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LA 1919

RIO/Avant-Prog • Italy

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La 1919 biography
LA 1919 (aka La 1919 Spontaneo) are a Milanese avant-progressive band that first started life in September 1980. The brainchild of LUCIANO MARGORANI (born 19th July 1961, in Milano) and his friend PIERO CHIANURA, the band have released five albums to date. Their sound is electronic-based, but still consists of traditional rock-band instruments, such as electric and bass guitar (with assistance by clarinets and saxophones on later releases). Mostly though, the band uses keyboard effects and tape looping, combined with a Frippian and Frithian guitar sound, supplied by Margorani (much more evident on their second and third releases), with overlying electronic drums, culminating in a unique sound that flirts with jazz, no-wave, post-punk and electronica, yet is remarkably progressive rock in its basic state.

From 1982 to 1983, La 1919 were part of the "Coopertiva L'Orchestra" of Milan and they eventually released their debut album "L'Enorme Tragedia" on cassette only in 1985. It seems they received somewhat of a following, because on their second release "Ars srA" (1987), they are assisted on some tracks by Henry Kaiser on Synclavier and guitar and many other guest Italians. After their second release, the band recorded Deficit in 1990 and then seem to have had a break until at least April 1991 and May 1992, when the they played live concerts in Italy. It was these concerts that became the basis for their third album "Jouer, Spielen, To Play" (1994). On this album, they were ably assisted by RIO stalwart drummers Chris Cutler (Henry Cow, The (ec) Nudes, The Science Group) and Charles Hayward (Quiet Sun, This Heat, Camberwell Now, Massacre), as well as Roberto Zorzi, who is a prolific guitarist of the Fred Frith style and who has also played with Henry Kaiser. The material on this album was quite different to their first two albums (mostly due to the guest performers), consisting of twin guitars and even a song by Charles Hayward. Their fourth album was "Giorni Felici" (1997) and again, the duo had guests, including Henry Kaiser, Franco Fabbri (Stormy Six), John Oswald and Fausto Rossi. Their most recent album is 2005's "Freepopjazzrock".

Luciano Margorani learned to play classical guitar from 1972 to 1977, under the tutelage of Mariuccia Tioli and then in 1980, from master Mario Gangi. He presented a progressive rock and electronic music radio show called "Musica dal Penguin Café" on Radio Regione, Milan, from 1979 to 1982. His primary instrument...
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Ars SraArs Sra
Spittle Records 2019
$23.33 (used)
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Materiali Sonori
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LA 1919 discography

Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help to complete the discography and add albums

LA 1919 top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.00 | 2 ratings
L'Enorme Tragedia
2.50 | 5 ratings
Ars srA
4.00 | 7 ratings
Jouer, Spielen, To Play
4.00 | 1 ratings
Giorni Felici
2.00 | 1 ratings

LA 1919 Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

LA 1919 Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

LA 1919 Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

LA 1919 Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

LA 1919 Reviews

Showing last 10 reviews only
 Jouer, Spielen, To Play by 1919, LA album cover Studio Album, 1994
4.00 | 7 ratings

Jouer, Spielen, To Play
La 1919 RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by progressive

4 stars Be awared. This isn't comforting everyone, not even the avant-heads, or even me.

Hanno Seppellito L'Uomo Sbagliato (1.) - Experimental electronic guitar sound, quite heavy and noisy, but distinguishly avant-garde. Reminds me of RUINS and even some math/post rock, and "free" improvisation - some kinf of closed-sounding jazz but also spacious like the beginning of the song. (2.) Sheffield Wednesday's beginnig (and ending) is psychedelic vocally-oriented experiment - this is what you get when you're pissed of to the days of week. Like in the previous song, bass is fairly similar ISLAND - Pictures in some parts, but with more fusion touch - very nice!, and the guitar soloing reminds me of ADRIAN BELEW's ones. Fate Fagotto! (3.) is more close to the funny chamber rock scene, but with more metallic jazz rock fusion touch (here and in other parts - think Ruins). (4.) Storie Del Dormiveglia - In this case, PRESENT - Ersatz is what pops into my mind, for there's some melodies and sounds quite similar. (5.) Qua Qua Qua... Singing Ducks - this is where the electronic experimentation comes on show at the latest. Singing ducks. But the form is once again free, some kind of slow atmospheric free jazz, flowing. The ending has noises like mechanic very avantgardistic piano that seems to be playing nothing (for some people). I like this kind of style (Listen to the piano passage before the ending in HENRY COW - Beautiful As The Moon - Terrible As An Army With Banners.). Donne Kamikaze (6.) is growing and repetitive like all these songs somehow, but it's also short, and only some kind of heavy interlude. The end starts to sound Vialka (nice jovial distortion guitar), which is some kind of jazz punk folk band. (7.) Un Mondo Invisibile is ambient-like song that reminds me of Yes, but there's some weird electronic hits that are hard to describe. I listen to prog mostly and not so much electronic prog, but "Faithless - Insomnia" is one that I can get for example. (8.) Red Wire is a bit scary.. noise and bass that goes slowly along the wire that is red with horror. (9.) The Drumming Talk is strange because I think there's other instruments talking than drum. But then.. also the drum begins to rule. Good ending for the album.

Not so much electronic as Ars srA or L'enorme Tragedia, but more heavy "improvisation". Original. 3,5 stars.

 Ars srA by 1919, LA album cover Studio Album, 1987
2.50 | 5 ratings

Ars srA
La 1919 RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by progressive

2 stars The starter Una Giornata Particolare is a bit like starter track for L'enorme Tragedia. Aksak Maboul comes still first into my mind. Also a bit KING CRIMSON's more electronically oriented experiments. But some sections rise and fall irritatingly, and sounds even like someone has just been introduced into making music with some computers, for example the hi-hats are awful. (2.) Il Sogno Di FF - slow rhythm, noise; (3.) Tenda Rossa - ambient; I don't want to listen this music anymore. If these are experiments, they are one of those numerous living tests that are doomed to be died. (4.) Killing Time is repetitive short track in a mood of Etron Fou Leloublan, for example. Still: Nothing. (5.) Vivace! - nicely astonishing electronic experiment. This is what you can play for people who (don't) want to know how hardcore you are. (6.) Underwater Photography - well, it seems in this phase that this is some kind of art of sickening. Or maybe it's just the sound that isn't so comfortable. (7.) resiaKyrneH is breathing out strongly and in a nice speed, but of course it's played reversed. The latter part of the song is more Dark and instrumental, with nice high quite random voices (well, slower timed than the drums etc in background). Very nice. (8.) Hawaii 5.0. - here the awful sound combined to some kind of Hawaiian mood makes it more funny, self-ironic (with 5.0 in the name) and more earth-oriented theme in a ridiculous form. (9.) Progetti Di Grandi Cittŕ Con Terazze is slower and a bit warm, also somehow scary (and reminds me of PFM's Agua azul from album Stati di immaginazione), and there's Something in this song. I don't mean it's good (but not bad). (10. Il Margine continues the hard-edged policy - "hard" and repetitive. The rhythm's in the album are a bit unusual, but I think they just don't offer almost anything for avant-garde lovers. The album is a bit like their previous, L'enorme Tragedia, which is more warm and accessible (even krautrock). So the experimentalism in this album seems to be more in the awful sound etc, and so it sounds too experimental, though it's not very progressive.

(11.) Gli Eroi De Lavaro is nice piece. Like classical music glued together with broken electronic cartoon. Gasping and more in the name of chamber rock. It is also maybe the most diverse track here. Also tracks 5 and 7 and maybe the first, longer track are what I might appreciate. I'd like to give even one star, but maybe I'll go with 2 because of the last song (that even isn't so special, but I like it very much).

 L'Enorme Tragedia by 1919, LA album cover Studio Album, 1985
3.00 | 2 ratings

L'Enorme Tragedia
La 1919 RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by progressive

3 stars Comforting experimentation.

Questo Caldo (1.) Electronic fast and vivid krautrock, that turns more twisting at the end (ETRON FOU LELOUBLAN). VERY nice start for an album. The next song is "closed" dark ambient noises, but the ending is atmospheric and some kind of Tangerine Dream with more electopop touch (but there's no drums). (3.) Senza Tregua sounds actually like there's samples played sequentially (I'm not sure is it like that), and it sounds stiff and pretty awful, though there's nice things, too. (4.) Dornier Cordialmente - nice association: KENSO (which is very nice band). (5.) L'enorme Tragedia is psychedelic experiment of sounds and vocals.. krautrock. (6.) Il Sogno Di FF-Metzengerstein has some "stick" percussions reminding me of AKSAK MABOUL - Age Route Brra! (Radio Sofia), but they the song is quite quiet and "noise" until there comes some kind of krautrock train. It goes crazy. Next track somehow continues it. And the rattle sounds are lovely. The krautrockness commonly here isn't so monotonic, though the music is fairly monotonic still. Last track, La Caduta, isn't so nice. It's just noises, for example some kind of steam machine sounding things. It somehow suits (train theme, hah) but doesn't give anything new. The sound in the album is mostly temperate while still being temperamental. Warm and almost fast psychedelic blues (see Captain Beefheart), and dark, a bit mystic.

Thanks to James for the artist addition.

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