Friday 14 October 2016

La Bottega Del Tempo A Vapore - Il Guerriero Errante


1. Overture
2. Fumo D'anime
3. Ordine E Follia
4. Arabeschi Sentieri
5. Mendicanti Luridi
6. Eterea Fusione
7. Urlanti Demoni
8. Vita Sospesa
9. Ombra Di Falce
10. Finale

It seems that Italy and progressive metal go together like tomato and mozzarella. La Bottega Del Tempo A Vapore are a septet from Benevento, forming in 2014/15. "Il Guerriero Errante" was released in April via by US label Minotauro Records. I believe that this is their debut album; however, I'm unable to speak or translate Italian so I could be wrong. Their music is influenced by everything from metal, to folk and classical. 

I’ll be completely honest here and say that I’m not usually a fan of the classical/orchestral strain of progressive metal that seems to have it’s roots in Europe, but I wanted to give this album a shot anyway. Opener Overture starts of as expected, but must sound great at the start of the band’s live shows. It certainly sounds rousing and majestic. La Bottega sing completely in Italian and Fumo D’anime features bombastic instrumentation alongside clean vocals, which thankfully are not overly operatic. The mix of keys and more traditional metal guitar work is well balanced. Ordine E Follia edges more towards La Bottega’s folk influence and is delivered acoustically to begin with. It’s catchy and very listenable before there’s a quiet mid-section that seems to slow momentum a bit. That’s followed by a full electric assault of excellent musicianship. I’m a little perturbed about the lack of harsh vocals but the more I listen to this, the more I’m beginning to enjoy it. Arabeschi Sentieri has a hint of Dream Theater about it, which is no bad thing and many different movements. The drumming at the beginning of Mendicanti Luridi beats like a the drums of a long forgotten tribe and the vocals match the mood. It reminds me a little of Orphaned Land. Being a progressive band, their songs aren’t short but they fully justify there lengths. Eterea Fusione is a classical ballad that might make you challenge what you’re listening to, but you shouldn’t let it. It will make the hairs stand on the back of your neck. The saxophone is a truly ace touch as well! Urlanti Demoni features some truly epic guitar playing that is befitting of La Bottega and their music. They sure know how to write songs that draw you in as well. They follow on in the same vein with Vita Sospesa but this time they take thing is an even grander direction in order to keep the fires burning toward the album’s conclusion. It work too with the mix of metal and pop-like keys. Penultimate number Ombra Di Falce is a bit like going to a bookshop and reading the last page of the novel you want to buy, because it pretty much sums up everything that is good about La Bottega. As Finale plays out I sit wondering about what just happened. I genuinely thought I wouldn’t enjoy this but I did. I’m not about to throw away my love of extreme metal and hardcore just yet but La Bottega have surprised me a lot and I reckon there will be a lot of you who will be surprised too.

You can listen to three tracks (curiously) via Minotauro Records below:-

You can buy it digitally and on cd via the label from their bandcamp page above.

La Bottega Del Tempo A Vapore Facebook -
Minotauro Records Facebook -

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