Ingranaggi della Valle - Warm Spaced Blue. 2016 Italy
CD issue: 2016 Black Widow
Warm Spaced Blue is an odd sophomore release from Ingranaggi della Valle. Their debut was a kinetic progressive rock album, with powerful Italian vocals, jagged rhythms, and fiery instrumental chops. Very much in league with the Italian school of symphonic fusion like Deus Ex Machina or DFA. On Warm Spaced Blue, they've embraced more modern progressive tendencies, some angular dissonance, representing King Crimson, Anekdoten, and even the Avant Prog contingency of Thinking Plague. In effect they've gone from being an Italian prog rock band to a prog rock band from Italy, if that makes sense. Similar to Not a Good Sign perhaps. As such, the album has been praised in international progressive rock circles, as it's a popular sound amongst the faithful. Personally, I was a bit disappointed, as it seemed Ingranaggi della Valle were poised to take the baton from the much missed DFA, who are unlikely to ever reform. All of this to say, Warm Spaced Blue is hardly an abject failure. To be honest, I'm a bit tired of this sort of cold and clinical modern progressive style. And yet Ingranaggi della Valle somehow brings it to life, adding just the right amount of romantic touches to what could have been just another academic exercise. Having Warm in the title, whether intentional or not, provides an ingenious hint. The compositions are dense, as these kind of albums tend to be, and requires multiple listens to absorb. Even with that, I'm not sure I have - absorbed that is. Which is fine - makes future listens all that much more intriguing. I'll give it 4 stars on faith.