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Roz Vitalis - Compassionizer CD (album) cover

COMPASSIONIZER

Roz Vitalis

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

3.49 | 20 ratings

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XPEHOPE3KA
3 stars In the journey to review all the studio albums of ROZ VITALIS I finally came to the last album to look like sole Ivan Rozmainsky project with guests, next ones will be group efforts.

Overall this is almost NOT an avant-garde album, with mostly keyboards, programmed percussion and other effects, guitar and some clarinet action. Almost always slightly slower than mid tempo. Both guitar and clarinet are scarce, psychedelic, often quite quieter than keyboards. After most previous albums going from very avant-garde to very boringly spacey this seems to be MUCH more balanced. Track by track thoughts with ratings follow.

3* Tragic fate 7:05

Has an atmospheric start with synthesizer effects, then some clarinet(?) and guitar come in, tension grows slowly and quite boringly up until 2:50. Then things change completely, somewhat complex drums, energetic keyboards - all what I've come to like about Roz Vitalis, but this time even with frisky or wailing guitar! This is one of the most avant-garde parts of the album. At 4:10 another change, to slow organ and guitar interplay, then at 4:50 again the main theme, building up to just a guitar and drums and percussion. From 6:15 goes some stomach-timbred organ with guitar. This could have been a 5* track with another intro and probably middle part.

3* Autumn of hypocrisy 3:59

This starts with a distinctively Rozmainsky'ish piano solo with some synth effects. Now it's bright, now it's tense! Seems like it shows just what a hypocrite looks like. From 1:40 sawing synths kick instead with some more normal keyboards. This probably should show what a hypocrite feels inside towards what he plays the hypocrite about. After 3:15 goes some psychedelic clarinet part. All happens with no drums. It's an illustrative track with wonderful intro, but the end is boring and sawing is quite uncomfortable.

4* Compassionizer 5:21

This one starts with a playful quirky dissonant piano solo, like from early films, from some scene with an intricate prank. Guitar helps with quiet howling. Complete change at 0:45: now two keyboard parts with scarce drums and murmuring synthesizer effects. Main keyboards parts keep changing while drums are quite the same but complex. Keyboards gradually play darker, drums help to pump more drama. From 4:30 goes sole spent synth part. Overall it's not a 5* just because my expectations were too high from music building up in the middle. Neither the way it was done nor the climax feel like excellent, just very good.

3* Elusive goodness 4:24

This is a mellow yet quirky keyboards (piano, synths, effects) composition, same theme delivered with different flavours and some spin off themes. The track title is really telling: melody really hints at goodness all the time, but there's also a slightest hint of tension. Beautiful but slightly repetitive and no other instruments. Easy 4* if sole keyboards are good for you.

3* Wakatte kudasai 7:27

It starts with some psyche clarinet and synth effects, from 1:30 some harpsichord-like synths and clarinet play in turn and together. An oriental (clarinet) and otherwordly (synths) tune follows, very interesting, with infrequent rhythm, tension builds up gradually up until 4:35. Then follows some 'standard' lovely avant-prog for a while, then rhythm changes, guitar starts playing, clarinet shuts down. 5:40 - keyboards are silent for a while, just guitar with drums and percussion, then keyboards and guitar play in turn several times, then blend, but guitar is still leading the way. All in all it's quite an extraordinary composition for Roz Vitalis (with quite a part of supporting, not leading keyboards), but for my taste it's overextended and slightly dull in the middle.

3* Annihilator of moral hazard 6:23

This is their all time concert hit, there are several versions on the live/bootleg CDs. The one prefixed with 'Wooden bear' is a psyched performance with lyrics, played until 2011. Then there's a better version with normal instrumentation, like at 'Live 14-11-14'. It still has quite psychedelic middle, but the main theme has quite some time. Also there were numerous concerts with other arguably rockier versions not available on CDs. The studio version though is very different. It starts with sprightly drums and murmuring keyboards, also there are some flute like sounds, then some tense quiet synth part with percussion. Then these two parts repeat with slight variations. Heavy parts are very good. Then some psych synths with rhythm- synth and guitar which changes at 3:50 to a continuous guitar fingering. Then follows the main theme and then again it's played but by guitar only. Main theme is easily 5* but the quiet/psych parts somewhat spoil the experience for me once again.

3* Dances of lost opportunities 5:38

This is a keyboards + percussion tune. Starts with an almost bright piano solo, track title again is quite telling. Then the heavy synths with percussion continues the melody with no brightness at all. Then a slowed down build-some-tension part which abruptly ends at 2:15 to allow some sole synth part. From 2:50 again a darker avantish part which I like. From 4:25 again just sole synth up to the end.

3* Disruption 3:41

This starts seemingly like a sequel to the previous track, below the average tempo. Then from 1:15 synth effects are supporting sole keyboard part, then sole guitar, then some clarinet with hints of guitar. From 2:32 the first theme again.

4* Train of parting (Compassion version) 7:55

It starts with a piano solo, again reminiscent of the previous track. Then synths and effects, then drums kick in, then guitar. Nice tension built suddenly changes at 3:15 to a quite bright but appropriate insert. Salivating listener from 3:50 hears an avant-prog part like from 'Tragic fate', up-tempo. Then some change to a leading guitar with synths and mid-tempo drums, building up to a 5:25 climax with flickering drums and howling guitar. Silence from 6:20 to 6:50 where just one drum beat happens followed by a closing keyboards-guitar interplay. Better coda would have easily made it a 5*.

Time-weighted score 3.25

XPEHOPE3KA | 3/5 |

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