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progVisions

progVisions is a progressive rock e-zine, published in English and made by an international group of members. Our objective is to become a centre of information that contributes to the knowledge, growth and development of progressive rock.

album reviews

album review

Unreal City - Il Paese Del Tramonto - 2015
albumcover

    
“A must have album for all Rock Progressivo Italiano lovers (RPI).”

( website: www.unrealcity.it )

“Il Paese Del Tramonto” is the second album of the Italian band Unreal City. The band was founded in the summer of 2008 by keyboard player Emanuele Tarasconi and guitarist Francesca Zanetta. After a first EP in the year 2012 the band released in April 2013 under artistic direction of Fabio Zuffanti their debut album “La Crudelta Di April” (the cruelty of April) on the AMS Records label. The band received very positive reviews for their wonderful debut album. On 15th December 2015 the eagerly awaited successor was released by AMS/BTF Records. Exact a month later the band played their first gig in The Netherlands and surprised the Dutch fans with an amazing performance. Keyboard player Emanuele Tarasconi impressed the audience with his fabulous keyboard playing and great voice. The band gave us an enthusiastic and passionate performance full of Symphonic and Progressive Rock. The positive energy was returned by an enthusiastic audience that even sung the catchy vocal refrains together with the band. It was a wonderful Sunday afternoon that I will never forget.

Emanuele Tarasconi - Voce, Pianoforte, Hammond, Minimoog, Sintetizzatori, Mellotron, Organo liturgico, Fender Rhodes, Clavinet, Clavicembalo, Theremin; Francesca Zanetta - Chitarra elettrica, Chitarra acustica, Mellotron; Federico Bedostri - Batteria, Timpani, Percussioni, Cori; Dario Pessina - Basso elettrica, Bass pedals, Cori, Voce narrate in "Processor Secondario"

Special guests:
Fabio Biale - Violino; Rossano "Rox" Villa - Trombone, Fisarmonica

These are golden times for the fans of RPI ( Rock Progressivo Italiano ). After writing positive reviews for bands like La Coscienza Di Zeno and Syndone the next beauties are waiting for a review on progVisions. Before writing the review for the new La Coscienza Di Zeno album first this “Il Paese Del Tramonto” album of Unreal City.

You will find only seven tracks on this album but the last one is a suite of epic proportions with a duration of more than 20 minutes. This brings the total duration of the album just over 70 minutes. And what is more important, you won't find weak points on this great album. Lovers of RPI don't have to read further, just buy this wonderful album!

The album opens with the instrumental “Ouverture: Obscurus Fio”. After a slow intro on the piano this song develops into an up-tempo piece with nice synth parts and a short melodic guitar solo in the end. After this nice opener mysterious Mellotron sounds brings us to “Oniromanzia”. First things you will notice is that the band has the ability to compose beautiful melodies and that keyboard player Emanuele Tarasconi has also a great voice. I am so happy that the band is singing in their native language (thank you Fabio Zuffanti). You know my opinion by now; it gives the music the right atmosphere. The track is diverse and has besides the passionate sung vocals delicious synth and Hammond solo's. The music of Unreal City is keyboard dominated .... I just love it!

The next track “Calgari” opens slow and mysterious. After a nice guitar part of Francesca Zanetta the band comes with catchy vocal lines and fantastic classical piano parts. After slowing down the tension of the music slowly builds up towards the next symphonic climax. You can also find some jazzy parts in the music. Special for the live shows Emanuele plays a great intro on the Theremin. In the middle of this track you can hear some Theremin sounds on the album.

“La Meccanica Dell'ombra” is one of my favorite tracks of the album. In the opening you can hear again those mysterious sounds of the Theremin. The special guest Fabio Biale and Rossano "Rox" Villa are playing the violin and trombone in a funny part with a folksy character. In a live setting the dynamic keyboard parts of this track are sounding even more bombastic than on this album. The vocal harmonies are great in this piece. Talking about vocal melodies. In “Il Nome Di Lei” you can find besides some beautiful melodic guitar parts and some classical piano the most wonderful (vocal) melodies. The catchy vocal refrain is pure bliss.

The second part of this album is very strong. First we have “Lo Schermo Di Pietra (Kenosis)”. The vocal melodies are beautiful and are sung with great passion. My mind often goes back to that great live performance in The Netherlands. I was standing in front of Emanuele and he showed us all what a talented and great keyboard player he is. And at the same time he is singing with great passion his vocal parts. The last composition of this album is the suite “Ex Tenebrae Lux” which is divided into the following parts; “Gelidae Mortis Imago”, “Ciò Che Disse Il Tuono”, “Processo Secondario” and “Ab Aeterno”. “Ex Tenebrae Lux” is the Magnus Opus of this album, a diverse piece of music of epic proportions. Unreal City is displaying musical craftsmanship and the melodies on this album are just amazing. In this last piece you can also find some jazzy keyboard parts.

The music of Unreal City is keyboard dominated. And however the music is influenced by the music of the great Italian prog bands of the seventies, the band sounds new and fresh. You won't find weak points on this great album. Without underestimate the other band members, keyboard player and composer Emanuele Tarasconi is the driving force behind Unreal City. He is a very talented guy who has great compositional skills. Not only is he a great keyboard player but also a good singer. If you like keyboard dominated prog with beautiful melodies, this is your album. And if you have the opportunity to see the band in a live setting, don't hesitate. In that setting the music of Unreal City is even more powerful. “Il Paese Del Tramonto” is a must for all Rock Progressivo Italiano lovers. Highly recommended!

Douwe Fledderus - March 2015
rating - AMS Records (BTF)

 

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