Nicola Pardini is a talented multi-instrumentalist and composer from Pisa who in 2016 self-released a very interesting debut album entitled Archimede, featuring the precious collaboration of vocalist and lyricist Stefano Simoncini. On the album Nicola Pardini plays all the instruments showcasing not only a great musicianship but also a songwriting full of inventiveness and an extraordinary sense of rhythm while the vocals and poetry of Stefano Simoncini add colours and visionary images, strange melodies and exotic flavours. You can hear here influences ranging from jazz rock to prog, from classical music to folk and more, all mixed with gusto and freshness...
The long opener "Pietra e sasso" (Rock and stone) is a magnificent epic about the mystery of life and the origin of the universe seen through the eyes of a child. It begins by the description of a spectral landscape and the threatening images of a wild nature on a primordial plante, the atmosphere is dark, the rhythm pounding and tight. There are eruptions and thunders, you can see shapes of broken rocks swept by the wind under a heavy black sky while you're slowly dragged into a nightmarish world, towards new borders, new mysteries, new certainties, new passages, new tides, new entities, new currents, new horizons... Now new stars shine over you and in the depth of the earth you can perceive a hellish power without humanity stirring under your feet as the whole universe dances following the rhythm of the gravity force... Then the atmosphere becomes more relaxed and a new image appears: there's a little boy under a tree in front of a mountain, he takes a stone from the ground and observes it, the stone seems able to speak and he asks the stone from where it comes from... The stone answers, it's like in a dream, there's magic in the air as the music runs through a jazzy area before coming back to the starting point with a reprise of the first part. A wonderful track that every now and again could recall Banco del Mutuo Soccorso and Area!
The dreamy "Bilbo Song", inspired by a J.R.R. Tolkien's character, tells in music and words of an endless journey through dark, timeless woods, where you can walk by light steps upon fallen leaves, touching softly invisible shadows, following the notes of a spring song carried by the wind with joy in your heart and hope in the future... Over the clouds there's a silver ship, come on board!
The following "Baffoman" tells of a music that is able to melt Time as you try to escape from bad memories, running away from carved smiles and greediness. The music flows halfway between enthusiasm and nostalgia as you are hiding away, trying to break through the walls of a busy city where you can never find a quiet moment. Then comes "Nostalgico" (Nostalgic), a piece where the lyrics evoke the memory of a smile that can give birth to melancholic shivers and powerful emotions pushing you to seek for new musical dreams...
The title track, "Archimede", was inspired by the character of Archimedes of Syracuse, a famous Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, inventor and astronomer. The music is rich in ideas, changes of rhythm, games of balance and other delicious intricacies while the lyrics evoke a spectacular sundown and the weight of dreams. Here ideas and concepts are compared to precious treasures to discover, imagination is what can really lead to a better future following an abstract path that will surprise you!
"Hoima" is a piece that conjures up exotic sceneries and the rhythms of Africa. The title refers to a city in Uganda, near the Lake Albert, and the lyrics describe a landscape of incredible beauty, full of positive energy. The following "Solitario" (Solitary) is another colourful track with strong ethnic flavours that could drive you from Africa to Jamaica and back to Europe in a while, almost making of distance an empty word...
The closer "Memo" is a calm, reflective track that tells about lost chances and disappointments that you can cure thanks to the healing power of music. There's always a gap between dreams and reality that you have to fill during your life. Sometimes let the music drive your way and take it easy: with a new awareness you can really look at the world under a different point of view!
On the whole, this a very interesting album and if you like bands such as Deus Ex Machina or D.F.A. I'm sure you'll love it!