(2010 - Electromantic Music - ITALY)
This is another one of those long time returns from the distant past bands. Seventeen years after their last release (Inca 1993, and first one was Spleen 1992), Syndone present their third CD, and this one has some fantastic Italian progressive music on it. Nik Comoglio was the brainchild of the first two, and of course he is in charge here too, along with a multitude of both bandmates and guest musicians. I’ve listed a partial lineup at end of this review to give you an idea of things. This large array of musicians presents a canopy of styles which range from brilliant PFM/Acqua Fragile progressive rock to ragtime ditties. Some might feel Syndone cover too many different styles on this recording, but for those who like things changing from song to song, it is a fine example of that for sure.
The first cut starts out with the high energy jazz rock similar to a mix of Arti & Mestieri/Banco and that ilk of style, but gives way to some beautiful vocals before diving back into the jazz rock. You have another high energy song right after this one that contains some great playful keyboard work. The third song is totally great! It has that pinnacle of classic progressive rock, hook, and sinker. Worth the price for this song alone. FANTASTIC! This is followed by a very Celeste/PFM (the mellow stuff like off 'Photos Of Ghost' – example”Old Rain”) sounding song on classical guitar, and sung beautifully in a folk style. And at the end of the song, a playful part that fades into track 5. Things change on a dime, and from second to second in most of these cuts, so it’s quite difficult to describe this whole CD without a play by play call. I don’t have enough time or space to do that so the overview will have to suffice.
To be clear, there is no shortage of creative great music here, and it’s theatrical at times, playful at some spots, and just fall back into the easy chair great, much of the time. Anyone into the wide variety of Italian progressive music we’ve been lucky enough to hear over the decades, should be thrilled to own this. It’s representative of the top of the crop of those Italian bands with no weakness at all. VERY RECOMMENDED!!! I certainly hope for another CD from Nik and band.
Reviewed by Lee Henderson on July 10th, 2011
Check out the musicians on this LINEUP:
Nik Comoglio – pianos, Hammond, Moog, keyboards; vocals
Francesco Pinetti – vibraphone, timpani
Paolo Rigotto – drums, percussion
Federico Marchesano – bass
Riccardo Ruggeri – vocals
Paola Perardi – cello (2, 5, 6)
Umberto Clerici – cello (2, 5, 6)
Claudia Ravetto – cello (2, 5, 6)
Gomalan Brass Quintet (6, 8)
Elena Favilla – viola (2, 6)
Marina Bertolo – violin (6)
Luigi Finetto – oboe (9)