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La Coscienza Di Zeno - SensitivitÓ CD (album) cover


La Coscienza Di Zeno


Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.91 | 190 ratings

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4 stars La Coscienza di Zeno now looks like the real deal, a potential RPI giant that will keep the flame of Italian prog burning brightly for many decades. Their sublime debut album had all the hallmarks of a stunning discovery of various talents, especially the voice of Alessio Calandriello , not to mention some stellar musicianship from a Goblin/Banco dual keyboard attack, with lush guitar, as well as rock solid bass and drums. Thankfully, only a slight line- up change was penciled in for this effort, a switch of ivoryman Andrea Lotti for the seasoned Luca Scherani (H÷stsonaten), so the backbone is still in place. Generally, there is a sophomore jinx and my expectations are always to, at the very most, equal the first offering. CDZ does that with a great amount of flair, as all musicians conspire to shine brightly once again.

Calandriello has an inspiring and full voice, quite original in his highest note presentation and knows how to ratchet up the emotion. He also can tone it down into a shuddering whisper. Guitarist Davide Serpico is rather keen on meaty riffs and occasional twisted leads, bassist Gabriele Guidi Colombi carves some strenuous lines throughout, helping ex-Finisterre drummer Andrea Orlando affirm with authority. But, CDZ's claim to fame is the double keyboard formula which gives the arrangements enormous depth and width, brilliant in dabbing little detailed splotches of mellotron where strategically needed, whilst leaving the gorgeous piano to lead the electric orchestra. To tighten the excitement, a barrage of synthesized wizardry surfaces often and willingly. Both Scherani and Stefano Agnini really know how to play the ivories. The mellower pieces such as the soporific "Tenue" are leaning towards jazzier confines, which only increase the pleasure and the flow. These lads are capable of hurtling like a Ferrari or gliding along silken Venetian waters on a gondola. The results are breathtaking as evidenced by the sterling title composition as well as the epic finale "Temperanza", both glittering prog prizes, both happening to be the longest pieces here.

That is not to say that the band has not mastered the 7 minute extravaganza as "Chiusa 1915", "Tensegrita", the frantic "Pauvre Misere" and the slick opener all qualify as utterly successful and each with their own identity and character.

I am still rapturously enamored by their debut disc (and its startling artwork), so many more spins will be needed to anoint "Sensitivita" with an equal score, but I am working hard on it. CDZ has immense talents, so I need to do my usual 'concentrate on one instrument throughout' formula and really revel in the prowess displayed by each player. But even the initial spin is quite delirious, full of inventive playfulness and bold confidence. Their music requires, no demands! repeat visits, a true sign of genius. A fabulous talent!

4.5 sophomore reactions

tszirmay | 4/5 |


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