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(49:45; Melodic Revolution Records)
This Italian progressive band were initially formed out of the ashes of Sons of the Rascals in 2010, but it took some years for the current line-up to come together and finally record this their debut album, which was released earlier this year on Melodic Revolution Records. This certainly doesn’t sound like a “new” band, but much more as if this was a lost album from the Seventies, such is the influence of that decade. The flute is an important melodic element, but far more tuneful and less forceful than the likes of Jethro Tull, more in common with the stylings of Martin Orford. As with most Italian bands, the keyboards are an incredibly important part of the overall sound, but here there is plenty of piano alongside the more bombastic elements, which again gives a more mature and controlled feel. It is that maturity that shines through on this album, and this never feels like a debut from a “new” group. One of the highlight for me is the simple use of bass chords at times within songs, the switch from single notes to multiple has a high impact, but it is never over the top, just an additional element of class when the time is right. Songs such as “II Mendicante” are sheer delight, with piano then having vocals placed against them, then acoustic guitar, and when the full band comes in the flute takes it to a whole new level. This is progressive rock music to get lost inside, to be enjoyed with a huge smile on the face as there is just so much to discover and take in. One thing I’m not a fan of however, is the switch from Italian to English halfway through the album. If someone suggested to the band that it might be a way of gaining more fans outside their home country, then they got it wrong. I found it incredibly annoying when I first heard it, and it still jars now even though I have played it multiple times but that really is nit-picking on what is quite a glorious album. Let’s just hope that they get back into the studio soon, and that there isn’t too long until we get the follow-up.
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