Exposé Online banner

Banco del Mutuo Soccorso — Darwin!
(RCA Victor 88697976912, 1972/2011, CD)

by Mike McLatchey, Published 2017-03-16

Darwin! Cover art

One of the most alluring aspects of Italian progressive rock from 1972-1977 is the wide array of tonal coloring, particularly due to experimentation with analog synthesizers. This was a completely different era from the "patch" and a lot of these bands really seemed to work through their sounds so that very few of the monophonic synths had the exact same tone, even within a five minute period. This gave a lot of these albums a great deal of color and warmth. Banco del Mutuo Soccorso really expanded their sounds on their sophomore album, released months after their debut, and while the song lengths went down on average, it often seemed like they were cramming more ideas in. The dual keyboards here were almost luxurious at this point, featuring a skill usually only seen in classical music. This is the kind of record where multiple plays are mandatory due to the compositional depth, not to mention the lyrical range in expressing the album's concept, it sort of fulfills that cliché where the more you listen the more it reveals. If the first album was the one I prize most due to the heaviness, Darwin is one I most prize for its sheer range, it has an almost mindboggling amount of key and meter shifts, intricate group melodies and harmonies, all within the service of its brilliant songwriting.


Filed under: Reissues, 2011 releases, 1972 recordings

Related artist(s): Banco del Mutuo Soccorso

Latest news

2018-06-05
Koenjihyakkei Seeks Funding for New Album – It's been quite a few years since the last new studio album by the amazing Koenjihyakkei. Now they are preparing Dhormimviskha for worldwide release, and they're asking fans to pre-order via a Kickstarter campaign to help it happen. » Read more

2018-05-14
Glenn Branca RIP – Experimental guitarist and composer Glenn Branca has died at the age of 69. He was known for compositions featuring large ensembles of guitars, and for the use of feedback. He founded his band Theoretical Girls in the mid-70s as an art-punk answer to what he saw as the increasing commercialization of punk music. His compositions were highly influential, with such figures as David Bowie, Thurston Moore, and John Lurie among his fans. » Read more

2018-04-05
OBEY Convention XI Set for May 24-28 in Halifax – As the 2018 festival season rapidly approaches, we’d like you to be aware of a real treasure of diverse and creative music that’s going to take place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next month. The OBEY Convention is on its 11th outing, and features a wide range of artists from around the world. From avant-industrial noise to experimental takes on Classical Chinese music, from chamber jazz to doom metal, from ambient soundscapes to Canadian First Nations drumming, you’d be hard pressed to find a festival with more variety in sound anywhere in the world. » Read more

2018-04-04
Close to the Rain Festival in Bergen Announces Lineup – Now in its second year, the Close to the Rain Festival of progressive music is scheduled to take place in Bergen, Norway, on June 7 - 9. They've got an amazing slate of bands lined up, including such powerhouses as Anekdoten, Major Parkinson, Arabs in Aspic, Tusmørke, and many more. » Read more

2018-03-01
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington and Oregon. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Univeria Zekt - The Unnamables – This is, for all intents and purposes, a Magma album recorded under a different name. The original intent by producer Laurent Thibault was to create an album that would be sort of like an introduction...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues