Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography


Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)

Various Genres

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) The 7 Samurai album cover
4.01 | 52 ratings | 6 reviews | 31% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

Write a review

Studio Album, released in 2006

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Alla Corte Degli Eroi - 1550 Periodo Sengoku (27:03) :
- i. Shimada Kambei
- ii. Kikuchiyo: Il Volo
- iii. Crepusculo - Parte Uno
- iv. Il Vecchio Mulino
- v. Katayama Gorobei: Le Sete Spade
- vi. Fa Che Io Sia: Il Dono
2. The Farmers (26:19) :
- i. Farewell to the Season
- ii. The Lone Samurai
- iii. Despair, Shout !
- iv. The Blind Crow
3. The Bandits (22:33) :
- i. First Ride
- ii. Eagle's Peak Pyre
- iii. The Flaming Lady
- iv. Last Ride

Total Time 75:55

Line-up / Musicians

- CAP (1)
- Tempano (2)
- Tapobran (3)

Releases information

Artwork: Stefano Scagni

CD Musea ‎- FGBG 4604.AR (2005, France)

Thanks to erik neuteboom for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
Edit this entry



(52 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(31%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(46%)
Good, but non-essential (19%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by erik neuteboom
4 stars Here is another project by Colossus and Musea, this time a CD featuring three bands, each with an 'epic' composition between 20 and 30 minutes.

CAP - Alla Corte Degli Eroi (27.03) First the Italian band CAP, they deliver symphonic prog in the 24-carat tradition, wonderful ! After a dreamy intro with violin, flute and twanging acoustic guitar, the music turns into a lush and compelling prog sound with strong hints from the Classic Seventies Italian Prog featuring warm Italian vocals, lots of Grand piano, Hammond organ and Mellotron and fiery electric guitar. The powerful guitar and flute traverse work evoke Jethro Tull, a very popular band in Italy in the Seventies!

TEMPANO - The Farmers (26.19) This band is from Venezuela, they also treat us on beautiful symphonic prog, very tastefully coloured by fat Moog flights and delicate work on the Hohner D6 clavinet, Farfisa organ and Rhodes electric piano. The music changes frequently and very fluently from dreamy with violin or a slow rhythm with soaring keyboards to propulsive with fiery guitar or bombastic with lush keyboards. At some moments there are vocals but it's mainly instrumental prog.

TAPOBRAN - The Bandits (22.33) Lots of progheads are eagerly waiting on their debut CD but first here they are with a very alternating contribution to this CD. First an impressive intro with majestic violin-Mellotron and sweeping drum beats, followed by a swinging rhythm with flashy soli on Hammond organ and Moog synthesizer, this is 'keyboard Heaven', with obvious echoes from Keith Emerson! Then a mid-tempo with warm Italian vocals evoking Nuova Era (another wonderful ELP inspired Italian band). Suddenly the atmosphere turns into folky with flute, mandoline and violin, it reminds me of the Andean folk. Tapobran keeps on surprising us with lots of fine musical ideas: sweeping drums with powerful violin-Mellotron, a piece with clarinet and piano and finally a bombastic climate with propulsive Hammond waves and captivating interplay between saxophone and choir-Mellotron, supported by dynamic drumming, unique prog!

This CD is highly recommended to all symphomaniacs on this earth .. and beyond!

Review by CCVP
5 stars I never saw the Akira Kurosawa classic movie Seven Samurai, back from 1954, but i still enjoyed VERY much the music presented here in this amazing concept album!

This great Various Artists concept album, conceived by The Finnish Progressive Music Association, known also as Colossus, and released by the French Musea Records, after the acclaimed Odyssey - The Greatest Tale (another masterpiece that was the result of this Colossus - Musea partnership), is a unique work of art that manages to bring back a lot of the 70's magic and feeling to nowadays, through the usage of vintage equipment or 70's sounding equipment and the emulation of the 70's symphonic prog composition.

In fact, one of the main ideas of the project is to reproduce the 70's Italian prog, what is only completely achieved by one of the two Italian bands, that actually lived the 70's Italian prog scene: the Consorzio Acqua Potabile, that used a lots of acoustic instruments, such as violins and flutes, that, besides not being exclusive of the Italian scene, where much more present on the said scene than in others, such as the English, French or German, for example, alongside with vintage equipment. That, however, does not takes any merit from the other bands, that were able to deliver terrific songs without fully connecting with the 70's Italian scene thing. Besides, theses pieces of music does not appear to be simple emulation of the 70's sound: they are really songs made today inspired by the 70's progressive rock but they sound unique in their own way, according to the band musical orientation and style, since two of the three bands are actually from the 70's (Consorzio and Tempano).

The story behind the album (the movie Seven Samurai) is quite interesting: Everything takes place in a countryside farmer's village that a group of 40 robbers want to plunder the harvest, in the 16th century Japan, during the Tokugawa Era, when the country endured a long a bloody civil war and the countryside was overrun by groups of bandits and robbers. To try stop the bandits from plundering their harvest, the villagers menage to hire seven samurai to defend their village. The samurai teach the farmers to fight, help them fortify the village entrances and fight alongside with the villagers to push back the bandits. With the help of the samurai, the villagers drive the robbers back, at the cost of the lives of four samurai and some villagers.

This album right here was actually my first experience with the great Colossus - Musea projects and i was not disappointed. Although it needed a lot of time to listen it as many times as necessary to digest it nicely, from day 1 i knew that i had something different from the rest on my hands; something that made me come back from time to time to this album, until i saw the light and was finally able to enjoy this very well.

Another interesting feature is that all the bands that participated on this album have already appeared on some Colossus - Musea project. Both Consorzio Acqua Potabile and Tempano appeared on Odyssey - The Greatest Tale and Taproban was on the first Spaghetti Epic.

About the songs, musicianship and other features there are some thing i would like to state:

CAP - Alla Corte Degli Eroi: the Consorzio here don't let us down, with a colorful and very competent presented to us, making a terrific epic opening track. Their brand usage of acoustic instruments gives this piece of music the most accurate approach (in my view) intended by the Colossus - Musea guys, bringing back most of that 70's Italian prog feeling.

TEMPANO - The Farmers: this track is, for me, the best in this album with a great ending (one of the most important parts of the song or album / book / whatever, since a bad ending could ruin everything or even save the crop!). Tempano here clearly outshines their comrades from Italy, presenting the most impressive piece of progressive rock music in this album. Here, the story is more guided by the music than by the lyrics, unlike CAP , being clearly distinguishable the parts of the movie when the samurai arrive at the village, train the villagers, etc, and that is because the music as a whole is very well developed during the song by the band, making the song great from start to finish. Another interesting feature of this song here is that it is the most experimental of the three, having some kind of jam in the middle of the song, like the jam in the middle of King Crimson's song Moonchild.

TAPOBRAN - The Bandits: this band right here appear to be another ELP - like band, and is quite like that: a drum / bass / keyboards power trio. However, they still manage to make great music (except the vocals, which are very sub-par when compared to the rest of their work in this album). The part of this song that really caught my attention was the second half of the song, specially when the Hammond Organ start to go crazy and when the clarinet and the soprano sax plays all the way until the end of the song, which is absolutely fantastic, reminding the ending of a movie itself.

Grade and final Thoughts:

Having this album a great concept, absolutely masterful music and terrific musicians, resulting in a marvelous album altogether, i think that it deserves th grade that all strive for: the masterpiece grade.

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars This album is sub-titled The Ultimate Epic. I was intrigued by this and since I am quite an epic collector, I decided to dig into this work. I knew already the work from Taproban as well as Tempano.

The first epic from these Seven Samouraï comes from the Italian band Consorzio Acqua Potabile (best known as CAP). The song that they deliver here holds some wonderful fluting and during the harder moments, a deep Tull filiation is felt.

It is maybe a bit lengthy, but the last six minutes are pure enjoyment. Emotive vocal part and a vibrant closing just make you forget about some weaker fragments. This track is all beautiful Italian prog music. And you might know that I quite like it. The violin sound is a fantastic add-on to the music proposed by this band. It is my preferred of the three, because few moments are superfluous.

I have catalogued this album into the Italian Symphonic, not only because two of the bands featured are coming out of Italy, but also because the Tempano contribution (even if sung in English) is really close musically to this style even though the long and improvised middle section is not the best moment of music I could have expected. But fortunately, the last five minutes revert the listener to some more conservative music: harmony and fine melody are taking over after these weird breaks.

The Taproban piece was the one I was waiting for the most. I quite liked their three albums and I hoped that this piece of music held most of the promises each of them contained. I have to say that it is only partially true.

While the objective of this combined work was to regroup three epic songs, I'm afraid that this sole objective obsessed each band. This last Taproban is effectively full of loose solo, long improvisations and lacks of substance. The passion of some of their work is not fully represented either.

In all, each respective band performs a decent piece of music; but the whole is not as great as it ought to be. Three stars.

Review by Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I also haven't seen "7 Samurai" yet (just Magnificent Seven, American remake), but I of course understand the story, how important this film is etc. However, I have to solve this album differently, treat this in a little bit weakened terms - I'm not sure I can process each track and rate it properly, so I'll deal just with its impact, how does it feel, what images it brings etc. It's good prog, ranging from 3-5 stars in general, but sheer length of these tracks prevents me from being proper in understanding it. Well, I had this problems with Spaghetti Epic' too, but I done it somehow. Maybe it doesn't matter, as this music is collection of various prog tunes, elements, really nothing concrete here. As you can see from tracklist, each song is divided into parts and that's not just scarecrow. Almost each part is like different song, however, linked together perfectly (you won't even notice it). "The Farmers" is a song I already know from "Selective Memory" by Tempano (2008).

4(-), not strong enough, not bad enough, more like four plus, but some parts distracts me.

Oh, I almost forgot, I can just recommend it.

Review by siLLy puPPy
4 stars One of the earliest chapters of the Finnish based Colossus Projects was the 2006 release, THE 7 SAMURAI: THE ULTIMATE EPIC which was the sixth epic adventure of concept albums of prog which in this case focused on the 1954 Japanese film by director Akira Kurosawa, "The 7 Samurais." This was the first release to feature a sole CD rather than a double disc set although maximizing the limitations of the physical format at a playing time of nearly 76 minutes.

This various artists compilation only features three sprawling tracks by the bands C.A.P. and Tapobran, both from Italy and the band Témprano from Venezuela. This album is dedicated to classic 1970s retro-prog with vintage keyboard sounds and a unified stylistic approach that borrows from early Genesis, ELP, Jethro Tull and the Italian greats like Banco and PFM. Each of the three tracks exceeds 22 minutes with the opening track by C.A.P. reaching a satisfying 27 minutes of symphonic prog splendor.

Consorzio Acqua Potabile (C.A.P.) starts the prog party with the sprawling 6-suite "Alla corte degli eroi - 1550, periodo Sengoku" which narrates the developments of the Samurai through endless variations based in the context of classic symphonic prog with additional references to Jethro Tull, King Crimson and especially Italian greats including Le Orme, Banco, Museo Rosenbach and just about anything else but the kitchen sink. This is one of the strongest tracks which is the most focused and features the most logical meandering through an endless series of developments. The segments while basically mini-tracks in their own right provide a logical procession although the actual Samurai references are nebulous and sparse. This track also features the most interesting vocalist at least for my ears.

The Venezuelan Témprano follows suit with a similar but distinct style as it nearly matches the longevity prowess of its processor. "The Farmers" which constitutes a mere four suites delivers the usual suspects for influences but also finds itself a bit less focused as far as meaningful movements and resorts to lengthy jamming extensions which tend to sound a little forced and at some points monotonous. Although not unlistenable by any means, just seems to be a step down from the opener and much more Genesis influenced with easily identifiable moments from classic pastoral sounds and Hackett inspired guitar tactics. Some jazzy moments are scattered about and the track sounds a bit more vintage.

The final track "The Bandits" by Tapobran likewise extends over the 20-minute mark surpassing the 22 minute demarcation. This track is segmented into four suites and offers some of the more overt rocking performances with heavier guitar moments and keyboard heft that will please fans of Emerson, Lake & Palmer's more brash moments. Being Italian there are plenty of references to the Italian greats of the era as well as moments of actual Japanese references making it the most identifiable as something that refers to the concept, something these Colossus Projects tend to make secondary in emphasis. While the track is the shortest, it offers more of a condensed punch in many regards and suits a more dramatic ending.

Overall this isn't as consistent as some Colossus releases yet quite excellent when taken as a whole. This is one of those pomp and awe type of prog album that many will cite as endless noodling but if an infinite roster of variations and thematic changes are your bailiwick then this will not disappoint. All three bands show an excellent display of tackling classic 70s prog and making it their own and despite an immeasurable wealth of influences on board, each band delivers a distinct flavor that far exceeds mere copycatting. For lovers of sprawling epic prog compositions, this is prog heaven however anyone allergic to these types of excess best stand clear. Personally i love it.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Well, another Colossus epic. This time only one CD, with 3 bands, each doing an epic piece. The concept is the movie The 7 Samurai, a movie I've never seen (actually, I haven't really seen any of the movies these concepts are based on.........though Kalevala was not based on any movie, and The ... (read more)

Report this review (#103465) | Posted by | Monday, December 18, 2006 | Review Permanlink


You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.