Tuesday, 27 September 2011

PUGLIA

Heading east now, for the next leg we go back to the Adriatic coast, to PUGLIA. We go first to FOGGIA, where we can listen to a young band called Moon Eclipse (MySpace). Then we turn south to BARLETTA, best known for the Disfida di Barletta, a battle between French and Italian Knights that took place on February 13, 1503. It consisted in a mounted tournament and was won by the Italians. Here we can listen to a psychedelic prog band called Orient Express (MySpace) and to the young, interesting Il Canto della Città Ibernata (Facebook) while the near town of San Ferdinando di Puglia is home to Geologica (Facebook).


Then we pass through the town of Bisceglie, birthplace of classical guitar virtuoso and composer Mauro Giuliani. Still heading south along the coast we pass through the town of Monopoli where we can listen to two interesting emerging bands, the post rock Corridoio... Con Figure e Luci (MySpace) and La Biblioteca Deserta (MySpace) that after two demos and much trouble (including the loss of all their instruments that were stolen after a concert near Naples in 2009) have finally released a first full length album on the independent label Faro Records, Travelling Without Gravity, featuring ethereal psychedelic sounds and spacey atmospheres.


Still heading south we arrive in BARI, the capital of this region. The best known artist from Bari is probably Domenico Modugno, but in the seventies Bari also gave us some good prog bands such as Festa Mobile and Il Baricentro. The current prog scene of the city is rich in interesting and very promising bands. One of my favourites is Assenzio (MySpace) that were formed in 2004 by five skilled musicians with the aim of blending influences of classic progressive rock bands such as PFM, BMS and Area with more recent sounds. 2005 marked the release of their excellent self-produced debut album, Avon, an interesting concept album about the seven capital sins featuring a very good sound quality although it was completely recorded and mixed in the band’s home studio. Well, Assenzio’s guitarist Gigi Lorusso is a teacher of sound recording techniques as well! By the way, Assenzio’s members are also involved in other projects such as the very interesting La Variante Chevac (MySpace) and U’Papun (MySpace).


Other interesting local bands are Floating State (MySpace), Le Marionette Ribelli (MySpace), Iniqua (MySpace), Odi et Amo (MySpace), Prometheo (Facebook), Chiquita Noir (MySpace), AcomeandromedA (MySpace), Telenauti (MySpace), Novaetere (Reverbnation), Noise Overtones Therapy (MySpace) and the Mediterranean ethno-pop project Radiodervish (MySpace). Members of Floating State started also a side project called Folletti di Vetro (MySpace) featuring new arrangements of Fabrizio De Andrè’s songs. Before leaving the province of Bari there’s the time to have a quick look at Gravina in Puglia, a town west of Bari in an area called Murgia. Here we can listen to some emerging prog bands such as La Quinta Essenza (MySpace) and Divinae Laude (MySpace).  


Leaving Bari, heading south we first pass through the town of Rutigliano, also known as the “città dell’uva” (the city of grapes) because of its renowned vineyards, where another excellent band, Architrave Indipendente (MySpace), come from. The band was formed in 2004 by musicians in love with analogical sounds. Their self-produced debut album, the excellent Azetium a 8 piste, was released in 2009 only on vinyl!



Then we reach Molfetta where we can listen to the psychedelic Obscure Paths (MySpace). Then we pass through the “white town” of Ostuni, where we can listen to Trimaira (MySpace) and to Silent Tears (MySpace). Our next halt is the city of BRINDISI, where we can listen to Aufklarung (MySpace) , Bolero (Facebook) and to the psychedelic Lenula (MySpace).


Then, finally, we arrive in LECCE, the main city of an area called Salento, the south eastern extremity of Italy. This area is best known for a particular dance called pizzica and for an annual music festival dedicated to this dance, La Notte della Taranta.


 This area is home to prog bands such as Abash (MySpace), Aria Palea (MySpace), Zaq (Bandcamp), Tempu’s (MySpace), Muzak (MySpace), Shedim (MySpace), RetrAvantgarde (MySpace), the folk oriented Aedo (MySpace), the hard, dark L’Impero delle Ombre (MySpace) and the metal influenced Historia (MySpace). Some members of RertAvantgarde are also involved in a side project called Melanalogica (MySpace). 



For our next stop we head north west along the coast of the Ionian Sea, to the city of TARANTO where we conclude our visit to Puglia. The city is home to some interesting prog bands such as Plurima Mundi (MySpace), Ritratto di un Mattino (MySpace), Sin Terra (Reverbnation), Exedra (MySpace), Nuclide (MySpace), Il Sogno di Rubik (Facebook), Le Meccaniche Illusioni (MySpace), Samsara (MySpace) and, in the nearby town of Grottaglie, Vino Zingaro e la Sospensione del Giudizio (MySpace).