Gleemen — Oltre... Lontano, Lontano
(Black Widow BWRCD 164-2 / BWR 164, 2013, CD / LP)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2014-04-29The history of the Gleemen goes all the way back to 1965 when guitarist Bambi Fossati got together with Maurizio Cassinelli (drums), Angelo Traverso (bass), and Marco Zoccheddu (guitarist who went on to Nuova Idea) to form the Gleemen. In 1970 they released their only album. The Gleemen morphed into Garybaldi in 1971. Over the years the original band members have remained musically active through a number of projects and then in 2013 Maurizio and Angelo revived the Gleemen to record and release their second album Oltre... Lontano, Lontano. They enlisted Bambi and Marco to complete the original lineup, plus added several younger musicians: Giampaolo Casu (guitars), Giovanni Pastorino (keyboards), and Mauro Culotta (guitars). To augment their sound, they brought in a bunch of guest musicians: Martin Grice (sax), Pino Nastasi (vocals and bass), Danila Piras (flute), Alessandro Paolini (acoustic bass), Roberto Piga (violin), Fabrizio Nuovilibri (bass), Carlo Olivieri (drums), and Luciano Ottonello (electric guitar). The result is an interesting mix of 70s blues rock and Italian progressive. In his youth Bambi was enamored with Jimi Hendrix and this current disc still shows the influence, especially on the outstanding “Schizoid Blues.” There are ten songs on this disc and the chosen running order is interesting. The first half is pretty straightforward 70s blues rock and Italian progressive. Then the remainder of the disc assumes a more acoustic atmosphere with some very pleasant songs that come very close to pop rock. The title track closes the disc with music very different from the other nine. There is some kind of Zydeco/Cajun vibe along with the Outlaw Country of Waylon, Willie, and the boys, as well as a bit of Tex Mex thrown in; all in all a pretty cool track. The disc shows that this song is 10:24 but it is over at the 7:04 mark. There is silence for about 30 seconds and then a different song fills in the remaining time. This is a pet peeve of mine. Why not make it a stand-alone song and credit it properly? Nevertheless, this hidden track is acoustic guitar and vocals calling to mind Le Orme. Overall, Oltre... is quite a good release for a second album after 40+ years, despite the cheezy cover art.
First ProgStock Festival Set for October – October 2017 will see the inaugural edition of a festival called ProgStock in Rahway, New Jersey at the Union County Performing Arts Center. With a definite slant towards neo-progressive music, the event is sure to please many fans with the inclusion of such artists as Echolyn, Glass Hammer, and Aisles. The festival will take place October 13-15. » Read more
Clive Brooks RIP – Word reaches us today of another sad passing in the music world. Drummer Clive Brooks, best known as a member of such Canterbury bands as Egg, Uriel / Arzachel, and Groundhogs, has died at the age of 67. Details are sketchy at this point. The news was reported on Nick Mason's Facebook page — Brooks was Mason's drum tech. » Read more
Col. Bruce Hampton RIP – The phrase "He died doing what he loved" is almost a cliche, but in the case of Col. Bruce Hampton, it couldn't be more true. Hampton, who was born Gustav Berglund III, collapsed on stage at his own 70th birthday celebration and later passed away. The event took place at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. » Read more
ProgDay 2017 Announces First Bands – Flor de Loto, Sonar, and Infinien are the first three performers to be announced for the 2017 edition of the long-running ProgDay Festival. The 23rd ProgDay takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd, at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. » Read more