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Imagin' Aria - 2000 - "La Tempesta"
(40 min, Lizard)

TRACK LIST:                             

1.  Bassa Marea 4:23
2.  Ci Credi Tu 3:55
3.  La Tempesta 0:49
4.  Verso il Tramonto 7:55
5.  Il Piume di Callisto 5:18
6.  La Canzine del Navigante 14:39
7.  Solo un Gesto 3:04

All tracks: by Imagin' Aria.
Produced by Imagin' Aria.
Engineered by G Brugnone.


Daniele Perico - vocals
Luca Milan - guitars
Juan - guitar
Andrea Peasso - bass
Fabio Biffignandi - drums
Giorgio Brugnone - keyboards

Prolusion. "La Tempesta" takes the second position in the discography of IMAGIN' ARIA and is also my second meeting with this Italian band. I had occasion to hear and review their latest, "Esperia", before this one.

Analysis. By getting more and more acquainted with Imagin' Aria's creation, I feel that some aspects of my knowledge of Italian Prog are smashing against the wall of the band's independence from their national progressive traditions. Well, the lyrics are in their native language, but the way of their delivering is non-Italian, with your permission. If I were not in the know of their origin, I would've been almost in the firm belief that they hail from North America - the USA or Canada, to be more precise. Imagin' Aria's vision of music is unquestionably original, but by their disposition to putting plenty of different themes into the short-format songs, which results in a rather specific: tight, dynamic and, simultaneously, highly diverse sound, they remind me of Dreadnaught and Bubblemath. In this respect, the only exception here is the sixth track, and of course, I won't forget to pick it out. The musical events on "La Tempeste" unfold in a different way than those on the band's latest outing, which is more uniform stylistically, but similarly to those on some of the albums I have reviewed for the last update. Reiterations are inevitable in such cases. But well, if I see a cow:-), I must say it's a cow; otherwise it would be a poetic license, and the use of such in reviews is inadmissible. The album's opener Bassa Marea represents a combination of guitar Art-Rock and Prog-Metal, with all the arrangements, vocal lines included, being highly mobile and changeable, as well as everywhere on the album. On the second track, Ci Credi Tu, appear passages and solos of classical acoustic guitar and piano to become the integral part of the music down to the end. This song, and also Verso il Tramonto, follow the direction laid on Bassa Marea, but with the less number of meaty, pronounced guitar riffs and, on the other hand, with the more quantity of symphonic textures. Between these, there is a tiny concerto for classical guitar. Due to its specificity, and also the difference between the first and the last three songs, the title track should have been placed on the fourth position, and not on the third. In that way, the described songs, which have rather much in common with each other, would've been logically separated from those located in the album's second half. (It's the lover of symmetry inside me that's cutting in now; 'he' does it each time the music is classically coherent, but is always silent in the case of Fifth Element and the like.) After crossing the album's equator, you'll notice that the heaviness disappeared without leaving a trace, as if it never were here. Besides, the parts of acoustic guitar (both solos and passages, all done masterfully) and piano press and, often, displace those of electric instruments. The dense arrangements alternate with more atmospheric landscapes, but the music is always deep and is full of mystery. All of the above is applicable to any of the remaining three compositions. Stylistically, however, Il Piume di Callisto and Solo un Gesto are closer to classic symphonic Art-Rock in pure form, while the 14-minute La Canzine del Navigante is of another story. Here, the band presented an outstandingly diverse and intriguing electro-acoustic quasi Jazz-Fusion. It was a very nice surprise, especially since I just didn't expect the band would ever go this way!

Conclusion. Being much impressed by Imagin' Aria's latest effort, I was primordially well disposed toward this album, too, and I am happy I didn't miss it. "La Tempesta" is also a masterpiece and is by all means on par with "Esperia". Highly recommended. As for the band's inclination for changing the sound of each of their new albums, it's a good tendency, IMHO. On this matter, just remember Pink Floyd, for instance.

VM: January 7, 2005

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