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Taproban - Ogni Pensiero Vola CD (album) cover




Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.34 | 45 ratings

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4 stars Taproban began life in Rome in 1996 on the initiative of keyboardist Gianluca De Rossi and drummer Fabio Mociatti. The name of the band was inspired by the ancient name of Ceylon or Sri-Lanka where Italian philosopher Tommaso Campanella (1568 ? 1639) settled his imaginary "City of the Sun". After many troubles and line up changes, in 2002 Taproban released their debut album, "Ogni pensiero vola" (Every thought flies) on the French label Musea Records with a line up featuring founder member Gianluca De Rossi (keyboards, moog, synthesizers, acoustic guitar, vocals) along with Davide Guidoni (drums, percussion) and Guglielmo Mariotti (bass, acoustic and classical guitar, mandolin, vocals). The mainly sources of inspiration of the band are Emerson Lake & Palmer and Le Orme but the music is not too derivative and perfectly fits the concept. Music and lyrics, in fact, were inspired by a very peculiar place, the Garden of Bomarzo, near Viterbo, also known as the park of Monsters of Bomarzo. It's a monumental complex created by the prince Pierfrancesco Orsini in the XVI century and composed of small buildings and a wooden park populated by strange sculptures. It was built not to please but to astonish and its symbolism is arcane, according to the liner notes, the band tried to transpose in music the ideal dimension behind this artistic creation, that consists of "non-conformist and parodistic overturning of the Renaissance stylistic principles of balance and harmony, proposing instead a horrid and grotesque version of classical mythology and chivalric epic". Well, it's high time now to visit the park following a musical path between mythology and fantasy...

The opener "Prologo" (Prologue) starts with dark sounds and hypnotic percussive patterns, then tension melts in an dreamy acoustic passage... The prince Pierfrancesco Orsini from a window of his castle seems still to be observing the statues of his garden... "You, who are coming in, leave out every thought / Until you'll reach your goal...".

"L'enigma della Sfinge" (The Sphinx enigma) is full of vibrant energy and exotic excitement. In the middle section you can listen to echoes of bolero and oriental touches... At the entry of the garden there are two mysterious sphinxes, one of them has an enigma carved in its stone... "You, who are coming in, put you mind part to part / And tell me whether so many wonders are made for deceit or for art...".

"Orlando che squarta un pastore" (Orlando quartering a shepherd) is a very short instrumental that was inspired by a sculpture portraying Orlando, the protagonist of the poem "Orlando furioso" by Lodovico Ariosto, quartering a shepherd who had bothered him. It's a kind of warning against the excesses of passions leading to blind rage...

The dreamy and ethereal "La Tartaruga e la Fortuna" (The Turtle and the Fortune) was inspired by a sculptural group representing the contrast between Virtue and Fortune. The Turtle symbolizes the prudence necessary to follow the instable proceedings of Fortune, a female winged figure walking on a ball and playing two horns. "Blind and instable ruler of the world / I must pay attention to second her balance...".

On "Pegaso il cavallo alato" (Pegasus the winged horse) rhythm takes off for a ride on the wings of fantasy. This track was inspired by the statue of one of the best known fantastical creatures in Greek mythology, a winged divine white horse... "Look at his wings, the wings of freedom / Look in his wings, the wings of freedom...".

"La casa pendente" (The little inclined house) is a kind of surreal psychedelic track featuring strange filtered recitative vocals and evocative experimental sounds. It was inspired by a strange building that lies in the Garden of Bomarzo, a small leaning house apparently bent by adversities but never falling down...

"Il signore del bosco" (The lord of the wood) starts with dark organ chords. It's a short instrumental inspired by the statue of an old man sitting on a throne, the God of Hell as depicted by the Italian poet Torquato Tasso in his poem "Delivered Jerusalem", first published in 1581, which tells a largely fictionalized version of the First Crusade.

"La ninfa dormiente" (The sleeping nymph) is another beautiful instrumental, an idyllic interlude that begins with a delicate acoustic guitar arpeggio setting a dreamy atmosphere. It was inspired by the statue of a woman lying backwards...

"L'Orco (Lasciate ogni pensiero voi ch'entrate)" (The ogre ? Lay out every mind who enters here) is a long and complex track featuring a dark atmosphere. It was inspired by an enormous and ferocious mask representing the door of Hell and portrayed on the album cover. "Infernal monster mask, into your gaping maw there's a room carved into the rock / I go cautiously in / The light is low, it filters from the holes of the eyes / It carves the table, and on the walls...". Well, listen to the music and imagine the rest!

The last track "Il tempio araldico" (The heraldic temple) is an amazing instrumental with a strong Renaissance touch. It was inspired by a memorial to Giulia Farnese, Pierfrancesco Orsini's wife, located at the top of the garden. It's also called heraldic temple and represents the victory on death and oblivion and the achievement of a spiritual purification releasing from anxiety..

andrea | 4/5 |


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