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Le Orme - Live In Pennsylvania (2CD + DVD) CD (album) cover


Le Orme

Rock Progressivo Italiano

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erik neuteboom
5 stars

In my 'eternal progrock quest' I stumbled upon very positive reviews about Le Orme their early Seventies albums in the mail-order catalogues of Musea (France) and Syn-Phonic and Laser's Edge (USA) in the late Eighties. So I decided to order the albums Felona E Sorona, Collage and Uomo Di Pezza. During my first listening session I was delighted about Le Orme their music and it's still my favorite Classic Italian Prog band. I even compare Le Orme to the captivating sound of Gabriel era Genesis and early King Crimson because of the stunning blend of (as Edward Macan describes in his excellent book Rocking The Classics) femine (warm and mellow) and masculine (more agressive and bombastic) elements: on one hand the pleasant vocals, acoustic guitar, sitar and Mellotron and on the other hand the fiery electric guitar and sumptuous sound of Hammond organ and Moog synthesizer). In 2005 Le Orme was invited to perform on the annual Nearfest Festival in the USA in order to present their new line up (including original members Aldo Tagliapietra and Michi Di Rossi) and latest album L'Infinito (2004). It turned out to be a legendary gig with Le Orme at their peak and and awesome tracking-list! Here's my review about their DVD, the tracklist is similar to the 2-CD's.

Le Orme starts with five songs from L'Infinito: the instrumental Il Tuono E La Luce featuring majestic choir-Mellotron samples and then propulsive drum beats, fiery guitar and intense guitar runs on a 'keytar' and the musical brainchild Aldo on a wonderful double-neck (all in mesmerizing blue light), La Voce Del Silenzio with howling guitar and beautiful work on piano and Hammond, the dreamy Shanti, the very compelling and impressive titletrack with great classical orechestrations, choir-Mellotron and fat synthesizer flights and finally Aldo on the sitar in La Ruota Del Cielo. Then Le Orme starts to play songs from their early Seventies albums: Una Dolcezza Nuova (bombastic church organ intro, followed by lush Hammond along varied piano play and warm vocals), Gioco Di Bimba (Aldo on the 12-string guitar of his double-neck) and a breathtaking version of the mainly instrumental La Porta Chiusa (exciting bombastic keyboards with Hammond, Moog and church organ) from Uomo Di Pezza (1972), Cemento Armato (loaded with excellent solos on violin, keytar and Hammond) from Collage (1971) and the absolute highlight of this evening, the complete version (nine parts) of the mindlbowing epic Felona E Sorona: we are carried away to Progheaven with a wide range of captivating shifting moods, wonderful keyboard work and a splendid 'grand finale', for me one of the highlights of Classic Italian Prog, goose bumps!

My euphoric conclusion: outstanding, very inspired musicians (with the dual-keyboards as the musical focus), a thrilling tracking-list, a beautiful lightshow, several camera positions (even some multi- screen) and a good sound quality, "you can't beg for more!", HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!

Report this review (#172081)
Posted Saturday, May 24, 2008 | Review Permalink
Errors & Omissions Team
5 stars I always wondered why such a great band like Le Orme had only 2 live albums in their discography, poorly recorded ''In Concerto'' and almost impossible to find now ''Live Orme''. At last, the dream of many Italian prog fans came true - Le Orme are on DVD (plus double CD).

And what a powerful live set it is! First class, virtuostic musicians, Aldo's voice still sounds great, performance is inspired, set list is well-thought and the level of energy is incredibly high. Sound and picture are almost top notch. Though to be honest, I must make two notes: 1. video montage is not perfect, because somitemes the whole stage is shown for too long time instead of soloing musicians; 2. DD 5.1 or DTS option is missing on DVD. But these things are not a reason to lower my rating - essential in any serious prog collection. 5 stars.

Report this review (#174875)
Posted Sunday, June 22, 2008 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Simply beautiful!

Here we have one of the most representative Italian prog bands ever and one of the most successful as well, so for that only reason I would invite anyone to dig into their music. This time they decided to release a DVD from a concert last year in Pennsylvania and believe me it is worth listening/watching/buying it.

In a personal experience, last year I attended to the BajaProg Fest mainly in order to see those Italian bands I loved (New Trolls, Banco who sadly cancelled and of course Le Orme), the fact is that I was really waiting for Le Orme's show and they did not let me down at all, it was an amazing show where we could appreciate their excellent music, how talented they are! And later when watching this DVD I realized that the set-list is very alike to the BajaProg one, it could be actually the same, I don't remember but this DVD brought me some nice memories, it was a sweet evening.

Well, this DVD includes 18 songs with a total time of 90 minutes approx, and also a kind of a tour diary in the extras section, something nice in addition to the concert. The only thing I could say as a negative comment, is that their performance is so good, that you would ask for more and more songs, I remember when the show ended I felt like it had been too short, it happened really fast because I truly enjoyed it, and with this DVD I have the same sensation, it is fantastic, yes, but maybe 20 minutes more would make this a superb concert.

I could say that the show is divided in 2 parts, the first one starting with 5 songs in a row taken from their last album "L'Infinito", which is a very nice album with great songs such as "La Voce del Silenzio" or "La Ruota del Cielo", with this group of songs, their focus on latter material ends just in order to play older and of course better known stuff. Continuing with the first part of the DVD, they chose some great songs from "Uomo di Pezza" and "Collage", awesome songs such as "La Porta Chiusa" and "Cemento Armato", their attitude on stage is really exciting, they keep making the prog lover want for more and pay total attention to their music, they are fantastic musicians whose music may cause you goose bumps. So the first part of the concert is now finished.

The second could be the more exciting for a lot of people, including myself since it is the performance of the whole "Felona e Sorona" album which is my personal favourite, so you can guess I was blown away when I saw them, and again when I watched this DVD. What more could I say, if since the very beginning with the superb "Sospesi nell'Incredibile" my attention was caught at 100%, when the music sound as good or even better than in the studio albums, so honestly a Le Orme fan must be really pleased with the performance o a complete studio masterpiece. I won't mention all the songs because I am not reviewing Felona e Sorona, if you are familiar with the band you already know the tracklist, but well, believe me this is a beautiful concert.

Well, despite I consider this as a fabulous concert, and as I mentioned earlier in this review, I wanted a bit more because after what I saw, I was sure the band could offer some more minutes, and for that reason I think this DVD does not reach the 5 star grade, my final qualification will be 4 stars, but anyway I highly recommend it to any prog lover, no matter if you are into RPI or not, this is simply a must watching.

Enjoy it!

Report this review (#227431)
Posted Saturday, July 18, 2009 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This 2 Cd/DVD package is a real treat for fans of Italian symphonic prog. Recorded at the 2005 Nearfest festival, it's a well recorded and filmed document of an excellent performance from Le Orme capturing their lush and melodic keyboard dominated sound perfectly. The band play brilliantly, particularly impressive being Michi Dei Rossi's dynamic performance on the drums, powerful yet full of many subtleties. Aldo Tagliapietra shows that his voice is more than capable in a live setting and has lost none of its distinctive melancholic charm over the years.

Not surprisingly there's no difference in the track listing between the cd's and DVD. The band play a crowd pleasing set drawing heavily from their most popular mid seventies albums. However, no doubt eager to showcase their latest studio album they open with 5 tracks from L'infinito which whilst not reaching the heights of their seventies classics proves they can still write a decent song, the only disappointment for me being the sitar heavy La ruota del cielo.

The rest of the first cd is mainly tracks from their 1972 masterpiece Uomo Di Pezza as well as one from Collage (Cemento Armato), all brilliantly executed. Probably the biggest treat for fans though is that the classic Felona E Sorona album is played here in its entirety taking up the whole of the second cd.

It's hard to find fault with this excellent package. If it has one then it's simply that at one and half hours it's a little short but as this is no doubt down to festival time restrictions it would be ungenerous of me to award it anything less than the full 5 stars.

Report this review (#236812)
Posted Thursday, September 3, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars Such a powerful live set, by means of a couple of audio cd's plus one DVD, which you won' t soon forget but-rather I should say, you would like to collect as a new surprising set...well honestly the quality of the product is not aligned with the best production for instance coming from the sound by Terry Brown or other excellent sound engineers, but the output is very good anyway!! Le Orme are an ever green band and the excerpt from "L' Infinito" is really majestic and enriched with a strong section of mellotron too...of course the sound is classic, but it's a sort of trademark by the immortal italian band. There are also "introspective" moments like in "La Voce del Silenzio" or within "La ruota del cielo", without forgetting the most powerful moments like in the famous suite "Felona and Sorona" and other old jewels...unfortunately They have not included a couple of remarkable recent suites like "Il Fiume" and "Elements", which would have given a clear idea of the new modern sound by Le Orme to the crowd; besides their fans could have got an inkling of their sound evolution (even though sometimes their recent albums are regarded to be very close to "Six wives of Henry the eighth" and "King Arthur & the knights of the round table" by R. Wakeman, being with an old mood..)...never mind, coming to the present live issue, it's a new small piece of their fantastic career and you are not tired when you listen to their usual ballads or hit singles (the soft song "Gioco di Bimba" is a typical example)!!

So Long Live Le Orme and...choose them once again!!

Report this review (#248299)
Posted Thursday, November 5, 2009 | Review Permalink
5 stars Yes...... I think this is the most sublime concert I have ever listened.

The selection of the albums played:Their best albums of the last era. : L,Infinito.

The best classical albums:Collage,Uomo Di Pezza and Felona e Sorona.

So you ,ll ask then 'These old musicians have they maintained their skills and quality?

Yes of course: Aldo S. excellent as in their best times.

Same comment to the other musicians.

The quality of the sound excellent,video excellent,the stage scenario as if this was a concert of classical music: simple but smart,very well illuminated.

So this is a masterpiece for a prog rock concert played by a master band .

5 stars.

Report this review (#435618)
Posted Tuesday, April 19, 2011 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Last week went to my favorite music store to change a DVD that was damaged, to my disbelieve, the owner was unusually comprehensive and changed it without asking questions, but everything has an explanation, because the guy took this beautiful second hand package with two CD's and DVD in perfect condition that offered it to me (He knew I wouldn't resist, being that it's very hard to find in Peru).

I couldn't even ask for a discount, because the guy noticed I started to drool as soon as he showed me the package, so even when it was a bit expensive, bought it without thinking it twice, but what a better way to expend my hard earned money than a complete visual performance of Felona e Sorona (There's much more, but that would had been enough to consider my money well invested).

Of course the 2 CD's are a must own and have the merit of a better sound, but I'll focus in the amazing DVD that starts with a massive doze of Mellotron from "Il Uomo de la Luce" that reminds me of Genesis. The DVD advances song by song pleasing me more due to the extraordinary ability of the band, and surprising me the participation of Michele Bon and Andrea Bassato in a contrapuntist battle of dual keyboards.

Watching for the first time in my life a well recorded video performance of the legendary Aldo Tagliapietra singing with his double-neck guitar and Michi Dei Rossi with his usual capacity in the drums, playing 9 tracks from their 2004 CD L'Infinito, Uomo di Pezza and Collage. left me wanting to applaud.

But the central piece of the DVD is the complete performance of Felona e Sorona that simply amazed me from start to end, sadly the DVD is Stereo, but I don't care too much, because it's a unique experience that I will enjoy for a long time. If this wasn't enough, I have two LE ORME CD's in my car stereo that will make me company during the lonely couple of hours that take me to go and return from the office every day.

So, being that I got two great CD's and a unique DVD of a LE ORME concert, with such a great number of perfect songs, can't rate Live in Pennsylvania with less than 5 stars

Report this review (#509156)
Posted Thursday, August 25, 2011 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is the best way to get into their music, if you didn't tried them yet. I must admit, this was my first contact with Le Orme. I have heard of them, I have read reviews, and some people describe them as an italian ELP. Well, I love italian prog -I know, I love almost every kind of prog, but- and Emerson, Lake and Palmer are my all time favorites, so I decided to try this package. I thought that it couldn't be bad at all. But goddamn, this is awesome! It starts with the four first songs from L'infinito (2004), very creative songs, and the keyboards are very impressive. The use of the citar helps to create a different atmosphere, in a good way. So we have the full "A Side" performance from Uomo Di Pezza (1972), and hell, the show is getting better and better. Finishing with Cemento Armato (Collage, 1971), Aldo Tagliapietra briefly introduces the second half of the show, Felona E Sorona, the album from 1973, played entirely. I just can't full describe this, it's a masterpiece. The first song puts you into the mood for the album, without mistakes. The drummer is very prog, and I like his basketball jersey. Maybe the best live performance I ever seen. This DVD is actually my favorite into my collection.
Report this review (#965479)
Posted Monday, May 27, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars ELP with emotion ?

For me 70s Le Orme is one of the prog bands that come close to the magic of the most legendary and pivotal UK prog formations Yes Genesis, ELP, Pink Floyd and King Crimson, The Prog Big Five. In his amazing book Rocking The Classics the US author Edward Macan writes about femine (warm and mellow) and masculine (more agressive and bombastic) elements in prog, Le Orme delivers that with tender Italian vocals, acoustic guitar, sitar and Mellotron as the femine part, and fiery electric guitar and the sumptuous sound of Hammond organ and Moog synthesizer as the masculine part, evoking lots of tension and dynamics in the music.

In 2005 Le Orme was invited to perform on the annual Nearfest Festival in the USA in order to present their new line up (including original members Aldo Tagliapietra and Michi Di Rossi) and latest album L'Infinito (2004). It turned out to be a legendary gig with Le Orme at their artistic peak and a mouthwatering setlist, wow!

Le Orme starts with songs from L'Infinito and then switched to playing the 'classic 70s tracks'. My highlights.

The instrumental Il Tuono E La Luce features majestic choir-Mellotron samples and then propulsive drum beats, fiery guitar and intense runs on a 'keytar', and the musical brainchild Aldo on a wonderful double-neck.

La Voce Del Silenzio with howling guitar and beautiful work on piano and Hammond.

The very compelling and impressive titletrack with great classical orechestrations, Mellotron choirs and fat synthesizer flights, and finally Aldo on the distinctive sitar in La Ruota Del Cielo.

Una Dolcezza Nuova contains a sumptuous church organ intro, then lush Hammond, along varied piano play and warm vocals.

In Gioco Di Bimba Aldo plays on the 12-string guitar of his double-neck.

A breathtaking version of the mainly instrumental La Porta Chiusa with exciting bombastic keyboards: the vintage Hammond and Moog, and a church organ sound.

Cemento Armato is loaded with excellent soli on violin, the 'keytar' and Hammond.

And finally that epic classic composition that the crowd was waiting for the entire evening: the complete version (9 parts) of the mindlbowing magnum opus Felona E Sorona, carrying you away to Prog Heaven with lots of varied and flowing shifting moods, wonderful dual keyboard work, and a splendid 'grand finale'. I remember a mesmerized crowd, blown away by the absolute highlight in Classic Italian Prog, goose bumps! By the way, that was in 2005, in 2013 Le Orme performed in The Netherlands, near my hometown The Hague, in the prog rock venue De Boerderij, a prog dream came true!

The DVD features the same track list, I am impressed by the beautiful lightshow, the use of several camera positions (including some multi- screen images) and a good sound quality.


Report this review (#3029094)
Posted Sunday, March 10, 2024 | Review Permalink

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