Méséglise – Stranamente Sereno (Lizard Records, 2016)
Méséglise is an alternative music project led by Paolo Nannetti and Marco Giovannini, two members of Italian progressive rock group Sithonia. On Stranamente Sereno (Oddly peaceful) you’ll find a mix of classic Italian progressive rock, traditional folk music and pop.
Songwriting plays an essential role in the music of Méséglise. Paolo Nannetti’s lyrics are deeply influenced by poetic Italian singer-songwriters.
I gravitated towards the songs with deeper progressive and folk roots versus the pop-leaning ones. Nannetti and Giovannini are joined by three additional band members, the rhythm section of Maya Seagull and Maurizio Lettera and the exquisite violin and mandolin work of Maria Robaey.
Definite keepers include the first two tracks, ‘Il Tempo di Un Caffe’ (The time for a coffee) and ‘La Strada Verso la Collina’ (The road to the hill); the folk-oriented, accordion-driven ‘Caporale Milt’ (Corporal Milt); the prog rock conclusion of’ Interno Notte’ (Internal Night); the classical-influenced ‘Confusi In Mezzo Ai Simboli’ (Confused among the symbols); and the last two instrumentals, the folk-rock piece ‘Il Gioco Delle Parti’ (The game of the parts) and the instrumental version of track 2, ‘La Strada Verso la Collina.’
The lineup on Stranamente Sereno includes Paolo Nannetti on keyboards, organ, guitars, accordion, and vocals; Marco Giovannini on vocals and acoustic guitars; Maurizio Lettera on drums, percussion; Maya Seagull on bass, vocals; and Maria Robaey on violin, mandolin. Guests featured: Alberto Celommi on acoustic guitar and Enrico Capalbo on ebow guitar.
The CD booklet includes lyrics and excellent cover and interior illustration artwork by Paola Baiesi.