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Il Fauno di Marmo / The Rebus - The Rebus (as The Rebus) CD (album) cover

THE REBUS (AS THE REBUS)

Il Fauno di Marmo / The Rebus

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.51 | 3 ratings

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Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator
Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars There was much confusion over The Rebus when they first came to the attention of the Italian Prog team of the Prog Archives a year or so back! There were some conflicting early reports as to whether this band was a lost relic of the vintage 70's era, or in fact a modern band. Some internet sleuthing later and the latter turned out to be the case! Emerging in 2001, The Rebus had already been through two previous name and line-up changes after initially coming together in the early 90's, but the one constant was vocalist/flutist Luca Sterle, and it's no surprise to find that he dominates a lot of the compositions here. The order of the day is not only heavy 70's inspired retro RPI/Italian prog with wild flute passages and a rough production, perhaps along the lines of Il Biglietto per L'Inferno and Delirium, but also shorter, punchy little dynamic blasts of 60's flavoured up-tempo energy and ear-pleasing melodies. 2011 would eventually see The Rebus morph into Il Fauno di Marmo, but for now let's cast our ears back to 2002.

Opener `Ronchi Cali Bropmp' is an up-tempo and frantic introductory instrumental burst of bashing drums, whirring vintage synths and huffing flute, and foot-tapping it is too! `Piccola Colomba Bianca' is a nice grinding organ stomp with a floating psychedelic break in the middle, Luca's distinctive gravely vocal instantly reminding of Martin Grice of RPI legends Delirium. `Donegal' is an upbeat instrumental folk jig full of positivity and love, the catchy `L'Ultimo Viaggio' is a spiky grooving rocker with an infectious melody and stomping beat. `Lui E' Come Gli Altri' is a nice bluesy laid-back chill-out with plenty of jazzy licks and a little fusion fire before a disorientating flute and spacey effects breakdown in the finale. `Ramadan' is a lusty R&B flavoured strutter with some scorching Hendrix-styled guitar straight out of the 60's, `Ghetto Mania' sticks to the same era for another groover with a powerful scuzzy fuzziness and shattering drumming. The mellow `Cogito Ergo Sum' allows for some furious electric guitar jamming over drowsy warm group harmonies, and album closer `Madre Natura' is a joyous acoustic bopper that wouldn't have sounded out of place on the first Delirium album `Dolce Acqua'. It's the perfect way to finish this charming and positive little album. In fact, I think this album might be about the most fun you can have with an Italian prog work!

The self-titled Rebus disc displays a confident and technically accomplished band tearing through some vintage influenced Italian prog rockers, and it's an undemanding but still tasty album performed with a playful energy. The best was yet to come when the group renamed themselves Il Fauno di Marmo and recently released the album `Canti, Racconti e Battaglie' in 2013, but there's no denying this is an accomplished disc. I think listeners, especially RPI lovers, will be pretty impressed by it's positive vibes, and personally, I'm a sucker for those dirty sounding Delirium and Il Biglietto-type bands, so for me, `The Rebus' is a real winner.

Three and a half stars, rounded up to four.

Aussie-Byrd-Brother | 4/5 |

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