Ataraxia / Autunna et sa Rose – Odos Eis Ouranon – La Via Verso il Cielo

This limited digipack contains two cd’s: one by Ataraxia and one by Autunna et sa Rose. Both bands have reinterpreted some of their tracks in an acoustic manner for this release. The occasion for this split release was a special live performance of the two Italian bands at the church of St. Michele in Rovigo.

The Ataraxia disc is entitled “Strange lights”. It contains a dozen of their songs, of which two were previously unreleased and two appeared on now deleted EP’s. All songs were rearranged using an antique piano. Furthermore you can hear classical guitar, flute and subtle percussions on these recordings and of course Francesca Niclo’s dominant and characteristic vocals, which will not be loved by everyone.
The songs really benefit from these acoustic and intimate setting, therefore this disc is not to be missed by Ataraxia fans. Highlights for me are ‘Bonthrop’ and the unreleased ‘Seas of the Moon’.

The second disc is filled in by Autunna et sa Rose, a band which I’m not too familiar with. They have reinterpreted songs from their first three albums mainly on piano and cello. Furthermore there are covers from Ataraxia (‘Canzona’) and Tuxedomoon (‘Egypt’). These recordings were made in the aforementioned church. The neo-classical music of Autunna et sa Rose is dramatic and melancholic. Especially the mournful cello dominates, together with the elegant soprano voice of Sonia Visentin. A few tracks like ‘Egypt’ are more piano-based, and on some songs (‘Temps Fumé) declamated male words are added.
This trio certainly knows how to play their instruments and the performance must have been lovely to experience in a church. For listening at home their classical music might be a little too minimal and a-melodic though. It would be bettery suited to accompany for instance an experimental theatre piece.

artist: Ataraxia
label: Equilibrium Music
details: 2cd, 2005 [EQM004]