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AltaVia - Kreosote CD (album) cover





3.85 | 15 ratings

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kev rowland
Special Collaborator
Crossover Prog Team
4 stars AltaVia are a new band to me, but apparently, they formed in 2008 in a small town in northern Italy, when after leaving his former band, Andrea Stagni (keyboards and vocals) started searching for new musicians. A friend introduced him to Marcello Bellina (drums, vocals), Mauro Monti (guitars, vocals) and Giuliano Vandelli (bass), who coincidentally were looking for a keyboard player for a new project, so it suited everyone. Although they were all from different musical backgrounds, they were keen to all move in a new direction, even if that direction was actually taking them solidly back into the Nineties. The line-up was finalised when they brought in a backing singer, Betty Copeta, to assist with the harmonies.

This is the second album, released in 2016, of which I have only just become aware, and the initial reaction is that the guys have all been listening to classic It Bites, have brought in some serious doses of IQ and have tempered it all with some modern Yes. They are a long way removed from the classically based Italian progressive scene, but instead are more melodic and modern in their approach, with some great rock guitar. This is fresh and invigorating, laid back but also with some strident riffs and attack, combined with lush vocals and harmonies. There are times when they almost fall into Camel territory, but although they can happily sit within that relaxed form of music they normally pull themselves out and create some very special sounds indeed. It is an incredibly enjoyable album, from the first note to the last, and is immediate and powerful. I can only hope that my delay in hearing this album means that there is a new one to come soon!

kev rowland | 4/5 |


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