Last night I was checking out the New Progressive Rock releases at New Prog Releases. One of the albums of interest to me was Il Paese Del Tramonto (Country of Sunset) from an Italian Progressive Rock band Unreal City. Their music was classified as Symphonic and since I have enjoyed other symphonic prog bands, I figured I’d like these guys. I figured right I put the album on while I was multi-tasking or as I like to call it ADDing! I was watching the football game, reading and listening! It didn’t take long to for the voices of Phil Simms and Jim Nantz to take a backseat to the keyboards Emanuele Tarasconi and Francsca Zantta’s guitar! (the decision was aided by the uncompetitive nature of the game, between the Colts and Pats! Ido believe, Unreal City would have lost out to the Packers and Seahawks!). Anyway I loved the album and today it became the soundtrack for my drive out Street Road to pick up my replacement hearing aid at Costco. Listening to the album in greater detail only brought out the great keyboard and guitar work on the album, solidifying my opinion that this is a great album!!
Unreal City was founded by Tarasconi and Zanetta in 2008 in Parma Italy. Sharing a love for 70s progressive, symphonic, psychedelic and art rock from bands like Emerson Lake and Palmer, King Crimson, Yes and Jethro Tull. The two set out to create albums using those classic sounds as inspiration!
Unreal City in 2008, self-released an EP which caught the ear of “Italian prog lord” Fabio ZUFFANTI who went on the become involved in the production of their 2013 debut album ”La Crudeltà Di Aprile” for Mirror Records. That album has brought Unreal City to the attention of the Prog World! Currently the album is #5 on ProgArchives list of the best albums of 2013! The early indications from Il Paese Del Tramonto are that this album my well rocket Unreal City into the prog stratosphere!! Of the 20 ratings so far at ProgArchives – 63% rate it as – Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music.
Emanuele Tarasconi: Keyboards, Lead Vocals
Francesca Zanetta: Guitars, Mellotron
Dario Pessina: Bass, Backing Vocals, Narration on Processo secondario
Federico Bedostri: Drums, Timpani, Percussions, Backing Vocals
Fabio Biale: Violin
Rossano “Rox” Villa: Trombone, Accordion
The young members of UNREAL CITY project something of a retro-modern image and their music also enjoys the best of both old and new. The tracks on ”La Crudeltà Di Aprile” display a similar present day consciousness but they do so with reference to the traditional RPI creed. That epic tradition manifests itself through typical Italian lyricism and the unrestrained expansion of lavish arrangements adorned with Mellotron, Moog, church organ, violin and lute. The texts scrutinize dark themes of psychological conflict (the trauma of Oedipal separation, corruption, the mediation between the conscious and unconscious realms) and draw inspiration from encounters with shadow forces (Faust, primitive deities, witches’ Sabbaths) although these related stories ultimately present a narrative of personal growth. The lyrical themes also seem to release the collective imagination of the band and the end result is a phantasmagoric Italian Symphonic Prog with a dark gothic bias. Read More
So if you’re like me and like symphonic prog with great keyboards and guitar work then check out Unreal City……..
Links for further explorations of Unreal City
Here’s the Official video for “Lo Schermo Di Pietra” from Unreal City’s Il Paese Del Tramonto! Oh, the vocals in Italian don’t bother me at all! It’s like I’m at a cool opera!