by Giannis Zavradinos
Translation: Alexandros Mantas
Goblin set foot on stage around 10 pm, heartily welcomed, and each musician took his position on the stage. Massimo Morante (guitar), Fabio Pignatelli (bass), Agostino Marangolo (drums) on the centre were clearly the conductors of the sound, atmosphere and arrangements, flanked by Maurizio Guarini and Αidan Zammit on the keyboards. The setlist was unsurprising, yet pretty much balanced as regards the choice and flow of the songs, giving weight to the soundtracks where they have shined and are endeared by us.
The haunted intro of Magic Thriller was enough to warm up the audience, with its neoclassical theme well delivered and also sporting a crystal clear sound as if they were about to record. By the time it was finished, we were convinced that their enthusiasm, serious-mindedness and professionalism would not falter at any moment. Morante greeted us with a discreet gesture and they moved on with Mad Puppet, while projecting scenes from Profondo Rosso to 200-250 punters, hungry for this magnificent and familiar audiovisual identification. Next was Dr.Frankenstein with its improvised crescendos and interplay that do justice to their legend and the name of these musicians.
The audience got fired up all the more by the first notes of Roller that gave the beat with its rhythm and also gothic atmosphere and from that moment onwards the excitement escalated and there were no signs of ebbing away. E suono rock with a revamped rendition provided ideal soundscapes in an idyllic piety where the audience and the band became one. It made perfect sense to hear Aquaman next that stirs an incredible flow of emotions which were intensified by the imposing medley of Non Ho Sonno / Death Farm, redolent of dynamics and a massive heavy sound. Halfway through Goblin, Marangolo left us speechless for several minutes with an amazing and meaningful drum solo to which we responded with a raucous applause well before it was over.
Guarini attempts to show us around the dystopian world of the living dead with the mesmerizing L’alba Dei Morti Viventi and fitting images, like the shopfronts and the empty eyes of the undead from Romero’s allegorical film Dawn Of the Dead, that rivet the audience. Zombi bursted somewhat unsuspectingly in a fusion version that really took it off where Marangolo and Pignatelli with his Rickenbacker played with telepathic precision. Morento was the silent force and his role being crucial amidst the dominance of the keyboards with his massive sound, but also the flexible rhythm basis he provides.
It was Aidan Zammit’s turn to bid us welcome while speaking through a vocoder and we cottoned on immediately to what was coming next because of the tell-tale ”paura, paura…” and people moved to the rhythm of the beloved Tenebre. The tension gradually diminished as Μorante grabed the bouzouki and the whispers (coupled with those from the audience) hinted that the ultimate haunting of Supiria was upon us, in what was perhaps the pinnacle of the show. Then it was time for the presentation of the band members in a delirium of enthusiasm and the “last” song which was none other than Profondo Rosso with the insane intro of School At Night and the ominous outbreaks. The band walked off stage – temporarily, fortunately – and came back with Zaratozom with its hard rock disposition perfectly fitting for an ending and an audience that didn’t mean to stop cheering.
Perhaps one and a half hour was not enough to get our fill, yet it was satisfying and packed with energy, sporting high-leveled playing, modern sound and anew, well-crafted arrangements from a radiant band which proved that honours its past, shows respect for its fans and works hard to keep it fresh. For our part, we reciprocated the passion and we hope to see them again soon enough. It was undoubtedly a show that we will cherish in our memory for years.
Magic Thriller, Mad Puppet, Dr. Frankenstein, Roller, E Suono Rock, Aquaman, Non Ho Sanno / Death Farm, Goblin, Dawn Of The Dead ( L’alba dei Morti Viventi ) / Zombi, Tenebre, Suspiria, Profondo Rosso
Photos: Anna Despotidi, Panos Moschogiannakis (Rule Of Thirds Photography)