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Faveravola - Contea Dei Cento Castagni CD (album) cover

CONTEA DEI CENTO CASTAGNI

Faveravola

 

Prog Folk

3.87 | 41 ratings

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andrea
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Faveravola come from Treviso and began life in 1998 on the initiative of Giancarlo Nicorelli and Adriano Durighetto. In the seventies both founder members militated in local bands that never had the chance to record an album, bands such as Diamond Red, Dinoterium and Dawson. After a long hiatus they decided to start playing again to make their musical dreams come true and so they gathered around them a new group of musicians to work on old and new ideas. In 2006 Faveravola finally released a debut album on the independent label Lizard Records with a line up featuring Giancarlo Nicorelli (keyboards, narrative vocals), Adriano Durighetto (bass), Paolo Coltro (drums, percussion), Alessandro Bonotto (acoustic guitar), Franco Violo (vocals), Consuelo Marcon (violin) and Gianluca Tassi (electric guitar) plus some guests such as Luca Boldrin (flute), Ivan and Nicola Durighetto (recorder) and Tiziana Carraro (vocals). The result of their efforts is an interesting concept album that tells of a metaphoric journey through the dreamy land depicted on the album cover and in the booklet by Marta De Martin. The overall sound is soft and folksy and conjures up calm, pastoral landscapes while the enthusiasm and passion of all the people involved in this project shines through...

The dreamy opener "L'antefatto" (Preamble) introduces the subject matter and sets the atmosphere. Every now and again it reminds me of Procol Harum and features narrative vocals explaining that what really matters in a man's life is his imagination. You have to follow your dreams, fighting for your freedom and against every form hypocrisy and conformism... All in all, who can be sure that fantasy never meets reality?

The slow paced "Lo specchio" (The mirror) tells of a man who looks at his face in a mirror... What is left of his dreams? Suddenly he feels his soul flying away, his reflected image breaks through the mirror and he's in some way catapulted in a fairytale world generated by his own dreams. The following "La Contea dei Cento Castagni" (The County of the Hundred Chestnut Trees) describes this dreams that come true with calm tones and soft organ passages that every now and again remind me of the liturgical atmosphere of a Catholic mass post Second Vatican Council. The man is now a knight who has to defend peace, love and justice...

Next comes "La foresta degli elfi alati" (The forest of the winged elves) where the rhythm rises and the music conjures up a light sense of mystery... Now the knight is riding in his new world and has to cross a forest where every leaf is an eye and an ear of the strange inhabitants of this magic place, the elves. These creatures warn the knight about the dangers that he'll find along his road, he has to cross an old gloomy world to meet his destiny, the real world will set ambushes and every sort of waylays... Only his generous heart and his honour can save the knight! The following "L'incontro" (The meeting) features a Medieval flavour and could recall some works of the Italian minstrel Angelo Branduardi. There are male and female vocals interpreting a dialogue between the protagonist and his soul. After the breakaway, the protagonist's soul comes back with words of hope and a particular gift, her eyes on the wings of the wind...

"Il sogno" (The dream) could recall Le Orme from the pre-Collage period. The music and vocals describe the gratitude of the protagonist for his new world where he can live his dreams. His voice soars like a prayer towards the sky... Next comes the long, slow "La Piana dei Temoli del Livenza" (The plain of the graylings of the Livenza River) that features lengthy narrative vocals and describes a surreal dialogue between the protagonist and the Livenza River that speaks words of wisdom and hope. The voice of the river here is interpreted by the special guest Aldo Tagliapietra, historic member of Le Orme.

The epic "Lo scontro" (The fight) describes in music and lyrics the fight between the protagonist and the enemies that are threatening his new realm: the ferocious, merciless Hypocrisy and Infamy... The fighting is hard, the sword of the knight breaks and his injuries seem to be lethal... But suddenly his sword comes to a new life, his injuries generate the notes of a powerful music that hits hard into the heart. Time stands still, the enemies are defeated and the dream lives on...

"Danza di Messer Reale e Madonna Fantasia" (Dance of Mister Reality and Lady Fantasy) is another track with a strong Medieval atmosphere that describes an imaginary dance between a clumsy, armoured knight and a beautiful lady, the metaphors of Reality and Fantasy... They dance all night long, until dreams and reality get mixed together... Then comes the melodic ballad "Leggenda della foglia, della vita e del vento" (Legend of the leaf, of the life and of the wind) where life is compared to a falling leaf, carried by the wind. Only if you will learn how to listen to its music that leaf would land on your hands and will live on...

"Neorinascimento" (New rebirth) is a nice ballad with a positive feeling that recalls Le Orme and that conjures up the image of a mother walking hand in hand with is little child... The knight now understands that building a new world based upon love is not impossible: an idea that once was nothing but a dream could come true... The dreamy closer "La strada ai confini di..." (The road on the border of...) invites you to search for your own way to the magic world of dreams: it could be a hard, long journey but you have to be brave and march forward along the borders of your imagination to reach your destination... There you'll meet the knight and his lady, it is there that you will discover if this magic country is just dream or reality...

On the whole, a pleasant album for Italian prog lovers who who prefer soft, calm atmospheres

andrea | 4/5 |

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