Daniele Liverani - Fantasia
SG Records
11 songs (51)
Release year: 2014
Reviewed by Joel
Surprise of the month

Daniel Liverani is a multi-instrumentalist from Italy, some of you may have heard of his other groups. Fantasia is an instrumental cd while his previous works with Twinspirits is a progressive metal band, Genius was his three part, Avantasia-like trilogy with many singers. Depending on the groups he has been in, he has either been the keyboardist or guitarist, he is equally proficient at both. Unbreakable is a straight ahead instrumental hard rocker, with Steve Vai Passion and Warfare like melodic lines. Joke and Peacefully are very much Joe Satriani like, while the first one is more Summer Song-era esque, the latter is more slower and a bit more melodic and dynamic. I really like Liverani's tone on this song. While I have made comparisons to the other two great guitarist, in no way is this a carbon copy of someone else's previous works. Apocalypse has some amazing faster drumming, with a very melodic lead that works like a verse, in which Liverani builds upon each time he returns to it.. This is one of my favorite songs on the disc. Daylight starts slow with piano and syncopated drumming. Some nice minor and diminished piano chords with lead guitar over them carry the beginning of the song before the song goes full speed. When I say full speed, this isn't the tear your face off, type of fast. The song switches between speeds throughout the song. Some very technical drumming and bass playing introduces Gigantic, with layers of keyboards and drums behind them. This is a very dark and rhythmic song. From dark and rhythmic to the atmospheric and quite beautiful, Dark Horse. From his melodic leads, to his majestic string/pitch bends, this may be your prototypical instrumental ballad, but this song is done so beautifully.

Outstanding is next, and adds element of progressive rock and metal to it as well. Its another mid paced rocker with a very cool layered, middle/chorus section. Guilty is another heavier song, with almost a Dream Theater-like feel. Between the keyboard/guitar trade off solos, and the drumming, its one of the most Progressive sounding songs on the disc. I am definitely Guilty of listening to this one a few times in a row! Heaven, is another majestic song, with beautiful lead guitars, and not once does Liverani go out of his way, to over play, or show us how virtuosic his skills are. This is definitely a blueprint for instrumental guitarist for the proper way of writing a slower song, without overdoing it. A flurry of fast guitar playing starts off the albums closer and longest song, Rage. By the start of the second minute, the song reverts back to Liverani's signature melodic leads. The transition from the heavy to melodic, is sudden, yet not jarring.

This is one of the best instrumental discs I have heard in a long time. I know instrumental cds are a bit of niche category. They are usually intended for musicians in mind. This is one of the few instrumental discs I have heard, where the listener does not have to be a student of music to enjoy. From the melodic and atmospheric to the heavy and technical, Liverani has created a disc that people, regardless of their own musical knowledge, can enjoy. Like a band with a singer, the songs flow like verses to choruses, and of course solos. The biggest compliment I can give Liverani, is that this is not a forty minute plus guitar solo, each song has its own identity. IF you enjoy guitarists such as Tony MacAlpine, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, or bands like Dream Theater, you may enjoy this disc.

Killing Songs :
All are awesome on their own!
Joel quoted 87 / 100
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