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TRACK LIST: 1. Silence Between Sounds. Nashira 10:48 2. Atma 7:10 3. Sirio 6:05 4. Martes 6:48 5. Plato's Cave 8:41 6. Lost Days 4:40 7. Canis Majoris 6:57 LINEUP: Daniele Giovannoni - drums, keyboards Alessandro Cefalì - bass Alex Massari - guitars with: Fabio Tempesta - guitars Sara Rinaldi - vocals Hellena - vocals Serena Ciacci - vocals Irene Morelli - vocals Luca Uggias - piano Emilio Merone - piano, keybords Lara Bagnati - flute Maria Rodriguez Reina - cello
Prolusion. Italian band KARMAMOI was formed back in 2008 in Italy, at the onset a 5 man strong ensemble but these days reduced to a core of two permanent members. "Silence Between Sounds" is the third studio production by the band, featuring the then three permanent members of the band and quite a few additional musicians that was required. The album was self-released by the band in 2016.
Analysis. Karmamoi appears to be one of those bands that will be rather difficult to pigeonhole into any one subset of the progressive rock universe. A band that it will be easier to place in terms of what they aren't rather than what they are. Which, in my book at least, is a good thing. My personal impression is that their take on progressive rock can be compared to bands like Porcupine Tree, in that they use some of the same elements and approach the genre in a related manner, now and then also with a similar result. But without actually being all that alike. I guess this is what some people refer to as new prog. The use of synthesizers and electronics in compositions that alternate between gentler and harder or more majestic passages is an approach many Porcupine Tree fans will recognize, especially when the use of shimmering electronic details and occasional more dominant electronic sounds is a part of that totality. And at times one can draw some direct comparisons between the two, but more in terms of specific passages and parts of songs rather than whole tracks. Because Karmamoi brings some additional treats to their particular table. One such treat is to look back in time, with gentler passages with a nod or two in the direction of The Beatles, vintage oriented passages with the good old Mellotron and flute having a pastoral, mystic interlude or the use of what sounds like a harpsichord here and there. There are also piano interludes with more of a classical music touch to them here and there, and the band aren't afraid to incorporate some nods in the more jazz-oriented direction either. Passages with more of an ambient, electronics driven nature is also a part of this totality, as are harder edged, guitar riff driven sections. The vocals merits a specific mention, the band opting for several vocalists all sharing similar traits: All are women, all have that subtly husky, sensual vocal style that men in particular tends to favor, and all of them should, if they aren't already, become established in their local jazz scenes. All of them have the voice and vocal talent to do very well in such an environment, at least in my personal opinion.
Conclusion. Karmamoi's third studio album is a truly well made album. A creation difficult to pinpoint in terms of any subcategories, with well made songs, excellent musicians throughout and a high quality mix and production as the icing on the cake. Those who tend to favor bands such as Porcupine Tree should have a field day with this one, especially if they don't mind encountering a band that use a slightly more expanded set of elements to create music in a similar vein as that highly influential and renowned band.
Progmessor: December 27th, 2017
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