Rovescio Della Medaglia- La Bibbia (50th Anniversary version)

Posted: 281021

Review Erik Neuteboom

In the second half of the Nineties I discovered the captivating and varied Classic Italian Prog, due to the fact that more and more Italian labels started to put rare LP’s on CD, as a reissue, from Zarathustra by Museo Rosenbach and DNA by Jumbo to Inferno by Metamorfosi and ….. Contaminazione (1973) by Rovescio Della Medaglia, generally considered as one of the gems of Classic Italian Prog. But their debut album La Bibbia (1971) is a totally different story, to me it sounds like a quirky blend of hardrock, psychedelia and experimental, with a lot of raw guitars and vocals, and without keyboards.

In 2011 guitar player Enzo Vita gave new life to RDM releasing a new album Microstorie with Roberto Tiranti (New Trolls) on vocals. In 2016 the new RDM (with Enzo as the only original member) released a new album entitled Tribal Domestic, a return to a progressive and symphonic rock sound as the third album Contaminazione. In 2017 Enzo Vita contacted bassist Andrea Castelli to form also a live-band to bring on stages once again RDM music. From this collaboration they released Contaminazione 2.0, recorded live in San Galgano and totally focused on their album Contaminazione. And now RDM presents a completely re-recorded and re-arranged version of the La Bibbia album from 1971, in order to celebrate the 50th anniversary.

Listening to this new version of La Bibbia I am pleasantly surprised how this new RDM line-up has changed that quirky blend of hardrock, psychedelia and experimental into a captivating Heavy Prog sound, well done! And everything on this 50th anniversary version is superior to the 1971 effort: the sound, the recording quality, the compositions, the interplay and the musical ideas. But the main difference between the 1971 and 2021 effort is the presence of keyboards.

Il Nulla (3:05) starts with sound effects and soaring keyboards, this is tasteful electronic music, topped with spectacular sequencing in the end.

La Creazione (6:21) delivers a lot of powerful rock guitar and vocals, but now blended with the distinctive Minimoog synthesizer sound.

L'ammonimento (5:51) features an interesting instrumental part with interplay between piano and guitar riffs.

Sodoma XY (4:23) contains fiery guitars, blended with soaring keyboards

Il Giudizio (7:49) turns out to be the most varied and exciting compositon, from mellow with spacey synthesizers to a bombastic eruption with howling guitar, topped with powerful Italian vocals. Halfway an instrumental interlude featuring delicate interplay between the guitar and bass, obviously inspired by Toccata In D-Fuga (Bach).

Il Diluvio (5:50) is another strong upgraded track by the use of keyboards, this time a church organ sound, then an accelaration with the Minimoog, next the sound of a male choir, wonderful keyboard orchestrations and sparkling Grand piano runs, this is topped with emotional vocals, the final minute is total silence….

This reissue also features 3 bonustracks, these are English versions of La Creazione (The Creation), L'ammonimento (The Warning) and Il Giudizio (Judgement Day), a nice addition tot his very interesting prog effort!