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(49:53, Fading Records / Ma.Ra.Cash Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Al Crepuscolo dell'Anima 5:17 2. Mediocrazia 7:17 3. Il Capitale Umano 7:52 4. Tempio Pallido 6:40 5. Tephlon (Club) 5:05 6. Il Giudice e il Bugiardo 9:25 7. Antropocene (Parte 1) 1:54 8. Antropocene (Parte 2) 6:23 LINEUP: Alessandro Zara - vocals Michele Zanotti - guitars, sax Giacomo Banali - guitars Thomas Pessina - keyboards, synths Alessandro Danzi - bass With: Andrea Ibrogio - drums Umberto Sartori - drums Federico Lonardi - guitars Eddy Fiorio - synths Carlo Cappiotti - backing vocals
Prolusion. Italian band IL RUMORE BIANCO was formed in 2012, and was drawing some attention to themselves with the release of their initial EP "Mediocrazia" the following year. "Antropocene" is their full length debut album, and was jointly released by Italian labels Ma.Ra.Cash Records and Altrock Productions, the latter employing it's imprint Fading Records for this production.
Analysis. Il Rumore Bianco is a band that, I suspect, might well be a hard sell for many progressive rock fans. This due to the fact that this isn't at all an easy album to come to terms with. Eclectic is the name of the game here, with words like unconventional and challenging following hot on it's heels. Quirky is another word that comes to mind. There is a lot going on here, but for starters a certain affection for jazz will be needed to really be able to enjoy this album. From delicate, unobtrusive instrument details to full arrangements, jazz, jazzrock and even brass rock all make appearances here, especially the former two. This in itself doesn't make this a challenging production obviously, nor an eclectic one. Everything else does however. The band isn't at all afraid to segue over to passages that may or may not be closer to both alternative rock and noise rock, and instrument details with at least half a foot inside post-rock appears here and there as well. Harder edged classic organ and guitar combinations have their place here, as do more twisted, dark and atonal escapades that may or may not have a modern day Crimsonian touch to them. Those fond of more symphonic oriented keyboard arrangements will get a few nods in their direction too. And as a red thread throughout, we have a dark mood, dark atmosphere and dark undercurrents in general. Kind of emphasized with the subtly theatrical lead vocals, of the kind so many Italian bands often favor. This is an album that twists and turns this way as well as that way, and possibly slithers through some until this unseen cracks as well. Unconventional and non-conventional, at times closing in on what I'd describe as avant-garde territories but always being just a bit too shy on the expressive side to really belong there. A dark and multi-faceted journey it is though, taking us into landscapes of a new kind of darkness. A brief ballad-oriented prologue towards the end of the album the sole exception here.
Conclusion. Il Rumore Bianco isn't a band to inspect if you tend to favor the inviting and compelling varieties of progressive rock. But if words like challenging, quirky and perhaps even difficult finds your favor, and you enjoy bands described in this manner to explore dark landscapes and using multiple sets of genre elements, then "Antropocene" is most likely an album that will find favor with you. A dark, twisted and innovative production.
Progmessor: April 29th, 2018
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