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Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso - ...Di Terra CD (album) cover

...DI TERRA

Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.75 | 195 ratings

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Tapfret
4 stars It is clear that Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso made their masterpiece works with operatic front man, Francesco Di Giacomo. It was also clear that Garafano Rosso, the movie soundtrack that was the band's first instrumental work, was a tier below the rest of their 1970's discography. But the band's 1978 album, ...di Terra, easily holds its own among Banco's classics.

This instrumental does not just feature the band playing sans lyrics, it also includes the Orchestra del'Unione Musicisti di Roma. Quickly one can hear a vast departure from their early sound and style. It is not readily comprehensible what the band might sound like playing this composition without the orchestra. The fusing of the rock band and orchestrations is tight, a complete melding, creating a cohesiveness between the instruments that is so often missing in these type of projects, even with regard to the most highly acclaimed of these rock/orchestra collaborations. For instance, on Days of Future Past, the orchestra is used more as a transitional element. As seamless and natural as those transitions were, the combination was rarely simultaneous. With ...di Terra, that fusion is the rule, rather than the exception.

While the compositions are not overtly complex, they are deeply explorative. From the legato Nel Cielo E Nelle Altre Cose Mute; to the frantic, disharmonic staccato of Terramadre; to the grooving jazzy overtones of N Pi Di Un Albero Non Meno Di Una Stella; this album is not one that is void of challenge to the listener, yet never seems to waver in its themetic goal. While I am not aware of the exact circumstances, the theme of the project is actually centered around a poetic work of singer Francesco Di Giacomo. Perhaps I am reading to much into it, but it often appears that his presence is not missing. Is it that the band is making a conscious effort to convey this work in the essence of Di Giacomo's approach to music without his actual presence on the recording? To me, that is exactly what happens, right down to the closing resolution. And the only way that could happen was to approach the entire piece from a purely orchestral direction. The result is a compostion that is poetically nuanced, each movement carrying an almost conversational pace and tone. When translating the titles: "In Heaven And In Other Quiet Places", "Mother Earth", "Neither More Of A Tree, Nor Less Of A Star", while a large aspect of subjectivity certainly applies, the names are emblematic of the movements.

...di Terra is an outstanding work at a time that most classic prog acts were floundering. But still, it endures an amazing amount of criticism. And surely its understandable with 1978 being the year of Tormato and Love Beach. The competition was fierce! But all kidding aside, ...di Terra is an extremely beautiful album, ranking 3rd behind Io Sono Nato Libero and Darwin! as my favorite BMS albums. It was easily one of the best of a particularly weak year. 4 stars

Tapfret | 4/5 |

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