Exposé Online banner

Calliope — Il Madrigale del Vento
(Vinyl Magic VMNP 015, 1995, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1996-03-01

Il Madrigale del Vento Cover art

Some are no doubt familiar with Calliope's two earlier albums La Terra dei Grandi Occhi and Città di Frontiera from '92 and '93 respectively. Those first two albums showed the band moving in a harder rocking, yet very melodic progressive direction, an area shared by bands like Garden Wall and Ezra Winston. This, their third, is radically different from the previous two. For starters, the band has enlisted a female lead vocalist in Annalisa Gastaldo. Her voice is very sweet, along the lines of a timid Annie Haslam, without the raw power and omnipresence, yet it's perfectly suited to the new directions Calliope is moving in. Their music has taken sort of a laid-back folky turn, in the direction of bands like Eris Pluvia or Kerrs Pink – those elements are certainly present here, and woven throughout the fabric of their music. When they anchor down, they are now more identifiably neo-progressive than before, the dual keyboards and guitar running the show while the drums and bass find a comfortable groove within, yet that notion tends to wear off as the album progresses. The band - now a six-piece, is augmented by violin on several tracks and even didjeridoo on one. The opener, "Terra di Maggio," and closer, "La Visione della Dolce Pioggia," are both long multi-part suites that top the sixteen minute mark, while four shorter, folkier tracks fall in between. Overall, this is an interesting change in direction for the band, though in doing it they seem to have lost some of their momentum, like beginning all over from scratch. File under promising re-starts.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 9, 1995 releases

Related artist(s): Calliope

Latest news

2020-10-14
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more

2020-10-06
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more

2020-09-05
Gary Peacock RIP – Legendary bassist Gary Peacock, veteran of many recordings and performances with Paul Bley, George Russell, Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, Tony Williams, and many more. » Read more

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Jean-Philippe Goude - Drones – Here's a welcome reissue indeed! My old cassette of this has done a full tour of duty, I don't think it could've lasted another six months... which is to say, this is one you'll...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues