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ROCK PROGRESSIVO ITALIANO

A Progressive Rock Sub-genre


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Rock Progressivo Italiano definition

aka "RPI"


"So it's an established fact that in Italy during the period between 1971-1974, a music movement existed where bands would challenge each other to see who could be the most imaginative, who could create the album for the ages. They were all painters and sculptors just as in Renaissance Italy." -Tom Hayes/Gnosis


1. The background
As the 60s drew to an end, Italy experienced a wave of new ideas and ideals which coincided with the new musical era being born. It would not be exaggeration to state that the 70s were a watershed period in the history of the country. Even though the 60s are generally remembered as the years of the 'economic boom', it was only in the following decade that Italy made the long, difficult change from a relatively poor, traditional country into a fully developed Western society. A look at any timeline for 70s Italy will show an incredible concentration of events that changed the fabric of Italian society irrevocably: laws and acts were passed which affected worker's rights, family and divorce law, and women's rights and reproductive health. In a country where the physical presence of the Catholic Church has always been impossible to overlook, not least because of its open intervention in the country's political affairs, the introduction of such radical changes was no small feat.

Most of those changes were made possible by the presence of a strong left-wing component in Italian political life, even if regarded with extreme suspicion by both the Church and Italy's main ally, the United States. Though the existence of a party that openly called itself Communist was not exclusive to Italy, at the time the PCI (Partito Comunista Italiano) was considered more of a danger than, for instance, its French equivalent - mainly due to Italy's strategic position in the Mediterranean area, as well as the party's obvious connection with the Soviet Union. Such a peculiar, potentially explosive situation sadly became a breeding ground for a number of extremist groups, who were responsible for the season of violence and unrest commonly known as the 'Anni di piombo' ('years of lead'), which lasted well into the first half of the Eighties. The number of casualties due to terror acts and rioting was quite high, involving people from all walks of life. However, the defining episode of the decade was the kidnapping and subsequent murder of well-known politician Aldo Moro (a left-leaning Christian Democrat) by the notorious Brigate Rosse ('Red Brigades') in the spring of 1978.


2. The birth of a movement
The turbulent times affected countless musicians looking for something new-some way to parallel the political climate through artistic media. Ranging from highly educated conservatory students to local singer-songwriters, this spirit managed to captivate an entire country within a few short years. Young people were restless, bursting with a burning desire to change the staid, suffocating atmosphere of Italian society starting with one of its symbols, its venerable musical tradition. Most musicians had more or less strong left-wing leanings (the prime example being Area), while the few examples of openly right-wing bands never managed to break out of obscurity, or gain more than a strictly cult following.

Without a strong rock tradition in the 60s Italy had mainly produced beat bands of varying quality, as well as singers well-versed in the long-standing canzone tradition of the country. As the tidal wave of counter-culture swept in, it brought revolution not only in the form of progressive rock, but also differing forms of heavier, continental rock which was establishing itself around the same time. Psychedelic influences and the incorporation of classical music may have been the same stepping stones used by most other progressive scenes around the globe during the same period, but even at this embryonic stage there was a whiff of something else in the air. In the late 60s when the beat scene was already heading towards a decline, a number of bands formed, some of them releasing singles (or even albums) that bridged the gap between beat, conventional Italian easy listening music (musica leggera), and the new ideas coming from Great Britain - among them, New Trolls, Le Orme, Panna Fredda, I Quelli (later to become Premiata Forneria Marconi), Il Mucchio, and Fabio Celi e gli Infermieri.

"We wanted to put some improvisations between the singing parts and we had to make up our minds about the style to follow... After having been to the Isle of Wight festival, it was clear to all of us that we couldn't keep on playing the usual songs with verses and refrains." -Toni Pagliuca, Le Orme


3. The golden years
The beginning of the new decade saw the rise of a countless number of bands and artists, some of whom would go on to become successful acts. PFM, Banco del Mutuo Soccorso, Osanna, Il Balletto di Bronzo, Quella Vecchia Locanda belong to this group, with all but the latter being still active at the time of writing. Some others only managed to release one album (or even just a handful of singles) before they disbanded. The prog-rock bug became so widespread in Italy that some experts say every artist and band in Italy produced at least one progressive album during this time. A number of well-known mainstream artists started their career with a prog album, like singer-songwriters Riccardo Cocciante (with Mu) and Ivano Fossati (with the first Delirium album, Dolce acqua). Or, like Lucio Battisti or Fabrizio De André, they released strongly prog-influenced albums when the movement was at its height.

During the peak years of the RPI movement in the early 70s, countless bands showcased their talent in the many pop festivals organized throughout Italy. The festivals were often free of charge and boasted a level artistic freedom and competition seldom seen in popular music. Fans witnessed bands rise from obscurity to compete on the same stage as the heavy hitters. This musical competition created something of an upward spiral; everyone tried to outdo each other, producing unique sounds and incorporating disparate influences into their music. The variety of the music went through the roof, with every band sharing the same aspirations, though seldom the same sound. It must also be made clear that despite the beliefs of those who write off Italian prog as simply a British counterfeit, many of these bands were creating music that was phenomenally original, experimental, free-spirited, and creatively successful. While bands from abroad helped influence and inspire Italian bands, Italy's young bands quickly took the ball and ran with it. It is ludicrous to suggest the scene a mere imitation. The upward spiral also meant an over saturated market, in which many bands only managed to put out one or two releases with minimal budget and intense recording. Some of the best, most genuine and treasured albums of Rock Progressivo Italiano can be found in this group: Semiramis' "Dedicato a Frazz", Pholas Dactylus' "Concerto delle menti", Raccomandata Ricevuta di Ritorno's "Per un mondo di cristallo", Museo Rosenbach's "Zarathustra", and Balletto di Bronzo's "Ys" to name just a few.

"We had to tackle this tradition, we had to fight against the conventions and refuse to be integrated. The New Sounds hadn't arrived yet, there was no music for the young people, there was nothing, you had to invent and build up your space. Perhaps this was the mainspring that unchained such a creative strength." -Gianni Leone

With time some of the biggest bands achieved international success, with PFM as the best-known example. Lyricist Peter Sinfield, known from his work with giants like King Crimson and ELP, even wrote for the band, while Peter Hammill provided English lyrics for Le Orme's "Felona e Sorona". Ironically this success often meant a detour from the roots of the RPI sounds, making these albums more aligned to the British scene than the bulk of the artists and albums in the archives. Look beneath the surface in order to discover hidden (or not so hidden) gems. While the oft-mentioned big 3 of Italian prog (PFM, Banco, and Le Orme) are conveniently considered the peak by those casually mentioning this scene, RPI enthusiasts know the river runs so much deeper, and many of our personal favourites are found outside of these popular groups. Those who search beyond the surface will discover that the most daring and provocative works were often made by more obscure groups who released one fantastic album and then vanished into thin air. This common syndrome of Italian "one-shot" bands became the bane of many RPI fans.

Since so many different musicians experimented with the progressive format, you will also find a broad musical scope within RPI, something which has kept the subgenre fresh and vital over time. Examples include Franco Battiato (still a very successful artist in Italy), Picchio dal Pozzo, Opus Avantra, Stormy Six and Area, who each in their own individual way, show a more cosmopolitan flavour and range of influences than most other acts.

After its explosive development in the early 70s, the movement followed the same path as other progressive musical movements around the world as the 80s approached. Some influential artists continued to release new albums though never with the same success as in the halcyon days. Others changed with the times and became highly successful mainstream artists both in Italy and internationally. As elsewhere in the prog universe the quantity and quality of RPI began to dry up a bit in the late 70s and early 80s, although there were some quality releases from that period. These titles tended to be more melodic and less brashly avant-garde than the classic period but were respectable nonetheless. To name but a few there were Locanda Delle Fate, Stefano Testa, Pierpaolo Bibbo, and L'Estate de San Martino. Area, Stormy Six, and PFM had a good title or two left in them as well.


4. Musical features of RPI
Italian symphonic prog is notable for the prominence of classical influences, often providing the driving force behind the music. The new listener will discover that this particular branch of RPI feels more like classical music in a rock setting as opposed to occasional classical influences on top of the rock format. Furthermore, the rich, diverse musical traditions of Italy permeate the albums, creating a strong national and even regional character. The "textbook" RPI groups can usually be identified by a pervasive sense of romantic melancholy and earthy flair, sometimes enhanced by baroque elements, sometimes by more ethnic ones. Other distinctive features include overt opera and operetta influences, wild and uncontrolled storytelling, and as a general rule, bold and highly emotional vocals. There is extroverted, operatic gallantry and panache or mellow balladry; exciting use of all sorts of keyboards, with sounds heard nowhere else but in this particular scene; exotic instruments such as aggeggi, ottavino, mandoloncello, clavicembalo- names that tickle the imagination and leave their distinct mark on the music. There is a uniquely magical marriage of the traditional to the modern, of the warm to the wild. The combination of flute, piano and violin is often encountered, and the interplay between the first two instruments in particular supplies the subgenre with a fair share of its identity and flavour.

Though the symphonic element is indeed the most common in RPI, the genre would be better characterized as eclectic. Jazz-fusion, folk, hard rock riffing à la Jethro Tull, Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin, intense drama a la Van der Graaf Generator (whose albums were revered in Italy), singer-songwriter, proto-metal, blues, avant tendencies, pop, psych, dark/occult, electronic-the list goes on. Even more amazing, these differences in style can often be found to varying degrees on one album, and still feel natural in the distinct stylistic framework mentioned above.

No overview of RPI would be complete without mentioning the use of the Italian language, by many considered one of the most musical languages in the world. It could be safely stated that the use of Italian is inherent to the soul of RPI, a critical component to the full appreciation of the subgenre. In fact, even if some key RPI albums were translated into English in an attempt to gain international recognition, most of them fail to impress. They feel as if one of the basic ingredients of what makes RPI such a successful concoction is missing. While most serious RPI fans consider Italian vocals essential to their listening experience, it is fair to say that some believe English lyrics are not so detrimental-even if in most cases the odd phrasing, incorrect emphasis, and heavy Italian accent of the singers detract significantly from an authentic overall effect. While some prog fans can find the gregarious Italian vocal style challenging at first, newbies are encouraged to simply stick with it for a while. With only a modest effort any RPI newbie will soon find they cannot imagine this music without traditional Italian vocals-they truly are the icing on the cake.

One common misconception that must be addressed is the belief that any prog band from Italy is an RPI band. There are bands from Italy more appropriate for other genres. As an example, a pure and obvious post-rock band who just happen to be from Rome are going to be in the post-rock sub, not RPI. A pure jazz-fusion band with no RPI characteristics to their sound could be easily placed in the Jazz/Fusion subgenre. The RPI team will work hard to evaluate bands that fit the characteristics and the feel of the subgenre, and those whose primary sound is more suited for another sub are recommended to them.

"Progressive is basically a blending of three elements: the song, the improvisation inspired by jazz and the composition in classical style. This cocktail is interpreted in different ways in every country: in England, for instance, Celtic, rock and blues influences prevail. In Italy we have to cope with our classical tradition: the melodramma, Respighi, Puccini, Mascagni but also all the contemporary classical composers. It's in this legacy, in my opinion, that the specificity of the Italian Progressive Rock is concealed." -Franco Mussida, PFM


5. RPI in the new century
As recently as the 90s and early 2000s RPI again proved its longevity to the prog community. Scores of the classic albums were re-pressed in Japan, then specialized independent labels such as BTF, Mellow and Black Widow (the latter responsible for rescuing the likes of Jacula and Antonius Rex from oblivion) started to re-issue many of the classic albums. As a consequence RPI has not only reached a new generation of fans, but the increased interest and appreciation have led to new material being released. Artists whose recordings have never been in circulation, bands that are as new to our ears as they are to many of those who were there when it happened, now have a new-found audience creating an ironic worm-hole effect: brand new music straight from prog's golden years.

With the revival clearly under way the 90s produced some stellar Italian albums and the beginning of CD reissue fever. In the 2000s the trend has continued to a much more successful degree. RPI is back and fan interest has exploded for both the classic period and the new bands of today like Il Bacio Della Medusa, Pandora, Lagartija, Conqueror, Il Ruscello, Senza Nome, Coral Caves, J'Accuse, Ubi Maior, and the projects of Fabio Zuffanti to name just a few. Italian progressive rock today covers a wide range of styles and influences, but many of the bands ground a portion of their sound in the RPI tradition. Moreover, this first decade of the 21st century has seen a new round of publications (both in print and in electronic format) covering various aspects of Italian prog, as well as the creation of a number of excellent websites dedicated to the subgenre, which are extremely influential as regards the promotion of new bands and artists.

The commercial success of RPI has always been modest compared to the big bands from other countries. However, the quality of the music past and present, from its unique compositions to fiercely independent spirit, has earned the RPI subgenre some of prog's most loyal followers.

By:
Raffaella Berry
Michael Berry
Ryan Olsen
Jim Russell
Linus Wikström
Todd Dudley

For the Mick.
29 July 2009



Current RPI Team
Todd
rdtprog (Louis)
progaardvark (Ken)
zeuhl1 (Paul)




Additional information:
Italian Prog - A dedicated RPI site
http://www.italianprog.com

Italian Prog Map - A superb blog by RPI writer Andrea Parentin
http://italianprogmap.blogspot.com/

Andrea Parentin's history of RPI (essential reading)
http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=33377&PID=2345095#2345095

Andrea Parentin's contemporary Italian prog (newer bands)
http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=62150&FID=58

Movimenti Prog
http://www.movimentiprog.net

Centro Studi per il Progressive Italiano
http://www.centrostudiprogitaliano.it

John's Classic RPI blog - Another good blog on the "classic" era
http://classikrock.blogspot.com/

Arlequins - A prog rock webzine with much RPI content
http://www.arlequins.it/gb/index.asp


Where to buy Italian prog
Syn-phonic (USA) - http://www.synphonicmusic.com
Doug Larson (USA) - http://www.douglarsonimports.com
Kinesis (USA) - http://www.kinesiscd.com/index.html
Wayside (USA) - http://www.waysidemusic.com/
Mellow Records (Italy) - http://www.mellowrecords.com
BTF (Italy) - http://www.btf.it
Black Widow Records (Italy) - http://www.blackwidow.it
Camelot Music Store (Italy) - http://www.semanticweb.it/camelotstore/
Discogs - www.discogs.com

Rock Progressivo Italiano Top Albums


Showing only studios | Based on members ratings & PA algorithm* | Show Top 100 Rock Progressivo Italiano | More Top Prog lists and filters

4.40 | 1913 ratings
PER UN AMICO
Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)
4.38 | 1340 ratings
DARWIN!
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
4.37 | 1231 ratings
IO SONO NATO LIBERO
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
4.34 | 1517 ratings
STORIA DI UN MINUTO
Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)
4.33 | 1012 ratings
ZARATHUSTRA
Museo Rosenbach
4.31 | 1028 ratings
BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
4.26 | 1075 ratings
FELONA E SORONA
Orme, Le
4.27 | 756 ratings
ARBEIT MACHT FREI
Area
4.27 | 571 ratings
MAXOPHONE
Maxophone
4.25 | 695 ratings
YS
Balletto Di Bronzo, Il
4.23 | 782 ratings
UOMO DI PEZZA
Orme, Le
4.20 | 984 ratings
L'ISOLA DI NIENTE
Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)
4.24 | 463 ratings
PALEPOLI
Osanna
4.25 | 424 ratings
CRAC !
Area
4.22 | 362 ratings
DISCESA AGL'INFERI D'UN GIOVANE AMANTE
Bacio Della Medusa, Il
4.19 | 387 ratings
L'ENIGMA DELLA VITA
Logos
4.18 | 346 ratings
CONTAMINAZIONE
Rovescio Della Medaglia, Il
4.17 | 336 ratings
CELESTE [AKA: PRINCIPE DI UN GIORNO]
Celeste
4.15 | 400 ratings
QUELLA VECCHIA LOCANDA
Quella Vecchia Locanda
4.14 | 434 ratings
ALPHATAURUS
Alphataurus
4.14 | 402 ratings
LA CRUDELTÀ DI APRILE
Unreal City
4.19 | 249 ratings
SADAKO E LE MILLE GRU DI CARTA
Logos
4.13 | 385 ratings
IL TEMPO DELLA GIOIA
Quella Vecchia Locanda
4.14 | 328 ratings
BIGLIETTO PER L'INFERNO
Biglietto Per L'Inferno
4.10 | 478 ratings
FORSE LE LUCCIOLE NON SI AMANO PIÙ
Locanda Delle Fate
4.21 | 186 ratings
VIETATO AI MINORI DI 18 ANNI ?
Jumbo
4.19 | 197 ratings
RISVEGLIO
Egonon
4.19 | 187 ratings
AVENOTH
Bocca Della Verità, La
4.16 | 209 ratings
IL PASSO DEL SOLDATO
Nuova Era
4.17 | 199 ratings
PASSIO SECUNDUM MATTHEUM - THE COMPLETE WORK
Latte E Miele
4.21 | 142 ratings
TERRA IN BOCCA
Giganti, I
4.11 | 250 ratings
MELOS
Cervello
4.05 | 453 ratings
STATI DI IMMAGINAZIONE
Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)
4.07 | 352 ratings
DEDICATO A FRAZZ
Semiramis
4.11 | 245 ratings
LA NOTTE ANCHE DI GIORNO
Coscienza Di Zeno, La
4.03 | 618 ratings
PHOTOS OF GHOSTS
Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)
4.05 | 391 ratings
IL PAESE DEL TRAMONTO
Unreal City
4.05 | 385 ratings
IL TEMPIO DELLE CLESSIDRE
Tempio Delle Clessidre, Il
4.07 | 297 ratings
INFERNO
Metamorfosi
4.09 | 230 ratings
LA COSCIENZA DI ZENO
Coscienza Di Zeno, La
4.03 | 427 ratings
THE WORLD BECAME THE WORLD
Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)
4.03 | 312 ratings
COME IN UN'ULTIMA CENA
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
4.07 | 223 ratings
MALEDETTI
Area
4.03 | 310 ratings
BANCO
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
4.07 | 212 ratings
WARM SPACED BLUE
Ingranaggi Della Valle
4.03 | 291 ratings
ROLLER
Goblin
4.07 | 197 ratings
IL GRANDE LABIRINTO
Maschera Di Cera, La
4.01 | 341 ratings
LE PORTE DEL DOMANI
Maschera Di Cera, La
4.05 | 225 ratings
ALIENATURA
Tempio Delle Clessidre, Il
4.06 | 206 ratings
REALE ACCADEMIA DI MUSICA
Reale Accademia Di Musica
4.09 | 162 ratings
IL NOME DEL VENTO
Delirium
4.01 | 284 ratings
IN HOC SIGNO
Ingranaggi Della Valle
4.03 | 230 ratings
INTORNO ALLA MIA CATTIVA EDUCAZIONE
Alusa Fallax
4.08 | 162 ratings
WINTERTHROUGH
Höstsonaten
3.96 | 536 ratings
CHOCOLATE KINGS
Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)
4.15 | 104 ratings
TALE OF A DARK FATE
Albero Del Veleno, L'
3.98 | 312 ratings
CONTRAPPUNTI
Orme, Le
4.08 | 141 ratings
SULLE CORDE DI ARIES
Battiato, Franco
4.03 | 169 ratings
MYSOGINIA
Syndone
4.03 | 168 ratings
ATTOSECONDO
Alphataurus
4.40 | 48 ratings
DESTINAZIONI
Melting Clock
3.97 | 264 ratings
CAUTION RADIATION AREA
Area
4.03 | 160 ratings
S.E.I.
Maschera Di Cera, La
3.94 | 313 ratings
SUMMEREVE
Höstsonaten
4.05 | 123 ratings
CAP. 7 - TRA LE ANTICHE MURA
Castello Di Atlante, Il
4.06 | 115 ratings
CONCERTO GROSSO - THE SEVEN SEASONS
New Trolls
3.98 | 178 ratings
LA MASCHERA DI CERA
Maschera Di Cera, La
3.97 | 203 ratings
SENSITIVITÀ
Coscienza Di Zeno, La
3.98 | 170 ratings
1984 - L'ULTIMO UOMO D'EUROPA
Fabbrica Dell'Assoluto, La
3.97 | 184 ratings
LUXADE
Maschera Di Cera, La
4.15 | 76 ratings
STORIE DI UOMINI E NON
Rocky's Filj
4.11 | 86 ratings
DRAMMA DI UN POETA UBRIACO
Pandora
4.02 | 126 ratings
III (VIAGGIO NEGLI ARCIPELAGHI DEL TEMPO)
Delirium
3.99 | 147 ratings
TALSETE DI MARSANTINO
Estate Di San Martino, L'
3.92 | 226 ratings
CAMPO DI MARTE
Campo Di Marte
4.17 | 65 ratings
LA BELLA È LA BESTIA
Syndone
4.01 | 123 ratings
NOUS
Nodo Gordiano
4.02 | 108 ratings
IL TRONO DEI RICORDI
Trono Dei Ricordi, Il
3.92 | 209 ratings
APOTEOSI
Apoteosi
3.87 | 371 ratings
COLLAGE
Orme, Le
3.97 | 135 ratings
AUTUMNSYMPHONY
Höstsonaten
3.91 | 207 ratings
CHERRY FIVE
Cherry Five
3.92 | 191 ratings
PASSIO SECUNDUM MATTHEUM
Latte E Miele
3.97 | 133 ratings
DI CARNE, DI ANIMA
Gran Turismo Veloce
4.04 | 90 ratings
NEO
Torre Dell'Alchimista, La
3.97 | 124 ratings
DIARIO DI VIAGGIO DELLA FESTA MOBILE
Festa Mobile
3.93 | 156 ratings
ODYSSÉAS
Syndone
3.91 | 185 ratings
IO SONO MURPLE
Murple
4.05 | 82 ratings
ORLANDO: LE FORME DELL'AMORE
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
4.02 | 88 ratings
APOCALYPSE NOW
RanestRane
3.98 | 104 ratings
ULISSE - L'ALFIERE NERO
Progenesi
3.90 | 167 ratings
ESSERE O NON ESSERE ?
Volo, Il
3.98 | 100 ratings
A SPACE ODYSSEY, PART ONE - MONOLITH
RanestRane
4.07 | 69 ratings
HYBLA ACT 1
Randone
4.09 | 64 ratings
E TUTTO COMINCIÒ COSÌ ...
Sensitiva Immagine
3.94 | 123 ratings
DEDALO E ICARO
Cerchio D'Oro, Il
4.19 | 48 ratings
H.E.X.
Nodo Gordiano
4.07 | 68 ratings
UNA VITA UNA BALENA BIANCA E ALTRE COSE
Testa, Stefano
3.90 | 154 ratings
DNA
Jumbo
4.00 | 86 ratings
VOCI
Basso, Luciano

Rock Progressivo Italiano overlooked and obscure gems albums new


Random 4 (reload page for new list) | As selected by the Rock Progressivo Italiano experts team

CAMPO DI MARTE
Campo Di Marte
VOCI
Basso, Luciano
CONCERTO DELLE MENTI
Pholas Dactylus
PER... UN MONDO DI CRISTALLO
Raccomandata Ricevuta Ritorno

Latest Rock Progressivo Italiano Music Reviews


 Corte Dei Miracoli by CORTE DEI MIRACOLI album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.69 | 171 ratings

BUY
Corte Dei Miracoli
Corte Dei Miracoli Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by siLLy puPPy
Special Collaborator PSIKE, JRF/Canterbury, P Metal, Eclectic

4 stars CORTE DEI MIRACOLI was one of countless 70s Italian prog bands that released a single album before its demise even though more material was recorded. This band formed in Savona in 1973 and stuck it out until the waning prog year of 1976 when it released its only self-titled album although an archival release of recordings from 1973-74 would be released in 1992 as "Dimensione Onrica." The band's name which means "Court Of Miracles" refers to an area of a city where beggars and social outcasts would traditionally gather in organized groups most notably in the 17th century.

The band was connected with another Savona band Il Giro Strano which keyboardist Alessio Feltri played in simultaneously. That band existed from 1971-79 and never released albums during its run but also would find archival interest in the 90s. CORTE DEI MIRACOLI was distinct in that it featured two keyboard players (Alessio Feltri, Riccardo Zegna) and no guitarist. The band also featured Graziano Zippo on vocals, bassist Gabiele Siri and drummer Flavio Scogna. The band played the live circuit for its entire existence and it was only just before the recording of this album that original keyboardist Michele Carlone was replaced by jazz pianist Riccardo Zegna.

A typical symphonic prog band in many ways CORTE DEI MIRACOLI featured the same style of romantic vocals, adventurous instrumental excursions that alternated from dreamy folk oriented passages to more bombastic hard rock. The double use of keyboards is taken to its extreme as the album opens with the beginning flurry of sound with "E Varrà L'Uomo" but the album features a lot of intricately designed softer motifs as well, equally at home with lush classically inspired piano runs. The band like so many in the Italian prog scene were all seasoned veterans in their retrospective field and although similar to other Italian prog bands such as Banco, PFM and Le Orme still delivered a rather distinct sound.

Although the band was not successful in the least as it dropped its sole album on the market the very same year it disbanded, this one has become a second tier favorite amongst many intrepid explorers of 70s Italian prog and for good reason. The album provides all the instant connections of a great Italian prog album with exquisite melodic developments that are fortified with all the excessive instrumentation and creative heft that a prog lover could hope for. Perhaps the vocalist could have been a bit more robust in his performances or better yet incorporate a more unique stylistic approach to his singing style but still manages to get the job done adequately enough. The album also offers some interesting percussive deviations form the norm. The guitar is not really missed at all as the two keyboardists fill the space commendably.

While i do not believe this is a concept album, the science fiction themed cover art is one of my favorites from the Italian 70s scene. Overall this is an excellent album. Not quite up to the level of the greatest Italy had to offer during this era but certainly a very competent band that delivered its own version of the style that made Italy a center of masterful progressive rock. This one is definitely recommended to those who love a double doses of symphonic splendor as the two keyboardists are on the top of their game and offer some excellent dueling moves when they get down and dirty. A rather unique experience in the greater Italian prog scene even if it doesn't reach masterpiece status. The band's earlier recordings though with the first lineup would have to be shelved for many years before seeing the light of day but as the prog revival of the 90s take hold, even the more obscure bands like CORTE DEI MAIRACOLI finally appealed to a greater audience.

 Concerto Grosso Per I New Trolls by NEW TROLLS album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.75 | 256 ratings

BUY
Concerto Grosso Per I New Trolls
New Trolls Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by siLLy puPPy
Special Collaborator PSIKE, JRF/Canterbury, P Metal, Eclectic

4 stars One of the major bands that jump started the Italian progressive rock scene, NEW TROLLS debuted as early as 1967 and the following year released the nation's very first concept album in the rock paradigm. While the album wasn't exactly firing on all prog cylinders yet, the band formed by guitarist / vocalist Vittorio de Scalzi, vocalist / guitarist Nico Di Palo, keyboardist Mauro Chiarugi, bassist Giorgio D'Adamo and drummer Gianni Belleno spent the next few years releasing singles but not albums primarily due to the fact the album concept hadn't quite caught on in Italy yet. Therefore NEW TROLLS released a compilation of non-album singles in the form of an eponymous release in 1970 before keyboardist Mauro Chiarugi jumped shipped and was replaced by classically trained Maurizio Salvi which would mark a remarkable shift in the band's direction.

In 1971 the band unleashed its most famous release CONCERTO GROSSO PER I NEW TROLLS which was basically ground zero for the classically infused Italian prog that exploded onto the scene soon thereafter. The music on the album was written by Luis Enriquez Bacalov, the Argentine film score composer who collaborated with a number of Italian bands during the early 70s prog boom. Fortified with orchestral arrangements and ambitious musical workouts, NEW TROLLS adopted the symphonic aspects of The Moody Blues along with the rock infused energy of The Nice and delivered one of Italy's most famous classical crossover rock albums of the era and one that announced to a nation still suffering from a 60s beat hangover that the times have a-changed and that the wild prog 70s had arrived.

The album featured two long tracks that filled each side of the original vinyl edition. The opening title track featured four suites ranging from a violin led orchestra introducing the show on "Allegro" and continues with dreamy vocal led progressive rock on "Adagio." "Cadenza" provides a haunting mood setting with a frenetic violin solo whereas it all ends with "Shadows (per Hendrix)" which displays a more acid rock heavy psych approach complete with an unhinged guitar freak out at the end. Throughout it all are elements of folk music with Jethro Tull-like flute performances and although the band had graduated to full-blown prog, the beat aspects in the drumming pattern still found their way into the mix. This was very much a transitional album from the 60s psychedelic rock trends to the wild and fully developed prog that bands like PFM, Banco and Il Balletto di Bronzo would deliver the following year.

The second side is a NEW TROLLS composition and features the 20 1/2 minute "Nella Sala Vuota, Improvvisazioni Dei New Trolls Registrate In Diretta" which is the cream of the crop on the album as it pushes the prog rock characteristics even further with a series of cadences and motifs that morph and offer basically what amounts to songs within songs. The keyboard performances are feistier as is the rock guitar, bass and drum rhythmic drive. On this one the band delivers a reckless abandon and simply goes for it as opposed to the more structured and reserved compositional flow of the A-side. Side B offered more exploration in meandering through various moods with shifting dynamics and a greater emphasis on soloing. While the keyboard excursions are pleasant i could live without the seven minute drum solo at the end though. Luckily the track resolves itself with a feisty band performance ending that matches the intensity of the drummer.

Sure this isn't the best prog album of the 70s but it surely is one of the most historically relevant and it's also fairly unique sounding as it perfectly capture that in-between stage between the psych-fueled 60s and the unleashed prog excesses that would very quickly follow. The musicians perform all the movements perfectly and although there is some downtime here and there which keeps the album from being perfect, nothing is so bad that it's not listenable. Much of the album is the perfect mix of classical and rock and for a rough draft of Italian prog so to speak, it's actually a brilliantly designed album. Excellent Hammond organ work, dynamic flute and guitar parts, more than competent drumming with Nico Di Palo's vocal style passionately delivering high register operatic walloping wails.

 Senza Orario, Senza Bandiera by NEW TROLLS album cover Studio Album, 1968
2.76 | 71 ratings

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Senza Orario, Senza Bandiera
New Trolls Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by siLLy puPPy
Special Collaborator PSIKE, JRF/Canterbury, P Metal, Eclectic

2 stars While NEW TROLLS isn't considered one of the greatest progressive rock bands that flourished in the 1970s, the band certainly was one of the first and built the early foundations that all those masters of the trade could improve upon a few years down the road. Although the band is best known for its classic "Concerto Grosso Per I New Trolls" which was like a lightning bolt for the Italian prog scene as it was playing catch up to the English bands like Yes, ELP and Genesis, the band formed by vocalist and guitarist Vittorio de Scalzi, vocalist and guitarist Nico Di Palo, keyboardist Mauro Chiarugi, bassist Giorgio D'Adamo and drummer Gianni Belleno got its start as early as 1967 in Genoa. This is probably the most dramatic band of the entire Italian scene playing out like a soap opera with hostility between band members resulting in law suits and ultimately a split into two groups: New Trolls Atomic System and Ibis.

Named after the fact one of the members had been in a band simply called I Trolls, this updated version proved to be innovative enough from its very beginning stages and even opened for The Rolling Stones on their 1967 tour based on the release of a mere single called "Senzioni." The band released its first album SENZA ORARIO, SENZA BANDIERA (No Time, No Flag) in 1968 which is considered to be the first Italian rock concept album forged by the poetry of Richard Mannerini and then reworked by the Italian singer / songwriter Fabrizio De André which crafted a single themed album where all the tracks ran together much like progressive rock albums that would follow. The music was written by Di Palo and De Scalzi with the exception of the track "Signore, io sono Irish" by Gian Piero Reverberi. Despite this being a concept album, i'm still not really sure what the concept is supposed to be about!

Given the album was released in 1968, SENZA ORARIO, SENZA BANDIERA was still far from the symphonic prog classical powerhouse that the band would release in 1971. This debut was still rooted in 60s beat music with psychedelic overtones such as the Hendrix inspired guitar sounds of Nico di Palo who would soon become one of Italy's most popular guitar heroes. Despite the 60s connections, NEW TROLLS was definitely innovating the beat pop music by offering symphonic elements even as early as this debut album with busy keyboard contributions orchestrating a classical-tinged backdrop and likewise the band was displaying the romantic vocal style that would become the staple of classic Italian prog in the 70s. The entire band contributed vocals and crafted some tight harmonies as well. Despite the progressive pop tendencies, the compositions themselves weren't very complex and based on the bluesy beat hooks that were popular during the era.

This is a rather mellow album that despite some sort of concept that will be decipherable by speakers of Italian pretty much flows from beginning to end like a very very long orchestrated pop song. The album is less than 27 minutes so it's not excessively long lasting but the musical ideas are fairly sparse with only the nascent prog ideas sprouting. The album comes across as Italy's answer to The Moody Blues' "Days Of Future Passed" only without the interesting compositions that take it anywhere exciting. The album is actually a bit boring as it seems like the same acoustic guitar strumming and music motif is extended throughout the entire album's run. Various moments do offer contrast but generally speaking, the musical flow is a bit of a one tricky pony and gets monotonous fairly quickly, a stark contrast to where NEW TROLLS would take its music just a few short years down the road. Sure it's a classic for planting the proper seeds in Italy's fertile music scene but as an interesting album in its own right it's just not very captivating.

2.5 rounded down

 Per... Un Mondo Di Cristallo by RACCOMANDATA RICEVUTA RITORNO album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.85 | 139 ratings

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Per... Un Mondo Di Cristallo
Raccomandata Ricevuta Ritorno Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by siLLy puPPy
Special Collaborator PSIKE, JRF/Canterbury, P Metal, Eclectic

4 stars RACCOMANDATA RICEVUTA RITORNO (Registered Mail Receipt Return) or RRR for short was one of the short-lived bands that participated in the exciting prog scene in 1970s Rome and yet one more band that released one mere album before disbanding and becoming somewhat of a footnote in the greater Italian prog scene. The band was formed by Luciano Regoli (vocals, acoustic guitar), Francesco Froggio Francica (drums, percussion), Manlio Zacchia (bass), Damaso Grassi (flute, sax), Nanni Civitenga (guitar) and Stefano Piermarioli (keyboards) and released its sole album PER? UN MONDO DI CRISTALLO in 1972 but soon folded due to tensions and disagreements between the band members as well as the record company applying excessive pressures to perform at certain events.

While in many ways the band was a typical Italian prog band with the classic folk and rock format that included two guitarists, a keyboardist, drummer, bassist and in RRR's case also a saxist / flautist, the band was led by the eccentric Luciano Regoli whose desire was to follow in the footsteps of the flamboyant Arthur Brown who was still rather unknown in Italy at the time. His first band was in Il Ritratto di Dorian Gray which never recorded its own music but proved to be the spawning grounds for Goblin's Claudio Simonetti and Quella Vecchia Locanda's bassist Massimo Giorgio. This experience prepared Regoli for the leadership role to steer his band RRR into more eclectic territory than what many other bands were aiming for.

PER? UN MONDO DI CRISTALLO is an early example of a science fiction themed concept album with lyrics written by the poet Maria Comin about a man who engages in an expedition to space only to return to a destroyed planet and all the loneliness and suffering he has to endure as he ponders the meaning of life and his struggle to find the will to continue on a depopulated destroyed planet. The album was one of the few post-apocalyptic albums of the Italian prog scene which set it apart significantly from the competition. The album features a series of musical motifs that shift between acoustically infused folk music with flutes to the more energetic guitar heavy rock. Regoli's vocal style is the top notch variety covering a wide range of octaves and evoking the classic PFM or Banco vibe however the music is darker and more mysterious.

Incorporating everything from knotty progressive rock workouts to jazzy touches, this album is designed to narrate the theme and offers a wide range of moods and dynamics shifting to pull it all off. The musicians are top notch with crazy keyboard runs and energetic hard rock outbursts balanced by dreamy symphonic prog touches that keep it within the realms of the romantic side of the Italian prog scene. The tracks are rather unpredictable in how they progress with off-kilter curve balls thrown in throughout the album's run without derailing the album's excellent attention to melodic processions that occasional veer into the avant-garde. The opening "Nulla" sets the tone with a dark brooding keyboard intro that paints the bleak picture of the stated man's mood as he returns to his once thriving life giving planet that is no more.

The album wastes no time ping ponging all over the place on "Su Una Rupe" which begins as a lush acoustically strummed dreamscape before erupting into a frenzy of knotty workouts and a passionate vocal led rock procession that finds an endless series of variations that continue throughout the album's playing time. While the musicianship is absolutely stunning, the production is a bit lackluster and has been a complaint of prog enthusiasts since the albums release however i can tolerate a less than perfect mixing job if the music delivers enough mojo magic to elevate the experience beyond that sole element and RRR certainly succeeded in that department. Fluent Italian speakers will also complain that the lyrics don't always relate to the concept but since my Italian is not of that level i can't say it bothers me too much especially since lyrics aren't my main focus anyways.

While considered by many to be a second tier band of the Italian prog scene, i beg to differ slightly. As far as success is concerned RRR may exist on a lower plane however as far as the talent and craftsmanship of the band's sole album is concerned i find this to be one of the most dynamically creative and well performed albums of the entire era. It's a bit of a strange one upon first exposure no doubt and requires an acclimation period but certainly delivers as many bold daring prog moves as all the greats of the day without sacrificing any of the attributes which makes it rather accessible in the melody making department. Nice diverse drumming styles, fiery performances contrasted with pastoral placidity and a more than competent singer and musical section. What's not to love about this one? Well, yeah the production which unfortunately many will cite as an inferiority. Masterpiece? Well maybe not quite but this is no doubt an excellent slice of creative Italian prog from the golden years.

 Il Fantastico Viaggio Del Studio Album, 1978
3.52 | 108 ratings

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Il Fantastico Viaggio Del "Bagarozzo" Mark
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by sgtpepper

4 stars Il Fantastico Viaggo is one of the best Goblin albums when it comes to pure music. The music is creative and well executed. We hear occasional vocals by Morante which is not a terrific added value but does not insult either. Thankfully, Goblin abandoned the cold experimenting from "Suspiria" and sticks to real music. This time, it is primarily a keyboard-driven progressive rock. Fusion is less present, I'm neutral about it because although I like fusion a lot, it could be a bit distracting from the typical Goblin soundtrack music. Goblin excels in crafting symphonic prog ("Terra di Goblin", "Un ragazzo d'argento") and delivers some really quirky complex prog with "La Danza". There are less successful moments like "Opera magnifica" with theatrical vocals but nothing that needs disposing of. If you're looking for a non-instrumental prog album by Goblin, then start here.
 Suspiria (OST) by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.72 | 173 ratings

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Suspiria (OST)
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by sgtpepper

3 stars The soundtrack music on Suspiria goes a step away from progressive rock and borrows more heavily from the horror side of things. The band is actually more experimental (second track and other short tracks) but that goes at the expense of good music, in this case. "Markos" opens door to an electronic-friendly music with busy drumming and steady repeated synths. My highlights are the title track, the more traditional instrumented "Black Forest" and somewhat Brand X sounding fusion of "Blind concert". The various remix tracks here are non-essential but curiously, "Suspiria (Daemonia remix)" sounds like a prog-metal piece (heavy bass drum and prog metal synths).
 Roller by GOBLIN album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.03 | 291 ratings

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Roller
Goblin Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by sgtpepper

4 stars Roller has a pretty non-soundtrack name and is a regular album, in fact. It is the most prog-rock compliant album with great instrumental playing and solid music, which, as other Goblin works, remains atmospheric. The first, title track, is an accessible classical music inspired (chords) piece, with church organ and drums providing the backbone. "Aquaman" is lighter and looser with fine electric guitar, has a soundtrack vibe. Then comes a playful jazz-rock number "Snip snap" with moog/Rhodes giving grooves but the drummer contributing greatly with funky beats. The next track again provides a variety by applying piano, acoustic guitar, to other electric counterparts.

Apart from the title track, "Goblin" is the second highlight to me, this 11 minute track standing well on its own. Stylistically, it borrows quite heavily from mid-70's Italian prog. Simonetti provides a good ride with synth leads and drummer accelerates to a 100km/h towards the end before returning to the symphonic motive. Perhaps the best Goblin track. "Dr. Frankenstein" is a fusion number, focused more on playing than composition but what a drive! Easily 4 or 4.5 stars.

 A Piedi Nudi by A PIEDI NUDI album cover Studio Album, 1994
3.16 | 35 ratings

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A Piedi Nudi
A Piedi Nudi Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by siLLy puPPy
Special Collaborator PSIKE, JRF/Canterbury, P Metal, Eclectic

4 stars With the prog revival of the 90s taking off with bands like the Flower Kings, Spock's Beard, Anglagard and Anekdoten rekindling the spirit of the 70s that was more or less extinguished in the commercial musical leanings of the 1980s, the Italian prog scene was also getting a second wind even as classic 70s bands such as Le Orme and Banco del Mutuo Soccorso were still cranking out albums throughout it all (but also watering down their prog aspects to attempt to stay relevant). While not nearly as a prolific era as the golden years of the early 1970s, bands like Nuova Era, Eris Pluvia, Finisterre and Höstsonaten were reviving the classic symphonic prog romanticism that the Italian scene delivered so uniquely well making Italy one of the most successful nations to export prog during the 70s. One similar band to form in 1991 was the hard edged A PIEDI NUDI ( Italian for "barefoot") which emerged from Rovigo.

Notable for mixing the classic RPI style with heavier rock, A PIEDI NUDI offered one of the most hards rocking blends of Italian prog since bands like Procession and Il Rovescio Della Medaglia burst on to the 70s scene with their own style of early proto-metal infused Italian prog. While experiencing lineup changes over its three album run throughout the 90s, the first lineup that appeared on this self-titled debut featured Mirko Schiesaro (vocals), Nicola Gardinale (guitar, backing vocals), Cristian Chinaglia (keyboards), Simone Bighetti (bass, 12-string guitar), and Carlo Bighetti (drums, flute, backing vocals). This would be the only album for lead vocalist Schiesaro who would jump ship after this debut allowing drummer Carlo Bighetti to pick up the additional task as lead singer. This dramatic darker variety of RPI debut featured 12 epic tracks that stampeded past the one hour mark.

Although several classic Italian prog bands added the extra touches of harder rock ranging from Osanna to Il Bigletto Di Bronzo, A PIEDI NUDI upped the ante so to speak and didn't just copy and paste past glories but rather took the romantic symphonic prog prototype of classic RPI artists and infused it with the modernities of the 1990s. With raw and aggressive rhythmic drives, A PIEDI NUDI delivered a borderline metal hybrid that offered a touch of alternative metal chord crunching along with the occasional modern guitar soloing techniques. The heavy rock freneticism of the guitar, bass and drums is accompanied by the more traditional keyboard styles of the 70s along with Schiesaro's vocals evoking the passionate romanticism of the classic era. This mix is stark and utterly unique as far as i've ever heard. While there were hard rocking RPI bands in the 70s, those bands deemphasized the symphonic prog aspects during their hard rock phase and focused on a more complex style of proto-metal. APIEDI NUDI feels equally at home in either the pastoral lushness of classic RPI as it does the modern world of heavier alt rock / metal.

This is even made more stark during turbulent instrumental outbreaks that take the guitar, bass and drumming action into overdrive meanwhile the keyboards remain staunchly rooted in the past as do the vocals which are fashionably sung entirely in the Italian language. The band also added elements of the darker world of contemporary rock with touches of gothic rock and grungy guitar tones. To call this album surreal would be an understatement as it sounds like two distinctly different bands from different eras gathered for a moment of cross-pollination that nobody else seemed to think of. Somehow despite the contrasting passionate display of Italian 70s sensibilities in cahoots with the harder nihilistic style of guitar playing that made the alternative 90s so distinct, the band pulls it all off quite successfully with neither style dominating and both finding the perfect middle ground to let the other simply meld into the overall mix of things.

And best of all this album doesn't sound the least bit gimmicky. The composiitons themselves are captivating and suit both the hard rock heft of the instrumentation as well as the more sentimental vocal and keyboard contributions. Overall this is a fascinating clash of two disparate musical scenes and one that A PIEDI NUDI delivered with gusto. Despite all odds, the pastoral tender aspects of the band's sound craftily cavort with the adrenalized rock bluster. All in all A PIEDI NUDI filigreed a fusion all their own and despite losing Schiesaro as the lead vocalist after this eponymous debut, would continue this unique federation of disparate musical forces. Although this one doesn't seem to get a lot of love, i find it captivating and utterly exhilarating!

 Echi di un Futuro Passato by CELESTE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.24 | 21 ratings

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Echi di un Futuro Passato
Celeste Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Agnenrecords

4 stars Celeste were one of the first RPI bands I'd heard of but it wasn't until around 2010 that I got to hear PRINCIPE DI UN GIORNO when a temporary colleague on secondment from Rome brought me back a second hand copy on CD after a weekend at home (from the legendary Elastic Rock.) The early- Genesis inspired bucolic prog on that album is indispensable and I managed to get the AMS vinyl reissue a few years later, then added the two similarly-themed LPs IL RISVEGLIO DEL PRINCIPE and IL PRINCIPE DEL REGNO PERDUTO when they were released. I've bought the limited edition vinyl version of ECHI DI UN FUTURO PASSATO (Mellow Records MMLP114) which has only five tracks and a different running order to the CD. Side 1 is comprised of PIGMENTI (8'47), ASPETTI ASTRATTI (7'34) and CIRCONVOLUZIONI (7'54) and side 2 ATTESE SOTTESE (10'31) and SOTTILI ARMONIE (10'51). The difference in running order doesn't affect the listening satisfaction because there is no overall concept to the album, with each tune standing up on its own merits. Despite moments where Ciro Perrino's distinctive Mellotron bursts into life, the album comes across as sonically disparate from the three 'prince' albums, being jazzy throughout with a marked swing (I don't find this a problem.) The difference between the 'prince' albums and this release is underlined by a full-colour, satisfying almost Roger Dean-esque cover illustration.

The tunes are beautifully melodic with plenty of room for development and the musicianship, writing and production are all excellent throughout. I can't believe anyone who likes PRINCIPE DI UN GIORNO won't enjoy this release.

4.5 stars

 Il Leone e la Bandiera by ORME, LE album cover Studio Album, 2024
3.85 | 24 ratings

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Il Leone e la Bandiera
Le Orme Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by patrishiou

4 stars Le Orme, the legendary Italian band, continues its legacy with one of the three original members remaining (five in the debut album). Frontman and vocalist Aldo Tagliapetra left the band over 15 years ago, and several have tried to fill his shoes in the different lineups of the 2000s. His iconic voice was a hallmark for the band, and its absence is noticeable in the albums released after his departure. For this latest work, which the band members themselves have suggested might be their last, they bring in Luca Sparagna on vocals and bass. And what can be said about him? An impeccable choice, with a timbre reminiscent of Aldo's, an excellent vocal range, and a vibrant and colorful personality.

We are possibly witnessing the best Le Orme album in the past 15 years, or even longer, not since the farewell of their original keyboardist, Antonio Pagliuca, has there been an album of this magnitude. This record revives all the pastoral magic, the candid interplay between acoustic guitars and synthesizers, and the sweet, evocative melodies that paint delicate and natural landscapes. The flexible yet direct compositions bring to mind classic albums like "Felona e Sorona" or "Uomo di Pezza," with contemplative and sweet pieces that resonate closely with both us and the broader Latin American prog community. There is undeniably much of Le Orme's influence seen in latin-american bands, Los Jaivas, Sui Generis, and Crucis.

The organs?whether they are tube, harmoniums, or Hammonds?are a delight throughout the album and contrast perfectly with the set of digital synthesizers and orchestrations (we have strings and a choir). The album has strong emotional points like "Rosa dei venti" and gentle introspective songs like "Lucciole di vetro," offering a broad spectrum of sensations while always maintaining a clean, melodic, and pleasant aesthetic for any listener. The solos are incredible, just as the classic ballad choruses are.

"Ouverture" is, as the name suggests, an opening piece for this tremendous work. It's simply an instrumental track filled with keyboards that serves as a palate cleanser and introduce us to this phenomenal album.

"Acqua di luna" is the first standout track. Everything we expect from a Le Orme song is here: a voice reminiscent of Aldo gliding over acoustic guitars and bowed strings, delivering memorable melodies later echoed by the synthesizers. A smooth and airy track that showcases the value of simple and dynamic production with high emotional impact, achieved through its compositional arrangements.

Without warning, we are hit with hard rock, Hammond organ, and all the glory of the '70s. "Ferro e fuoco" is sharp and lethal with its unforgettable piano/Hammond counterpoints. The vocals take a backseat as the instrumental madness takes over this progressive marvel.

An ethereal sense of comfort takes hold with "Lucciole di vetro." Luca's incredible voice transforms the choruses into true gems that will linger in memory. A song driven by grand piano and vocals, where nothing can go wrong.

"L'alba della partenza" is another progressive track heavily driven by keyboard counterpoints. It presents itself as more delicate and ominous, with minor melodies that move unpredictably. The soft vocal sections strongly remind us of Charly García's inflections or that pastoral Le Orme from "Collage."

And now, the strongest contender for the best song on the album, "Rosa dei venti." This composition offers beautiful themes, keyboards, open, reflective, and emotional ambiances. After almost four minutes of precious sonic undulations, we transition to the final section where a choir sings the chorus, flooding us with happiness and magic.

The album's final track is the most experimental. Michi dei Rossi unleashes his creativity, adding drums and various percussions to the mix, enhancing the atmosphere created by pads and '80s guitars drenched in reverb. The icing on the cake is the Hammond organ at the end, ready to blow out our speakers, another spectacular climax that reassures us, one last time, that if this is indeed Le Orme's final album, they are going out with a bang.

This album is a spectacular reimagining of the best of Le Orme from the '70s. It's for fans of "Contrappunti" and those who were left wanting more after being captivated by the incredible interplanetary love story of "Felona e Sorona." A return to that timeless sound, filled with counterpoints, as classic, elegant, and romantic as ever.

Originally written for: Nacion Progresiva.

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Rock Progressivo Italiano bands/artists list

Bands/Artists Country
A PIEDI NUDI Italy
A.S.T.R.A Italy
ABISSI INFINITI Italy
ABSENTHIA Italy
ACQUA FRAGILE Italy
AD MAIORA Italy
ADHARMA Italy
AELEMENTI Italy
STEFANO AGNINI Italy
AINUR Italy
AKRON Italy
L' ALBERO DEL VELENO Italy
ALGEBRA Italy
ALIANTE Italy
ALESSANDRO ALISCIONI Italy
ALLEGRI LEPROTTI Italy
GLI ALLUMINOGENI Italy
ALPHATAURUS Italy
ALTARE THOTEMICO Italy
ALUSA FALLAX Italy
AMMINISTRAZIONE CAOS POPOLARE Italy
ANACONDIA Italy
ANCESTRY Italy
ANCIENT VEIL Italy
ANTONIUS REX Italy
GLI APOSTHOLI Italy
APOTEOSI Italy
APRYL Italy
AQUAEL / EX MAURY E I PRONOMI Italy
ARCAMIRI Italy
ARCHITRAVE INDIPENDENTE Italy
AREA Italy
ARIES Italy
ARJUNA Italy
ARMONITE Italy
ARPIA Italy
ARS NOVA (ITA) Italy
ASSEMBLEA MUSICALE TEATRALE Italy
ASSENZIO Italy
ASTROLABIO / EX ELETTROSMOG Italy
ATON'S Italy
ATTI PUBBLICI IN LUOGO OSCENO Italy
ATTO IV Italy
AUDIO Italy
AURORA LUNARE Italy
AVALON LEGEND Italy
B-RAIN Italy
IL BABAU & I MALEDETTI CRETINI Italy
SOPHYA BACCINI Italy
IL BACIO DELLA MEDUSA Italy
THE BADGE Italy
BALLETTIROSADIMACCHIA Italy
IL BALLETTO DI BRONZO Italy
IL BALLO DELLE CASTAGNE Italy
THE BALMUNG Italy
LA BAMBIBANDA E MELODIE Italy
BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO Italy
BANDA BELZONI Italy
BARABBA Italy
MARIO BARBAJA Italy
BARO PROG-JETS Italy
BAROQUE Italy
BARROCK Italy
LUCIANO BASSO Italy
LA BATTERIA Italy
FRANCO BATTIATO Italy
PIERPAOLO BIBBO Italy
BIGLIETTO PER L'INFERNO Italy
BLOCCO MENTALE Italy
LA BOCCA DELLA VERITÀ Italy
BONDAGE Italy
BORNIDOL Italy
LA BOTTEGA DELL'ARTE Italy
BRAEN'S MACHINE Italy
BRAINDEAD Italy
ANGELO BRANDUARDI Italy
BRIGHT HORIZON Italy
BUON VECCHIO CHARLIE Italy
BUTTERFLY SYSTEM Italy
CAGE Italy
I CALIFFI Italy
CALLIOPE Italy
IL CAMBIO DELLA GUARDIA Italy
CAMERA ASTRALIS Italy
JURI CAMISASCA Italy
CAMPO DI MARTE Italy
CANTINA SOCIALE Italy
CAPITOLO 6 Italy
CAPRICORN COLLEGE Italy
CAPSICUM RED Italy
CAPSIDE Italy
ENZO CAPUANO Italy
CARPINETA Italy
IL CASTELLO DELLE UOVA Italy
IL CASTELLO DI ATLANTE Italy
CAVALLI COCCHI.LANZETTI.ROVERSI Italy
CELESTE Italy
IL CERCHIO D'ORO Italy
CERVELLO Italy
CHERRY FIVE Italy
CHIAVE DI VOLTA Italy
CHRISTADORO Italy
LUCIANO CILIO Italy
THE CINEMA SHOW Italy
CINEMA STYGE Italy
CIRCLE OF FAIRIES Italy
CITTÀ FRONTALE Italy
CIVICO 23 Italy
CLEPSYDRA Italy
I COCAI Italy
ROBERTO COLOMBO Italy
CONDOR Italy
CONQUEROR Italy
CONSORZIO ACQUA POTABILE Italy
MICHELE CONTA Italy
CONTRAPPUNTO Italy
CONTROTEMPO Italy
COOPERATIVA DEL LATTE Italy
CORAL CAVES Italy
CORMORANO Italy
CORPORESANO Italy
EMANUELE CORREANI Italy
CORTE AULICA Italy
CORTE DEI MIRACOLI Italy
LA COSCIENZA DI ZENO Italy
MARIO COTTARELLI Italy
COURT Italy
CRYSTALS Italy
LA CURVA DI LESMO Italy
GINO D'ELISO Italy
GIANNI D'ERRICO Italy
DALLAGLIO Italy
DALTON Italy
DE DE LIND Italy
DELIRIUM Italy
MAURIZIO DI TOLLO Italy
I DIK DIK Italy
DISEQUAZIONE Italy
DISTILLERIE DI MALTO Italy
DIVAE Italy
LA DOTTRINA DEGLI OPPOSTI Italy
DUEMILA12 Italy
ECFONETICA Italy
ECLISSE Italy
EDERA Italy
EDGAR ALLAN POE Italy
EGO Italy
EGONON Italy
ELISIR D'AMBROSIA Italy
EMPIRE Italy
ENEIDE Italy
ENIMA Italy
ENTITY Italy
EPISCOPIO VISTARAMA Italy
EQUIPE 84 Italy
ERA DI ACQUARIO Italy
ERIS PLUVIA Italy
ERRATA CORRIGE Italy
L' ESTATE DI SAN MARTINO Italy
EURASIA Italy
EUTHYMIA Italy
EXPLOIT Italy
LA FABBRICA DELL'ASSOLUTO Italy
FABIO CELI E GLI INFERMIERI Italy
FALENA Italy
IL FAUNO DI MARMO / EX THE REBUS Italy
IL FEDELISSIMO BRACCO BRANCO Italy
FEM PROG BAND / FORZA ELETTROMOTRICE Italy
FESTA MOBILE Italy
FILARMONICA MUNICIPALE LACRISI Italy
FILORITMIA Italy
FINISTERRE Italy
FLEA Italy
FLOATING STATE Italy
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