Via Lumini — What Have We Done About Us?
(Progressive Rock Worldwide PRW 031, 1995, CD)
by Peter Thelen, 1996-03-01:
Singer and producer João Kurk is listed in the credits simply as a 'Special Guest,' while the five instrumentalists (B3+piano+synth, guitars, drums, bass, and flute) comprise the band proper. From São Paulo, their sound is an original blend of accessible UK early progressive and light jazz-rock. Compositionally, one may be occasionally reminded of early (pre-Wakeman) Yes, Gentle Giant, and bands like Cressida, Kestrel, and so on, but their sound is clearly of the 90s. The keyboards (mostly Hammond and piano) and flute really make the difference here, two elements that keep their material interesting, despite its apparent simplicity. Kurk's voice can be very mainstream sounding, and may put the listener off initially, but if one can weather the first few tracks, the disc picks up fire as it goes along. By the fusion instrumental "Fast Feet" at the mid-point, the album has taken on a very different character, even Kurk's voice changes to meet the music on a more equal footing. All taken, along with Dogma's Twin Sunrise, Via Lumini is probably one of the better releases from Brazil last year.
by Mike Ohman, 1997-02-01:
For their long-anticipated second album, the band took what may appear to some as a step backward, not forward, with the addition of Hammond B3 organ to the keyboard arsenal (and it gets a lot of usage here). And the change from Portuguese lyrics to English does not bode well. But I personally prefer this over their first. Perhaps it's because of the addition of the Hammond, or of flute-player Silvio de Oliveira as a full-time member of the band. Though there's obviously more of a 70s influence, and less of the neo-ish feel of the debut, one would definitely not mistake this for a 70s release. I do know the vocals (by producer João Kurk, not listed as an actual member) do fit into the band better than those by the original singer. A pleasant diversion, not especially challenging, but certainly worthwhile.
Related artist(s): Via Lumini
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more