Apoteosi is one of those Italian bands that one would tend to gloss over in light of the slew of excellent releases from that country, and understandably so. The band plays symphonic progressive rock with many of the usual characteristics; piano, flute, beautiful melodies, and a tendency to sound like PFM at times. Add that to the fact that the album came out in progressive rocks downswing, 1975, and is really not as highly touted as, say the Quella Vecchia Locanda or PFM albums, a conclusion could be drawn that a certain wannabe connoisseur of Italian prog (read: me) might have clean overlooked this album until just recently. Not surprisingly, it's actually really damn good. Thankfully, this Italian one shot has enough distinguishing qualities to make it a necessary purchase for any serious collector. Most obviously, Apoteosi features a full time female vocalist, who is quite nice, though her vocals certainly don't make or break the album. More importantly, the band has a slight hard rock/psych sound at times, with fuzzed out electric guitar solos, plenty of organ and moog, as well as thick, consistently intriguing basslines that tie the proceedings together nicely. Of course, these portions are always set against other, quieter segments that are more typically Italian, for better or worse. Piano and flute melodies create beautiful backdrops for the female vocalist, who generally chimes in when things settle down, allowing the instruments to carry the melodies when the band chooses to crank up the intensity. The best cut on here is probably the 14 minute two part second piece "Prima Realta/Frammentaria Rivolta", which features some absolutely sizzling moog lines over a driving rhythm section that will stick in your head for days. I remember back when I had only heard the album a few times, having the main theme from this piece in my head and being maddeningly unable to place it. The other highlight is the three part third track, which again exhibits some absolutely extraordinary melodies and powerful playing, especially with regard to the hard rockish guitar riffs. "Dimensione da Sogno" is uninteresting, basically a ballad over which the female vocals actually sound pretty cheesy. Still, its only about four minutes long, so no biggie. The album closes with what is perhaps the most atypical track on here, "Apoteosi" sounds vaguely improvised, build up around a repetitive bass groove as other instruments fall into place around it, building and releasing tension cyclically. Very cool. Essential at some point for fans of Italian symphonic for sure. - Greg Northrup Add Apoteosi to the list of great bands who sadly only did one or two albums in the '70s, then vanished into obscurity, only to become more famous than ever due to the prog revival of the '90s. The music on Apoteosi's one and only album is very energetic and vibrant at one time, then very mellow, melodic and beautiful at others. I think they sound a little like an Italian Camel with a female vocalist and more sophisticated compositions. This album has five tracks ranging from two minutes to nearly 15 minutes in length. They all flow pretty well together, so the album tends to sound as if it is one piece of music and passes by quickly. There are plenty of great analog synth and guitar solos to keep it interesting. This is a must for fans of Itaprog. - Scott Hamrick
01 - Track01 2:37 02 - Embrion - Prima Realta 14:43 03 - Frammentaria Rivolts 8:37 04 - Il Grande Disumano 3:47 05 - Attesa - Dimensione Da Sogno
Produced by Salvatore Ida. Recorded at studio SONIC(Rome) in February 1975.
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