Size: 77,7 MB
Label: AMS Records
Styles: Progressive Rock/RPI
1. Il Volto Stanco Della Gente (Previously unreleased) - 3:45
2. Hai Messo Al Rogo M.H. (Alternate version) - 4:39
3. Harold (Live 1998) - 3:37
4. Luci Buie (Live 1973) - 3:58
5. Madre Di Cose Perdute (Live 1973) - 4:32
6. Sette? (Live 1973) - 10:55
7. Passaminabirra (Previously unreleased, live) - 2:01
A rather strange CD+DVD release of this long-standing band that started as a beat group from the Genoa region, then morphed into I Gleemen and for our enjoyment as Garybaldi during the 70's. This luxurious double-disc affair with an extended psych triple-folding artwork (filled with erotic drawings on the innerflod) and picture booklet is rather attractive at first glance for progheads, but can only really satisfy Italian-prog loving completionists, because the contents are of moderate interest to pure-prog fans. Indeed, let's not forget that the band was more addressed to Hendrix-influenced fans rather than ELP freaks.
Apparently the seeds of this release were born when someone in 99 sent a bootleg recording of a concert dating from 73, this prompting the band to exploit it along with creating this DVD. So the album proper is made from a bunch of miscellaneous tracks half from their glory era, including the Gleemen album sessions (the rather proggy opening Volto Stando Della Gente), a rather surprising folky Harold from the Nuda sessions, and the intensely Hendrix-y Madre Di Cose Perdute, which seems to exude Astrolabio sessions (that's the Italian translation of the first track's title). Despite a recent remastering, these tracks sound dated ? there is only so much you can do with nearly 40-years old magnetic tapes. The rest of the album consists of three solid (read guitar-saturated) tracks recorded in 98, including a reworking of the Martha Helmut track from Nuda, but this writer finds them messy and too raw for their own good. As you can read here, hardly anything essential.
As is usual with Italian products, the attached DVD documentary insist a tad too much on visuals from well-documented artistes, much more than necessary, but it's nothing blatantly abusive of copyright infringements. There is plenty (too much?) of name-dropping in the background context to flatter themselves with comparisons with the acts mentioned. For progheads, the rockumentary spends way too much time on the genesis of the group in the 60's, especially when discovering what kind of atrocious soup they were dabbling in at that time, even if most 70's Italian groups went through the same kind of ordeal and paid their dues that way. Compared to their early singles-days, the Gleemen album seems a little too-quickly dealt with, and I must say that I can't help feeling a bit frustrated that so few minutes are spent on Nuda and Astrolabio, compared to their early and later days, but the good stuff is delivered correctly, even if you wish the live footage would've lasted much longer. Indeed, over the four decades of the "group's" existence, their peak period lasted two, maybe three, years, the rest being only mildly interesting at best, although not totally devoid of interest.
I can't help but thinking that this type of nostalgic release is a bit of an auto-satisfecit artifact, but I won't judge on its justification or pertinence, outside that it is an interesting (if partisan, as they might over-estimate their own impact on the scene) view on the Italian prog scene, but it is hardly essential for this writer. I know I won't keep this album, so if interested, you can always PM me.