Nodo Gordiano, a band from Rome, was founded in the year 1994. Originally playing material from bands like King Crimson, Genesis, and Banco del Mutuo Soccorso. After two years the musicians decided to go for their own compositions. Changing line-ups with almost every album, the constant factor was always bandleader and founder Andrea De Luca (guitars, keyboards). At the end of 2020, the Italian label Lizard Records released their fifth album entitled "Sonnar". progVisions would like to thank Nodo Gordiano's 'newcomer' Davide Guidoni for supplying progVisions with a physical promo copy of the album. Davide Guidoni (percussion, keyboards) is well known by progVisions readers through his own progressive rock band Daal.
Filippo Brilli - windwoods; Andrea de Luca - guitars, keyboards; Davide Guidoni - percussion, keyboards; Natalia Suvorina - vocals
First of all a little remark before writing the review section of this progressive rock album. If you read the intro you noticed the name of King Crimson, and yes this means that this album is for the open-minded prog lover. The album includes four compositions of leader Andrea De Luca and two from the new percussionist Davide Guidoni.
The album opens with a track entitled "Only Fool! Only Poet!". It has a mysterious opening with a nice synth and relaxed bass before slowly the intensity of the music becomes more intense with fine guitars and drums. This is also the first track where we can enjoy the vocal abilities of singer Natalia Suvorina, a vocalist from Saint Petersburg, Russia. It is a nice opener to a surprising album. Surprisingly because the following track is from another planet. Partly this is because of the hectic saxophone parts. "Limbic Rendez-Vous" is a progressive rock piece with complex structures and rhythm patterns. And combining this with the beautiful voice of Natalia sounds a little bit weird. This is a track that you have to hear several times before you can make sense of it and enjoy the quality of it. And it even becomes weirder with the track "Charun". Amazing percussion and out-of-this-world synth sounds had me think of my favorite Neo-Classical composer Johann Johannsson. Never imagined I would use his name in one of my progressive rock reviews! Well, I just love this Davide Guidoni composition. Then it is time for the Opus Magnum of this album. With its duration of almost twenty-one minutes "After Dusk" is the track where it is all happening. Countless rhythm changes, impressive saxophone, and drum parts, and even some references to the music of King Crimson. Also, vocalist Natalia Suvorina is in her element in this long composition which has the so needed variety to keep it fascinating and interesting. As you have thought this composition is indeed one of the highlights of this album. Well, I am happy now that you have been warned that this music is not for pussies, I mean for the open-minded music lover. An amazing piece of music. The following track "Vanth" is like the other Davide Guidoni composition "Charun" a little bit weird ... but I like it! There is more melody in the first part but it slowly builds up in tension like a King Crimson song. Especially if you listen to the repetitive guitar parts. The album comes to an end with the title track "Sonnar". After all the hectic of that previous epic track, the slow opening of this song is welcome. But after some minutes the tempo increases. Gradually I'm starting to get impressed by the vocalist Natalia. If the music has more melody her voice is shining on this surprising album.