Osanna — Tempo
(Black Widow DVD 2215/BWR 163, 2014, 2DVD)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2014-06-03
Tempo is a double DVD housed in a beautiful book with lots of photos from Italian theatrical proggers Osanna. Disc One is a concert recorded in Naples at the Trianon Theater on October 24, 2012. This is a career spanning concert featuring songs from their catalog along with guest musicians David Jackson (on “Theme One”), Gianni Leone (on “Introduzione”), and Tito Schipa Jr. (“Per la Strada”). Other guests included Sophya Baccini, Giampero Ingrassia, Elio Eco, Maurizio Capone, and Antonella Morea. Since the massive Prog Exhibition 40 Anni di Musica Immaginifica was recorded about the same time, all of the songs from that concert are here as well as more for the entire performance. Extras on Disc One include a music video of “Rosso Rock” with Lino Vairetti in black robes with the left side of this head black and the right side white walking/drifting through some ruins. Images are meant to make him transparent and then by the end of the song is whole head is grey with red makeup smeared all over. This imagery recalled to me the Star Trek episode from January 10, 1969 with Frank Gorshin “Let That Be Your Last Battlefield.” There were two aliens Bele and Lokai and what lingers in my mind after all these years is that Bele believes his black and white coloration to be superior to Lokai's — "I am black on the right side" ... "Lokai is white on the right side." So in this video, Lino must be a member of Lokai’s race. Sorry for the tangent. The other extra on the disc is a backstage interview. Unfortunately most is in Italian without any subtitles. The only exception is when David Jackson is interviewed and of course he speaks English. But this is not much of an issue as the interviews are edited with excerpts from the sound check and actual concert so it tends to hold your interest even if you don’t speak Italian.
Disc Two, titled Osanna Story, is a collection of 20 historical video clips from 1971 – 2009 including extracts from TV shoes and live concerts. This alone is worth the price of this double DVD set. It is fascinating to see that band evolve over this 40 year time period. The earliest videos are multiple versions of “L’Uomo” recorded on various TV shows. And it is amusing to watch the Emcee struggle against laughing at the band all made up in greasepaint and robes and to talk seriously about the music. And to make things even more awkward for the Emcee, the band stands there with extremely serious expressions. If I counted correctly, there are at least six different videos of “L’Uomo” with two in this century. Over time this song has taken on a more aggressive nature and I think is far superior to the original. Back in the day, they all had long hair and lots of facial hair. That in combination with the greasepaint made them freakish, especially compared the relatively conservative Emcees in coats and ties and the straight laced audience. This was quite a statement for the 70s. Today Lino is bald and his son Irvin is now part of Osanna. The band if anything has more stage presence and aggressiveness today than when it began and the makeup and costuming no longer seems out of place.
This is quite a documentary effort and belongs in the library of any prog rock aficionado.
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more
Carmen - Fandangos in Space & Dancing on a Cold Wind – Do you like Jethro Tull? Curved Air? Flamenco dancing? Did you ever wish for a combination of the three? Your wish has come true, and its name is Carmen! And if you don't think they could pull off... (1994) » Read more