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Quaterna Requiem (Wiermann & Vogel) - Quasimodo CD (album) cover

QUASIMODO

Quaterna Requiem (Wiermann & Vogel)

 

Symphonic Prog

3.92 | 57 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars By the time they recorded the second album, the Brazilian band Quaterna Requiem was formally handicapped by the absence of violinist extraordinaire Kleber Vogel. but that's as far as the minus point went, since Vogel's departure didn't undermine QR's ability to perform and arrange their material with total finesse and absolute good taste. In fact, keyboardist/main composer Elisa Wierrnann sounds really upfront, since her keyboard parts are more pronounced than on the band's debut album: the pompous opener 'Fanfarra' is a perfect example of the QR's enhanced symphonic drive, adding an extra dose of energy to their typical colourful sound. It's not as if their style has evolved, but more precisely, it has been enriched via the broadening of their sonic pallet (elements of Renaissance and jazz rock are included in places, for good effect) and a more powerful cohesiveness among all musicians - drummer/percussionist Claudio Dantas and guests on guitar and bass complete the line-up. The album's first part consists of four tracks, 'Os Reis Malditos' and 'Irmaos Grimm' being the longest ones: because of that, they stand out as the most accomplished numbers in this section, and IMHO; the album's apex. Between the two, 'Aquintha' sounds a bit diminished, but still it's a very good track: in many ways, it is quite similar to some of the tracks in their "Velha Gravura" album. The second part of "Quasimodo" is the namesake suite - seven sections, 39 minutes long. This number seems to have been conceived more as a succession of scenes (like an original soundtrack for a movie or a TV series) than as a unified musical piece, since each individual section is clearly distinct from the others. This gives the band the chance to concentrate more deeply on the particular character of each section: some extra help comes from some guy who sings a Gregorian chant and some other guy who plays recorders and krumhorn, in order to make things sound closer to the old times when once a hunchback lived his poetically dramatic life, behind the walls of Notre-Dame and falling in love with a beautiful free-spirited gypsy. This suite ends the album with full bombast, like a progressive Catherine wheel that spins its splendorous lights. I can't praise this beautiful album enough: amazing compositions, tasteful orchestral-oriented arrangements, clever mood and tempo shifts, ultra- polished performances of magnificent proportions. what else could a symph prog fan ask for? Excellent, almost perfect! (I dedicate this review to my good friends Carlos Calonge and Giancarlo Gianotti)
Cesar Inca | 4/5 |

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