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(62:14, Black Widow Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Kaze 4:15 2. Senza Colori 8:30 3. Il Passo 9:25 4. Fino Alla Vetta 7:42 5. Onirica Possessione 9:08 6. Notturna 2:40 7. Il Cacciatore 14:50 LINEUP: Elisa Montaldo – vocals; keyboards; ethnic instruments Fabio Gremo – bass, guitars; vocals Giulio Canepa – guitars; vocals Francesco Ciapica – vocals Paolo Tixi – drums; vocals
Prolusion. The Italian band IL TEMPIO DELLE CLESSIDRE was formed in Genoa, Italy, back in 2006, at the time representing an ensemble of young, talented musicians joined by former Museo Rosenbach vocalist Stefano Galifi. Following their 2010 self-titled debut album Galifi decided to leave the band, who subsequently recruited Francesco Ciapica as their new singer. "AlieNatura" is the band's second full-length album, and their first with Ciapica as vocalist. It was released by Black Widow Records in 2013.
Analysis. The progressive rock scene is one that covers a vast amount of musical ground, and when covering music that either is made by acknowledged bands in the scene, unknown artists who desire to be a part of that scene or artists exploring a style of music connected to progressive rock, you do encounter a lot of different and often fairly challenging music as you work your way through the promos submitted to you. Of course, progressive rock doesn't have to be challenging escapades that try to defy genre conventions and expand the borders of musical perception always, and it's always a treat when you come across a band that opts to explore more familiar and well chartered territories, as long as they do so with the excellence needed when entering grounds well explored by others. Il Tempio Delle Clessidre is a case in question within this context, a band that sounds like and perform their music with the ease of seasoned veterans from the ‘70s, and with the vigor such veterans had back in that decade to boot. Symphonic progressive rock is the name of the game for this fine Italian band, and their take on this style of music, despite firmly founded in the old traditions, still comes across as a vital and spirited creation rather than a new band having a flawed attempt at exploring this style of music. This is a vibrant, well made and extremely professional sounding affair on all levels, a sheer joy to experience from the onset until the final notes fade out. Not always a brilliantly shining light of pure perfection, it takes a lot for me to hand out the top rating with exclamation mark, but that this is an album very close to being just that merits a mention. I guess quite a few will regard this CD as a perfect creation as well, especially those with a strong affection for this type of music. The core foundation of the style explored on this album appears to revolve around firm, majestic guitar and organ based themes. They are a constantly recurring feature, and the arrangement of choice for major alterations and just about any of the intense passages that appear, at least initially. More often than not supported by a frail, wandering piano motif, something of a mainstay element throughout this production as well. Vintage keyboard textures are liberally applied throughout as well, both as creators of the numerous gentler, atmospheric passages that are another recurring feature on this disc, but also as the final ingredient when the band shifts towards their most intense and monumental, majestic cascades. A select few pastoral excursions have found their way into this album as well, although the more powerful and majestic passages are the dominating ones, and fairly often ones with a darker tinge to them at that. The powerful, theatrical vocals of Francesco Ciapica fits this type of music to a T, and that he has a vocal delivery that brings forth associations to an elderly man singing is a charming and rather appropriate element when used in music of this specific type.
Conclusion. Symphonic progressive rock with a distinct vintage sound and quality to it is the chosen style for this Italian band, a style of music they explore with a high degree of excellence throughout. A strong and well made production, and while it does explore musical grounds rather thoroughly explored by other before them, they do in such an excellent manner that the end result is a powerful and compelling one anyhow. A production well worth spending some time with if you have a soft spot for vintage symphonic progressive rock, and in particular if you fancy music of that kind with Italian vocals.
OMB=Olav M Bjornsen: February 4, 2015
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