3

Berserk!: Berserk!

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Berserk!: Berserk! What, you might ask, qualifies a record as Berserk? In this case, going Berserk! combines a string of cunning abstracts, tinted with goofy metrics, blistering progressive-rock etudes, anti-pop, heavy metal and ghostly ambient electronics effects. The masterminds are Italians, vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Lorenzo Esposito Fornasari and bassist Lorenzo Feliciati. Perhaps the leaders overdosed on energy drinks, given the sheer power and zany underpinnings they bring to the table.

With alternating personnel including, New York City-based keyboard wizard Jamie Saft and ex-King Crimson drummer Pat Mastelotto lending their wares, the program merges lighthearted antics with cataclysmic extravaganzas. The Spaghetti Western whistling sequence on the madcap opener, "Macabre Dance," offers an unanticipated respite from the booming undertow, while "Fetal Claustrophobia" kindles a premise of what the popular rock act Queen would have sounded like had they ventured into an avant format.

The album unveils surprises and nuances on additional listens; on "Clairvoyance," ace modern jazz trombonist Gianluca Petrella dishes out a brawny and dark solo atop a staggered groove, treated with foreboding electronics manipulations and blossoming undercurrents. The musicians also generate pensive moments, but summon memories of vintage prog rock during "Wait Until Dark," which is centered on Feliciati's deep bottom-end and Mastelotto's massive backbeats, amid subtle hues and Fornasari's weighty crunch chords. Here, the ensemble musters a phantasmagorical storyline.

The program closes with "Dream Made of Water," designed with Fornasari's prophetic vocals and basso profondo screams atop a whirlwind of electronic processing and electric keys, as the band surges into an interminable void. Nonetheless, there is a method to these musicians' madness. Berserk! is one of those outings that play games with the psyche via tempestuous intentions, equating to a fun-filled, action-packed rendezvous.

Track Listing: Macabre Dance; Fetal Claustrophobia; Blow; Not Dead; Clairvoyance; First; Dream Made Of Wind; Wait Until Dark; Latent Prints; Dream Made of Water.

Personnel: Gianluca Petrella: trombone, effects (1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 10); Sandro Satta: alto saxophone (3, 9); Fabrizio Puglisi: piano, Arp Odyssey (6, 8, 9); Jamie Saft: keyboards (1, 2, 9); Eivind Aarset: guitars (3, 4, 7, 9, 10); Lorenzo Feliciati: electric and upright bass; Cristiano Calcagnile: drums, effects (4, 5); Pat Mastelotto: drums, electronic percussion (6, 8, 9); Simone Cavina: drums (1, 2); Lorenzo Esposito Fornasari: voice, guitars, organ, electronics.

Title: Berserk! | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: RareNoiseRecords


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles

More Articles

Read Towards Language CD/LP/Track Review Towards Language
by John Eyles
Published: June 23, 2017
Read The Romeo and Juliet Project CD/LP/Track Review The Romeo and Juliet Project
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 23, 2017
Read Saluting Sgt. Pepper CD/LP/Track Review Saluting Sgt. Pepper
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 23, 2017
Read Crystal Machine CD/LP/Track Review Crystal Machine
by Glenn Astarita
Published: June 23, 2017
Read Saluting Sgt. Pepper CD/LP/Track Review Saluting Sgt. Pepper
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 22, 2017
Read Thick as Thieves CD/LP/Track Review Thick as Thieves
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 22, 2017
Read "Dancing Our Way To Death" CD/LP/Track Review Dancing Our Way To Death
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 16, 2016
Read "Special Night" CD/LP/Track Review Special Night
by Jim Trageser
Published: November 25, 2016
Read "Stripped" CD/LP/Track Review Stripped
by James Nadal
Published: August 22, 2016
Read "The Unknown" CD/LP/Track Review The Unknown
by Budd Kopman
Published: December 31, 2016
Read "Under the Influence" CD/LP/Track Review Under the Influence
by Doug Collette
Published: July 2, 2016
Read "This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People" CD/LP/Track Review This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: May 29, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.