Exposé Online banner

Cherry Five — Il Pozzo dei Giganti
(Black Widow BWR 181-2, 2015, CD)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2015-11-14

Il Pozzo dei Giganti Cover art

In 1976, a mysterious group released an Italian prog album. Cherry Five, then part of the well-known Goblin, had recorded the songs in 1974 and that release rapidly achieved cult status. Now 40 years later drummer Carlo Bordini and vocalist Tony Tartarini reformed Cherry Five with a group of younger musicians, Gianluca de Rossi (keyboards), Ludovico Piccinini (guitar), and jazz musician Pino Sallusti (bass) to record Il Pozzo dei Giganti. Keeping with the gothic themes of 70s Italian prog, Cherry Five has created a musical journey through Dante’s Divine Comedy starting at the lowest level of Hell at the Well of the Giants, travelling upward through Purgatory, and ultimately attaining Heaven. Il Pozzo dei Giganti is quite an ambitious project, especially the opening title track, clocking in at 25 minutes. This epic piece is pure Hammond organ-dominated Italian prog that shifts periodically into jazz-fusion territory while paying homage to ELP. And after remaining at this hellish nadir for 20 + minutes, there is a majestic ending like a beam of light from above showing you the way out. Then tracks 2 – 5 are four parts of “Manfredi (Purgatorio III)” that together last about 16 minutes. Part (a) is quite complex with rapid-fire riffs. Part (b) is a calm jazzy interlude that grows to majestic heights with swelling organ chords and a fantastic guitar solo. Part (c) strays into metal prog territory with complex interchanges between guitar and Hammond organ, augmented by formidable bass riffing, virtuoso guitar licks, and great organ solos. And Part (d) calms things down a bit with tasteful vocal and organ interactions. The final track, “Dentro la Cerchia Antica [Paradiso XVI],” is quite lighthearted in comparison to the rest of the disc. This track is cinematic, sound somewhat like Le Orme’s Felona and Serona. Another tasty slab of revitalized Italian prog.


Filed under: New releases, 2015 releases

Related artist(s): Cherry Five

Latest news

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

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

The Spacious Mind - Sailing the Seagoat – This third album from The Spacious Mind delivers more of their patented spacy psychedelia. Those familiar with their earlier releases know exactly what to expect; Ebowed guitar leads over a backdrop...  (1996) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues