And The Stars Above by Armonite (Album Review)
Led by the musical expertise of composer Paolo Fosso and violinist Jacopo Bigi, Armonite has proven themselves to be the premiere Italian progressive rock band of this modern era. Ironically, Fosso and Bigi previously played in a band named Armonite during their college years. The group would go on to record an album in 1999 and then split up.
After taking a five-year hiatus Fosso and Bigi would reemerge in 2015 and form a new band under the name of their previous group Armonite. When they had enough tracks to make an album, they hired Porcupine Tree’s bassist, Colin Edwin and Dutch drummer Jasper Barendregt for the recording, which took place remotely. Their album “The Sun is New each Day” was released in June 2015.
Following the success of The Sun is New each Day, Armonite released a new album in May of 2018 entitled And The Stars Above. The music for this new work follows the band’s signature formula, wherein we the album’s compositions were written by Paolo Fosso and provide a foundation for violinist Jacopo Bigi to draw inspiration from. Armonite also performs with bassists Colin Edwin (Porcupine Tree) and Alberto Fiorani, along with drummers Corrado Bertonazzi, Emiliano Cava, and Jasper Barendregt.
And The Stars Above is a compelling album that is equally cinematic in its approach. Violinist Jacopo Bigi takes the lead in storytelling through instrumentation from the podium created by Fosso’s electrifying soundscapes. Delightfully, Armonite is able to create a synergy that is bright, hopeful and equally aggressive.
Comprised of fourteen tracks, And The Stars Above opens with The March of the Stars, a tune that reveals the depth and craftsmanship behind each and every track on this album. The delights of this sonic smorgasbord are too tempting to overlook. The brilliance of compositions like Clouds Collide and Ghosts work well in revealing the theatrical nature that And The Stars Above has to offer. Freaks exceptional quality and driving groove will surely put Armonite’s audience in awe concerning the group’s inventiveness. With a guest appearance by Colin Edwin of iconic UK prog-rockers Porcupine Tree, And The Stars Above by Armonite is a masterful work of genius that hangs from a place known as the skies the limit.