Searing, Mature Debut
Sometimes it Happens
Sometimes, out of the blue, someone suggests a new band they heard, or somehow the track on Youtube makes an impression.
I can’t explain it.
But there it is. Something about the music, the crunchy guitar/bass guitar lines, the moody synths, the vocals that are clean and clear, the taut rhythm section that never overplays and seems to be in lockstep-
I’m describing Italian heavy-progressive band ILLUSION OF GRAVITY!
Sure, they’ve been around since 2013. Seems like they’ve used that time well to rehearse, compose, to gel, to tighten the sound, to exclude the extraneous and include the necessary…
Federico Aluzzi: rhythm guitar, lead vocals
Gabriele Zuddas: bass guitar
Umberto Alberto: keyboards
Davide Garofalo: drums
Alessandro Cascella: guitar
The title track opens gently, mysteriously- is that a clarinet? The throbbing bass guitar line ushers in atmospheric keyboards and builds. Electric guitar lines sing, then chiming guitar chords point to a deliberate, ballsy, ultra-tight full band sound.
For me, the punchy, expressive bass guitar is one of several standouts about ILLUSION OF GRAVITY– going very very deep at times, then in spry unison licks with the guitar.
Sequencer keyboards open, and again that punchy bass guitar. I really like the way this band refrains from wankery. Sure, they can play fast and intricate lines.
But the overall song is the thing. If the voice needs to be heard, it’s out front.
And underneath, the guitar and bass and drums might be churning up a storm.
Without exhausting the listener.
Throughout, ILLUSION OF GRAVITY displays a strong melodic sense. On this track, the bass guitar opens and then is joined with crisp, taut unison riffs with the guitar.
So many textures within the tracks- soaring and singing synths, ominous spoken words in a deep register, melancholy and dark keyboards.
Then those gutsy, mean rock licks again in unison with bass and guitar. And I inhale those heavy, dark guitar lines.
Sequencer keyboards open, then sustained midrange string sounds. The bass and the electric piano noodle together, and the clean vocals- never strained or trying to over-reach- leading to soaring, searing electric guitar swooping overhead.
The mood changes with distorted, reverb’d guitar chords, then a majestic sequence with powerful guitar chording, building, sweeping, majestic.
Lead guitar absolutely shreds, and it ends.
There are no “short” tracks on this album.
But this one at ten minutes and change, might be my favorite: that punchy bass guitar, the sweeping atmospheric keyboards, crazy bass and guitar lines swooping, those clean vocals sometimes solo and sometimes in harmony…
Behind the scenes, the band percolates, then the intensity subsides and gentle chiming guitar chords, reflective keyboards.
Wait, is that a string quartet…building, growing into a near orchestral sound, which swells, deepens, and closes.
So Let’s Sum it Up
So much to love on this debut release from ILLUSION OF GRAVITY:
Overall melodic sense. Taut and crisp compositions. Excellent musicianship. Nothing in excess, all that is necessary.
ILLUSION OF GRAVITY links: Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/illusionofgravity, spotify- https://open.spotify.com/artist/5gFToSb2BoodiMlDBwhhwP?si=VlyweHPoTh6tOXXnEohM4g
Progressive Rock Fanatics facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/595398647223538/?multi_permalinks=1413972172032844¬if_t=like¬if_id=1503396208171776