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Nodo Gordiano - Sonnar CD (album) cover

SONNAR

Nodo Gordiano

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.04 | 67 ratings

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Matti
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Sonnar is the fifth album by NODO GORDIANO, but the first one that I listen to. The band from Rome already has a long history with several changes in the line-up. Here the creative unit is formed by Andrea De Luca (stringed instruments and keyboards) and Davide Guidoni, probably best known from Daal, who plays percussives and keyboards. On board are also Filippo Brilli on wind instruments and Natalia Suvorina as a vocalist.

I might as well start by saying that the music screams King Crimson. Not the early era (except '21st Century Schizoid Man' perhaps) but the more experimental and edgier output. The rhythms are very complex, the atmosphere is often quite sinister and there's a certain "free jazz + avant + metal" spirit reminiscent of what's heard in Crimso's music, and what could be called Crimsonesque. The female voice on this hard boiled album isn't any softening feature either. Mostly the music is instrumental, and hardly ever song oriented per se.

The 9-minute opener 'Only Fool! Only Poet!' starts promisingly with a creepy atmosphere but the vocal parts sound mostly too cold and monotonous to make the piece significantly better than it would have been as an instrumental. The second track has an intense sound full of saxophone a la King Crimson or VdGG. There are some moments with brief backround vocals to underline the schizoid frenzy. 'Charun' is a deeply sinister, nightmarish instrumental with interesting percussion.

'After Dusk' is a 20-minute epic containing eight movements, according to the leaflet. After the free- jazzy intro ('Promenade') comes a vivid portrait of a "21st century schizoid girl", one of the coolest and grooviest moments of the album. Unfortunately the epic has very little for me to enjoy. The Crimsonesque intensity is way too constant without much space to take a breath. Also the calmer and slower sections maintain the dark and hostile atmosphere, and the fresh melodies are absent. Sorry, not my cup of tea. Too bad I don't even like the vocals, as you may have guessed at this point.

'Vanth' is a dark-toned instrumental with a psychedelic feel. My favourite is the title track in the end: it has fascinating, esoteric moments of spaceyness, and the vocal parts add a needed, more or less song oriented element to what is basically another instrumental.

Two stars might be closer to my subjective level of enjoyment, but I add one star and recommend this album for those progsters that appreciate the avant flavour and Crimsonesque hard edge.

Matti | 3/5 |

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