Alfio Antico - Supra Mari
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Alfio Antico
Supra Mari
Alfamusic - Rai Trade (

cd cover Alfio Antico made good use of his surname in creating this unique work: balancing between the antiquity of the Middle Ages and the contemporary Mediterranean reality to deliver the vision of the Sicilian idyll of his youth, Antico delivers a record that is a joy from start to finish.

Forget about the magnificent and varied collection of instruments, his wonderful voice and the spirit of the times that runs in the veins of these songs. These are just the means to delivering a musical package of great beauty, prone to induce feats of spirited dancing, generous doses of humming and wild hand clapping. The Sicilian lyrics are difficult to grasp and the lack of a lyric sheet makes comprehending the meaning of the songs rather taxing, but this ends up being of limited importance. The tambourine undercurrent (the instrument for which Antico is famous for, since appearing in the Italian musical scene in the Seventies) is so well produced that although it is always present, never becomes tiresome. Actually, this is probably one of the few records where the tambourine and the vocals have received equal place in the mix. The result is wonderful. "Viru a mi stissu," "Pitti Petti," "Fila Fila" and "La Foglia" (plus the hidden instrumental track) are probably the most representative of the tracks in that respect, although all of them are above average. In general, though, his fastest songs seem to work better.

Despite the fact that Antico on many instances on this record plays fast and loose with tradition, this still feels like a record beyond the tenets of fashion, although it is one of the most "hip" Italian recordings I've listened to recently. With its characteristic acoustic instruments (and the sparing thoughtful use of keyboards once in a while) this is a highly enjoyable record. - Nondas Kitsos

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