[ SHORT REVIEWS - LIST | DETAILED REVIEWS
(85:00; Melodic Revolution Records)
It has been some years since I first came across Italian band If, but I remember enjoying their 2008 album ‘Morpho Nestira’. That was actually their last album under the name If, as they changed it to Ifsounds a few years later and after signing with Melodic Revolution Records in 2010 they released this double disc compilation, which brings together songs from their first four releases as If, plus a new number as Ifsounds. Earlier this year I saw a post from head honcho and top hat aficionado Nick Katona celebrating the tenth anniversary of this album, and that it was being made available free of charge to download (just go to the MRR website and search for it) so I decided to renew my acquaintance with the band. Over the course of their first four albums the band released 40 songs, and there are 17 of these on this set, so it is possible to hear virtually half of all the albums they had released to this point. But what is strange is the lack of continuity overall, which can often be an issue with compilation albums spread over a large number period of time, but apart from the new song, opener “Don Quixote”, all the material here was from just 4 years. The change in styles and recordings means this is actually a hard album to get inside and really enjoy, although individual songs definitely do stand out. Generally, their sound is very melodic, very crossover prog, but when they do let themselves go a little such as the much more rocking “Background Noise” it works very well indeed. “Loser” is one of the highlights, with gentle piano and vocals, and strangely I discovered that if I just came in and out of the album for individual songs I got way more from it than playing it from beginning to end. Overall this is a good way of discovering the band for those who have yet to come across them, especially as it has been made available free of charge by the band and the label, but I would use this more as a way of hearing them and then going back to the original albums to hear them in the original setting.
[ SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]