The initials I.S. of course do equally apply to both the main protagonists of this extremely listenable and somewhat comforting project of wonderfully melodic symphonic progressive rock. ‘Comforting’ might be a strange term to use but, with such a preponderance of well executed melodic keyboard runs, classical piano phrases and especially the adorable female vocal accompaniments, all one’s troubles seem to disappear leaving you completely at ease with the world. And so ISPROJECT makes a lot of sense as a title. Convenient too that both these guys have the same initials although pleased that they steered well clear of doubling up to form the term ISIS (Of course I’m only joking!!)
The album comprises seven delightful melodic keyboard infused tracks that are packed to the brim with different synthesizer modulations which in turn create a totally amazing number of different sound combinations. Washing over the resultant sound spectrum are many charming choral effects which are wonderfully complementary to the lush romantic piano accompaniments. These individual symphonic soundscapes are then are fused together with an amazing array of accompanying audio multi tracking trickery, The entire project is beset with a massive variance in different tune structures, time signatures and instrumental arrangements and yet it all fits together so perfectly, no tune out of place in any way and all solid tracks from start to finish.. The press release notes point to the music being connected with personal experiences and joyful memories of the two musicians and this I believe is portrayed here in the sheer beauty of the resultant music which is so full of ideas, energy and panache. Certainly in terms of genre, the term ‘Progressive Music’ suits the musical output of this project well, both for its style, instrumental complexities and combinations of different musical stylisations. There are some areas of confusion appertaining to the musicians because incorporated into the mix are some nice moments of lead guitar, saxophone, bass and drums without and real aid to who played what? It is not unreasonable to suggest that Ivan, being such an accomplished musician, did not feature himself on all instruments. I’m endeavoring to find out.
The vocal arrangements too are all so extremely delightful, beautifully alluring, interesting and unique. Generally following a kind of choral approach ‘Ivan Santovito’ sings most of the lead vocals lines whilst ‘Ilenia Salvemini’ provides an enchanting and quite breath-taking two part harmonic descant accompaniment. It would though of been good to have heard more of ‘Ilenia’s’ pure tones in more of a distinctly lead role, this is not a criticism just an observation.
Summary: An easy five star album. A beautifully considered project of melodic keyboard led progressive music with unique lyrical arrangements.
Artwork: Fairly basic artwork
Ivan Santovito - Mastermind/Composer/Arranger, Vocals, Keyboards & Piano, Ilenia Salvemini – Vocals, Bass? & Co-Arranger
2. The Architect.
4. The City and the Sky.
5, Lovers in the Dream.
6. The Mountain of Hope.
7. Between The Light and the Stone.