Claudio Rocchi — La Norma del Cielo (Volo Magico No. 2)
(Sony Music Italy 8875000812, 1972/2014, CD)
Claudio Rocchi — Viaggio
(Sony Music Italy 8875000832, 1970/2014, CD)
Claudio Rocchi — Volo Magico No. 1
(Sony Music Italy 8875000822, 1971/2014, CD)
by Mike McLatchey, Published 1995-07-01
In many ways, Claudio Rocchi can be best described as the Italian Donovan – in music, lyrics and even artwork. His career that began with Stormy Six on L'Idee di Oggi per la Musica di Domani, spans the 70s, and blazed a trail for innovative and inventive folk / acoustic based music that long left behind his troubadour counterpart in the 60s. However, his debut Viaggio was a modest beginning. Rocchi here is joined by ex-Dalton and future PFM multi instrumentalist Mauro Pagani and the music is somber, acoustically oriented with bongos backing much of it up. It reminds me of a particular late 60s hippie folk style except much more melancholic. A nice album, but not exceptional.
There was a huge change after Viaggio, of what magnitude or type I'm not sure! Volo Magico No. 1 (in English Magical Voyage #1) opens with an amazing side long cut that begins with sober acoustic guitar and swells into an incredible progressive folk anthem with choral vocals, Mellotron, piano, and electric guitar. It's tremendous that this was on the album, as side 2 is more like Viaggio except better developed and with more piano and a wider instrumentation. Really, an impressive twist on the folk genre.
Volo Magico No. 2, also known as La Norma del Cielo, followed in 1972, yet unfortunately didn't contain a second magical voyage and was a return to shorter more lyrical songs. The music is quite good, with lots of acoustic guitar, Mellotron, and a good amount of piano, and spiritually oriented lyrics. This is also richly crafted and acoustic based although more outside the realms of "progressive" music than its predecessor.
Related artist(s): Claudio Rocchi
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more
Chicago-Based Surabhi Ensemble Tours the World in January – Surabhi Ensemble was formed more than a decade ago in Chicago with the aim of bringing together musicians from varying traditions to make music. Saraswathi Ranganathan, who plays veena, assembled a cast that includes Arabic oud, Spanish guitar, and percussion from Africa and India. This month, the group will be sharing their sounds with concert-goers in Southeast Asia, Europe, and Africa. » Read more
Seaprog Festival Seeks Donations – Seaprog is a small festival in Seattle that highlights creative music from many genres with artists from around the world. It's also a US non-profit organization. They're seeking donations to help keep the ball rolling. Starting in 2013, the organization has been growing, and has featured such artists as Free Salamander Exhibit, Jack o' the Clock, Nik Turner, Cabezas de Cera, Miriodor, Thinking Plague, and many more. » Read more