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Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)

Rock Progressivo Italiano

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Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM) Suonare Suonare album cover
2.70 | 144 ratings | 9 reviews | 6% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1980

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Suonare Suonare (4:49)
2. Volo a Vela (4:25)
3. Si Può Fare (4:51)
4. Topolino (4:47)
5. Maestro della Voce (5:36)
6. Sogno Americano (4:09)
7. Bianco e Nero (5:47)
8. Tanti Auguri (4:06)

Total Time 38:30

Line-up / Musicians

- Franco Mussida / guitars, lead (4) & backing vocals
- Flavio Premoli / keyboards, lead (2,7) & backing vocals
- Lucio Fabbri / violin, viola, cello
- Jan Patrick Djivas / bass
- Franz Di Cioccio / drums, percussion, lead (1,3,5,8) & backing vocals

- Aldo Banfi / synth programming

Releases information

Artwork: Ambrogio Lo Giudice (photo) with Francesco Logoluso (graphics)

LP Numero Uno - ZPLN 34092 (1980, Italy)

CD RCA - 74321 100812 (1988, Italy)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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PREMIATA FORNERIA MARCONI (PFM) Suonare Suonare ratings distribution

(144 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(6%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(13%)
Good, but non-essential (33%)
Collectors/fans only (37%)
Poor. Only for completionists (11%)


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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Tony R
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars What is it with the classic early 70's Prog bands? For Yes' 90125,Genesis' Duke and ELP's Love Beach read PFM's Suonare Suonare.Out go the majestic symphonic sweeps,sumptuous synth and concert violin and in come bouncy,poppy beats,frantic fiddle and jangly guitar.

The album opener is the title track "Suonare Suonare" which sets the scene for this major disappointment.As the track starts there is a moment of panic as what seems to be Elton John's "Song For Guy" minces out of the speakers;Styx meet John is a sign of how much better this track gets. "Volo a Vela" is no better."Si Puo Fare" has a catchy beat and at least some interaction between synth,violin and guitar,a decent track but no more."Topolino" comes and goes with only a hint of some flash guitar playing to impress the memory."Maestro Della Voce" at least builds towards some sort of instrumental climax but only vaguely hints at former glories."Sogno Americano" features some soft-rock guitar histrionics and the last two tracks; "Bianco e Nero" and "Tanti Auguri" are so insipid and bland that I mention them only to "name-and-shame" them.

So who might enjoy this album? Well,Elton John fans maybe,Supertramp fans or even anyone who can stomach the 1980's kansas albums.It really is that poor.

Review by andrea
3 stars I think that this is a good album, although it's not exactly a prog one. In 1980 progressive rock was out of fashion and PFM was looking for new ideas to survive in the music business like other bands in that period.

«We all started writing new songs, trying to go towards the Italian rock way, which was identifiable by lyrics. Our new project was not easy to realize, because we had to become authors. Anyway we succeeded thanks to our experience with Fabrizio De Andrè and the advices of our new producer, Mr. Colombini. "Suonare Suonare", that is to say "Eight stories made of music and words to express ourselves, communicate, suffer, enjoy and play music" (as is it written on the LP's back cover) is a new, fresh and vital LP which contains poetic autobiographical stories from the band's members» (from the official website of the band).

In my opinion this album is better than the previous studio effort "Passpartù" and, though the song-writing of PFM is far away from De Andrè's standards, here you can find at least three good songs that are still regularly performed live on stage: "Suonare suonare", a piano ballad with some "shy hints" of progressive and lyrics about "playing music as an antidote against boredom"; "Maestro della voce", song dedicated to Demetrio Stratos and built up around a catchy bass line; "Si può fare", with an interesting drums work. Remarkable also "Volo a vela", with a joyful rhythm that reminds slightly of "E' festa". In the other songs you can appreciate at least the great musicianship of the members of the band.

Though very far from essential in a prog collection this album is still an interesting one because it marks the definitive turning point in PFM's career and, in the whole, it's a good pop-rock work full of energy.

Review by ZowieZiggy
2 stars Let's put things into perspective here. The year of this release, "Banco" released "Urgentissimo", a very poor electro-pop album (and they will go on with very poor production throughout the whole of the eighties, unfortunately).

"PFM" will also take an almost similar approach for "Suonare Suonare" : to release a pop-oriented album as well.

Their collaboration with Fabrizio de Andrè in 1979 which led to a tour and two live albums left their marks on the band. The folkish "Volo A Vela" is very much in the vein of the work of this Italian folk singer but I could never be seduced by these live albums.

The title track is probably the most bearable one. Nice violin (but this will be featured several times on this album, which is one of the only good news). It is a good rock ballad. But nothing from the other world.

"Si Può Fare" is not too bad either. A pure rock'n'roll song. It is of course very far from their traditional offering, but this is another "PFM". The closing section has a definite "ELO" flavour. Great rock'n'roll with furious violin. Do you hear what I mean ?

But these two songs are an exception on this album. Most of time, "PFM" music featured here is easy listening and pop stuff like "Topolino" or "Maestro Della Voce" (which unlike its title might indicate features poor vocals).

"Sogno Americano" is pretty bad. Electro pop beat and awful vocals. The only way to escape from this nightmare is the very welcome "next". Even the violin won't be able to save this one.

"Bianco E Nero" is somewhat Supertrampish. But not the best of their repertoire, I'm afraid. None the less, a great duet violin / guitar closes this song and partially saves it. The closing and folkish "Tanti Auguri" won't do any good to raise the quality level of this album, I'm afraid.

Two stars. Just a poor curiosity for die-hard fans.

Review by Tarcisio Moura
2 stars By the time Suonare Suonare was released it became clear that the band was trying to find some way to survive in the music market and that was not an easy task for a band labeled as ´prog´ (remember this was 1980 and being prog was not cool anymore). Their earlier effort, Passpartú, was already shifting towards a more pop/folk direction. Unfortunately Suonare Suonare was even popier as a whole, although not without some merits (the title track and Maestro De La Voce are very good tunes). With Bernardo Lanzetti gone, drummer Franz DiCioccio assumes the lead vocals, but that´s not the problem. In fact, he performs this job very well.

The main issue with this album is that the band can´t seem to make up their minds if they´re going folk or jump into the pop wagon headfirst. The result is an hybrid, some tracks being more folkish, some very commercial. Needless to say, there is very little prog in here. Not a bad record, but clearly very very away from the great symphonic band that once released such masterpieces like Photos Of Ghosts and The World Became The World. Some instrumental breaks sometimes show how skillful musicians they really are. Unfortunately the songwriting here is not up to their fantastic musicianship, to say the least.

If you like traditional italian music and pop stuff of the early 80´s, you´ll probably enjoy this album. Other than those I can only recommend this album for fans and collectors. 2 stars..

Latest members reviews

4 stars In the 80's the Progressive Rock bands of the surviving 70's recycle themselves as Rock bands with mixed fortunes. Their problem is to remain credible and, above all, to be able to write credible songs. However there have also been bands that have created (although not in Progressive Rock) great alb ... (read more)

Report this review (#2547392) | Posted by Prog123 | Tuesday, June 1, 2021 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The fiddle is back! Yes I think that is extremely important for my review of this record. The violin was missing on Passpartù, a record I felt was quite weak and not especially exciting. The virtuos violin is something of the most specific with Premiata Forneria Marconi's music. Along of cour ... (read more)

Report this review (#1123177) | Posted by DrömmarenAdrian | Tuesday, January 28, 2014 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Purists may certainly snob this album, but even though it has a more commercial style I think it's a great work and an essential step to understand the band's evolution. Tracks are definitely easier than before but they mainteined a good execution and excellent lyrics. Tracklist alternate between ... (read more)

Report this review (#180909) | Posted by Moonlit.Knight | Wednesday, August 27, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars A lot of great music was produced at the time this album came out, but as the first review here states, the giants of initial progressive rock movement all shifted away from their roots. As a purely Italian album, Suonare Suonare for me stands as PFM's greatest pure Italian album bringing Fra ... (read more)

Report this review (#108269) | Posted by gr8sho | Sunday, January 21, 2007 | Review Permanlink

2 stars The ninth work released in 1980 "Suonare Suonare". Acoustic sounds are not as noticeable as on former works. All tunes are sung in Italian, and the pop sound where the relaxed atmosphere drifts. It is a performance which is given room to breathe. Traces of the past have vanished completely. Ho ... (read more)

Report this review (#63938) | Posted by braindamage | Tuesday, January 10, 2006 | Review Permanlink

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