Live Report by Tarja Virmakari
…When Poetry leads you to a beautiful journey, opening another dimension to feel the Music…
VERDE LAURO is Fabrizio Sassi‘s ambitious Cultural Project adding music to some of the poems belonging to Francesco Petrarca’s opera: “Canzoniere” (commonly Anglicised as Petrarch (1304-1374) was an Italian scholar and poet in Renaissance Italy, and one of the earliest humanists).
The project involved musicians and singers from different Italian rock and metal bands. The Album “Son Animali Al Mondo”, released in March 2015, includes 20 tracks, sang in the antique Italian language, and can be ordered/downloaded on the band’s website.
“Son Animali Al Mondo” was produced by Mattia Stancioiu and SPB Produzioni, registered, mixed and mastered by Mattia Stancioiu and Fabrizio Sassi at Elnor Studio. Music: Fabrizio Sassi, Arrangements: VERDE LAURO, Orchestrations: Mauro Desideri, Lyrics: Francesco Petrarca (1304-1374), Illustrations: Antonello Venditti, Artwork: Mattia Stancioiu.
VERDE LAURO are:
Fabrizio Sassi (vocalist) – Mattia Stancioiu (drums) – Mauro Desideri (Orchestrations) – Francesco Marras (guitar/bass)- Pier Gonella (guitar/bass) – Guests: Alessandro Del Vecchio (vocalist) – Roberto Tiranti (vocalist) – Davide Dell’Orto (vocalist) – Emanuele Rastelli (vocalist) – Live: Andrea Grumelli (basso)
* * * * * * * *
I received the album “Sono Animali Al Mondo” two weeks prior to the album presentation, so I knew what to expect, when I entered Legend Club in Milan (Italy) on March 24th, 2015… no, I correct myself, I thought I knew what to expect…
…The tech men were still working on the latest installations and the cameramen were adjusting and aiming the cameras, to use the material for the next VERDE LAURO video. The atmosphere was intimate and familiar and gave an idea of a relaxed feeling and positive tension about this long awaited moment, to present the fruit of the hard work and for sure many sleepless nights.
The stage was ready, the venue was crowded, and when the lights faded, the musicians were still backstage, showing up then one by one, in different formations. The evening was divided in two parts; Album presentation, followed by the Guest performances and covers.
The whole setlist (please see below the complete list) was created as a harmonious flow, with the “flying changes” between the Guest Vocalists Alessandro Del Vecchio, Roberto Tiranti, Davide Dell’Orto, Emanuele Rastelli and of course Fabrizio Sassi, in different combinations, and in a way that between the songs there wasn’t any empty spaces or dead moments. Comparing to the album, the live arrangements were done more towards a progressive sound, which the audience appreciated a lot.
It’s difficult to express, with the right words and without too many superlatives, the emotional turmoil I had while “feeling” and listening to VERDE LAURO’s performance, offering in the same package, the beauty of High Poetry and impeccable professional performance by the best musicians in Italy, without forgetting that Music is a joy to be shared. The result couldn’t be anything other than the best, as we saw on that rainy Tuesday evening.
Right after the album presentation, each Guest Vocalist performed 2 songs, one of their own and one cover of their favourites. However, Davide Dell’Orto’s choice for “Burn” (Deep Purple) turned out to be an outstanding jam with everybody on stage, as a perfect final climax for the evening, expressing the brotherhood and “feeling” between these great artists, no matter about the different musical background they are coming from. Indeed, Music unites and makes us better people.
Sooner than I realized, the evening was over and I had to prepare myself for the 4 hour drive back home, under the pouring rain… but I didn’t really notice it, as my thoughts were still with VERDE LAURO (but no worries, I did concentrate on driving, too)
In summary, when I didn’t know what to expect from this evening, I can only say
“…you know the feeling, when the beauty of Art is nearly too much to handle, touching and feeding your inner soul, and leaving a permanent mark in you… yes, this is VERDE LAURO!”
Two video clips from the album presentation:
1 Voi ch’ascoltate
2 Se Virgilio
3 Questa fenice
4 Giovene donna
5 Zehpiro torna
6 Solo et pensoso
7 La vita fugge
8 Passa la nave
9 Se lamentar augelli
10 A qualunque animale alberga in terra
11 Era il giorno
12 Sono animali al mondo
1 Dalla bocca dell’inverno ( Magnifiqat)
2 Lovesong ( The Cure)
3 Percorso Obbligato ( dal suo disco solista)
4 L.Y.A.F.H ( Labyrinth)
Alessandro Del Vecchio
5 Distant Voices ( Edge of Forever)
6 Edge of Thorns (Savatage)
7 Watcher of the wall (Drakkar)
8 Burn (Deep Purple)
This is how VERDE LAURO‘s mastermind Fabrizio Sassi describes his project:
You, who read and listen … I would like to tell you how it is impossible to resist some Passions. And I do it, bringing you to think for a moment about three animals and their relationship with the light.
Think about eagles flying towards the sun without burning their eyes. I believe that if we were to go on talking about this “talent” and the ability to withstand “something”, anything important, we would not finish talking at all! So, maybe some other time!
I ask you to think instead of those animals that have a “fear” of the light and come out only at night, for example the owl. Also in this case we could talk for hours about the solution to hide oneselves … not now and not here!
But I would like to make you think a little ‘more intensely” to another condition. …to think about those animals that are attracted by the light and that, perhaps knowing what to expect, or perhaps driven by a mad desire and convinced to rejoice of the splendor, they approach up to burn themselves… like the Moth!
There you go … I’m like a Moth! I belong to this array and this is what I’m singing about, through the lyrics of the Canzoniere (Rerum Vulgarium Fragmeta) of Petrarch. For me, Laura, the woman of who Petrarca sung and “chased” in his opera, is a metaphor for any person or thing that you cannot resist and for which you decide, or you are forced to spend your time … for me is even the Music! Laura is that light in which the Moth burns itself! It is the wound that does not heal even if the arc that launched the arrow is no longer tense.
To sing this story and the lyrics that most moved me I asked for the collaboration of some musicians around Italy. Combining the various fragments and the various styles was born, VERDE LAURO.
More information at http://verdelauro.com – http://www.facebook.com/pages/Verde-Lauro/151925898195937
“Son Animali Al Mondo” tracklist:
1. Voi ch’ ascoltate
2. Son animali al mondo
3. Valle che de’ lamenti miei se’ piena
4. Zephiro torna
5. Era il giorno
6. Questa Fenice
7. I’ vidi in terra
8. Erano i capei d’oro
9. Passa la nave
10. Giovene donna
11. Solo et pensoso
12. Se Virgilio
13. La vita fugge
15. Se lamentar augelli
16. A qualunque animale alberga in terra
17. Quanto più m’avicino al giorno extremo
18. Pace non trovo
Bonus Tracks (orchestration versions):
19. Passa la nave
20. Zephiro torna
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