Thanks...
 
By the way, who could guess that the singer (and flutist) in the video below is Cervello's lead vocalist Gianluigi Di Franco?
 
[TUBE]clpEyoPEXKQ&feature=related[/TUBE]
 
 


Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: July 30 2010 at 12:07
Originally posted by andrea

By the way, who could guess that the singer (and flutist) in the video below is Cervello's lead vocalist Gianluigi Di Franco?
 
Shocked
 
Oh, the 80s were not kind...  Wow.  I mean, WOW.


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: July 30 2010 at 12:11
Yeah, don't even peak at what became of the Zarillo dude from Semiramis!
 
Andrea, as usual, another fine review....may steal that one for my blog.  It's such a wonderful album and always seems in the shadow of its big brother Palepoli.  All these Osanna fans out there, and I don't think too many of them are aware of Cervello.  We'll have to keep banging the drum.  Smile


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Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: July 30 2010 at 12:54
Zarrillo?  The song in the video below was composed by Vince Tempera (Il Volo) and Ares Tavolazzi (Area) for a Japanese cartoon... And still is their greatest hit!  LOL
 
 
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Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: July 31 2010 at 04:46
A NEW BARROCK’S REVIEW...
 
- - - - -
 
http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=158 - L'Alchimista
http://www.progarchives.com/artist.asp?id=38 - Barrock http://www.progarchives.com/## - Rock Progressivo Italiano
Review by http://www.progarchives.com/Collaborators.asp?id=18649 - toroddfuglesteg
Collaborator Interview Team
 
Behind a truly ghastly cover, there are some truly great music.
I am a fan of all music with big sound and over the top melodies. In short, I am a fan of Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Barrock is pretty much exploring this musical territory on this, their debut album. Add bands like Mostly Autumn, Osanna and Renaissance to and you get this album.............. more or less.
The female vocals here are good. But most of all, this album is dominated by Valter Poles tangents. The rest of the band too is making this into a great album. An album which is a great crossover between the symphonic prog and the RPI scene.
 
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Although this album has some mediative pointless pieces where little is happening, this album has some great pieces of music too. The best ones is Re Artu - Suite and the title track. Yes, the music feels a bit "heard this before", but it is still great. Mostly due to Valter Poles. My gripes is the lack of one or some signature tracks and the pling-plong stuff. But it is still a great album........ hidden well behind this ghastly cover.
 
4 stars (barely and bordering to three stars)
 
- - - - -
 
More info about the band:
PA interview:  http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=69659 - http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=69659
Official website:  http://digilander.libero.it/barrock/ - http://digilander.libero.it/barrock/
Valter Poles’ official website: http://www.valterpoles.it/ - http://www.valterpoles.it/
 
 
Well, the band is not dead yet... There is hope to see them performing live again, sooner or later...
 
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aE9Lre6nXC8&feature=related -  


Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: July 31 2010 at 06:38

ITALIAN CANTERBURY? 

http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=2566 - Picchio Dal Pozzo
http://www.progarchives.com/artist.asp?id=516 - Picchio Dal Pozzo http://www.progarchives.com/## - Canterbury Scene
Review by http://www.progarchives.com/Collaborators.asp?id=12001 - Astryos
 
By the first 2 minutes you already have the feeling that something special is going on. Guitar, voicings, keyboards, vibraphone, saxophone and all with a unique and "unusual" sound. "Merta" is an introduction which melts into "Cocomelastico" and by the end of it, you can tell that you are dealing with high quality music here.
 
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And then, "Seppia" comes and you are blown away! It's not only the compositions, the production, the ideas, the soundscapes. It is also that the instruments' sound is so personal and fresh.
 
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The pieces unfold with no rush and develop effortlessly. "Napier" is an avant guard-ish song with beautiful voice melodies and celestial keyboard/wind passages while "La Floricoltura" has funny voicings and entangled wind instruments.
 
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Both "La Bolla" and "Off" are peaceful compositions with laid back voicings, electric and classical guitar, keyboards and lot of flutes.
 
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A piece of art full of musicianship, freshness and beauty.
 
----
 
Thanks Astryos!


Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: July 31 2010 at 12:16
^ That sounds like a really nice album Andrea, thanks for bringing it to my attention. Thumbs Up


Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 04:31
FOCUS ON BMS’ LAST SUPPER...
 
A recent review...
 
http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=1799 - Come in un'ultima cena
http://www.progarchives.com/artist.asp?id=36 - Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano
Review by http://www.progarchives.com/Collaborators.asp?id=24656 - Pirx the Pilot
 
It wasn't too long ago that I began my foray into the world of Italian progressive rock, and one of my first listens was Banco's Darwin. It was only a matter of time before making the eventual leap to Come In Un'Ultima Cena, a quite recognizable but still changed beast relative to the releases that precede it. This 1976 allegory is laid before us with greater emphasis on Francesco Di Giacomo's tremendous voice and the wild organ, synth and piano excursions of the Nocenzi brothers to great, if different, effect.
Looking back over my plentiful track by track notes, I have decided to forgo the specifics in favor of a brief, overall look. The one thing that stands out in reviewing my observations is that many of my individual song comments are not entirely dissimilar. The same traits are evident in each track - Francesco's distinctive singing, the amazing keyboards, rich compositions, and above all the phenomenal interplay between all of the musicians (no better example than Il Ragno). Even when they court their mellower side, the intensity never wanes.
Favorites include the typical (of 1972-73 Banco) opener A Cena, followed by Il Ragno - pure adrenaline from start to finish, and the wildly diverse Voilà Mida, which manages to twist its way through a number of styles all so intricately bound together. The singular change of scenery can be found in the beautiful La Notte è Piena, which stands in sharp contrast to the rest of the album in that it features purely acoustic instruments.
So, where does this leave Come In Un'Ultima Cena? An ambitious album with over the top performances, but overall not entirely memorable, the whole diluted somewhat by a certain sameness. A little less adventurous than previous Banco albums and others of the genre, but still an incredibly focused and energetic release.
-----
Well, the complexity of this work is more in the concept and in the lyrics than in the music. The album was released with liner notes explaining the content and I think that is difficult to appreciate this work only listening to the music, without comprehending what the music tries to express, what the songs are about...  
 
Despite an art cover that apparently is full of references to the gospels, the subject matter of this work is not religion at all. A simple supper with friends is the starting point of a spiritual path that leads to the discovery of a new perspective to life, to another spiritual dimension. During the supper the protagonist let drop his usual human mask and asks for help expressing all his confusion, his lack of true relationships, his needs... Tension rises and someone says “it seems to be as in a last supper”. The beautiful inlay drawing was inspired by Leonardo Da Vinci’s famous painting “L’ultima cena” (exactly the same painting that inspired Dan Brown in his novel “The Da Vinci Code”) and it’s full of symbolism. The members of the band appear disguised as disciples, on the left there’s a peacock with a crown of thorns in the beak and on the table you can notice a gun...
 
The opener “... a cena per esempio” (... at supper for example) set the atmosphere. It begins softly and unquiet melodic lines depict the spiritual troubles and the pain of the protagonist and his need for help. “I set out the last fire to give relief to my eyes... But the scream of the earth keeps on whipping my heart / I’m nailed here to listen to it... Now I’m here among you, my dearest friends... It’s to you that I’m asking for help...”. The music in the middle section, where the protagonist unravels his thoughts, is tense and dramatic while the end is more relaxed and melodic. Once the protagonist has delivered his weight silence falls down and for a while the hope for a new day seems to hang in the air... “My tiredness is stretched on my shoulders... My throat is trembling waiting for the dawn / Outside a new day comes to life / And we are dying...”.  
 
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“Il ragno” (The spider) depicts a hard reaction, full of rage and cynicism... “I’ve come here walking on the highest walls / To have a party and celebrate with you / But I was wrong / You’re talking about life and death / I don’t like it...”. The first friend stigmatizes the attitude of the protagonist, moaning about himself like an old broke thief while you need to be shrewd and pitiless to be successful in life... “I’m the spider who looms along the darkest holes / I lay a snare for the ones who are astonished by my skilled tricks...”. The rhythm is frenzy, then suddenly a break where the protagonist answers to his cynical friend that he can’t stand it and that he couldn’t walk following his wicked tracks towards a labyrinth with no way out. But the break is short and rhythm takes off again with the reply of the spider... “I run fast up and down / Everyone thinks I’m a wise man... In my precious shrouds I delicately cradle my preys... Take this thread! / I never bestow anything to anyone / Follow this thread and you won’t lose yourself...”.
 
 “E’ così buono Giovanni ma...” (Giovanni is so good but...) is about false and conditioned love. The music is sweet and delicate featuring piano and acoustic guitar. The second friend makes sweet and allusive promises to the protagonist but wants something in exchange (sex?). “I’ll give you the honey for your lips... I’ll gather your fears / And I will be the amphora where you will drop your tears but...”.
 
“Slogan” (Slogan) is about crowd control. The rhythm goes up and the atmosphere becomes tense and heavy like lead...  “Slogan, slogan, slogan, shout up your slogan / Slogan, slogan, defend you slogan...”. The third friend is an opportunist and a merciless political leader who doesn’t cares even about deaths because martyrs can be useful. He is a crowd rider ready to sell out his own father to reach his goal. He can’t understand the feelings of the protagonist and his reply is disdainful... “Like an albatross that’s gone insane / You are looking for a space where you can fly on your own / While I have tore off my wings to breath the earth along with other people / I can’t accept your troubles / Your mean thoughts are only yours!”.
 
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“Si dice che i delfini parlino” (They say that dolphins can speak) is a wonderful introspective track. The dolphins with their instinct of survival seem to show the way to the light to the protagonist telling that you don’t have to fear the waves of life and that you must never give up. The atmosphere here is dreamy, the bass lines pulse beating like a heart... “After the storm I’ve been wondering for a long time among the corals / On my skin I was feeling the weight of the sea / And I feared I could never jump towards the sun again / But the desire of immensity was shaking my veins / And I came up from the abyss again...”.
 
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“Voilà Mida (Il guaritore)” (Here comes Mida, the healer) is about charlatans, preachers and false magicians. After a short introduction the rhythm becomes frenzy, colourful and bright. Lyrics describe a man boasting that he can heal every pain in exchange of money. Mida the healer comes on a chariot dragged by peacocks on the market square and sells things like pieces of personality, bomb proof ideals or hair spray to fix the ideas... “For your soul to heal / You have found the right man, my friend...”.
 
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“Quando la buona gente dice” (When good people say) is beautiful short and lively track featuring acoustic strummed acoustic guitar and percussion in the forefront.  It’s about the role of the appearances... “Do not open too much yourself / Take care of the appearances, they are the sign of respect / Do not show yourself to the others when you are injured / Or they will hit you to death... Tie your thoughts to the thread of the night / You will be alone and nobody will see / When you’ll be alone in the night untie you breaths / And nobody will hear...”.
 
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“La notte è piena” (The night is full) is a delicate acoustic piece featuring strong classical influences. It describes a night full of desires and frustrations... “The night is full of desperate screams / You will recognize all of them, one after another / If you carefully listen to the silence / You can hear them tearing to pieces each other...”.
 
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“Fino alla mia porta” (Up to my door) begins with an hypnotic crescendo of keyboards. It marks the conclusion of an introspective spiritual path leading to the enlighten. The protagonist had to go through himself to discover a new awareness, climbing over the refusals of his friends to recover himself and experience a new dimension for his life... “On the steps of your refusal / I’m coming up to my door / This time the nocturnal harp / Is playing the song of the fears in vain...”.  Eventually tension melts in a solemn ethereal melody. A beautiful finale for an excellent album!
 
By the way, the overall sound of this work was enriched by the collaboration with the Italian “minstrel” Angelo Branduardi that appeared on the album as a special guest playing violin...
 
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Posted By: seventhsojourn
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 05:08
Originally posted by Nightfly

^ That sounds like a really nice album Andrea, thanks for bringing it to my attention. Thumbs Up
 
Paul, as far as I'm aware, Synphonic, Kinesis, Doug Larson, Amazon etc don't have this. There are a couple of Japanese sellers on eBay that have it for about £25. A bit pricey, but worth it I think. Smile


Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 09:58
Originally posted by andrea


Well, the complexity of this work is more in the concept and in the lyrics than in the music. The album was released with liner notes explaining the content and I think that is difficult to appreciate this work only listening to the music, without comprehending what the music tries to express, what the songs are about...



I probably should have stated that my knowledge of the Italian language is severely limited.  Thankfully, my girlfriend is able to translate the written word for me, if the singing is somewhat difficult to comprehend.  Alas, my version of the album (Virgin) has a booklet with absolutely no liner notes - actually, no text whatsoever except the song titles and times.

Perhaps I should make the disclaimer, too, that I am very focused on the music, almost never the lyrics or theme (unless musical), no matter the tongue.  To me the voice is another instrument, and it's no more pronounced and beautiful than it is in RPI!

Shall I stick to instrumental album reviews? Nah... Wink  Interesting because just this moment I'm listening to Di Terra, which I only picked up yesterday.


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 10:04
Same here Pirx.  It is the beauty of the music which speaks to me, rarely do lyrics matter for my enjoyment.  Whether English or non-English, content is always far secondary to the music for my enjoyment.  And Italian vocals are so cool because they are expressive in sound, even if one does not comprehend the language.  

-------------




Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 10:12
Originally posted by Finnforest

Same here Pirx.  It is the beauty of the music which speaks to me, rarely do lyrics matter for my enjoyment.  Whether English or non-English, content is always far secondary to the music for my enjoyment.  And Italian vocals are so cool because they are expressive in sound, even if one does not comprehend the language.  


This just sparked a very interesting conversation I'm having with my girlfriend right now about lyrics and music.  For her, it's the music that draws her in - if the lyrics are in anyway meaningful, all the better (she was using Marillion as an example).  Then there are the folks who relate to what many bands have to say despite the music (I'm thinking country music, here - ugh)...

Di Terra is over - I'll have to give that a few more spins.  Checking out Canto di Primavera now.  Yeah, I went on a bit of a shopping spree last week and nabbed a dozen Italian releases (including Areknames, which I haven't listened to yet).


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 10:23
Did you get the new Areknames?  I think you'll love it.  Especially given your avatar choice....Areknames has that dark sheen not unlike Arachnoid, though they are different in other ways.

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Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 10:30
Originally posted by Finnforest

Did you get the new Areknames?  I think you'll love it.  Especially given your avatar choice....Areknames has that dark sheen not unlike Arachnoid, though they are different in other ways.


I did!  Based on your review and Todd's recommendation earlier in the thread...  I also grabbed some Deus Ex & DFA, Wicked Minds, Universal Totem Orchestra & Orme's Contrappunti.


Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 10:54
Originally posted by Pirx the Pilot

Originally posted by andrea


Well, the complexity of this work is more in the concept and in the lyrics than in the music. The album was released with liner notes explaining the content and I think that is difficult to appreciate this work only listening to the music, without comprehending what the music tries to express, what the songs are about...



I probably should have stated that my knowledge of the Italian language is severely limited.  Thankfully, my girlfriend is able to translate the written word for me, if the singing is somewhat difficult to comprehend.  Alas, my version of the album (Virgin) has a booklet with absolutely no liner notes - actually, no text whatsoever except the song titles and times.

Perhaps I should make the disclaimer, too, that I am very focused on the music, almost never the lyrics or theme (unless musical), no matter the tongue.  To me the voice is another instrument, and it's no more pronounced and beautiful than it is in RPI!

Shall I stick to instrumental album reviews? Nah... Wink  Interesting because just this moment I'm listening to Di Terra, which I only picked up yesterday.
 
Don't worry, everyone is free to enjoy music as he prefers. But words are not just sounds and their meaning sometimes is more important than the sound of the notes notes played by the other instruments... On this link you can find lyrics and liner notes in Italian: http://www.lyra.net/fabio/new/songs.php?tipo=normal&aut=4&alb=36 - http://www.lyra.net/fabio/new/songs.php?tipo=normal&aut=4&alb=36
 
bye!
 


Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 11:14
Thanks, Andrea.  You should know that I didn't walk into the review blindly - I at least did a little homework and recognized the basis for the allegory.  Hard to hide from with that cover art! Smile

My first impressions of Di Terra are strong, but mixed for Canto di Primavera.  But we all know first impressions are meaningless.

And I expect to have a review of Panna Fredda up soon, if I can scrounge together some time today...


Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 13:50
Originally posted by seventhsojourn

Originally posted by Nightfly

^ That sounds like a really nice album Andrea, thanks for bringing it to my attention. Thumbs Up
 
Paul, as far as I'm aware, Synphonic, Kinesis, Doug Larson, Amazon etc don't have this. There are a couple of Japanese sellers on eBay that have it for about £25. A bit pricey, but worth it I think. Smile
 
Thanks Chris, £25 quids a bit steep for me to be honest. To pay that much it would have to really want it desperately and then only after a few months of hunting. I've sometimes managed to turn up some pretty obscure and rare albums at record fairs, on ebay etc for quite cheap prices. Usually requires a bit of patience though but sooner or later many turn up.Smile


Posted By: topographicbroadways
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 17:14
I listened for the first time to Reale Accademia De Musica self titled album earlier and found it very striking, 
it was like know italian prog i have heard before. From Le Orme, PFM, Banco and Quella it was a stream of epic symphonic which i fell in love with straight away, but on Reale there was something unique i havn't heard from anyone else in this scene and it was a thoroughly enjoyable album.


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Posted By: topographicbroadways
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 17:17
I just ordered Museo Rosenbach - Zarathustra  

I can't wait to hear it, i hear it is one of the greats and i have yet to be disappointed or underwhelmed by a recommendation like that


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Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 17:23
Oh trust me Topo, you will love Museo.  It's wonderful.  I need to throw that one on again.  Smile

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Posted By: seventhsojourn
Date Posted: August 01 2010 at 17:26
Yep, look forward to maybe reading your review of that one Topo. Thumbs Up


Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 06:30
Originally posted by topographicbroadways

I just ordered Museo Rosenbach - Zarathustra  

I can't wait to hear it, i hear it is one of the greats and i have yet to be disappointed or underwhelmed by a recommendation like that
 
It's a fantastic album, you did well to find it actually as it's not easy to come by. Took me about 2 years of searching to find it at a reasonable price I seem to remember. Enjoy!
 
That first RAM album is another gem.


Posted By: octopus-4
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 07:17
I've seen only today that "I Pooh" are on PA...how could it happen? The team has rejected my Barret-inspired Jennifer Gentle and gave room to one of the worst mellow italian mainstream? I agree that they have been on stage for more than 40 years and have done some beat in the 60s, they are very skilled musicians, but they are pure pop and not of the best kind...

Recently I went into "Il Castello di Atlante" and "Nuova Era".  Very good stuff. 


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Curiosity killed a cat, Schroedinger only half.


Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 08:42
Originally posted by topographicbroadways

I just ordered Museo Rosenbach - Zarathustra  

I can't wait to hear it, i hear it is one of the greats and i have yet to be disappointed or underwhelmed by a recommendation like that
 
Yeah, the Reale is a nice release.  The Museo, on the other hand, is out of this world.  The only thing that bothers me is the quality of the recording (Sony/BMG).  There's a lot of buzzing that is quite noticeable at low volume.  Could be that there's just such a wide volume range that I crank it a little too loud... Smile


Posted By: Todd
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 12:03
Originally posted by Pirx the Pilot

Originally posted by Finnforest

Same here Pirx.  It is the beauty of the music which speaks to me, rarely do lyrics matter for my enjoyment.  Whether English or non-English, content is always far secondary to the music for my enjoyment.  And Italian vocals are so cool because they are expressive in sound, even if one does not comprehend the language.  


This just sparked a very interesting conversation I'm having with my girlfriend right now about lyrics and music.  For her, it's the music that draws her in - if the lyrics are in anyway meaningful, all the better (she was using Marillion as an example).  Then there are the folks who relate to what many bands have to say despite the music (I'm thinking country music, here - ugh)...

 
While that is true, for me there are times when understanding the concept/lyrics add to (or occasionally detract from) my overall enjoyment of the music.  For that reason, I really enjoy Andrea's analyses.  For example, one of my favorite RPI albums is Procession's "Frontiera."  I loved the album from the beginning, but Andrea's explanations about the concept of migration only enhanced my enjoyment.  But I definitely don't need that dimension to love it!


-------------
"A good album should always be much more about questions than answers." Bill Bruford

http://gnosis2000.net/ratertodd.shtml" rel="nofollow - My Gnosis Ratings


Posted By: Todd
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 12:25
While not as symphonic as the first album, the "second" album with Adriano Monteduro is quite good.  And the long-lost real second album, called "La Cometa" is finally officially available and is also very good.

-------------
"A good album should always be much more about questions than answers." Bill Bruford

http://gnosis2000.net/ratertodd.shtml" rel="nofollow - My Gnosis Ratings


Posted By: Pirx the Pilot
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 12:28
Originally posted by Todd

For example, one of my favorite RPI albums is Procession's "Frontiera."  I loved the album from the beginning, but Andrea's explanations about the concept of migration only enhanced my enjoyment.
Now there's an album I don't know...
 
By the way (and to Jim as well), I listened to the new Areknames last night and again on my way to work this morning - very good stuff.  It brought Thork to mind more than Arachnoid, but based on one sleepy first listen and another distracted by my commute. Tongue
 
I also just now listened to the first 20 minute track on UTO's Magus...  Zounds!!  Amazing stuff.  Can't wait to get out of work and listen to the rest.  A big thanks for the recommendation.


Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 13:30
Originally posted by octopus-4

I've seen only today that "I Pooh" are on PA...how could it happen? The team has rejected my Barret-inspired Jennifer Gentle and gave room to one of the worst mellow italian mainstream? I agree that they have been on stage for more than 40 years and have done some beat in the 60s, they are very skilled musicians, but they are pure pop and not of the best kind...

Recently I went into "Il Castello di Atlante" and "Nuova Era".  Very good stuff. 
 
It is accepted that I Pooh are primaily a pop group and only got accepted by PA for a couple of albums or so. However it is PA's policy to include all albums by a band if they are deemed of being worthy of inclusion at all, even if only on the strength of one album. Notice though that they aren't in RPI and are in the crossover section, more suited to bands with a more mainstream approach.
 
Good choice for your recent listening selections. Thumbs Up


Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 13:41
http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=185 - L'Ippogrifo
http://www.progarchives.com/artist.asp?id=52 - Il Castello Di Atlante http://www.progarchives.com/## - Rock Progressivo Italiano
 
Studio Album, 1995
3.90 | 7 ratings
http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=185#buymusic - BUY
 
Review by http://www.progarchives.com/Collaborators.asp?id=10853 - octopus-4
 
Il Castello di Atlante is an invention of the XV century Italian poet Ludovico Ariosto. His masterpiece is "L'Orlando Furioso" and this is what "L'Ippogrifo is about". In few words Atlante is a magician whose Castle is a trap: everybody approaches the castle sees inside the thing that he desires more, so one is trapped into the castle by his own desires.
The band was formed at the beginning of the 70s, but they published their first album only in 1992. This means that also their first albums are "mature". Because of the arrangements and the production they could be considered neo-prog, but their roots are clearly symphonic. In years when bands like Banco and PFM followed the "Genesis trend" trying to become more commercial, this band was doing the good progressive as can be listened in this album.
 
[TUBE]QtCpvaLdCEo&feature=related[/TUBE]
 
While the music is inspired mainly by Genesis, or maybe Marillion, the vocals are typical of RPI. The first track can be compared to some long songs of the Fish era. I have Forgotten Sons in mind.
"Volta la Pagina" starts with acoustic guitar and keyboards (I think it's not a flute). Here the reference can be the early PFM but also Alphataurus. The violin part is very nice and leads to various changes in tempo.
 
[TUBE]p3YMXLZO2hc[/TUBE]
 
The title track is quite an epic, and the lyrics are about an episode of the mentioned "Orlando Furioso". Astolfo, the name can be easily catched, is one of the characters involved. The intro has a medieval taste until a Genesis like keyboard first, and piano later lead to the sung part. The coda is acoustic, conducted by piano, violin and bolero-drumming to the fadeout.
 
[TUBE]RgL7PaqKa3A&feature=related[/TUBE]
 
[TUBE]FVwkELY-4X4&feature=related[/TUBE]
 
"E recito anch'io" is very close to PFM, specially the first 3 minutes.
 
[TUBE]cWXpssotsME&feature=related[/TUBE]
 
"Pioggia" is a short melodic track. It looks like a filler, but is not bad anyway. It has a symph arrangement and reminds to some Jon and Vangelis. "Chrysalis" starts on the same pitch, so it's like Pioggia is just an intro to this track. This one is an auto-biographical song about the band in pure RPI style. I mean that this sequence of chords can be found in a lot of other RPI songs, but this is the kind of things that help in defining the stabdards of a sub-genre. Again very PFM, mainly because of the violin.
 
[TUBE]23urWq3lrR8&feature=related[/TUBE]
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23urWq3lrR8&feature=related - [TUBE]nBYTpBa6rJg&feature=related[/TUBE]
 
The closing track starts with bass and drums followed by piano. It's evident that the band's roots are in the 70s. A melodic instrumental of about 7 minutes. Not the higher moment of the album. It looks like they had to complete the recording "in time", a session put on tape without the care of the other songs. It could have been developed better, specially in the guitar solo that's not very impressive.
 
[TUBE]1EExoS4BbpU&feature=related[/TUBE]
 
With a bit more effort it could have been a 4 stars album. It is for the first half, but the overall rating can't be more than 3.
- - - -
 
Nice review...
 
You can find an interesting interview with the band http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=66019 - HERE
 
 
You can watch a whole concert of the band clicking http://www.unotv.net/unotv/index_uno.cfm?sector=titoli&page=tl_showVideo&tlCodiceID=21&ts=Il%20Castello%20Di%20Atlante%20in%20concerto%20al%20Prog%20Festival%20Verona - HERE
 


Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 02 2010 at 13:44
Vault Pick - I'll borrow Chris's great review of this more recent excellent album Clap.....
 
album.asp?id=18214"> Discesa aglinferi dun giovane amante by BACIO DELLA MEDUSA, IL album cover Studio Album, 2008
4.19 | 66 ratings

album.asp?id=18214#buymusic - BUY
album.asp?id=18214 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=27127 - seventhsojourn
Collaborator RPI Team

4 stars Discesa Agl'inferi D'un Giovane Amante is the title of the second album by Italian band Il Bacio Della Medusa. Although it was released as recently as 2008 it is highly typical of the classic RPI of the 1970s. It has been described as a concept album, the subject of which is the descent into Hell of a young lover. However it might also be appropriate to think of it as a rock opera, and one of the tracks is even titled Recitativo. For those of you who may not know, recitative in opera is sung narration. On this occasion more than any other I wish I understood the Italian lyrics, as the highly dramatic nature of this music has severely piqued my interest. Fortunately, PA Reviewer Andrea's review of the album incorporates a detailed synopsis of the plot.

The album opens and closes with some acoustic pieces that have a quasi-chamber music quality. Sandwiched between these is the meat of the album, a mixture of mostly heavy songs and instrumentals. In addition to the classical influence alluded to above, there are also elements of jazz and folk music on Discesa. All the tracks flow into one another, which enhances the feeling of grand scale on the album.

An approaching wind effect heralds Preludio: Il Trapasso, which features a beautiful yet doleful melody. Piano, flute and violin are joined by Simone Cecchini's grieving vocals. Confessione D'un Amante continues in a similar vein and employs the same texture as the opener. Piano arpeggios support the bittersweet violin melody, and on this song Cecchini's voice has a slightly harsher quality as he sings those gorgeous sounding words. Divine.

La Bestia E Il Delirio is the first instrumental track and features two main musical ideas. The first is a heavy, jazz-inflected theme with swirling organ, raucous electric guitar and staccato flute-play. The second theme is a sprightly bucolic dance featuring flute, pizzicato and bowed violin, and handclaps. It includes an accelerando that really gets the foot tapping, followed by some stops and starts before the first theme is reprised. The manic closing section features an organ and Moog joust that is only interrupted by a psychotic laugh. Thunder claps and a peeling bell introduce the ominous Recitativo: E Nel Buio Che Risplendono Le Stelle. A marching drumbeat accompanies the malevolent spoken word vocal, with evil laughs, whispers and gasps in the background. Creepy stuff. Some tormented screams introduce a heavy guitar and sax riff, with flute joining in toward the end.

Ricordi Del Supplizio continues in heavy mode with fuzzed organ and Eva Morelli's superb flute-play. Cecchini's singing is gruffer here and the torrid guitar and drums make this one heck of a rocker. There are a few moments of respite with the medieval-sounding intro of Nostalgia, Pentimento E Rabbia, featuring flute, acoustic guitar, vibes and sonorous drum rolls. The mood changes with a loose, swing-time rhythm and Simone Brozzetti's wah wah guitar. Cecchini's venomous vocals alternate with Morelli's flute in an anguished antiphon. A blistering guitar solo and a galloping rhythm on the bass and drums lead to a brief recapitulation of the swing riff.

Sudorazione A Freddo Sotto Il Chiaro Di Luna is the second instrumental track on the album. It also has a swing feel at its start with sax and organ to the fore. A heavy guitar and organ riff follows, before the track settles down with acoustic guitar, vibes and misty flute. Electric piano and jazzy guitar join in along with the rhythm section, producing a pleasantly laid-back groove. Some weird sounds lead to another heavy section where the organ mimics a storm, and the entire track is rounded off with a beautiful organ melody. The acoustic guitars and legato flute of Melencolia give it something of a Genesis air, although with distinct Italian vocals of course. Electric piano and whispered backing vocals further enhance the downcast mood of the song. Exquisite.

E Fu Allora... is a rather nondescript instrumental that mainly features jangling guitar and sax, although Brozzetti does impress with a sobbing fuzzed guitar solo. After its subdued intro, the tempo of Nosce Te Ipsum picks up with some lovely interplay between violin, organ, wah wah guitar and a hint of sax. Another stop-start section leads into some heavy riffing, then a heavily syncopated part.

Corale Per Messa Da Requiem witnesses a return to the chamber atmosphere from the beginning of the album. This is an elegiac choral piece that reflects the sorrowful mood of the subject. Epilogo then closes the album as it had started, the final notes being a beautiful ritardando that fades in the wind.

If you are a fan of RPI but don't have this in your collection I would urge you to buy a copy of this incredible album at the earliest opportunity. For those who only have a passing interest in Italian prog I would still recommend it highly.



Posted By: seventhsojourn
Date Posted: August 04 2010 at 16:34
My copy of Clowns arrived this morning... looking forward to my first full play. Been listening to Finisterre albums most of the day; working on it guys, honest! Smile And you're right Jim, In Limine is a very unusual album... but also very good!


Posted By: seventhsojourn
Date Posted: August 04 2010 at 16:48
OK, let's just have the full review. Wonderful! Clap
 
 
http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=353"> In Limine by FINISTERRE album cover Studio Album, 1996
3.75 | 20 ratings

http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=353#buymusic - BUY
http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=353 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by http://www.progarchives.com/Collaborators.asp?id=12042 - Finnforest
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator / RPI Specialist

4 stars One of Italy's finest recordings of the 90s

So, so good. When I complained a bit about the relative lack of surprises in Finisterre's most recent album "La Meccanica Naturale" I had yet to become fully acquainted with their second album "In Limine." So it's a bit ironic that they answered my main criticism almost to the letter and then went on to land a square knockout punch to my prog jaw. I am very comfortable calling "In Limine" one of the coolest progressive music albums of the 1990s. So many (though not all, of course) of the modern prog releases from the Neo and Symphonic genres leave me decidedly unimpressed with their shiny, visual arts firm designed packaging, their clichéd affirmational lyrics, their cheesy sing-song choruses and most disturbingly, their predictability. As I've mentioned before I can grab one of these supposed new masterpieces, listen to one song, and know exactly what the next 65 minutes have in store for me.ouch! This is not that experience. "In Limine" gives you quality modern prog with touches of folk, great beauty, and eclectic surprise. You will experience lush classical touches, dreamscapes, and jazzy teasings. You will hear great performances of organic and acoustic sounds that pay homage to the 1970s masters, but do not simply attempt to imitate. You will not know what the whole album holds in store after hearing the first track. You will not be able to sing along to everything, you might occasionally be turned off by seemingly abrupt changes of mood or style (and thank God for that.) You will remember what a great prog experience feels like and you'll ask why more bands can't make albums with this much personality and irreverence for musical vanity. Some complain the album lacks direction and while there is some truth to the charge, for me the music is so satisfying that it overcomes any sniff of having too many cooks in the musical kitchen.

"In Limine" begins with a brisk flute like dancing that trades with guitar, each part having a different drum part. Soon the keys begin to intrude but are quickly interrupted by the flute dance again. They return for some really cool stereo panning effects and nice melody. Then things change to jazzy piano and unsettling chaos of different instruments and it gets dark. Soon the flute leads us from the darkness with gorgeous melody which leads to a lovely Gilmour-ish sounding solo with organ behind, oh man this is nice. "XXV" starts with flute and acoustic going right into the first vocal, very laid back and pleasant. The music is a mix of keys, acoustic guitar and some woodwinds. Another lovely guitar solo with good bass and drumming behind it. Things gets blissfully like a dream or a drug trip on "Preludio" with its whispers, secrets and more whispers. You hear these clearly audible people speaking to each other but you can't quite make out what they're saying. In front of that you have droning bass and wave upon wave of electric guitar notes rolling over you, joined by saxophone too I believe. This is the kind of strange and mystifying track that we should expect more of from current artists. "Ideenkleid Leibnitz Frei" is a fairly avant piece for Finisterre, the first half being a rough and chaotic frenzy of sounds. The second half is a quiet space jazz with free bass and drums to strange synths sounds and guitar squirks. The ending brings another rather discordant mish-mash of sound imagery. "Hispanica" uses flute, sax, cello, and acoustic guitars to very pleasant effect leading to the first vocal verse, which features some very nice harmonies. It just refuses to be predictable taking little disjointed turns here and there, after a quirky bridge the song takes on a Spanish flavour with some folk-oriented acoustic guitar runs. After this section enters the piano playing a slow dreamy section with flute and acoustic followed by another vocal. There is an enormous variety just in this one track! "Interludio" is a short acoustic piece accented with flute, cello, and gorgeous recorder.a totally engrossing meditative mind break leading to the two last tracks which are also the longest at 13 minutes and 16 minutes respectively. "Algos" starts with unsettling piano that is beautifully played. After 2 ½ minutes the band breaks down the door and we have electric guitar dueling with the flute and keys, to a rather forceful beat. After another mellow section things go a bit insane and we soon find ourselves in an aural nightmare with strange vocals choirs and electronica, including the album's biggest mistake: someone getting carried away with the synth sounds from Dark Side of the Moon. It's cool for a minute but it goes on too long and just reminds you of Floyd, which is not a distraction I want while listening to this great album. Finally that section ceases and we find ourselves listening to strings and sax in a lovely classical section finished with piano. The album finishes like fine wine with the 7-part suite entitled "Orizzonte Degli Eventi." Flute and fantastic strummed acoustic guitar are joined by cello as the first verse begins. This section is characterized by repetitious, pretty melodic playing. The next part picks up the pace with more urgent vocals backed by mellotron and edgy electric rhythm guitar chugging along, some nice leads thrown in here and there. The track gets increasingly guitar heavy as it rolls forward with some excellent drum and keyboard performances. The ending is an exciting, emotional guitar solo over blue skies keyboards and thunderclouds drumming.

This album is recommended for fans of Italian music and highly recommended for anyone looking for beautiful yet slightly bizarre music. If you like more the more conventional, pop-prog releases that get so much attention in the marketplace, you might want to steer clear of this black sheep that can be so blissfully confounding. If you took a few shakes of Pierrot Lunaire and Orme, whisked that into some Gotic and added a modern edge to the production, you might have an idea what the In Limine cakes tastes like. It's a good cake. I will jab them a bit for the unfortunate album cover they chose. There are 3 or 4 other cool photos/drawings in the cd artwork that would have made a far better album cover than the silly image they chose. Nevertheless, "In Limine" is a wonderful album.

 


Posted By: Todd
Date Posted: August 04 2010 at 18:24
Great review of a wonderful, unique album.  Jim, I seem to remember you had this at five stars at one point.  Am I remembering wrong?

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"A good album should always be much more about questions than answers." Bill Bruford

http://gnosis2000.net/ratertodd.shtml" rel="nofollow - My Gnosis Ratings


Posted By: Todd
Date Posted: August 04 2010 at 18:26
[QUOTE=seventhsojourn]My copy of Clowns arrived this morning... looking forward to my first full play.[QUOTE]
 
I think you'll have lots of fun with this one!  I really look forward to hearing your thoughts about it.


-------------
"A good album should always be much more about questions than answers." Bill Bruford

http://gnosis2000.net/ratertodd.shtml" rel="nofollow - My Gnosis Ratings


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 04 2010 at 19:47
^^

Probably right, I do adjust ratings and reviews as necessary, if my opinion changes over time.
And thanks guys.


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Posted By: Deleuze
Date Posted: August 04 2010 at 20:50
Originally posted by topographicbroadways

I just ordered Museo Rosenbach - Zarathustra  

I can't wait to hear it, i hear it is one of the greats and i have yet to be disappointed or underwhelmed by a recommendation like that


I can guarantee you that you'll love it.I'm actually reading

Thus Spoke Zarathustra

from Nietzsche, an unexplainable feeling :P. I understand italian, lyrics relate perfectly to the book.
Good purchase Clap


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Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 05 2010 at 21:30
 Clap
../album.asp?id=19446"> Folk Destroyers by I TRENI ALLALBA album cover Studio Album, 2008
4.00 | 2 ratings

../album.asp?id=19446#buymusic - BUY
../album.asp?id=19446 - Eclectic Prog

Review by ../Collaborators.asp?id=2304 - andrea
Prog Reviewer

4 stars I Treni All'Alba are prog band from the north western Italy that was formed between Aosta and Turin in 2002. The line up features Paolo Carlotto (acoustic and electric guitar), Daniele Pierini (acoustic and electric guitar), Sabino Pace (piano and keyboards) and Felice Sciscioli (drums and percussion). All the members are experienced musicians with different influences that managed to shape an amazing blend of folk and progressive rock. In 2008 they released their first full length album "Folk Destroyers" for the independent label Smartz Records. The album was recorded with the help of some guest musicians that contributed to enrich the sparkling sound of the band, with counter bass, flutes, sax, congas, trumpet, violin, accordion and many other musical colours.

"Watch TV, buy, obey the authorities, do not think, do believe in the collective truth, no ideas, no imagination..." . The only vocal parts on this album are some ominous warnings freely taken from "They Live", a 1988 film directed by John Carpenter where aliens rule on society and control humans through the TV broadcasts and mass media. The single tracks have no titles but each track is described in the beautiful booklet by a drawing by Domenico Sorrenti. The music flows away like in a long suite where quiet acoustic and folkloric passages melt in fiery percussion rides and vice versa. Some sources of inspiration could be find in the album "Anime salve" by Fabrizio De André, then you can find reminders of samba, tarantella, Ravel, Piazzolla, Le Orme and PFM...

Some words taken from a book by the Italian writer Stefano Benni that you can find on the booklet try to describe the right approach to this work: "We should always feel like we are leaving the next day, or like we have just got back. Everything becomes more precious: what we leave and what we find. To hear the tiny voice of hope , beyond the screams of pain. It could be interesting to come to a train station to find it... hope.". The name of the band, I Treni All'Alba, means the trains at dawn...

On the whole an excellent album!



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Posted By: andrea
Date Posted: August 06 2010 at 00:32

^^ great album...

 
Here's the link where you can find it:
http://www.smartzrecords.org/artists/itreniallalba/ - http://www.smartzrecords.org/artists/itreniallalba/


Posted By: toroddfuglesteg
Date Posted: August 06 2010 at 05:49

Angelo Branduardi's La Luna album............ WOW !!!!!!!!!!!

 




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Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 06 2010 at 09:39
^ hmmmm, wonder if Mr. Walker has the Branduardi.....

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Posted By: Todd
Date Posted: August 06 2010 at 10:31

Branduardi's first two albums, the second of which is La Luna, have been out of print for a while.  He rerecorded the album and added a few songs for his 1980 album Gulliver, La Luna e Altri Disegni.  That's the only access to those compositions I've been able to track down personally, and I really enjoy them. 

In fact, I have to admit that I absolutely love Branduardi.


-------------
"A good album should always be much more about questions than answers." Bill Bruford

http://gnosis2000.net/ratertodd.shtml" rel="nofollow - My Gnosis Ratings


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 06 2010 at 11:47
Todd, you are going to have to launch a blog on availability issues with RPI titles.  There is no one more on top of this stuff than you.  Clap

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Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 06 2010 at 18:12
Vault Pick: Well worth getting but only seems to be available as a Japanese import at the moment which isn't cheap...
 
album.asp?id=4739"> Reale Accademia Di Musica  by REALE ACCADEMIA DI MUSICA album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.15 | 40 ratings

album.asp?id=4739#buymusic - BUY
album.asp?id=4739 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=16136 - LinusW
Special Collaborator Italian Prog Team

4 stars 1972 was in many ways a golden year for the Italian Symphonic Rock movement, with titles such as Storia Di Un Minuto and Per Un Amico from PFM, Bancos's debut plus Darwin! and Le Orme's Uomo Di Pezza. Bands and albums that are familiar if not by nature, surely by name to many proggers out there, all seen as perhaps the most representative of their particular sub-genre.

But 1972 is also the year that spawned Reale Accademia Di Musica's self-titled first album, after being successful on the Italian festival scene under this name and I Fholks for a while. Perhaps that makes this album even more interesting in the discussion of pioneering efforts of this movement.

What this album presents the listener is predominantly a very lush symphonic landscape, with soaring Mellotron strings and various keys together with an earthier blues-rock touch in a mellow Atomic Rooster and Deep Purple area. Don't expect to hear clear influences from those bands, it's just to categorise parts of the sound in something with substance. Not always an easy task, believe me. It's heavy on piano, based around the piano on some tracks - acoustic and electric - and in my eyes that's always a good sign, adding delicacy and poignancy like no other similar instrument, and it really is the albums big bonus.

It's no surprise that many reviews mention the similarity to PFM, or more precisely the earlier PFM, with regards to the sweet romantic melodies and becoming melancholy. Vocals are very pleasing, never really grasping for either emotional highs or lows, which has different prospects for different people. But where PFM aims for more grandeur on Storia Di Un Minuto (which I consider closest to RADM), this is in many ways a more down-to-earth AND a more spacey album (and also stripped from the clearer classical influences of PFM). Instead of choosing one, why don't take both and place it on top of the omnipresent symphonic properties? The down-to-earth part is pretty self-evident, with the blues-rockier approach on both structure and instruments (especially the guitarist presents some rather familiar licks) that can be found on songs like Vertigine and Padre. Ognuno Sa also has a slight boogie-feeling to it, contributed almost exclusively by the piano. The spacious bits and pieces are a little harder to explain. But on Favola and Il Mattiono and then scattered around the other songs are quite lengthy parts with a clear and crisp not to say dreamy and distant, quality to them. These are what thrill me the most; exciting, enticing and inviting in a strangely beautiful way.

I'd say three tracks affect me more than the rest: Favola, Il Mattino and Padre. With a sensitive, hypnotizing guitar in that indescribable Mediterranean style, Favola is a mellow and relaxing tune, with a dreamy interlude from the keys in the middle. Comforting, and yet deeply sinister, it evokes a mildly unpleasant uncertainty I find irresistible.

Il Mattino is the killer track here, beginning with another crisp and soothing display, this time lead by a melodic piano. And then it just explodes. Distinct build-up from bass and drums with an escalating tone from the keys, it soon turns into a fest of crescendo after crescendo, a tsunami of musical energy with the piano riding on its top. Unstoppable as it might seem, it suddenly.just stops, falling back into a reprise of the dreamy first part. A powerful example of how important structure is when making music of any kind.

Repeating a theme from the keys over and over again, a slow, yearning and slightly darker build up from the rest of the instruments launches Padre. Guitar-driven and tense, it has a certain Dazed and Confused vibe to it from time to time and leaves a lot of space for keys-induced atmosphere and plenty of emotions. A song that just works on many levels.

Pleasant, lush and melodic and not particularly challenging are the keywords for yet another Italian success. If not for the band, at least for us listeners.

Heartily recommended. 4 stars.

//LinusW



Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 06 2010 at 23:24
Ahhh, Linus my boy.  My favorite PA reviewer, bar none.  That's one of his mid gear reviews, you should see some of his best ones.....no one describes sound like the Wik.  

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Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 07 2010 at 13:44
Vault Pick  Thumbs Up
 
album.asp?id=2820"> Sun Supreme  by IBIS album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.08 | 29 ratings

album.asp?id=2820#buymusic - BUY
album.asp?id=2820 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=4388 - Andrea Cortese
Special Collaborator Italian Prog Specialist

5 stars "climb the point and we can't reason why. Overhead, another kind of sky. How we can wait? We see vision of majesty..."

After the release of their classic album Searching for a Land, it was quite clear that New Trolls' members couldn't remain together longer. Too much the differences between musical ideas of the two enemy/friends Nico di Palo and Aldo De Scalzi. Two leaders cannot easily share the same place!

So the band split up but the litigation continued in the Civil Courts for the use of the famous name of the band. De Scalzi won the game while Di Palo, after a first album titled "Canti d'Innocenza, Canti di Esperienza" under the undefined name of "Nico, Gianni, Frank, Maurizio" thought it was a good idea to ask the fans which would have been the best choice. IBIS was what fans suggested him, and so Ibis it was for the second album of the band, the memorable "Sun Supreme".

"Sun Supreme" is a wonderful gem, magnificient opus with strong performances of guitars, acoustic and electric guitars. I was really blown away since the very first listening 'cause I did not expect such high standard of quality. Di Palo wanted to explore more hard rock territories but he and the band knew how to mix their choice with a relevant progressive structure that still remains well imprinted in the record. Flute and keyboards never seem to go too far. Vocals provided by Di Palo are fine and lyrics are completely sung in english 'cause they strongly hoped this work could have been a starting point for greater success even outside of Italy. A special mention goes for the drummer, a certain Ric Parnell, ex Atomic Rooster.

The opus is a subtle concept on spirituality and ascension of spirit to the highest peaks of interior consciousness. The metaphore is the climbing of a high mountain upon which, over the clouds, the one who can be there will have the opportunity to see and contemplate Divinity.Two long suites then, one for each half of the album. Titled respectevely "Divine Mountain/Journey of Life" and "Divinity", both divided in shorter sections (and even sub-sections).

The music is so refined and different from what we're used to listen to from the italian classic prog scene. An interesting mix between Led Zeppelin and King Crimson (with only a Jethro Tull's touch): folky and symphonic with a strong "heavy-prog" structure. Some keyboards' and vocals parts are worth of mention for they really help to improve the general standard of the album.

A full five stars rating is the correct evaluation, in my humble opinion. Wonderful! Hope to read many other opinions on this site. I'm so curious to know what people think of it!!



Posted By: seventhsojourn
Date Posted: August 07 2010 at 14:40
Yep, Sun Supreme is a fine album but, dare I say it, it sounds a bit too close to Yes. Just my opinion , mind. Good album, just not a 5 for me though. Thumbs Up


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 07 2010 at 16:08
I just watched a show called "Visions of Italy" on PBS which takes an aerial view of the country from a helicopter.  So fun to see all of the towns and cities we read about every day in bios and reviews.  The photography is stunning and set to classical music, highly recommended if you like that kind of thing.  Italy must be the most beautiful country in the world. 

http://www.wliw.org/productions//travel/visions-of-italy-northern-style/382/ - Short video preview


Click to close image, click and drag to move. Use arrow keys for next and previous.


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Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 07 2010 at 17:23
^ It's my intention to go one day and come back with a suitcase full of Italian prog cd's. Big smile Pity BTF shut up their shop.


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 07 2010 at 17:40
BTF is gone?  You mean just the brick and mortar store?  Not the website I hope.  

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Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 08 2010 at 04:03
Yes, don't worry Jim, just the bricks and mortar store, the website and label is still up and running.


Posted By: opethpainter
Date Posted: August 08 2010 at 19:48
BTF is still alive. Working for them, I can tell you they are. :)


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 08 2010 at 19:49
Originally posted by opethpainter

BTF is still alive. Working for them, I can tell you they are. :)


Heart


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Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 09 2010 at 15:13
Vault Pick: A classic Thumbs Up
 
album.asp?id=103"> Crac ! by AREA album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.25 | 63 ratings

album.asp?id=103#buymusic - BUY
album.asp?id=103 - Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Collaborators.asp?id=2304 - andrea
Prog Reviewer

5 stars After the explosive debut album "Arbeit macht frei" and the experimental and controversial second one "Caution Radiation Area", in 1974 Area released "Crac!", probably their best known and accessible work. It was recorded by the classic line up featuring Giulio Capiozzo (drums, percussion), Patrizio Fariselli (electric and acoustic piano, synthesizers, clarinet), Ares Tavolazzi (bass, trombone), Paolo Tofani (electric guitar, synthesizer, flute) and Demetrio Stratos (vocals, organ, harpsichord, percussion). Gianni Sassi, Area's producer and "ideologist", wrote the lyrics and took care of the art cover. In the liner notes there are some words by Spanish "guerrillero" and anarchist Bueneaventura Durruti that should help the comprehension of this work... "We don't fear the ruins. We'll inherit the Earth. The bourgeoisie will have to smash its world into pieces before go out from the scene of history. We bring a new world into us and this world is growing, every moment passing by. It's growing, right now that I'm talking to you...".

The opener "L'elefante bianco" (The white elephant) is full of rebellious energy and blends rock with Oriental influences. It invites you to search for the obsolete rules that do not work anymore and to break them in a radical way... "Run fast boy, keep on running / People say it's your fault / White shadows, old powers are shamelessly buying the world / Old images, stupid saints are leaving everything as it is / Look foreword boy, don't think about it / History is running along with you / Run fast boy, keep on running / People say it's your fault / Take everything, don't stop / Fire is burning your virtue / Lift up your fist boy, do not tremble / Look at reality straight in the face...".

Next comes "La mela di Odessa" (The Apple from Odessa), a complex track that begins with experimental sounds and a drum solo... It tells in an allegoric way the story of a dadaist artist, a certain Apple, that in 1920 hijacked a German ship and led it to the seaport of Odessa, in the communist world. The people celebrated Aplle's heroic action blowing up the ship... Demetrio Stratos' exuberant and theatrical recitative vocals soar from a fiery rhythm pattern narrating this terrorist act like a fairy tale..."Once upon a time, there was an apple riding a leaf..."...

"Megalopoli" (Megalopolis) is an instrumental track that begins with synthesizers and vocals used as an instrument, then, after a drum roll, rhythm takes off blending modernity and tribal rhythms. According to some interviews with the band this piece was inspired by the construction of Brasilia, the capital city of Brazil, and by the blind megalomania of some governments that waste money building modern and useless cathedrals in the desert instead to think to the primary needs of their people...

"Nervi scoperti" (On edge) is a vibrant and tense jazz rock piece that leads to "Gioia e rivoluzione" (Joy and revolution), that after a peculiar introduction, features strummed acoustic guitars and powerful melodic lines... "I sing for you who come to listen to me / I play for you who don't want to understand me / I laugh for you, who can't dream... We fight our battle / With the sound of our fingers... My machine-gun is a counter-bass / Shooting into your face what I think about life...". It's one of the best known Area's songs.

"Implosion" is an instrumental track that begins calmly and then develops with sudden changes of mood and rhythm allowing the musicians to showcase their great musicianship while the last track "Area 5" is a short piece of "contemporary classical music" composed for the band by Juan Hidalgo and Walter Marchetti, two followers of John Cage. A bizarre way to conclude a great album!

Well, you can like or dislike Area's committed approach to music and share or not their revolutionary point of views about art and life but this is for sure one of the most influential album of the Italian prog scene of the early seventies and a must for every prog lover...



Posted By: Cosmiclawnmower
Date Posted: August 09 2010 at 16:10
Hello everyoneSmile
I'm new to the progarchives forums and RPI forum looking for a little advice; ive been listening to progressive music since the 70's and got into the Italian scene through its most obvious proponents; PFM, Banco, New Trolls etc . After working for an Italian family (who were amazed i knew any of these bands) i aquired some more obscure stuff & then in recent years picked up a few more lps (after trips to Italy) but am very keen to discover more. i'm very much a vinyl man which makes tracking down this stuff expensive and complicated- you guys obviously really know your stuff and i would love to hear your top 5 (or more) lps you think i should hunt down next. I'll quickly list my favorites..
PFM Storia di un minuto/ per un Amico ( ihave all the others but these are my faves)
Banco Darwin/ io sono nato libero (,,   ,,  ,,  ,, etc)
New Trolls (all early lps)
New Trolls Atomic System
Alphataurus( my Fave!)
Osanna, Palepoli
Quella vecchia locanda(my Fave!)
il volo
Alusa Fallax, intorno alla mia cattiva educazzione (another fave!)
Metamorfosi, Inferno,
And more recently Finnesterre, Tale cue, Standarte & Nuova era.
I was given an I pooh lp which sounds like Queen (at BEST...)Confused
I have felona & sorona by Le Orme which i dont rate much but know they have much better lps...
Any ideas, suggestions & views to help enrich this middle aged Italian prog fans life very much appreciated!!!  All the Best to All!! JR


Posted By: Nightfly
Date Posted: August 09 2010 at 18:06
Hi John and welcome! To name my top 5 would be really tough but many of the bands you mention feature highly as favourites of mine. I see Biglietto Per L'Inferno are missing on your list so I'd deffinitely give them a listen. As you like vinyl (original 70's pressings not easy to come by) I was looking to see what BTF have available that you may like   http://www.btf.it/default.asp?id_tipo=3 - http://www.btf.it/default.asp?id_tipo=3  
You could try from this page (some of my favs)  Campo Di Marte, Raccomandata Con Ricevuta Di Ritorno, Cherry Five, Maxophone, Procession and Area for starters though for Area I'd start with the first 3 which aren't listed as on vinyl at BTF as far as I know.
 
Also have a look here http://www.progarchives.com/subgenre.asp?style=28 - http://www.progarchives.com/subgenre.asp?style=28  if you haven't already. Lots of wonderful stuff like Semiramis, Rovescio Della Medaglia, Cervello (as you like Osanna), Ibis, Torre Del Alchimista (newer), Il Bacio Della Medusa (also newer) and that's just the top 100! I could go on but enough for now. Happy hunting and listening. Smile
 
By the way, if you don't like Felona E Sorona ( a highly rated Le Orme album) they may not be the band for you so I'd investigate the other areas I mentioned first.


Posted By: Finnforest
Date Posted: August 09 2010 at 20:11
Welcome JohnBig smile, we always love it when a new RPI addict enthusiast strolls into our mist.  You'll find a gold mine of picks in this thread and the previous one, which you can link to in the first post of this thread.  Also I have my top 20 somewhere in the Lists section, you can probably find it if you search Finnforest in the title.  It needs updating but there's good stuff there.

QVL is a fave of mine too, I assume you have both.  If not, there's a slam dunk for you.  Also don't miss Campo Di Marte, Semiramis, Cervello, Latte Miele, Jacula (if you like dark, weird stuff), Museo Rosenbach, Jumbo, and for something new try Il Ruscello or Lagartija.  If you don't have the BAnco debut that is essential. 

I find it so hard to make suggestions anymore, as I could now list hundred of Italian releases that are significant to me.  Trying to make suggestions is like picking your favorite child.  Wacko


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