(All Album Reviews by maribor)
While many consider Artiís first album Tilt to be their best album and one of the most important fusion albums to come from Italy, I personally consider Giro di Valzer as at least an equal to their debut. Granted, itís not as innovative as Tilt but I think that this album shows more maturity in composition and less tendency to improvise and experiment (not that thatís always a bad thing).
Thereís definitely a sense that some of the fusion elements arenít as potent as on the first album. Beppe Crovella comes to the fore more here and uses instruments that arenít typical of fusion, like mellotron and harpsichord (not mentioned in the liner notes but it appears quite prominently). But the main difference is in terms of the songwriting and the melodies. Some of the melodies definitely have a more symphonic feel to them and I would guess that this is mainly due to Crovellaís contribution. Donít get me wrong, the prevailing elements are still those of jazz-rock. The electric piano is still the main keyboard instrument, as was the case with most fusion bands of the time and the saxes, violins, vibraphones and other percussive instruments still speak in the voice of fusion but every now and then the violin seems keen to play something resembling classical music rather than jazz.
The main composer is probably still Gigi Venegoni, whose sometimes blazing and sometimes passionate and emotional guitar playing is the basis for many Arti melodies. Furio Chirico is still a dynamo of a drummer. He seems to be the engine that drives this band. He seems to be a relentless source of energy. Some passages that he plays are simply beyond belief; he plays them at such a tremendous speed and with such technical proficiency.
The main problem still remains the vocals. Although they recruited a singer for this album, he doesnít really perform his duties with very much critical acclaim. The vocals on Tilt were just as good (or maybe just as bad?), so there was really no need to recruit a new singer. But fortunately not many songs have vocals on them. I will however admit to liking the vocals on ďRinunciaĒ with the contrast between the tenor and bass voices.
This is definitely an album that is at least an equal to Tilt and deserves to be acknowledged as an excellent work of art.
8.5 out of 10.