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progVisions

progVisions is a progressive rock e-zine, published in English and made by an international group of members. Our objective is to become a centre of information that contributes to the knowledge, growth and development of progressive rock.

album reviews

album review

Ancestry - Discendenze - 2003
“New Italian band, searching for imaginary worlds”

The history of this Italian band goes back to the year 1988. But this first version of the band, which already included original members Fabrizio Sicuteri and Federico Ruoppolo, was playing hard rock in those early days. Soon they got interested in progressive rock. After having made a demo and some member changes, the new version of Ancestry got a deal with Mellow Records. With “Discendenze” the band presents their first full worthy prog-album. Their style is a mixture of typical Italian prog music which is melodic and mellow.

Musicians:
Fabrizio Sicuteri – keyboards & vocals, Fabio Venturini – guitars & vocals, Federico Ruoppolo – drums, Maurizio Bellofiore – bass

Guests:
Cristina Bertucci, Lorenzo Costa & Andrea Bellofiore

The CD starts with a long suite called “I Colori dell’ età Sorgente” (17:03). It consists out of the following parts; “Risveglio”, “Giada”, “Colori Segreti”, “Rinascere nell’ alba” and “L’età Sorgente”. With this first track Ancestry leave its marks. Delicate and mellow progressive rock only Italian’s can make. Fabrizio Sicuteri and Fabio Venturini are making me happy because they sing in their native language (Italian). This beautiful language harmonizes with the music the band is making. The band is constant switching between slow and up-tempo parts. But the music becomes never aggressive or bombastic. Personally I think the first and last tracks (“Verso l’Esterno”) are the highlights of the album. “Nuova Opera” (6:08) is one of the up-tempo tracks with nice keyboard- and guitar work. The vocals parts are always melodic. “Stanza Della Terra” (7:17) has beautiful vocal lines and piano work. Maurizio Bellofiore’s bass sounds delicious in this track. “Oasi” (7:03) is completely instrumental if you don’t count the “vocals without words”. The desert has always been an inspiration for a lot of musicians and authors. Maybe this has something to do with the big contrasts you find in those places. At the same time it can be the most terrible and the most beautiful place on earth. The guitar of Fabio sounds a little bit Camelesk in this melodic track. In “Labirinto” (5:53) the dark and deep voice of Lorenzo Costa is used as narrator. The piano and keyboards are very tasteful in this composition. They sound romantic and warm which reminds me of some South American bands. The main theme of the piano is repeated in the opening of the closing track “Verso l’Esterno” (12:07) of this album. In this long track there is room for some melodic guitar and keyboard solos. The vocals on this album remind me of one of my favorite new Italian bands (H2O). Other Italian bands that crossed my mind are PFM and Arcansiel. But only because of the atmosphere of the music, not to compare the music. Well the band wouldn’t mind to be compared with PFM, but they need first a few years first to develop and to mature.

So for me the best tracks of this album are the opening track “I Colori dell’ età Sorgente” and the closing track “Verso l’Esterno”. Personally I like this mellow kind of Italian progmusic. But if you like more power in your sympho/prog I would recommend a band like Mangala Vallis. Maybe Ancestry can also put a little bit more power in their next release. Because the compositions sometimes stay too sweet and fairytale like. I mean the creation of just a little bit more tension in their music. But in general this is a very good debut album of a promising young band.

Douwe Fledderus - November 2003
rating - Mellow Records

 

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