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Ars Nova (JAP) - Fear & Anxiety CD (album) cover


Ars Nova (JAP)


Symphonic Prog

3.01 | 45 ratings

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Special Collaborator
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
3 stars Not an EL&P clone. Of course when a lineup is made of keyboards, drums and bass it's easy to make this comparison. Instead of ELP, I think they are closer to bands like Niacin (same kind of trio). This debut album has of course some contact points with ELP but no more than a generic influence of classical music. A difference respect to ELP is that Keith Emerson is more influenced by moderrn authors like Stravinskij and in some way Gershwin and Copland. Ars Nova are more "european" in this sense.

The album is good and well played. In Particular, House of Ben, the 3rd track has good moments and varies from a baroque organ, more "a la Wakeman", to jazzy accents in the Niacin style. The only track really close to the ELP style is Prominence, but also this is less ELP influenced than some more acclaimed artists like Par Lindh Project. I also want to remind that many of the bands of the Eastern Europe were strongly influenced by ELP and have never been considered clones, also because they are excellent bands. I mean the Slovakian Collegium Musicum and the Hungarian After Crying.

"Fata Morgana" is a gothic track that could be the soundtrack of a horror b-movie like some good RPI bands, and Emerson himself did in the 70s for the Italian cinema. The cymbal sound that drives the first section of this track reminds to Keith Emerson's "La Chiesa" or to Goblin's "Profondo Rosso". The second of the two is a sort of masterpiece of the genre and Fata Morgana doesn't have anything less, apart a bit more of psychedelia. It doesn't have the orchestral accent typical of ELP in "Works" and could be easily classified into RPI, not only for the Italian title. What lacks is maybe the continuity, because the transitions between the different parts are not always "soft" and at the end it's more like a patchworks of short pieces (like a b-movie horror sountrack can be expected to be).

It's a promising album from a promising group, not enough mature to have four stars, but good enough for 3.

octopus-4 | 3/5 |


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