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Fiorletta, Simone: Parallel Worlds

The young guitarist from the Italian prog-metal band Moonlight Comedy has done what so many hotshot axe men do these days: He's released a solo album. But Simone Fiorletta's international debut, Parallel Worlds, isn't a traditional shred fest. Sure, there are frantic moments, such as the title track, "That's My Truth" and "For You." But Fiorletta also incorporates other instruments - and in the case of "Lullaby for Laura," the lovely bonus track culled from his regional debut The Beginning, haunting females vocals. Plus, he doesn't always think he must have the fastest fingers on the planet. In fact, more often than not, the songs on Parallel Worlds emerge as mid-tempo or mellow affairs.

"The 1st Day of Life" begins with a newborn baby crying, then soaring arpeggios rise against acoustic strumming. The piece gradually picks up pace, but it never reaches the point of sonic exhaustion. Likewise, "Blue Eyes" is an electric ballad that emphasizes Fiorletta's fluid style without burying the rest of the music, and "Alone in the Rain" is a beautiful blend of jazz and classical guitar.

The songs on Parallel Worlds are more straightforward than the complex progressive metal on Moonlight Comedy's 2004 album, The Life Inside. But they offer enough variety at the right length (Parallel Worlds clocks in at right around 45 minutes, with no individual song running longer than six-and-a-half minutes) to keep the disc interesting and make it worth revisiting even for casual listens. How many instrumental electric guitar CDs can you say that about?

Track Listing:
1) Parallel Worlds
2) For You
3) The 1st Day of Life
4) Blue Eyes
5) That's My Truth
6) Alone in the Rain
7) Again With You
8) Your Rest
9) A Strange Evolution
10) Lullaby for Laura (Bonus Track)

Added: February 2nd 2006
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Related Link: Lion Music
Hits: 3400
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

Fiorletta, Simone: Parallel Worlds
Posted by Duncan Glenday, SoT Staff Writer on 2006-02-02 01:11:15
My Score:

Don't be put off when you hear that Simone Fiorletta is a guitar virtuoso. Yes, his sound is rooted in the Satriani / Vai school of wizardry, but he's less technical and more lyrical than his mentors. Like his first CD Fiorletta's Parallel Worlds is all instrumental, and and revolves around his guitar work.

At age 17 Fiorletta was instrumental in forming progressive metal outfit Moonlight Comedy, and now, 6 years later, his sophomore soloo release sounds nothing like prog-metal - and not much like Moonlight Comedy either. Despite his youth Fiorletta demonstrates remarkable maturity and flexibility. His guitar style is very expressive and carries every element of every song - and therein lies an area he may want to address in future records: Although there are hard rock songs here, ballads, blues, and even a bit of fusion (but no progressive metal), and despite the fact that he seems to wring a dozen different voices out of his instrument, it gets a bit 'samey' after a while. A more imaginative rhythm section, different instruments, and perhaps even a few vocal moments would introduce a welcome relief.

Having said that - at just 45 minutes, and with at least 3 songs that are real breakaways from the rest, this is a record you can play again and again. Focus intently on the fine technique if you're a guitarist - but this is music that you could also push into the background. Try doing that with any Satriani record since Flying In A Blue Dream.

Some sections - like "Again With You", the first part of "Blues Eyes" and the middle section of "Alone In The Rain" - have an annoying, cheap sounding percussion that sounds like it was produced from a poorly programmed entry-level drum machine. You know, the kind of rhythm that dominates elevator music. Andrea Scala is credited with playing drums, so it's a mystery how these sounds found their way onto the record. Despite that distraction, "Blue Eyes" is a ballad with wonderfully soulful, bluesey guitar work - very fluid and very emotional. "A Strange Evolution" is a slow, appealing lead solo played over a simple but elegant acoustic guitar. Very pretty.

Track 10, "Lullaby For Laura", deserves special mention. It is extremely pleasant, and it is totally out of character for this CD. A simple acoustic guitar accompanies nicely reverbed falsetto male vocals. Vocals, but not singing - it's a pleasing ohh-ahh sound, and you get the impression that it would fit well into the score of a classic European movie.

So Parallel Worlds isn't without criticism, but it's a very pleasing listen - and isn't that why we by records?

» Reader Comments:

Fiorletta, Simone: Parallel Worlds
Posted by Vikie Martel (Canada) on 2006-02-02 14:38:38
My Score:

Hi !

I've got that album myself and got really impressed by the quality of the work Simone has done !!!! I mean, he's so young and already done great stuff ! This guy is amazing...and very talented indeed !!! Great beginning, for a carrer, no ?! ;-)
Or at least, for what concerns his solo album.
I'll keep an eye on his next material, for sure...

Thanks for the review ! Was cool to read.

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