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ARTI E MESTIERI

Jazz Rock/Fusion • Italy


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Arti E Mestieri picture
Arti E Mestieri biography
Formed in 1974 in Turin, Italy - Still active as of 2017

Outstanding fusion band from Italy. All the power delivered by the insane drumming of Furio CHIRICO is counterpointted by the beautiful violin passages, as well as the killer guitar work. On their early albums, ARTI e MESTIERI made a dynamic, complex and elaborately crafted rock, folk, and fusion blend, that featured much violin and keyboards.

ARTI & MESTIERI, considered one of the most influent cult bands in the italian and european prog scene will astonish the audience confirming, 25 years after its release, that "TILT" is still a milestone for two generations of fans. Both albums that came out on CD, "Tilt" and "Giro Di Valzer Per Domani", are real masterpieces of the genre. A real must for all fusion lovers!

See Also:
- Beppe CROVELLA
- Italian Prog

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ARTI E MESTIERI discography


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ARTI E MESTIERI top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.30 | 221 ratings
Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio
1974
3.82 | 113 ratings
Giro Di Valzer Per Domani
1975
2.96 | 35 ratings
Quinto Stato
1979
3.16 | 17 ratings
Acquario
1983
3.53 | 15 ratings
Children's Blues
1985
3.18 | 26 ratings
Murales
2001
3.64 | 17 ratings
Estrazioni
2005
4.11 | 43 ratings
Universi Paralleli
2015

ARTI E MESTIERI Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.45 | 16 ratings
Arti e Mestieri Live
1990
3.94 | 8 ratings
Live 1974/2000
2003
2.32 | 9 ratings
Prog Day
2003
3.60 | 16 ratings
First Live in Japan
2006
3.42 | 12 ratings
The Live
2013

ARTI E MESTIERI Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

ARTI E MESTIERI Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.08 | 13 ratings
Articollezione
2002

ARTI E MESTIERI Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.14 | 7 ratings
Il Grande Belzoni
2009

ARTI E MESTIERI Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.30 | 221 ratings

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Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by zeuhl1
Collaborator RPI Team

5 stars Is it RPI? Is it jazz fusion? Sitting somewhere halfway in between is Arti E Mestieri's masterpiece debut album, Tilt. Labelmates with Cramps stars Area, they produced two classics of RPI before disbanding after three more middling fusion albums starting in 1979 -- a four year gap from their second release. (They did reform like many of their contemporaries in the 21st century)

This album is definitely one that RPI fans should seek out quickly after getting a few of the big Italian prog classics under their belts. Featuring some stellar keyboard work from Beppe Crovella but more importantly the brain expanding drumming of Furio Chirico, one of the busiest drummers in all of prog rock. (he'd give Bruford a run for his money). He can quietly drum solo throughout a whole song without ever losing the pulse of the beat, not an easy trick. This album ticks the boxes for most RPI needs: mellotron, violin and complex instrumentals in abundance.

The album opens Mahavishnu style with a burst of energy that instantly subsides into an oboe and mellotron intro to one of their classic songs: Gravita 9.81 (metric version of gravitational acceleration on Earth). Aptly titled, we tumble free falling as Chirico gives us his first introduction to his drum clinic on this one. Soprano sax from Arturo Vitale is first a calming then consonant force in tandem with the drums. Synthesizer (ARP this time, not Moog) is powerful here and takes the song into another mellotron prog direction as the violin dances on top. Picture Jean Luc Ponty growing up in Italy and composing with an Italian background for this section. Vocals show up on song 2, Strips. Gentle acoustic guitars, mellotron and vibraphone drive this midtempo song. Corrosione, Positivo/Negativo and In Cammino blend together as one suite to end side one, a furious blast of jamming with some impressive guitar work from Venegoni and violin from Giovanni Vigliar.

Side two starts with a gentle piano and synthesizer duet in Farenheit, a short one minute song that bleeds straight into the second real masterpiece: Articolazione, a 13.5 minute tour through all of the strengths the band has. Violins create tension and calm simultaneously. Synths trigger lightning-like bursts from the drums (Chrico never saw a drum fill he didn't like). Bass creates a stable riff for the players to ground themselves as soprano sax draws the momentum further onward. Sections come effortlessly until our next encounter with vocals. This time they sound a bit more on the slick side than RPI stylings on side one, and some have noticed this as a flaw. The second pass through on vocals here reverts to a more traditional RPI style, and this song will be the best place to start for Italian prog fans wondering what this band is about, with its symphonic edges and some early Fripp style guitar work. Some uncredited flute makes its first and only appearance here. This song is a stone cold RPI masterwork. The title track, Tilt, finishes the album with a short piece of ARP 2600 synths burbling away randomly like R2D2 while mellotron plays a frightening Watcher of the Skies styled outro. Amazing.

This band often opened for Area back in the day. Now that would be a dizzying one two punch I'd like to have seen.

Just found an original first pressing vinyl on Cramps which is far superior to the Akarma vinyl reissue, which I thought was a little tinny in sound reproduction. The original lp sounds better than the 80's and 90's CD versions as well.

Impeccable musicianship, complex arrangements, and one of the more gifted bands in the whole Italian prog scene. Fans of Ponty and Mahavishnu for non RPI followers would love this. RPI fans though? Go get this immediately. Terry Bozzio or Bill Bruford fans will ideally already have this one just for Chirico.

4.75 stars

(I'd advocate this album is more a classic in the RPI canon than fusion as their full on jazz fusion era came in 1979.)

 Giro Di Valzer Per Domani by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.82 | 113 ratings

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Giro Di Valzer Per Domani
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by sgtpepper

4 stars The sound has not changed much in comparison to the previous album but it is slightly less raw and vocals prevent from getting much focus on instrumental prowess. Arguably there is less space for brass instrument and more vocalized sections. Drums are usually more aggressive and fast then on the debut album which might attrack additional listeners.

"Valzer per domani" is an elegant waltz with violin and plenty of drum variety. "Mifafori" reveals the devilish fusion speed behind the drums unmatched by most other fusion acts.

This part reminds of Mahavishnu Orchestra also because of aggressive guitar and violin duel. The third track "Saper sentire" is a modernized track with funky keyboards and plenty of good vocals.

"Mescal" is very close to Mahavishnu Orchestra sound especially where violin dominates. Excellent furious drumming is evident here, too. This is a high quality track with many changes in its 5 minutes. Nice organ and piano contributions are in the short "Nove lune dopo". "Dimensione terra" has a great Canterbury feeling and reveals an optimistic feeling.

The tenth with the long name finally features a typical light fusion guitar a la Larry Coryell and drums are kept less dominant.

The most expressive drumming monemt comes with "Sagra" with drums running around at wild pace are contrast to normal paced piano and keyboards. "Rinuncia" is more reminiscent of typical Italian progressive rock and less of fusion. "Marilyn" has asynchronous drums with clavinet/spinet and synth layers. "Terminal" goes again back to a reference manual by Mahavishnu Orchestra.

 Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.30 | 221 ratings

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Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by sgtpepper

5 stars One of the best fusion albums from Italy of the 70's. Musicianship is excellent and inspired, players do not try showing off all the time. The most dominant player, in my opinion, is the drummer, who is very profilic and provides also some unnecessary fill-ins. Violin and synths + ARP2600 are also sound trademarks of Arti e Mestieri.

The first composition is pretty much THE trademark signature of the band with its typical fusion melody, complex drums and focus on keyboards and violin. Saxophones and clarinet push the sound to another fusion league. The interesting contrast is very jazzy saxophone feeling soloing over more rocking drums.

The second composition introduces good Italian vocals that have warm emotions. "Positivo/negativo" is balancing between going left and right as heard by violin. Calming vibraphone is deceiving since abruptly furious drumming comparable only to Cobham/Mouzon legendary intensity enters the stage. Agressive guitar duels this very well and is finally to be heard. After a sudden stop, a new calm saxophone start leads us into "In Cammino" - a welcome break from intensive drums. However, soon the time signature is changed into third-based that make one want to dance. One of the most dynamic moment is with wild saxophone solo seconded by drums and bass guitar. "Farenheit" is a pleasant change to hear piano with clarinet and the composition evokes good old times. "Articolazioni" offers many changes including Canterbury-like vocals.

The last track is experimental synth/Mellotron noodling and has nothing to do with the album's context.

A highly recommended album for fusion and Italiano Rock Progressivo fans.

 Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.30 | 221 ratings

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Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars How is this album, this band not as famous and talked about as other Italian prog from the mid-70s? The instrumental prowess, mature songwriting, broad dynamics, and great production here is to my mind on par with PFM, Banco, and Cervello and even AREA! Prog of ANY era does not get better than this--especially in the fact that acoustic and folk elements are worked in and there were no computers! Where are people finding the deficiencies or inadequacies! Not in melody. Not in sophistication. Not in sound quality. Is it in the seeming lack of originality? (I read all the comparisons to Mahvishnu and Jean-Luc Ponty.) Break out albums happen. The fact that they emulated--that they inspire other musicians to create in a similar style--should be rewarded not penalized! To strive to be the best--to go through doors that other geniuses have opened--should be lauded and encouraged, not denigrated and discouraged! They may even end up refining something to make it even better! But it could never happen if they are discouraged from trying. I have no hesitation calling this album a masterpiece of progressive rock music--composition and performances of the absolute highest caliber---and, best of all, very accessible/engaging and enjoyable (as opposed to some of the obtuse and jarring music made by Mahvishnu, Miles, and even Yes. Check this album out everybody! It's a work of genius, passion, and inspiration from start to finish. It should be heralded as one of the shining pieces of 1970s progressive rock music--not just RPI or jazz-rock fusion.

1. "GravitÓ 9,81" (4:05) opens the album with an energetic burst before backing off to allow for an almost chamber strings intro. At the one minute mark everybody in the band jumps into a fully formed JEAN-LUC PONTY-sounding song of high speed, tight sequencing of high complexity, and very catchy melodic presentation with violin in the lead. At the two minute mark things break and shift to a slightly slower tempo a different structure as the bass and saxophone become more prominent. Amazing drumming throughout and nice presence of Mellotron in the background. At 3:40 we return to the violin theme of the second minute for the finale. Tight song of melodic and instrumental perfection. (9.5/10)

2. Strips (4:39) drum kit and piano and synth bass line open this before the 'tron and violin enter and the drums kick into full gear. Saxes enter later with a second melody introduced into the weave. After 90 seconds things stop and restart with vocals! Multi-voiced, gentle, even sappy--as acoustic guitars, xylophone, and Mellotron accompany in a gentler fashion than the previous section. At the three minute mark the vocals end and piano, violin, xylophone and acoustic guitar take turns with the melody in between singing sections while drums and bass support in a kind of staccato way for the final two minutes of the song. Unexpected and nice! (9/10)

3. Corrosione (1:37) opens with Mellotron strings before bass, keys, and cymbals crash in with two-stroke pattern over which roto-toms and sax. It turns out that this song is merely a bridge between "Strips" and "Positivo / Negativo" as both songs bleed into each other. A kind of three-chord experiment over which drummer gets to play and sax and keys hold down the melody and chordal structure before going into: (4.5/5)

4. "Positivo / Negativo" (3:29) opens with slow, forceful single-stroke strums of a 12-string guitar accompanied by congas. Violin, synths, cymbal play and vibraphone join in. The tempo shifts a couple of times as vibraphone takes a brief turn at lead until at 1:40 things stop, new keyboard instrument takes over the "strum" of the guitar as rest of band jumps it at breakneck speed to allow shapeshifting extravaganza of solo-turn-taking--saxes, violin, electric guitar, vibes, and then all in unison!--and this while the bass and drums are terrorizing the rhythm tracks beneath. Wow! Impressive! (9.5/10)

5. "In Cammino" (5:36) opens with some beautiful slow sax and, later, vocalise melody-making with piano and brushes providing some support. At 1:45 there is a stop as piano and electric piano provide a pretty bridge into a new section in which full band supports violin and sax dual lead melody establishment. Frequent stops, breaks, tempo and stylistic shifts follow though the busy bass, drums, and keys remain at the foundation of it all throughout. Nice electric piano and electric guitar soloing in the fifth minute. Man, this band is tight! J-RF doesn't get much better than this! (9.5/10)

6. "Farenheit" (1:15) opens as if a little piano interlude ditty, but after the first run through the piece, seconded by sax, and then full rhythm section for the third, and sax and violin for the fourth and fifth. (4.25/5)

7. "Articolazioni (13:24) opens a bit like something from PFM's Per un amico, slow and exploratory, not ready to commit to full song but willing to play around with a theme. At the one minute mark there is a pause before the band kicks into a mid-tempo, full band jazz-rock exposition with violin, sax and electric guitar providing the melody in triplicate. Music shifts behind speeded up, frenetic drums yet slowed down bass and keys while violin, sax, and guitar take turns teaming up or independently carrying the melody forward. At 2:46 there is another break before soprano saxophone restores the melody while drums and bass provide a slow, sparse, stoccato accompaniment. At 3:17 a cool drum roll across the toms signals a new full-on dynamic commitment, but this is short-lived as a lot of shifts and transition/transformations occur before a slightly more straightforward (Brian Auger-like) singing section begins by the end of the fourth minute. Cool tension in the transition at the 5:00 mark and thereafter--a kind of preview of BRUFORD/UK-ishness. Speaking of which, man is this drummer amazing! soft and loud, subtle and intricate, fills and cymbal work that have blinding speed, and always in command as the staunch time-keeper. Very cool instrumental sections broken up by brief vocal sections play out with lots of vibes, 'tron, violin and sax in the lead. One neat thing about this band seems to be that the lead instrument is always propelling the songs' melodies with very detailed, intricate, and often-doubled up melody lines and that the actual "solos" are actually very few and brief. At 10:30 there is a big downshift in both tempo, delicacy, and mood with vibes and violin establishing the melody while drums do all kinds of wildly impressive subtleties before sensitive singing enters. At l1:45 band amps up for the full exposition of the current melody before 'tron and flanged strummed electric guitar guide us into a kind of GENESIS "As Sure as Eggs Is Eggs" finale. Great song with dazzling but never over-the-top or overwhelming complexity, constant beauty in the melodies. (24/25)

8. "Tilt" (2:29) an exercise/Útude in synthesizer weirdness--including special effects being applied to saxophones and violin. Not exactly melodic or very memorable, it is a fitting representative of the infatuations that new technologies must have been causing adventurous musicians in the early 1970s. (4/5)

Total Time 36:34

Five stars; a true masterpiece of jazz-rock fusion from the classic era of Rock Progressivo Italiano.

 Universi Paralleli by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 2015
4.11 | 43 ratings

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Universi Paralleli
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by andrea
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Universi Paralleli is the last, long awaited, studio album by Arti e Mestieri, a band from Turin that have been active, one way or another, for more than forty years. It was released in 2015 on the Cramps - Sony label with a renewed line up featuring, along with founder members Gigi Venegoni (acoustic and electric guitars, keyboards) and Furio Chirico (drums, percussion), also Iano Nicol˛ (vocals), Piero Mortara (accordion, piano, keyboards), Lautaro Acosta (violin, electric violin), Roberto Puggioni (bass, fretless bass) and Marco Roagna (acoustic and electric guitars) plus some prestigious guests such as Arturo Vitale (sax), Mel Collins (sax, flute) and Lino Vairetti (vocals). The creative vein of the band has not run out along the years and the songwriting is still brilliant, blending jazz rock, melody and Mediterranean colours with excellent results. On the album cover there's the picture of a sculpture by Lugi Farina that in some way recalls their debut album Tilt - Immagini per un orecchio, but with a touch of modernity that could give you an idea of the musical content. According to the liner notes, the music and lyrics of this work deal with the subject of parallel universes, emotional contrasts that are mirrored, for instance, in double lives or double personalities...

The opener "Alter Ego" is a great instrumental track where acoustic and electric instruments draw new images for you ears with soaring melodic lines defying the gravity force flying high over jazzy patterns... I think that it's a very introduction for a wonderful album!

"Dune" is a beautiful instrumental with Oriental flavours that leads to "Pacha Mama" where we can hear for the first time on this work Iano Nicol˛'s vocals. The lyrics deal with environmental issues. In fact, the title refers to the goddess of fertility revered by the indigenous people of the Andes. Mother Earth here is depicted as a dying entity, poisoned by the greediness of humankind. Men driven by gold are sucking the divine maternal sap like vampires while deserts of sand are rapidly replacing lakes and rivers...

A strong, melancholic wind of nostalgia blows through the notes of the following "L'ultimo imperatore" (The last emperor). The title seems to refer to the film of the same name directed in 1987 by Bernardo Bertolucci about the life of Puyi, the last Emperor of China. The lyrics do not try to tell a story but draw evocative images about parallel universes and fading memories where distorted and manipulated revolutions are celebrated by godless priests in doomy cathedrals that can't hide the pervasive sense of loss and emptiness of a faithless ritual performed by rote...

"Finisterre" and "Johann" are two charming instrumental pieces drenched in a kind of dreamy romanticism that lead to the heartfelt "Restare immobile" (Remaining motionless) where the music and lyrics depict the eternal contrast between reality and dreams. You can pin down a fragment of reality on a blank page and anaesthetize your memories. Poetry and dreams can set you free and when your mind begins to fly you're able to take off on a journey across far, extraordinary worlds, even without moving your body!

The melancholic instrumental "Borea" (Boreas) is full of delicate autumnal colours and soaring folksy melodies with accordion and violin in the forefront. The music draws evocative northern landscapes while the title refers to the god of the north wind, one of the four seasonal Anemoi in ancient Greek mythology... It leads to the joyful "Pandora" where the music and lyrics conjure up strange images and cheerful dances. Here the wind takes you onwards and you set off on a magical journey to discover new moons and better days...

The following "Linea d'ombra" (Shadow line) is darker and tense. It's another beautiful instrumental that leads to the pyrotechnic drum solo "Comunicazione primordiale" (Primordial communication), full of savage energy and exotic flavours. Next comes the instrumental "La luce in fondo al tunnel" (The light at the end of the tunnel) that is more relaxed and shines for his perfect mix of jazz and classical influences.

The last track "Nato" (Born) is credited as a "bonus track" and features the special guest Lino Vairetti from Osanna on vocals. It's a wonderful piece that deals with a strong sense of nostalgia for a lost emotion that was born from a thought or maybe from a kiss, or a lie, a tune, a sound, a poem, a sin, a shout or just from a moment of madness that now your are trying to find again between a smile and a tear, between the clouds and the stars, in an image or in a deep, cold abyss inside you soul or... wherever you want! It's just a magic moment that fled away and you're still desperately running after it...

On the whole, I think that this is wonderful album and a real must for every Italianprog lover!

 Live 1974/2000  by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Live, 2003
3.94 | 8 ratings

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Live 1974/2000
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

4 stars `Live 1974/Live 2000' is an amazing two CD set capturing Italian jazz/fusion legends Arti e Mestieri at two very different points in their career, over 25 years separating the two discs on offer here. It's best to treat this as two albums for the price of one, each offering something different to stand apart from each-other. Likely it's the vintage recording that will be of most interest to Italian prog and fusion fans, but the `Live 2000' disc is a real gem too, with superior sound and infectious performances. `Live 1974' makes for a fascinating time-capsule to give you in idea of what the band sounded like live back then, but `Live 2000' is not as rough around the edges and easier to listen to. With both discs performed by mostly the same line-ups, you get two winning discs overloaded with incredible musicality.

In some sections `Live 1974' sounds almost like an `official bootleg'. Not a lot of depth to the recording, the odd crackle or distortion once in a while, so just be aware before considering a purchase. Diehard fans will want to persevere and will be rewarded with a thrilling glimpse at a band in their infancy, performing most of the tracks from their debut album `Tilt' with a dirtier, more frantic urgency than the studio versions. In fact, I'd go as far as saying that once you've heard these performances several times, it's quite difficult to go back to the original studio recording, as it sounds so reserved and mannered by comparison! This disc occasionally features violin player Giovanni Vigliar's vocals, not quite as pleasing as on the classic studio debut, really serviceable at best here, but no better than they need to be, as the emphasis is, of course, on the blistering instrumentation.

There's not a bad track on offer, but let's look at a high standout moments. Drummer Furio Chirico truly dominates opener `Articolazioni', his playing a tornado of percussive energy, always front and center. The piece takes on moments of racing tension and breathless aggression as the band whip up a fury, the murky saxophone and searing violin adding a melancholic seriousness. A rougher reading of `Young Man's Tale' takes on even more King Crimson-like qualities with its weeping violin, and `Comin' Here To Get You' is given a dirtier blusier electric guitar approach over blaring Soft Machine-esque clarinet, which also gives the opening of `In Cammino' a somber restraint.

Special attention must go to the two different interpretations of classic `Gravita' 9:81', one of the signature pieces from the band. They are barely contained jazz explosions, full of glistening electric piano runs, maniacal drumming and senses-warping scratching violin, but they also find time for some hazy and hypnotic ambience to allow the listener to catch their breath. They are also an absolute showcase of masterfully executed drama by clarinet player Arturo Vitale, especially the later version.

Moving onto the later disc, `Live 2000' is taken from different sources between 1999 and 2000, but luckily doesn't have a disjointed feel, perfectly playing like a continuous concert. Entirely instrumental for this performance (just the way I prefer the band, to be honest), the band bristles with confidence, a real lively snap and energy to their playing. Due to the absence of saxophone, the violin player here, Corrado Trabuio, takes a lot more solos and adds new sounds to some of the same pieces on the first disc.

I'll draw attention to a few of my favourite numbers on this disc. `Nove Lune Prima' is a stirring violin piece, full of the expected Italian sophistication and classical style. `2000' is all humming Hammond and spacey swirling synth effects plied over murmuring bass that slinks around the background. The purposeful drums and sweeping violin bring a tense near-cinematic sound with an exciting build towards the finale. `Valzer per Domani' is my absolute favourite track, a sprightly and sweeping romantic violin-driven performance that makes me smile every time, plus it's also foot-tappingly catchy! This recording truly belongs on every compilation of chill-out instrumental music.

Thoughtful piano solo `Nuova Dimensione' changes the atmosphere for a cooler night-time sound, `Gerico' and `Ali' are brief drum/bass duels that show off the cleverness and jamming skills of the two musicians, and `Terra Incognita' is an addictive upbeat groover that darts through a range of quick-change tempos and allows all the players a chance in the spotlight. `In Cammino' takes on a near psychedelic ambience in the intro, still reminding me instantly like it always does no matter whan version of Perigeo's fuzzy `Abbiamo Tutti un Blues da Piangere', before positive breezy vibes take over with some rapid-fire wailing electric guitar soloing throughout.

`Live 1974/Live 2000' is a fascinating historical document of a defining jazz/fusion band that offers ample brilliance of their early years, and a sublime and classy instrumental performance showcasing two decades of honing and perfecting their craft. Fans of the band could not ask for a more exciting and worthy collection to treasure.

Four stars.

Oh, and whoever voted this disc a 1 star...well, what can I say? I guess they have a problem with superb musicians playing amazing music...

 Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.30 | 221 ratings

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Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Raccoon

5 stars 109 ratings and 17 reviews don't serve this Italian Jazz/Symphonic band justice. If classified as a Jazz/Fusion album, then it's my favorite album in the whole extensive genre. I'll explain why...

Aggressive at times, but never out of control. Peaceful at times, only to build to an opus of Giovanni's violins and Furio's furious drumming. (Not to mention hypnotic keyboards adding depth to the already dense songs). Despite the rarity of finding this album cheap, every dollar you pay goes towards the infinite replay value you'll get from this musical gem.

Some reviewers discredit the album closer, veering from the flow of the album. Though, after the confused techno-babble, there's melodies recalling previous songs. It's an amazing reprise, reminding you of all the great melodies you may have forgotten. In my take, these distorted reprises reminds me of a bubbling cauldron containing each melody only to be swooped up by the everlasting mellotron. I won't evaluate each song since they all flow into each other, ending (what seems like) abruptly. Clocking in at 37 minutes, you wish it would last just a bit longer. Any jazz- enthusiast or prog-enthusiast would find something special in this album. Hell, anyone would. If you've yet to hear this due to the jazz/fusion classification, LISTEN TO IT. It took me years to finally venture into the jazz/fusion realm, and it sickens me to think I could've missed out on this.

 Giro Di Valzer Per Domani by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.82 | 113 ratings

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Giro Di Valzer Per Domani
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Andrea Cortese
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars This is a more mature work than the band's debut "Tilt" and it is certainly an album difficult to avoid. Notwithstanding I think it is not a the level of their first number which is still my personal favourite.

Music is impressive and the skills of the musician unquestionable but that peculiar sypmhonic attidute has (incomprehensibly) gone. Where are the majestic mellotron's atmospheres?

They play professionally and blend the technical perfection of MAHAVISHNU with mathematical knots of GENTLE GIANT and touches of mediterranean folk. Drumming is astonishing as always.

Sadly enough, this album never really grabbed my full attention. Excellent, but a bit too soft and a bit too unchallanging without those memorable symphonic effects of the famous precedessor.

 Murales by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.18 | 26 ratings

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Murales
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Arti e Mesteri's reunion album finds them taking on a much smoother, cooler, and laid-back approach to jazz fusion. Despite the presence of a few mischevious Zappa-esque flourishes here and there to remind us of the firey and mischief-loving albums of their early career, by and large this album leans much closer to the jazz side of fusion than the rock side - but when it's jazz as beautiful and soothing as this album is at its best, I'm not inclined to complain.

Unlike many other bands, Arti e Mesteri avoid falling into the trap of making a reunion album which tries too hard to sound just like their classic-era material: instead, they've produced a piece which shows they've paid attention to developments in fusion and jazz over the course of their hiatus. The end result is a capable album which sounds like an entirely different band. It's nice, but at points the production style does feel a little cold and hollow and the group don't quite have enough strong material to fill out the running time. Indeed, they resort to rerecording their own Gravitia 9.81 from their debut album to round things off.

On balance, this is no embarrassment, but at the same time it isn't a pillar of the genre in the same way Tilt was.

 Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio by ARTI E MESTIERI album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.30 | 221 ratings

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Tilt - Immagini Per Un Orecchio
Arti E Mestieri Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

4 stars A lost classic of the 70s golden era

Arti E Mestieri are an obscure band from Italy who focus on jazz rock fusion unlike many other Italian prog artists. Their debut primarily is an instrumental with moments of Italian singing. The title of the album is "Tilt: Immagini Per Un Orecchio", and this is translated as "Images For An Ear" which seems profoundly appropriate. The tracks blend together beautifully in places, such as the stunning 'Strips', 'Corrosione' and 'Positivo / Negativo', and jump wildly about with odd time sigs and virtuoso musicianship. At other times, on tracks like 'In Cammino' the sound becomes rather subdued and tranquil.

The band are consummate professionals at their craft consisting of Furio Chirico on drums, Beppe Crovella on acoustic and electric pianos, synths, mellotron, Hammond organ, Marco Gallesi on bass, Gigi Venegoni on guitar, synthetizers, Giovanni Vigliar on violin and Arturo Vitale on soprano and baritone saxes, clarinets, and vibraphone. Vitale's sax work on 'In Cammino' is an incredible tour de force and of note also is the guitar lead break of Venegoni. This track is a definitive highlight along with the spine tingling opener 'GravitÓ 9,81'.

'Articolazioni', the mini epic that takes up most of side 2, features vocals along with 'Strips', the only occasions, and these are rather a nice break from all the musicality. This track features stunning clarinet and some very heavy passages mixed with moments of peaceful serenity. These dark and light sections are balanced perfectly with the amazing drumming skills of Chirico. The time sigs are everchanging and it even locks into a 6/8 rhythm and beautiful vibraphones are heard from Vitale. Vigliar's violin is absolutely gorgeous and sings sweetly in the melancholy soundscape. This really is a masterpiece track with some of the finest musical structures in the 70s golden era of prog.

Overall, Arti E Mestieri's debut is a lost classic in Italian prog and really deserves more recognition. The music is similar to Mahavishnu Orchestra and at times just as astonishing in terms of virtuosity. There is never a dull moment and it is packed solid with inventive musicianship and creativity.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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