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Nathan - Era CD (album) cover




Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.66 | 30 ratings

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3 stars In 2016 this promising Italian prog band released their acclaimed debut CD entitled Nebulosa, in 2018 the successor Era, now as a four piece formation, with guest musicians on choirs, backing vocals and guitars.

They start the album with Figli Di Cane: a modern sound with a tight and powerful rhythm-section and harder- edged guitar, embellished with electric piano, organ and fat synthesizer flights, and topped with strong Italian vocals. Halfway a dreamy part featuring soaring keyboards, warm vocals and twanging acoustic guitars (evoking early Genesis). Then a bombastic eruption with organ and propulsive guitar riffs, flashy synthesizer runs and fiery guitar, accompanied by Mellotron choirs. The music turns into a dynamic mid-tempo with moving Italian vocals and fiery electric guitar work, slowly the music fades away, Nathan has delivered a captivating first musical impression, to me it sound like a modern blend of Seventies symphonic rock and Nineties Neo-Prog.

The next three compositions are 'trademark Nathan': a modern blend of symphonic rock and Neo-Prog with frequent shifting moods and a lot of soli on keyboards and guitar, topped with powerful Italian vocals. My highlights are a fiery guitar solo with howling runs in Invisibile, sensitive Hackett-like guitar and a spectacular break with propulsive guitar riffs and fat synthesizer flights in Le Vie Dei Canti and varied keyboard work and harder-edged guitar play in L'ultimo Giro. Although there is a lot to enjoy in these three songs sometimes my attention slips away. Because the atmospheres sound a bit similar, or more like a cascade of nice musical ideas than a composition.

The dynamic song L'Ombra Del Falco alternates between dreamy and bombastic: from twanging acoustic guitars with soaring keyboards, tender piano, delicate flute and warm vocals to a powerful mid-tempo with dynamic drums, a powerful male voice and fine female vocal harmonies and sumptuous keyboards and harder-edged guitar play. A kind of 'Neo-Prog meets 70-77 Genesis' (Tony Banks Mellotron, organ and synthesizer sound).

Next Indaco, my highlight on this CD. First a dreamy part with melancholical vocals, tender piano and synthesizer work and a majestic Mellotron violin sound. Gradually the music has turned into a slow rhythm with soft synthesizer flights and Mellotron drops, culminating in compelling soli on electric guitar and Minimoog, goose bumps! The final part delivers first a mellow interlude with warm piano and Mellotron, and then a bombastic finale featuring Mellotron and powerful electric guitar.

The final two tracks are a bit more song-oriented (Maschere has even hit potential), alternating between symphonic rock, Nineties Neo-Prog(Arena, Everon) and AOR (Eighties Styx and Kansas): strong Italian vocals, lots of shifting moods and breaks, often powerful and bombastic, layered with harder-edged guitar play and tasteful keyboards (electric piano, Minimoog, Hammond, Mellotron).

My rating: 3,5 star.

The first edition of this review was recently published on Dutch prog website Background Magazine.

TenYearsAfter | 3/5 |


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