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(47:40, Musea Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Prefazione 0:33 2. Il Guardiano 3:31 3. Il Suono Seducente del Sogno 8:55 4. Nemesi 7:43 5. Rovescia l'Immaginazione e Scopri la Realità 6:49 6. Il Suono Seducente del Sogno-2 4:49 7. Lorca e Dali 12:33 8. The Sun 2:47 LINEUP: Fabrizio Pellicciaro – vocals; guitars Fabiano Cudazzo – keyboards Marco Angelone – guitars Alessio Palizzi – drums Giuliano Torelli – bass
Prolusion. The Italian band DISTELLERIE DI MALTO (DDM hereinafter) was formed back in 1988, and if I have understood their history correctly, they started out playing cover material for a while before they started to create their own music. They released their debut album "Il Manuale dei Piccoli Discorsi" back in 2001. Following a creative process that has spanned more than a decade, they released their second studio album "Suono!" through Musea Records towards the end of 2013.
Analysis. There's a segment of progressive rock fans living outside of Italy that has a deep fascination with Italian progressive rock. Not all varieties of it, but for bands that either started back in the 70's or those who look towards the bands that started back then as sources of inspiration. I suspect many in that specific crowd will find DDM to be a fairly intriguing band. This is a band that does appear to look back in time for inspiration; they sing in Italian, and they do tend to mix things up a bit in terms of stylistic variation. Which, as I understand it, are all core features for the bands most highly regarded by that market segment within progressive rock. Following a delicate atmospheric opener DDM kicks off the album proper with a folk-tinged affair of the kind that will cause many to name drop Jethro Tull when describing it. The acoustic guitar and piano are prominent, keyboards and electric guitars are used sparingly, and there's plenty of space for the flute on this initial, energetic and joyful excursion. The folk and Tull-inspired details continue being a presence in Il Suono Seducente del Sogno, but now used more sparingly, as this composition has a stronger emphasis on symphonic progressive rock as the highlighted style. This latter aspect continues being the main feature for the rest of this production, but as the songs unfold on after the other, the mood and atmosphere get somewhat darker and more ominous, with dark toned guitars and organ given more room to dominate the proceedings, either alternating with passages of a more sparse and frail nature or with intermissions of a similar nature given room. On occasion the guitar in particular will be used to provide some rather twisted, almost sickly sounds, this specific aspect explored on Rovescia l'Immaginazione e Scopri la Realità. Following the rather impressive, epic length and multi-part Lorca e Dali, one of many highlights on this production, the band opts to conclude the CD in a more gentle manner, with a brief, frail entry called The Sun. This creation is a delicate acoustic guitar and piano driven affair with vocals on top and the dark, brooding sound of the cello added for additional and melancholic flavoring.
Conclusion. "Suono!" is a production that appears to be made specifically for those with a taste for the brand of music described as Rock Progressivo Italiano by a specific subset of progressive rock fans. The songs on the album incorporate aspects from folk, symphonic and heavy prog; there's also room for a few jazzy details at times, and the songs have a certain timeless flavor to them that appears to be oriented back to the age when progressive rock dominated the airwaves to a much greater extent than today. A well made specimen of its kind, and not surprisingly, I'd recommend this production to those who do favor artists commonly sorted under the Italian Progressive Rock description.
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