Exposé Online banner

PropheXy — Improvviso
(Musea MP 3270, 2013, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2013-10-28

Improvviso Cover artIt's worth noting that the Italian word improvviso means unexpected, not improvised (provided I can trust Google Translate), so if you're expecting some spontaneous composition from PropheXy, you'll be disappointed. Improvviso is in fact a live recording of progressive rock with some jazzy elements, a touch of Canterbury, and dashes of RIO as well — which, come to think of it, is rather unexpected. Apparently the band were not aware that the show was being recorded, hence the title. With a name like PropheXy, I was half expecting prog metal, which this certainly isn't. Another unexpected (as long as you're not reading the liner notes in advance) thing is the sudden appearance of Richard Sinclair's unmistakable voice on the last two tracks, one of which is a lovely rendition of "Golf Girl." On the band's own material, the Canterbury influence is less prominent, though I suppose a bit of National Health can be detected in a track like "Stralci di Quotidiano," with the electric piano and wandering arrangement, though the assertive guitar tone is not much like anything you'd hear from Phil Miller. But sounding a bit like National Health is nothing wrong in my book! In addition to the keyboards and guitar, the vocals are quite strong, with some parts even reminiscent of Demetrio Stratos of Area (the improv section of "Paradigmi Mentali") — I suppose this might turn off some listeners, but I really enjoy it, since it's so well done, in tune and in keeping with the music. There's also some great work on flute throughout, which really comes in handy in the tracks with Sinclair. I highly recommend this unexpected treat — like a good dish, it's got a variety of flavors combined into a tasty whole.

Filed under: New releases, 2013 releases

Related artist(s): PropheXy, Richard Sinclair

Latest news

2017-04-16
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

2017-04-16
Allan Holdsworth RIP – Surely in the list of artists who have contributed to the sound of modern music, there is a special spot for guitarist Allan Holdsworth. His name is known to virtually every student of the instrument in jazz and rock, and his style has been so widely emulated that it's hardly worth mentioning anymore — we can just assume that every guitarist has Holdsworth as an influence. » Read more

2017-02-20
Larry Coryell RIP – One of the greats of jazz guitar has left us at the age of 73. Larry Coryell was one of the founding figures of jazz fusion, but produced a significant body of work the bridged many styles. His group Eleventh House provided a unique take on the combination of jazz and rock that was distinct from contemporaries such as Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return to Forever, and Weather Report. » Read more

2017-01-31
John Wetton RIP – After a long battle with colon cancer, singer and bassist John Wetton has died at the age of 67. As an integral member of such bands as King Crimson, UK, and Asia, his was one of the distinctive voices in progressive rock, lending a human touch to often difficult music. » Read more

2017-01-30
Seaprog Announces First Artists for 2017 – The organizers of the Seaprog Festival in Seattle have announced the first set of confirmed performers for the 2017 festival. The best known names are Jack o' the Clock and Zero Times Everything, but a host of other bands are featured, mostly from the Northwest. The festival will take place June 2-4, 2017. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Biota - Half a True Day – Colorado Art colony Biota continues to make strides in their first new collaboration in over six years. Since their last recording, the European folk elements have been put in the background in favor...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues