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Spettri - Spettri CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.01 | 24 ratings

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3 stars Dreaming yourself away from the terrors of modern society - Road-trip soundtrack

It doesn't take Sherlock Holmes with a couple of stethoscopes to find out what this band is all about. Spettri's story has been handed over quite nicely in the preceding reviews, but to those of you who are too lazy to click on the orange skull beside this review; these guys started playing way back in the sixties - going through various band members for then to record this, their sole album, in 1972. It then laid on somebody's shelf for the next 40 years, when Black Widow Records finally gave the guys a fair break and released it.

As Chris mentions in his brilliant biography, the album itself revolves around a man who by way of a spiritual sťance encounters the backside of the coin - the other side of the mirror. He investigates and practically throws himself into the metaphysical abyss to conjure up reasons to live. As described in many other such tales, this is indeed a path one must walk alone, and so he does - finding what can only be described as some kind of spiritual sanctuary - only to be sabotaged and obliterated by the strange and dehumanizing essence of modern society.

Musically we are never far away from the early 70s - maybe late 60s. I get Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and Uriah Heep although the beautiful bubbling Hammond organ at times reminds me of Dave Greenslade's powerful sound from Valentyne Suite. I really love the way this organ sounds. Almost omnipresent, it delivers a potent underlining to the proceedings here, which again reek of those early heavy prog days with loads of blues based riffing - although turned way up with a good ass-kicking of distortion. Finally we get belting raw vocals that to me personally works when they're trying to relegate something docile. When they're going a hundred miles and hour, they sound slightly forced and unconvincing to me.

If you love the sounds of the heavier Italian outfits such as Biglietto per L'Inferno and Metamorfosi, then imagine these without the synths and you're not entirely far off Spettri's sound. What I personally miss a tad is the kind of sweet and, gulp I can't believe I'm saying this, romantic vibe most other acts from the scene were utilizing. Yes there are snippets of acoustic guitars scattered throughout this record, but I'd just wish they would have incorporated them more into the thing. Battered the dough with just a touch more pomodoro and vino.

My fave thing about it is the way the snarling guitar raptures from time to time - heavily supported by some catatonic frenzied organ work that seems to rise slowly up from the ground - effectively merging the dark utopian metaphysics with the feel of the band.

This one is highly recommended to fans of early progressive hard rock with an overload of Hammond organ. It's the kind of thing you put on, when you're off on a road-trip in a dirty beat down truck with beers in the trunk and fuel in your stomach.

Guldbamsen | 3/5 |


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