Monday, 5 December 2011

FOLLOWING THE TRACKS OF THE DINOSAURS

Logos are an Italian prog band from Verona that was formed in 1996 by Luca Zerman (keyboards), Alessandro Perbellini (drums) and Fabio Gaspari (bass and guitar) as a cover band of Le Orme. Later the guitarists Massimo Maoli and Andrea Dossi joined the band (although Andrea Dossi just for a short period) and they started to work on original compositions.

Logos in 2009

In 1999 they released a first self produced eponymous album that was recorded in two weeks with the help of two friends, Simone Chiampan and Tommaso Carrara, using a 8 track analog recorder in a home-made studio. According to the band, all the tracks were recorded “live” and there is very few overdubbing. As a result, the sound quality is very far from perfect but at least you can appreciate the freshness of the compositions and the good song-writing...

The opener “Il grande fiume” (The great river) is a long suite that recalls Le Orme. It begins calmly with the keyboards in the forefront and a “mysterious” atmosphere, then a repetitive bass line comes in and changes in rhythm follow until the vocals soar upon a classical piano pattern depicting a river slowly flowing towards the sea... The lyrics were inspired by Hermann Hesse’s novel “Siddharta” that tells about the spiritual journey of the protagonist to reach the “enlightenment”. After many troubles, he eventually finds his way by listening to the murmurs of a river... The music perfectly fits a subject where joy and pain walk along the same spiritual path that leads to awareness... “Time passes by and doesn’t forgive / The empty days of a sad age / While the old man is still learning / Why to live, why to fight / If life wins against you...”.

“Arc en ciel” (Rainbow) is a short dreamy ballad with a beautiful melody featuring keyboards and strummed acoustic guitar... Imagine to be in the outskirts of a forest with some friends when the dark falls. Near a bonfire your eyes mirror the nature and you can talk to each other about the future and about the past until the morning comes... Well, more or less the lyrics are about this.


“Sentiero nel prato, porta dell' universo” (Path through the lawn, door of the universe) is a long track that starts with an acoustic guitar arpeggio and then develops with fiery organ rides and delicate piano passages. The lyrics tell about the loss of a child in a poetical way... “It’s not a star nor a fire that far light / It becomes just a little point in the universe / Until you can’t see it anymore...”.

“Un giorno...” (One Day), is another good track about an impending journey towards the unknown while “In una nuova terra?” (In a new land?) is about the come back from a journey into the space. In these tracks you can find slight echoes of Le Orme and Franco Battiato... An alternate version of “Arc en ciel” concludes the album.

You can listEn to the complete album HERE


After the interesting but still immature eponymous debut album, between August 2000 and February 2001 Logos recorded their second work, “Ásrava”. It’s another self production but the sound quality is really improved if compared with the previous album. The line up here features Fabio Gaspari (bass, acoustic guitar, nylon string guitar, vocals), Massimo Maoli (electric guitar, acoustic guitar, nylon string guitar, pedal steel guitar), Alessandro Perbellini (drums, vocals) and Luca Zerman (keyboards, vocals).  You can find the influences of artists such as Le Orme, PFM and Franco Battiato, but the band managed to add a touch of originality mixing new ingredients with the classic “Italianprog” style.

The album opens with “Prologo”, a symphonic instrumental introduction featuring a multiple overdub of keyboards. Next comes another instrumental track, “Ezra Pound”, full of energy and well balanced changes in rhythm and atmosphere, from symphonic to funky...

The long and complex “’99” is about the fear for a nuclear disaster... It depicts a nightmare where the protagonist dreams to fall asleep in the footprint of a dinosaur and to wake up alone in that peculiar and gigantic cradle. The music is good enough but vocals every now and again seem to be a little insecure...


“La leggerezza della libertà” (The lightness of freedom) is a beautiful short acoustic ballad featuring acoustic guitar and keyboards,  “not too delicate, not too simple”. Next comes the title track, a long instrumental featuring a trumpet solo where rock, funky and jazz are blended in an original way.

The mysterious “Terra incognita”  (Unknown land) is about the discovery and conquest of a new world in the name of a king that will come to upset the quietness of a beautiful savage nature. Clear melodic vocals alternates with distorted ones while music gives a sense of impending tragedy... “When on the first of these new days / The sunset will come out from its hiding place / It will cover with darkness a new world / The World of the new Kingdom...”.

The last track “Epilogo” (Epilogue) reminds me of some works of Franco Battiato from the eighties and features just keyboards and an acoustic guitar solo... “Wind and snow play together / Ten children run after each other in the empty square...”.

You can listen to the complete album HERE

Do not miss the interview with the band on Progarchives that you can find HERE

Other opinions from Progarchives collaborators:

Jim Russell: After spending the time necessary to absorb Logos the beauty of these compositions began to come forth. There are so many different places they venture here that trying to describe the sound is very difficult... In my eyes "Asrava" is a very good album but not the best album Logos will make. All of the potential is there. I believe their growth will continue and have big hopes for their new album coming later this year. But I can recommend "Asrava" without hesitation to prog-rock fans who enjoy a varied and muscular sound. It will not disappoint... (read the complete review HERE)

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