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Taproban Per Aspera Ad Astra album cover
3.79 | 89 ratings | 5 reviews | 19% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2017

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Outside Nowhere (15:07)
2. Fragments of Life (1:26)
3. Il Difficile Equilibrio Tra Sorgenti d'Enegia (8:16)
4. Ves Ml' TaHghach (4:48)
5. Nexus (5:07)
6. D.I.A.N.A. (3:58)
7. Agata Lost in the Mirror Whale (3:25)

Bonus tracks on 2017 CD edition:
8. Entwinings (1:57)
9. Octopus! (6:21)

Total Time 50:25

Line-up / Musicians

- Gianluca De Rossi / keyboards, vocals, composer
- Roberto Vitelli / bass, bass pedals, electric & acoustic guitars
- Ares Andreoni / drums, percussion

- Antonio Marangolo / tenor saxophone (5)
- Francesco Pandico / drums & percussion (7)

Releases information

LP Musea Parallele ‎- FGBG 2041 (2017, France)

CD Musea Parallele ‎- MP 3329 (2017, France) With 2 bonus tracks

Thanks to Meltdowner for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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TAPROBAN Per Aspera Ad Astra ratings distribution

(89 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(19%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(35%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (14%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

TAPROBAN Per Aspera Ad Astra reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by rdtprog
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Heavy / RPI / Symphonic Prog Team
4 stars This is the 5th studio album for the band but they also did some works for various themes albums (Colossus Project) with long songs. The music is led by keyboards in the symphonic style, sometimes a little bombastic not too far from ELP and Nuovo Era. The guitars on this latest are letting the space to the keys, bass, and drums who are high in the mix. The album starts strongly in the first half with some impressive keyboards and bass lines, the band doesn't need many vocals that are actually very brief throughout. The second part of the album gets a little weaker, especially the song "D.I.A.N.A." with a cheap techno sound and a poor melody. The things improve with the next track " Agata Lost in the Mirror Whale" where the guitar for the first time gets out of his shell to take the lead. The last song"Octopus" bring back the greatness of the first half with some complex keyboards lines. This another good release for this band. Those who enjoy 70's music will want to get their hand on this.
Review by Matti
4 stars Here's a good example of retro- and keyboard-oriented progressive rock made in Italy today. The only feature that is slightly less typical for the vital R.P.I. scene is that the vocals are in a very minor role. There are some lyrics in Italian (except for the English- language 'Octopus!' in the end). Taproban is an ELP-kind of trio of keyboardist, bassist-guitarist and drummer, but the keyboardist and composer Gianluca De Rossi handles the sparse vocals. The frontman is even responsible (together with Paolo Carnelli) of the Baroque-like cover art. Which is pretty gorgeous!

On the 15-minute instrumental opener 'Outside Nowhere', the Genesis/Yes -influenced symphonic sound and compositional structure are introduced at full steam. The time signature changes and bombastic keyboard solos follow each other in a grandiose way. Minimoog, Hammond C3, Mellotron, Prophet 5, Roland JX8P and other vintage equipment make a long list below De Rossi's name. There's nothing that wouldn't be heard myriads of times since the seventies and the new rise of symphonic prog with bands such as Kaipa or The Flower Kings, but so what, if you enjoy that kind of stuff. The epic is followed by a brief instrumental and another lengthy track with a brief vocal section. The symphonic vitality is being kept at high level so that the listener hardly pays any attention on the changing of tracks at this point.

Very oddly titled (at least for me and others who have never-ever watched Star Trek!) 'veS ml'taHghach (A Klingon War Dance)' begins in an irritating manner with an angry spoken line and proceeds as a tiring rollercoaster-ride of fast and intense playing, as if there had been a goal of loading as much as possible in under five minutes. To me, it gets impressive only after the most complex intensity has given way to the majestic keyboard-oriented finale, ending with a harpsichord vignette.

The latter half of the album is more uneven and less symphonic. The slow 'Nexus' contains some vocals in Italian, plus in the end, the last words of the Russian cosmonaut crushed into the ground in 1967. "This record is dedicated to him and all the other heroes of space explorations", like the latin phrase as the album title suggests. 'Nexus' also features tenor saxophone, which underlines its 80's-reminding cheesy gloominess.

Android-themed instrumental 'D.IA.N.A.' is the weak link of the album, just B-class electronic music with a steady rhythm. Well, 'Agata Lost in the Mirror Whale' isn't much better, as a composition only a little of progressive nature. Two- minute 'Entwinings' is a pretty simple piano/Mellotron duet with some oceanic effects. It changes seamlessly into 'Octopus!' that returns to the more bombastic and complex prog style. My overall rating is 3 stars. I round it upwards mainly for the great cover art, but I've heard better prog albums from Italy this year.

Review by kev rowland
4 stars I don't know what it is about many Italian progressive rock bands, but they can make it seem as if the Seventies have never gone away. And with their fifth studio album, Taproban are again producing something that makes an old progger like me just smile from the start to the end. The Mellotrons and classic keyboard sounds are there in abundance, and one can just imagine Rick there with his long blond hair and cape just joining in the fun for the hell of it. The keyboards are deliberately high in the mix, but this is very much a band album, operating in an ELP-style format (although keyboard player Gianluca De Rossi is actually the singer here). There are times when the keyboards do take a back step to allow bassist/guitarist Roberto Vitelli his time in the spotlight, while drummer Ares Andreoni is always kept high in the mix.

But, the star and centre stage will always be Gianluca, and the reason that there aren't many vocals on the album is that there simply isn't any need. For the most part this is classic Italian keyboard drive progressive rock that sees no reason at all to move past 1977, and is going to stay in that mid-Seventies period thank you very much (although there are some keyboard runs that are more early Mark Kelly than Keith Ermeson). I find it hard to comprehend that this is the first time I have come across these guys, which just goes to show just how much music there is out there at the moment. If like me this is a name that you haven't come across before, then if you enjoy classic keyboard progressive rock then this is one you should discover.

Latest members reviews

5 stars Listening to the the new Taproban album PER ASPERA AD ASTRA, it seems as if you began a journey into an inner world, where opposing rhytms alternate themselves, as in the tumultuous life of a metropolis of the future. In the lyrics you can find the same human conflict you feel in the music, as w ... (read more)

Report this review (#1702520) | Posted by Gaia | Thursday, March 16, 2017 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Now established in the Roman musical environments and with a growing audience, Taproban shows a greater maturity with their latest effort: PER ASPERA AD ASTRA. Although the leader Gianluca De Rossi and the other musicians recall Emerson Lake & Palmer, maneuvering well between the atmospheres of Ge ... (read more)

Report this review (#1696177) | Posted by Lisandro21 | Thursday, February 23, 2017 | Review Permanlink

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