The Trip – Caronte 50 Year Later

Posted: 020921

Review Erik Neuteboom

Classic Italian Prog formation The Trip released four albums in the first half of the seventies. The eponymous debut LP (1970) and Caronte (1971) contain a blend of rock, prog and psychedelia, with a lot of harder-edged guitar and powerful organ. On the third effort entitled Atlantide (1972) The Trip plays as a trio without a guitar player. The eight songs sound pleasant and varied with decent English vocals and strong work on keyboards (The Nice and ELP inspired). Their final effort Time Of Change (1973) is jazzy oriented with ELP sounding keyboards. In 2010 the reunion of the 1972-73 three-piece line-up was announced and Joe Vescovi, Arvid Wegg Andersen and Furio Chirico played in November at the Prog Exhibition in Rome. This event was released in a lush 7-CD and 4-DVD box set, entitled Prog Exhibition – 40 Anni Di Musica Immaginifica ( also featuring bands like Banco, PFM, Osanna and La Maschera Di Cera). The project of reforming the Trip went on with a concert in Japan in 2011, but the death of Andersen in 2012 and especially the lost of Vescovi in 2014 (another original member Billy Gray had passed away in 1984) marked the end of this highly acclaimed formation. The name The Trip was revived in 2015 by the original drummer Pino Sinnone (initially as The New Trip) and the band has been active despite many line-up changes. In between Black Widow Records released in 2016 the CD Live 1972, recorded at the legendary The Piper in Rome. The new line-up since 2019 includes only one original member, drummer Pino Sinnone. In 2020 The Trip released a new version of the 1971 Carone album entitled Caronte 50 Years Later.

Early Seventies Hammond drenched prog, re-recorded in 2021 what a interesting combination! The 8 compositions deliver a pleasant variety. Psychedelic in the short instrumental opener Acheronte. Bombastic and dynamic with The Nice inspired Hammond work and fiery guitar in Caronte 1 and II. A ballad with piano and decent English vocals in Little Janie. Heavy guitar and swirling Hammond like Atomic Rooster, topped with strong Italian vocals and a boogie woogie piano in Una Pietra Colorata. And a blend of Seventies Uriah Heep and early Classic Italian Prog with slightly theatrical Italian vocals in Fantasia.

My highlight on this album is the longest track L'Ultima Ora E Ode A Jimi Hendrix (10 minutes). First a slow rhythm featuring soaring Hammond and powerful vocals. Then the music turns into bombastic and compelling, with dramatic vocals and lush Hammond. The sound reminds me of Seventies Uriah Heep. Halfway a wonderful Hammond solo, followed by an accelarion with lush Hammond and powerful drums. Next a fiery guitar solo and a Hammond solo with strong classical hints. The second part is a warm tribute to Jimi Hendrix, translated in a moving way by howling electric guitar runs, very intense.

"Good job by this new line-up, fuelled by only original member drummer Pino Sinnone. Especially keyboard player Andrea "Dave" D'Avino colours the The Trip sound in an exciting way with his mighty Hammond."