ProgressoR / Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages

[ SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]


Pierrot Lunaire - 2011 - "Tre"

(43:22, Musiche Particolari & Records)


*****
                 

PERFORMERS / TRACK LIST:

1.  Il Segno Del Comando: Lady Ligeia 3:02
2.  Gran Turismo Veloce: Il re di Ralpure 3:17
3.  Sciarada: Dietro Il Silenzio 3:54
4.  InSonar: Plaisir d'Amour 3:24
5.  C. Milano/M. Tuppo/Liir Bu Fer: Gallia 3:12
6.  Central Unit: Giovane Madre 4:25
7.  Arturo Stalteri: Morella 4:51
8.  Pierrot Lunaire: Sonde in Profondita 3:08
9.  Pierrot Lunaire: Mein Armer Italiener 3:24
10. Pierrot Lunaire: Soldato 1:52
11. Pierrot Lunaire: Cilla 2:43
12. Pierrot Lunaire: What'd You Say 2:42
13. Sciarada: Giovane Madre 3:28

LINEUP (tracks 8-12):

Arturo Stalteri  keyboards; guitar; recorder; violin
Gaio Chiocchio  guitars, sitar, zither; keyboards
Jacqueline Darby  voice 

Prolusion. PIERROT LUNAIRE was a short-lived Italian band, whose two albums from the mid-70s made them a semi-legendary act in Italian music history. And it is their second and last production "Gudrun" from 1976 that has earned them most accolades, at least by progressive rock aficionados. Until recently, these two albums covered all known recorded material by the band, with later reissues catering for various outtakes, alternative versions and suchlike. But with the release of "Tre" in 2011, the history of this band will be in need of a slight revision.

Analysis. "Tre" was, from what I understand, the planned name for Pierrot Lunaire's third album, a creation that never went beyond the initial idea phase. Instead, this name has now been resurrected to be used for a curious release by MP&P Records, containing a number of cover versions, two demo versions of previously released songs and, as the proverbial carrot on a stick, three previously unreleased compositions by this long-defunct project. And it appears that these recordings, unearthed in 2010, were in fact planned to be used on their planned third album. To get to the core of the matter, these three efforts, as well as the two alternate versions of their previously released songs, are the least interesting material on this disc, the former home recorded song sketches, the latter demo recordings of songs that appear to have been still in development. Pleasant material by all means, but unfinished, and in the case of the new material, recordings of a subpar quality too. Long time fans of this band will most likely find all of these items to be worth experiencing however, as these compositions even in unfinished versions do reveal a talented act with well developed songwriting skills. But the main reason for buying this disc is to be found in the additional material. Cover versions of other artists material are something of an acquired taste obviously, but if you like Pierrot Lunaire and are open to listening to other artists versions of their material then you have a fairly good reason for buying this CD. Il Segno del Comando delivers a stunning take on Lady Ligeia as the first track and clear highlight, where galloping bass and guitar are the driving force, instrumental soloing coming and going, and fluctuating synth patterns taking up a fairly constant presence as an effective subservient part of the arrangement. And both Central Unit and Sciarada deliver fairly intriguing takes on Giovane Madre, the former a dark, elegant creation featuring a bass and drums driven arrangement with an echoing piano motif as a constant element, careful synth surges and effects flavoring the arrangements and effective saxophone soloing in the first part, the latter utilizing guitar riffs and swirling, lighter toned industrial instrumental touches to explore an atmosphere of a rather different kind. Gran Turismo Veloce's time-typical, folk-oriented take of Il re di Rapture is another intriguing experience, and Sciarada's wind synth, glockenspiel and effects-based version of Dietro il Silenzio adds up to yet another fascinating experience. Just about the only of these cover versions that gets a slight question mark from me is InSonar's Plaisir d'Amour to be honest, not because it isn't well made but due to the opening half's exploration of vocal sounds, which to my mind sound like something that warrants an X-rated warning sticker and a parental advisory remark. Well made by all means, but somewhat outside of my personal preferences as far as enjoying the art of music goes. But further thumbs up are due for Claudio Milano, Marco Tuppo and Liir Bu Fer's version of Gallia, in this take an experimental vocal and electronica creation, and at last Arturo Stalteri delivers a fragile and emotionally laden piano-only take of Morella, the sheer simplicity and elegance of this one being a welcome encounter on this disc and a performance that works just as well as a standalone feature too. Personally I think the label MP&R deserves a bit of praise for releasing this production. By assembling a new total package rather than adding the three previously unreleased recordings by Pierrot Lunaire as additional bonus tracks on a CD reissue fans will already have in their possession, they have ensured that followers of this act get a fair bit of additional value to this potential purchase. There are many record labels out there which would have opted for the easy solution instead, and which do so on a regular basis I might add, so while a production such as this might not be to everybody's taste, it is one made for the fans rather than one made to exploit them, at least in my opinion.

Conclusion. The five recordings by Pierrot Lunaire, three of which are previously unreleased, aren't the major reason for owning this CD, unless you're an avid fan that is. But fans and those curious alike might want to and possibly should contemplate getting this production for the cover versions, which by and large are of good to excellent quality. Some straying further from the originals than others, but all of them are well made recordings by artists that appear to be passionate about the material they have chosen to cover. First and foremost a disc that will interest fans I suspect, but there's plenty to enjoy here even for those who don't have this Italian act as a personal favorite.

OMB=Olav M Bjornsen: January 19, 2012
The Rating Room


Related Links:

MP Records


[ SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]

ProgressoR / Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages



. ,