This is the first time I review in progVisions the new CD of one of my favorite bands, the Austrian band Angizia. This band is the creature conceived by the twisted mind of writer Michael Haas (a.k.a. Engelke) in 1994. His first recording, "Die Kemenaten scharlachroter Lichter" (1997), achieved positive reviews in underground media, and I consider it as one of the best albums of gothic-operistic genre. The following hazard was the "Russian trilogy" formed by the albums "Das Tagebuch der Hanna Anikin", "Das Schachbrett des Trommelbuben Zacharias" and this "39 Jahre für den Leierkastenmann". I know, it´s extremely difficult to learn the titles of the CD's.
The band´s line up is composed by the vocals of Michael Haas, Irene Denner, Rainer Guggenberger y Jochen Stock, and the instruments of Mario Newtwich (piano), Krzysztof Dobrek (accordion), Roland Bentz (violin), Giuseppe Gravoni (cello), Bernhard Seibt (clarinet), Alex Dostal (drums), Emmerich Haimer (guitars), Harald Hauser (bass), Jochen Stock (bass), Gottfried Kölbl (tuba), y Svea Juckum-Bentz (violin).
"39 Jahre für den Leierkastenmann" (subtitled as "Ein Stück für die Judenstadt") is a theatrical play in three acts which narrates the misfortunes of four jew musicians during the World War. Eighteen tracks with never ending titles and variety guaranteed. If you don´t know the music of Angizia I can tell you it´s one of the most original bands nowadays, with a very personal style, and I could define the music as a mixture of XIX century operetta, festive traditional center European music, some drops of Goethe´s dramatism and hard discharges here and there. In fact I´m sure that Haas has been lately listening to Devil Doll a lot.
From the point of view of progVisions potential readers this CD is great if you want to understand the music and concept of Angizia (of course you must be fans of bands such as Devil Doll or Lacrimosa, the rest better not to try) because in this CD don´t appear the screaming voices of previous albums. But it´s also true that, although the CD has lots of variation, this CD is more boring than the previous CD's. Además, 18 songs in 60 minutes are few minutes in each song, so there is always a permanent sensation of "lots of things happening in a short time".
To define Angizia is like to explain the music of Yes to a Nigerian guy, so the only thing I can do for you is to recommend the listening of this album at your favorite record store. Begin with "Das Tagebuch...", go on with "Das Schachbrett...", and you´ll thank it to me. But you must have a mind open to any sensation because Angizia is a band as schizophrenic as Devil Doll and it´s hard to accept the music in a very first listening.