Musicophilia Daily

[Audio] – Il Balletto di Bronzo – “Epilogo” (1972)

Posted in Audio by Soundslike on April 3, 2009

Il Balletto di Bronzo – “Epilogo” (1972)

Prog is a form of music that when I enjoy it, I’m certain I enjoy it from all the “wrong” directions and for all the “wrong” reasons, as I place no intrinsic value of the purported paramount virtues of the genre (virtuosity, speed, complexity-as-an-inherent-good, constant change for its own sake, technicality).  I’ve come to appreciate plenty of middle-period King Crimson, but via This Heat; I enjoy post-Wyatt Soft Machine, but through the lense of Miles Davis; I dig Amon Duul II only when they set aside the noodling and get a little Stooges rawness.  Il Balletto di Bronzo, described elsewhere as “difficult at first” is an easy fit, coming from my prog-wrong directions.  Apparently the album ‘Ys,’ from which this track is culled, represents the pinnacle of something called “Italian symphonic prog,” which had I known would probably have steered me clear of this recent Exiled Records acquisition.

Fortunately, I gave it a blind listen, and found that its stereo-experimentalism and weird choral vocals and moog-and-piano arpeggios work for me entirely against any “symphonic” assessment–this ain’t no Yngwie, thank goodness.  The fast parts remind me of Death May Be Your Santa Claus or Burnin Red Ivanhoe or Os Mutantes–they have a sense of humor and psychedelic playfulness, rather than lockstep-prog guitar-faced seriousness.  The long slow-burn phased-drums groove of the middle section of this track needs no apologies–it’s just damned spooky, dark-space heavy badassness.

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