This record is dedicated to the mountain world. Paths, valleys, snow, bike rides and gloomy lakes with ancient mystery in the depths of their waters.
"Alessandro is a crafty little Roman devil! Not content to redefine the classic RPI with his band Mad Crayon, he also explores the thin line between prog and electronica with his Inner Prospekt project. "Dreaming of Tony Banks" and "the Gene Machine" are both stellar musical propositions, offering electronic music done prog style, which means tons of soloing on a variety of keyboard instruments as well as typical prog structure. The pieces are developed, constantly in flux and never droning endlessly. In fact, it's quite vibrant, fresh and audacious, inspired by walking adventures in the mountains, breathless alpine scenery, deep gorges, icecaps, cascading rivers and dense forests.
"Blue Days " lifts off with a blazing piece entitled "High Snow" that actually adds voices (and not vocals) to an avalanche of slithering synthesizers, a gleaming undertow of electric piano that hints at Manfred Mann's classic Springsteen remake "Spirits in the Night", a nice choppy rhythm with a strong beat and a real good sensation. The jazzy feel can even evoke a distant Steely Dan feel that is sublime as the tortuous synth solo sweetly hisses amid the calmer mellotron pools as well as giving off a wintry feel.
The mood becomes quirky with the slippery "Valleys", a 6 minute synth-led piece that has all the rhythmic trimmings down pat, funky prog electronic music all rolled into one, mellotron howls just to remind you that this is definitely a prog rock work and not some fluffy facsimile. The solemn piano testifies to the constant veering into contrasting moods, at first elegantly effusive, then suddenly bombastic, urged on by rolling organ and whistling synth soloing. Thrilling and totally exciting and unpredictable with a minimalistic finale.
"The Path" sounds like some 60s breezy psychedelic affair at first , what with the windswept harmony vocals but when the scintillating synth takes over, front and center , you will be slain. Emanations of Banks, Mann, Bodin and Tillison abound, all dedicated keyboard virtuosos unafraid to take the lead. Alessandro's gravely and accented voice may startle at first but it's a personal testament by an artist that creates music for pleasure. As the title implies, "Sitting Back" is a more relaxed affair, where the atmospherics and the polyphonic rhythms kick in to create a restful excitation, a piano lounge on top of a mountain retreat, a panoramic view and some soothing sounds. Though accessible and jazzy, it's also quite experimental.
"Mrs Braies" relates to one of those 'hidden from the tourists' gems (like my favorite Seealpsee in Switzerland), the Braies valley in South Tyrol is an achingly gorgeous vista of an alpine green lake and its surrounding towering Dolomites peaks. The evocative music exudes a sense of massive grandeur, intense visual beauty expressed with bombastic mellotron waves, a sweeping synthesizer melody and also occasional gentleness.
Brash, jumpy, curious and vivacious just like any true 'bambino' or 'bambina', the final piece "My Child" insists on a vast arsenal of characteristics that keep you constantly alert and on your toes (just like a good father), the various keyboards expressing the thrill of discovery and adventure, the yearning for learning, the sweetness of innocence. Bubbly synthesizers lead the way, child voice effects and a slick rhythmic package keep the buzz alive and kicking. To add some more of a personal touch, Alessandro adds his voice to the blessing.
Every release from Inner Prospekt has been a total delight and I urge all prog fans to check this artist out at innerprospekt.bandcamp.com
and see what all the fuss is about. Unless you dislike synthesizers, there is no reason not to give this a spin."