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La Nuova Era - La Nuova Era CD (album) cover

LA NUOVA ERA

La Nuova Era

 

Crossover Prog

3.28 | 7 ratings

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kenethlevine
Special Collaborator
Prog-Folk Team
3 stars Note! This is not Walter Pini's NUOVA ERA, and, apart from the name and country of origin, bears no similarity to that band either.

The mythology surrounding the genesis of this obscurity is somewhat neutralized by the largely low impact music herein. But firstly, I must immediately dispel the notion that this is a crossover of prog and pop or other mainstream styles. It's essentially a new age album appropriate for its time, almost entirely instrumental, with certain progressive elements in the interweaving of synthesizers and acoustic guitar. The pieces range from the entirely ambient to partially ambient with discernible melodies. The titular themes are Christian, but, with lyrics in only one track, that's neither a blessing nor a curse.

Apart from some of the more ambient duos and trios that haunted labels like Narada and Windham Hill, I'm reminded of POPOL VUH or some of the experimental works that were appended to AMENOPHIS' self titled album. I wish I could invoke more geographically intimate environs given that LA NUOVA ERA was Italian, but I did listen to a few pieces from the shrouded LA COMPAGNIA DELL'ANELLO, the band that composer Marinella Di Nunzio is somewhat known for, and, yes, some of their material is very similar sounding, when they are not singing their (apparently) right wing shanties. Also, think a God fearing GOBLIN and you won't be too far off.

Lest you run and hide or, alternatively, order it pronto and program this for your Wednesday evening Zen Buddhist meditation gathering, I do want to add that a couple of the offerings are minor masterpieces of pastoral sensitivity. In particular, "Il Figlio Di Maria (La Nascita)", the only one with voice, albeit spare, is a nigh Celtic sounding piece with a form of tin whistle and a synthesizer that sounds like one of those gags in which someone with no background in carpentry plays a saw for everything it's worth, bringing the house down. "Luciferus (La Crocefissione)" is even better, with eerie GOBLIN styled synths, piano and succinct acoustic guitar phrases. The best of the rest is probably "L'Angelo Gabriele (L'Annunciazione)", but I think its techniques are better explored on the aforementioned.

While LA NUOVA ERA rates but a low font footnote in prog, or any other music history, if the descriptions above find you still intrigued against your better judgement, then off you go to procure this Mellow Records mellow record.

kenethlevine | 3/5 |

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