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Architrave Indipendente - Azetium a otto piste CD (album) cover


Architrave Indipendente


Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.59 | 17 ratings

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Special Collaborator
3 stars The creative energies of Architrave Indipendente are dedicated to addressing the issues that affect traditional Italian rural life and to preserving faithfully the analog sounds of the seventies; Jim's bio highlights that their manifesto incorporates a direct and bipartite attack on environmental degradation and the state of the music industry and as such is the perfect antidote to these deficiencies. So, first and foremost, their debut album 'Azetium A Otto Piste' (2009) has integrity. What the guys in Architrave Indipendente say is in perfect harmony with what they do; they put their money where their mouth is; they practice what they preach.

The conflict between destructive and sustainable agricultural practices is reflected in 'Azezio' where the sound of machinery contrasts with the barking of dog-come-mascot Gaston. What this track seems to demonstrate is that the quality or tone of particular sounds is as important as the actual melodies and to this end the band employs legions of instruments to enrich the sound.

As for the Italian lyrics, and I can make neither heads nor tails of them, but from what I can gather, the perils facing traditional grape-farming underlie the texts and on this troubled foundation Architrave Indipendente build a musical labyrinth of anxiety and complexity. This capacity for complexity reaches its culmination with the improvisatory 'Emplecton', a dizzyingly fragmentary 18-minutes that is at times close to the edge of dissolution. This piece is full of eccentricities with, for example, an impressionistic piano section followed by a passage for cello and marimba. The slight downside to all this is that it does intermittently sound like a disordered work-in-progress, with the band feeding ideas to the listener like buns to a bear. But that's just me being picky.

This is some album to be just one album and it'll take many more listens for me to get my head fully around it. Produced in the old fashioned way, it's an album that endeavours to invoke the ghosts of the seventies RPI greats while scoffing at the more generic examples of the species. It's an important album, with an important message, that shouldn't be hidden away or reserved for only a small handful of listeners.

seventhsojourn | 3/5 |


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