Sunday, July 02, 2006

Locanda Delle Fate - "Forse le Lucciole Non Si Amano Più" [1978] @ 256 (Excellent Italian Symphonic Prog)

Perhaps the finest release of Italian progressive rock there ever was. For some on rec.music.progressive this is their favorite album period; I won't go that far, but I will certainly sing its praises.

Locanda Delle Fate did not invent any new styles. They have the dual keyboards, used with a healthy amount of flute to contribute softer parts while the guitar and gruff vocals often provide the harsher counterbalance. This isn't something unique in Italian progressive rock. They were, however, able to do so much with that style that the earlier bands didn't seem to. Melodies are layered on top of counter-melodies with a subtlety often lacking in the symphonic prog world; in fact, you could listen to this album for months before it hits you with its full force. While the arrangements can be dense, they never seem that way and the often clinical feel of such arrangements is not here.

Each track on this album is a success. The longer numbers tend to be developed intelligently, with a logical progression of themes that stops short of milking them for length. The shorter ones hit the listener with an idea or two, and tend to be somewhat simpler. Highlights would have to include the opening instrumental and the title track.

For those looking for comparisons to other bands, I could offer perhaps early PFM, Celeste and Maxophone. In my opinion, however, LDF is better than all of these bands. It is indeed a handsome slice of classic Italian symph prog. Locanda della Fate fall somewhere in between Genesis and Yes. The guitarist is a pretty obvious Steve Hackett disciple, both in the broad, melodic style of his playing and also the way he occasionally employs Hackett's well-known 'weeping' effect. The keyboardists lean favorably towards Tony Banks' sense of balance and servicing the composition, yet at the same time take full advantage of the Rick Wakeman palette, including those keys that Banks never really touched (e.g., harpsichord, clavinet). The lead vocalist is an acquired taste, singing somewhat gruffly but with gusto. I personally find his vocals quite enjoyable. This is on my short list of albums that every progressive rock fan should own. Any further superlatives would be redundant. Get it!

-- compiled from reviews by Joe McGlinchey & Sean McFee @ http://www.progreviews.com

Highly Recommended!

Track 1 - Volte un Istante Di Quiete......

Keep Listening!!!!

Link in comments....

5 comments:

BlackwatchPlaid said...

Here is the link:

http://tinyurl.com/gsun8

Enjoy!!

Anonymous said...

OK I was sold at "Tony Banks' sense of balance and servicing the composition..." - and Wakemanesque pyrotechnics too? THANKS!

Anonymous said...

My girlfriend called this "The Three Tenors go prog."

NORWAY said...

My goodness, this was fantastic. I have some albums of PFM , but this is so strong. Its so good to heare natural sound and not the sampling sound nowdays. Why can it be creating sound and music like this today, we have all the options. This is a great album. ***
THANKS!!

Anonymous said...

Link doesn't work anymore :(

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