Pandora is an Italian progressive rock back that started by a father and son musicians, Beppe & Corrado Colombo in 2005. The current line up features Beppe Colombo (synth, organ, backing vocals), Claudio Colombo (drums, percussion, bass, acoustic guitar, synth), Corrado Grappeggia (vocals, synth, organ, piano) and young guitarist Christian Dimasi (electric guitar, backing vocals) together created a band that combined influences from the past (PFM, BMS etc.) with those of the present. Their goal was to help the shorten the gap between the two generations.
In 2008, Pandora's debut album "Dramma di un Poeta Ubriaco" was released by AMS/BTF label. From what I can remember, it was met with positive results. Some back story, was that during the seventies Beppe Colombo, a music fan and a musician, who while never had the chance to record an album, but he always held onto his passion to make music in hopes that someday he‘ll be able to record and release his own music.
The opening track, "Il Giudizio Universale" (The Last Judgement) (7:37), aggressive and desperate, is an imaginary dialog with God on the Day of Judgement. The next track, "March to Hell" (5:59) is an instrumental that according to an interview with the band, it was written 13 years ago and it was inspired by the war in Kosovo. Next up is "Così Come Sei" (The Way You Are) (8:21) comes like the calm after the storm, acoustic and delicate.
One of the long pieces, "Pandora" (11:43) is worth the price of admission alone. A gloomy voice describes the opening of Pandora's box: only a little and pretty blue bird remains to give comfort to the humankind while the evil is spreading all around. Then the music flows in every direction and the members of band can showcase their great musicianship and their taste for challenging compositions.
The acoustic ballad "Breve storia di San George" (Short tale of Saint George)(6:39) is about the myth of Saint George and the dragon, where the "hero" kills the monster with his spear and save a princess. You can find here almost a medieval atmosphere.
The title track "Dramma di un poeta ubriaco" (Tragedy of a drunken poet) ” (9:05) is about a poet that relies on alcohol to find his inspiration and dreams. The second long track, "Salto nel buio" (Jump in the Dark) (13:45) closes of the album perfectly, in my opinion. The track is very dramatic, almost mystical and it’s divided in four parts: Reflection, Jump, Fall and Awareness. The mood of this song is dark and lyrics develop reflections about death.
In closing this an excellent example of a beautiful mini-LP style album packaging and booklet. This is simply a must have album for anyone that considers themselves a fan of classic & modern Italian progressive rock.
Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on May 30th, 2011