Sunday, 26 July 2015

THE DARK TOWER

Hailing from Colle Val d'Elsa, a small town in the province of Siena, Profusion began life as a trio in 2001 under the name Mardi Gras Experience, influenced by the American prog scene of the nineties and by bands such as Planet X and Spock's Beard. In 2002 they changed their name into the current one combining the words "Progressive" and "Fusion" and four years later they self-released an interesting debut album entitled One Piece Puzzle. After a good live activity on the local scene and some personnel changes, in 2012 Profusion released their second full length work, RewoToweR, on the independent label ProgRock Records with a renewed line up featuring along with founding members Vladimer Lado Sichinava (drums) and Gionatan Caradonna (keyboards) also Luca Cambi (bass), Thomas Laguzzi (guitars) and Luca Latini (vocals) plus some guests such as Simon Hosford (guitar), Titta Nesti (vocals), Andrea Beninati (cello, percussion) and Andrea Libero Cito (violin). The overall sound on this album is rich and full of energy, the songwriting is good and mixes different influences ranging from metal to world music. According to the band, their music is a spiral of genres, tones and rhythms, melted and tangled together that tries to convey an original message dealing with musical flexibility and research while the album is conceived as a path that guides the listener into a tower and where each song reveals a new plan, a new step that allows you to reach the top. An ambitious project indeed, anyway there's no real storyline and the meaning of this conceptual work remains a bit foggy and open to various interpretations and sensibilities...


The nervous opener "Ghost House" conjures up in music and lyrics a nightmarish mansion on a hill overlooking an American town. It was built long time ago by a mysterious man coming out of the blue who, since then, has always been locked in, like a ghost. Rumours, imagination, fantasy, fear, rage... Eventually the town's folk try to break in the house to see what's hidden in its dark rooms but what they find there is nothing but a surreal vision of their own lives under the light of the moon. Here the atmosphere reminds me of some stories by H.P. Lovecraft or Stephen King such a The Dreams In The Witch House or Salem's Lot...

Next comes "The Taste Of Colours" that is divided into two parts and tells of the personal crisis of man who has lost his identity. It starts softly, with piano a vocals. The protagonist of this piece seems condemned to live all his life in black and white but when he's alone he's still able to see the colours that shine inside his soul and he can break through the dull sense of apathy that's hanging all over him, diving in the inner light his of self consciousness to paint a secret place where to live in peace and harmony...

Profusion on stage 2013

On the following "Treasure Island" the borders between dream and reality are blurred while the lyrics quote Robert Louis Stevenson and evoke a ghostly sea song and fifteen drunken men dancing on a dead man's chest with a bottle of rum. A man is sailing across an unknown ocean of hopes and doubts, he can't find the right course and he feels like a damned fool at the mercy of the waves, deeply falling into nonsense... Then comes "So Close But Alone", a piece that starts just by piano and vocals before veering to exotic islands and spiced atmospheres built upon Latin rhythms and flamenco sketches while the lyrics evoke the painful memories of a betrayed love...

The short instrumental "Tkeshi (ტყეში)" features a strong ethnic flavour. The title is a Georgian word that means "Into The Woods" and introduces the following "Chuta Chani", a wonderful traditional Caucasian lullaby from Georgia re-elaborated and transformed into something unusual and new with sudden bursts of energy and even tarantella passages. After all, the drummer Vladimer Lado Sichinava was born in Tbilisi and he's proud of his roots: just take the time to compare Profusion's version with the one by Lela Tsurtsumia...



"The Tower" is a complex track divided into two parts that tells about a man obsessed by the dream of building a tower to reach the sky. Every night his sleep is haunted by sounds of iron work and images of incomplete shapes and incomplete walls. Eventually that tower will be buried and from the top of its ruins he will start to fly... A nice track that in some way reminds me of some atmospheres from Stephen King's Dark Tower saga

"Turned To Gold" is a romantic, melodic ballad that tells in music and words of the cathartic effects of a new relationship with someone that seems to understand you and complete your soul... It leads to the closer "Dedalus", a long, complex track about the mysterious architect who planned to build the metaphorical, labyrinthine tower that marks this strange concept album: a living building where he's imprisoned for the eternity, a building that irepreents in the meantime the wonderful fruit his creative work and his damnation. In the end a reprise of the first track closes the circle inviting you to listen to the album again, reflecting about time and dreams, hopes and old fears...

You can listen to the complete album HERE

Profusion: RewoToweR (2012). Other opinions:
Andy Webb: While the guys could work on a bit of a more signature sound, the album is incredibly well produced, put together, composed, played, and just about everything that can be done "well" on an album. The huge variety of styles put into the album added a nice dynamic, and the guys successfully pulled every style off, which, in many cases with other bands who try the same thing, doesn't go very well... (read the complete review HERE)

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