Luca Turilli - The Infinite Wonders Of Creation
The time has come for Luca Turilli, mastermind behind italian power metal band Rhapsody, to give us the third and hence closing part of his epic Virtual Odyssey trilogy which began with King Of The Nordic Twilight (1999), continued with Prophet Of The Last Eclipse (2002) and now reaches an end with The Infinite Wonders Of Creation. This release has been, at least by me, highly anticipated considering Turilli's capabilities and his previous creations. Therefore I am sad to say that this a disappointment of immense, to not say gargantuan, proportions.
It is all very beautiful with wonderful melodies and it is as usual extremely professional arranged, but the songwriting does not by far reach up to par with earlier works. There are only a couple of song on the album that can be called uptempo (Mother Earth, The Miracle Of Life), but even there it is a matter of definition, and the latter is also the best song. A marvellous refrain but bits of the rest of the song sounds familiar from songs on earlier albums so the real wow-feeling is never present. The rest of the material are more or less ballads and slower operatic pieces throughout the album. Everything is very naked and free from flamboyant elements, it is just a down to earth and atmospheric creation.
The role of the guitar is unusally enough mainly as a rhythm instrument and feels secondary to the other instruments. The total amount of guitar solos and leads on the album are easily counted on the fingers of one hand. The vocals are split between male ones in form of Olaf Hayer as usual and female soprano done by Bridget Fogle. They are divided pretty much 40/60, with the female ones being the dominate part. The overall theme and lyrical concept is something that during the years has shown to be very dear to Luca Turilli, and that is Mother Earth and the wonderful creation of life and nature. He has indeed managed to capture a good mood of that and perhaps, or even most likely, it is intentional to keep the music this naked and fragile in order to show his and the rest of mankind's humbleness and insignificance toward Mother Earth.
The feeling I get is that this mainly consists of leftovers from the soft section of King Of The Nordic Twilight and from Rhapsody's latest album. I am actually able to enjoy the occasional slow and majestic piece but this album is just a major sleeping pill. I can just hope that this means that Luca Turilli saves all his really good ideas for the next Rhapsody album.
I want to mention and stress once again that everything is very beautiful and elegantly arranged but it just do not do anything for me. It is simply put way too boring. It clearly lacks the sonic extacy of its more powerful cousins. But if you are a fan of Turilli's and Rhapsody's atmospheric and operatic semi ballads, you might have a goldmine here.