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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Le folli arie

Le folli arie

Review by Gary Hill

Le folli arie is an Italian band. The album they have produced is mostly prog rock, but with a real European bent to it. It leans toward the pop AOR end of things, but on the other hand, it can be challenging at times. The bulk of the lyrics are in Italian, but the last few songs are in English.  It’s really quite an effective and surprising album. I don’t think that it really sounds like anyone else, more than a little here or there. That’s high praise, really.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2016  Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Salto nel buio

Balancing between mellower sounds and hard rocking ones, part of this almost roots rock while other parts have space rock and other forms of prog built into them. I don’t even understand the lyrics, but the vocals bring a lot of emotion to it. I love the powered up section later, too. It’s very much pure progressive rock.

Bellezza
There are lots of world music elements here. This is a powerful and dynamic cut that has a lot of peaks and valleys. It’s another that’s so emotional, without even understanding the lyrics. I love the powered up prog rock summits.
Non รจ facile
The same basic principal is in place. This has a real modern prog feeling to it. It makes me think of something like modern Marillion in a lot of ways. I love some of the acoustic guitar playing on this, but the whole song (again full of rocking and mellower stuff) works extremely well, really.
Quello che ho
Although in a lot of ways this has more mainstream European music sound, there is still plenty of prog in the mix, too.
On Da Bridge
This is a funk infused fusion turned prog jam. It’s short and a real screamer.
Fuori!
Latin drums open this, and it works out into a jazz jam from there. It feels like Carnival in a lot of ways. This is very much a world music jazz kind of vibe. If there’s a cut that’s not prog, this is it.
Il giardino della mia follia
A mellower cut, this has prog, world music and jazz all built into it. It’s a pretty piece that’s kind of a power ballad in some ways. There is a harder rocking section that comes in past the half way mark. It’s energized, hard edged prog rock.
Mentre tu cadi
Here is a high energy, hard rocking prog jam. It has a mellow section at the end that features whistling.
Il giorno mio migliore
This one alternates between mellower music and harder rocking stuff. It’s European prog blended with European music and some mainstream pop rock. It’s another great song on a disc with no shortage of great material. The ending section with screaming guitar solo is really on fire.
Alien's Trip
As the mellow music that starts this plays, a didgeridoo plays. The cut gradually builds out into a great jam. It has a nice arrangement of vocals kind of soaring down in the mix, feeling a bit distant. This grows out feeling like some kind of joyous jam session. There is a section at the end with just all kinds of voices singing in a real tribal celebration kind of sound.
Shot in the Dark
Acoustic guitar sounds lead this off, and the cut grows out from there. The cut is another that does a great job of balancing the harder rocking stuff with mellower sounds.
A Better Day Tomorrow
This is the catchiest cut of the disc. It also does a great job of combining mellower music with more powered up stuff. It’s still proggy (with some jazz in the mix) but leans on the AOR side of the equation.
It's Not Easy
Prog and pop rock merge nicely on this song. It’s another that’s distinctly AOR. It’s quite a pretty song, really.
 
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