Court — Frost of Watermelon
(COURT 01, 2007, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-01-01A recent stateside tour was the first I had heard of this Italian quintet since their two WMMS label releases over a decade ago. What is surprising is how little has changed with their sound in the intervening twelve years; certainly they deserve some credit for just surviving! A strong folk-tinged brand of neo-progressive with sharpened contrasts between acoustic and electric instrumentation still guides their sound, driven by a standard rhythm section and use of flute, oboe, recorders, 12-string, classical and electric guitars, mandolin, accordion, a variety of vintage keyboards, and Mellotron. The thickly accented voice of lead singer Paolo Lucchina may be initially off-putting, but certainly one that a listener can warm up to over the course of a few spins. There a few instrumentals to be found across the album's 15 tracks, including the very tasty "Bridge to Maya," but they mainly focus on song length prog mini-epics — the exception being the sidelong four-part closer "Mad and Child." Unfortunately, this writer was at an east-coast festival on the weekend Court passed through the SF Bay Area, but one gets a sense that this could be an outstanding live set. As it is, this is a solid recording that I'm sure many readers will enjoy.
Related artist(s): Court
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