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Malibran - Trasparenze CD (album) cover

TRASPARENZE

Malibran

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

4.03 | 33 ratings

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andrea
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Trasparenze is the fifth studio album by Malibran, a band from Catania whose roots date back to 1987. It was released in 2009 on the independent label Electromantic, more than seven years after its predecessor Oltre l'ignoto. Although it was originally conceived as a solo project of the leader and multi-instrumentalist Giuseppe Scaravilli, later other members of the band joined him during the recording sessions and eventually this excellent work was released under the name Malibran with a line up featuring Giuseppe Scaravilli (vocals, acoustic and electric guitar, flute, bass, keyboards), Jerry Litrico (guitar) and Alessio Scaravilli (drums) plus the guests Giancarlo Cutuli (sax) and Toni Granata (violin). Of course, here composer and lyricist Giuseppe Scaravilli does the lion's share playing almost all the instruments but the result is in perfect continuity with the band sound. In the booklet you can find extended liner notes that explain the genesis of each track while the art cover is taken from a painting by Karl Friedrich Schinkel that in some way describes the spirit of this work...

The opener is the title track, "Trasparenze" (Transparencies), a complex suite with many changes in rhythm and mood featuring some passages that could recall Genesis or Jethro Tull. It's about the passing of time... All along your life there's something or someone that attracts you and shows you the way you have to follow with its perfumes and its fire. You have to go on and on as your age flows away like a short poem, between dreams and reality, led by your will and by the flames of that fire...

Next comes the dreamy "In un attimo" (In a while). It starts with strummed guitar and flute, then the music and lyrics conjure up a long awaited, timeless moment of peace. You have in front of you a white canvas that your are going to fill with the colours of your dreams... You are painting a magic landscape and your soul is flying over there. Your troubles are left behind and you can smile, forgetting for a moment all the problems of everyday life, your mind is already over there...

"Vento d'Oriente" (Wind from the East) features a mysterious, exotic flavour. Heavy electric guitar riffs are mixed with Mediterranean influences while the music and lyrics evoke distant deserts and ancient sands, lost identities and empty realities. Listen to the voice of the wind blowing from the East, it carries echoes of ancient songs and whispers mysterious charms...

"Presagio" (Omen) alternates calm, pastoral sections to heavy riffs and Latin rock passages. It tells of obscure presages looming on the horizon like the thundering sound of the rapids ahead while you are swimming on the calm waters of a river, cradled by the current. Well, you've better keep calm and fight against all the adversities of life without fear...

"Pioggia di maggio" (Rain of May) is a beautiful, dreamy instrumental track full of soaring, delicate melodies. It leads to "La marea" (The tide) that tells in music and words of the contrast between the need to go away searching for a better way of life and the responsibilities that prevent you from leaving, keeping you tightly bound to your routine. You know you have to stay but you feel a strange emptiness growing inside you, maybe one day or another you'll turn your glance back and you'll start running after an idea, following dreams and ideals, drifting with the tide towards new horizons...

"Nel Ricordo" (In the memory) is about the power of fate. Your future turns around you like a dark shadow from whom you can't escape, you'll soon forget who you are because you're already changing and moving forward, you can't help it! The days and the nights you spent are like circles in the water that soon will fade away, the past is going to melt in your memory, you can't cheat on destiny...

"Volo Magico" (Magic flight) is a short instrumental track that conveys a strange sense of mystery. You can hear the sound of the bumblebees around you as you're flying from flower to flower under the charm of exotic perfumes and colourful landscapes... It leads to the nocturnal atmospheres of "Promesse vane" (Vain promises), a piece about a man who feels like an eternal boy and finds difficult to accept his everyday life and the burden of time passing by. Where are the promises of his childhood, what is left of his old dreams? He's burning out and nothing but his fantasy and imagination can set him free from the metaphorical chains of reality and make him happy, at least for a while...

The short, dreamy "Gioco di specchi" (Game of mirrors) is a nice instrumental track that introduces the wonderful suite that closes the album, "Pensieri fragili" (Fragile thoughts), a long, complex piece that every now and again recalls Arti & Mestieri and begins by the sound of a pouring rain... Here the music and lyrics take you back in time to World War I, in a trench along the front between the Kingdom of Italy and the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Under the rain the thoughts of a young infantry soldier unfurl while the water washes away a desperate night of waiting. Around the soldier there is nothing but mud and fog but he dreams of enchanted valleys and smiling faces that now seem just faded memories... A thousands eyes observe the human fragility from the sky, the soldier feels that the real enemy is inside him, he wants to give up not because of cowardice but because he feels that this war is not his own business. He doesn't care about honour and glory and in the fog he gets stealthily out of his shelter and runs for his life, disappearing in the rain...

On the whole, I think that this is a wonderful album without weak moments that will not disappoint Italianprog fans...

andrea | 5/5 |

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