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Migliori Amici & Co

Best of Friends

Review by Gary Hill

This debut set is quite impressive. The music here brings all kinds of differing musical styles together and blends them into a powerhouse progressive rock tapestry. This set makes me think of artists ranging from Deep Purple to ELP, Dire Straits, Rick Wakeman and more at different points. It's strong from start to finish and is highly recommended for fans of inventive and rocking prog.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) form in Music Street Journal: 2022  Volume 5. More information and purchase links can be found at: garyhillauthor.com/Music-Street-Journal-2022.

Track by Track Review
Sick S***
A smoking hot blues rock jam brings this thing into being. They drive forward with that, but as it continues proggy elements emerge over the top. In some ways it resembles what you might get if you merged Dream Theater with Deep Purple. This is quite a powerhouse jam. It has some more melodic shifts and turns built into it as short interludes. There is a shift around the two-and-a-half-minute mark to a piano section. That quickly gets augmented by more driving, hard-edged instrumental prog jamming as it continues. That jam makes me think of ELP to a large degree. The track just keeps evolving with ever-present twists and turns and amazingly dramatic and powerful instrumental work.
Glasgow Reel
Hard rocking sounds, Celtic rock (you have to expect that from the title, right?) and even some Rick Wakeman like elements are heard on this tune. It's another powerhouse, but it's perhaps a bit less dynamic than the opener was. There is some killer guitar soloing, and don't miss the killer bass work. This is so strong.
Sun
A slower and more melodic number as it gets underway, this features some particularly evocative guitar soloing. There is a blues rock angle to this along with fusion, prog rock and more. It has quite a bit in common with some of the guitar gods like Vai and Satriani. There is a bit of excursion into an almost Pink Floyd angle at times, though. You can make out hints of country music at times, as well. The powerhouse jam later is high energy guitar-dominated prog jamming of the highest order.
Arctic Drift
Intricate guitar starts this in a mellower way, and calls to mind both Steve Hackett and Steve Howe as it does. This works out into an intriguing and rather different sort of jam. It has plenty of fusion along with more of a mainstream rock angle at times.
Shattered Glass
I love the killer fusion meets prog concept at the heart of much of this number. There is some powerhouse jamming and some cool twists. This manages to cover quite a bit of cool territory. There are some neo-classical moments and does have some more fusion leanings at times. It even turns metallic further down the road.
Images
Another that starts with intricate acoustic guitar, this grows gradually from there, painting nearly classical lines of sound as it does. Then, after the 30-second mark electric guitar takes over, feeling a little like Dire Straits as it does. The cut works out to a proggier jam as it continues. We're taken on quite the adventure from there with a lot of cool jamming and classy instrumental work. There is some seriously neo-classical guitar soloing at times. A drop to acoustic guitar with an expressive electric guitar over the top is so effective. It builds back outward from there with a real bluesy edge. That section closes the song and album in style.
 
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