Glass Onion / Cleopatra Records
Review By Geoff Penn
Instrumental Progressive Italy 2018 CD 46:42 mins
My Rating 70/100
Although there is a massive contribution delivered by the keyboards on this album it is essentially a showcase for the versatility and grandeur of the electric violin. Strange when you discover that all of the music was composed by the keyboardist ‘Paolo Fosso’. The multi-layered keyboards do, of course, form the solid bedrock and provide the extensive accompaniment in terms of infills, lead in passages and symphonic backing for the music as it ebbs and flows. Thus leaving the electric violin to claim the lion’s share of the lead instrumental role. The pace and the feeling of movement is abundant throughout the project but, common to the overall acoustic delivery, there is seemingly more of a sensation of rhythmic distribution as opposed to melodic charm. But never-the-less all of the tunes are interesting and thoroughly enjoyable.
Comprising fourteen tracks, two of which are bonus tracks, the music shifts easily between different ranges of mood. There is a definite air of melodramatic impetus which drives the music along throughout the entire project. Indeed it was no surprise to discover that the recording label ‘Cleopatra Records’ are heavily into cinematic productions and clearly the direction of ‘Armonites’ music is ideally suited towards the enhancement of visual experiences and graphical escapades.
It is quite amazing how a fairly basic line up of just keyboards, drums bass and violin can produce such a powerfully energetic and resounding sound. There are many nice little audio enhancements incorporated within the score by means of splendid synthesizer trickery, clever percussive variations and furthermore really interesting melodic and powerful bass lines to enjoy.
The violin throughout is ever-shifting between segments of utter mournfulness, Celtic folksiness, undulating happiness and classical flamboyance. From a singing perspective there are contributions of choral enhancements but only on one track is there any kind of properly crafted vocals. There is though (on track eight) some well-placed human whistling which fits in rather well.
Although the music is unique and quite different from anything else currently being released to the progressive market, there are slight similarities with the harmonica infused sound of Corky Siegel’s blues-tinged Chamber Blues
Summary: Excellent musicianship which is Interesting and enjoyable but quite limiting in appeal. it is through a timeless album and one which, if you owned, would resurface every now and again to be enjoyed.
Artwork: My Press Issue: Colourfal and Adequate
Jacopo Bigi – electric violin,
Paolo Fosso – keyboards.
With Colin Edwin, Alberto Fiorani – bass; Jasper Barendregt, Emiliano Cava, Corrado “Dado” Bertonazzi – drums
- The March of the Stars
- Next Ride
- District Red
- Plaza de España
- Clouds collide
- Blue Curaçao
- By heart
- By the Waters of Babylon
- The usual drink
- What’s the Rush?
- [Bonus Track] A Playful Day (for Strings Quartet)
- [Bonus Track] The Fire dancer (for Piano solo)
Original music composed and arranged by Paolo Fosso