Tuesday, 20 December 2016

POINT OF NO RETURN

Anacondia began life in 1995 on the initiative of keyboardist Andrea Canonico and singer Gabriele Ramilli but it wasn't until 2000 that the band could find a durable line up featuring, along with the founder members, also Antonio Emanuele Sergi (drums, percussion), Walter Marocchi (guitars) and Vincenzo Valerio (bass). After two demo EPs (Genesi instabile, 2003 and Due mondi, 2005 - later collected on the self-released CD Due mondi, 2006) and a good live activity, in 2015 the band finally released what can be considered their first real official full length album on the independent label Lizard Records. It's entitled L'orizzonte degli eventi (Event Horizon) and features the collaboration of the guest Nicoletta Bartola (sax, flute, backing vocals) who contributed to enrich the sound. It's a nice mix of prog, metal, psychedelia, classical and a touch of folk and in my opinion it's a great step forward for the band, especially if compared with the previous, still immature, demos. The title of the album refers to a phenomenon that is usually associated with black holes, a boundary in space-time beyond which events cannot affect an outside observer. Anyway, here the term event horizon is used in a metaphorical way and marks the limit between dreams and reality, ideals and conformism. But perhaps the art cover by Massimo Valerio probably describes the lyrical content of this work better than my words...


The opener "Eroi di solitudine" (Heroes of solitude) starts by heavy electric guitar riffs and sudden flushes of energy. The music and lyrics describe the desperate wish to escape from the nothingness of a society that is compared to a vain, empty pageant of masks where falsity and myths of plastic rule. Despite its length this is a straightforward piece where the band just try to express rage without hate claiming their right to be different from the mainstream...

The following track "Nel silenzio" (In the silence) is shorter but, in my opinion, more complex and refined. At the start the atmosphere is almost hypnotic, tense. Then tension melts in a dreamy section with the flute in the forefront... Here the music and lyrics depict a kind of nobody's land between wake and sleep where strange sensations and false images gather around you and silence begins to paint your soul in vivid colours as a soundless orchestra begins to play for you...

Anacondia on stage 2013

"Ideale o verità" (Ideal or truth) starts calmly and conjures up confused images hanging in the air, between dream and reality. It's a delicate ballad that deals with the need to have an ideal, a dream to follow to get on and on. Dreams and hopes can make you blind but without them you risk to get lost anyway... Next comes the melodic "Come un fiume in piena" (As a raging river) that celebrates the thaumaturgic, overwhelming power of a music that can shake you from the inside and that you can't stop.

"Un foglio bianco" (A blank paper) is an excellent track that combines delicate classical music patterns and heavier passages. The music and lyrics describe the atmosphere of an important moment in your life when you have to make up your mind and make a choice but where you are uncertain about what to do. Life can be like a blank sheet that you have to fill with your own words, a white page that you have to paint with your own imagination and sometimes you really have to try hard to reach your goal...


The long, complex "Gerico" (Jericho) is a dramatic epic whose title refers to the battle of Jericho as told in the holy bible... So the people shouted, and the trumpets were blown. As soon as the people heard the sound of the trumpet, the people shouted a great shout, and the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they captured the city. Then they devoted all in the city to destruction, both men and women, young and old, oxen, sheep, and donkeys, with the edge of the sword. (Joshua 6:20-21). However, here the episode of the fall of Jericho is just a metaphor: in fact, the music and lyrics of this piece tell of an imaginary battle against falsity and human vanity drawing strong images and evocative musical passages.

The ethereal closer "Il colore dell'aria" (The colour of the air) starts softly and the atmosphere is dreamy and melancholic. The music and lyrics evoke the dance of the wind and the singing of the leaves, an inner void that is difficult to understand and dark shadows that the river swept away. But at last you can hear a friendly voice and see the light of hope showing the way...

On the whole, a very nice album that is really worth listening to.

Streaming available on deezer or spotify. Have a try!

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