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Vita Nova: self-titled (CD, 46:20); import, Penner Records CD014 Do not adjust your stereo. Do not check your calendar. Just close your eyes and drift away, way back to 1971 and hear progressive music in its seminal form. Hear fusion in the raw before anyone knew to call it so. This is a historical must-hear. These guys were light years ahead of their time. Granted, they use the basic, analog equipment but that in itself is a rich texture. What is most clear, most non-digital, is the soul, the spirit, the impetus of art rock and embryonic fusion. Eddy Marron, (Ed Ugly-Ugly), was all guitars and solo vocals. Sylvester Levay, (Lysy), was vocals, vintage keys, and especially that far-out Hohner Clavinet, hybrid harpsichord. Christian Von Hoffman, (Chris Hoff), was awesome drums and vocals. All vocals were sung in Latin! Twas an effective regal touch. These guys fused, rocked, improv-ed, stretched, waxed classical, shocked, pontificated, and enchanted. Listen for ELP, Focus, Bo Hansson fugues throughout but take notice of Vita Nova's unique, overall, rare gems sound. This collector's item album was fetching $1,000 once and now the CD issue holds two bonus unreleased tracks. Get this and groove man. Extensive liner notes and photos included too. --John W. Patterson
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