[Review] Ciccada – Harvest

Ciccada is a Greek group that offers a mix of 70s-style Progressive Rock and Folk, as if the sounds of Gentle Giant meet those of Gryphon. Born in 2005 they have since released 1 EP and 3 full-length EPs, the latest of which “Harvest” released on April 23, 2021 via Bad Elephant Music and containing 6 medium-long tracks. The album opens with “Eniania” which begins with dreamy guitar and flute melodies with marked Folk influences, as well as the choral vocal intertwining male and female voices. A solid rhythmic session enters and the track develops with tempo changes that bring the sound into a more Prog territory, with traditional European music mixing with 70s Rock. Soft and very elaborate, this song immediately plunges us into the pleasant atmosphere of the album, immediately highlighting the great technical skills of the band both in the composition and in the execution phase. Mainly instrumental and at times intricate, the piece is enriched by virtuous solo parts that involve the listener and guide us on this journey of over 7 minutes. “Open Wings” is characterized by a soft intro with traditional instruments and the flute in evidence, the band is able to create intertwining between the large amount of instruments played. The vocal is warm and expressive and of Folk matrix, adapting best to the various phases of the piece. The tempo changes are an added value, as are the instrumental sections where all the artists are able to express their technique and put it at the service of the band. Very intense and full of pathos, another successful track that presents very intense passages, keeping the level very high, in the scale of values here we are in the Masterpiece. The third passage of the album “The Old Man And The Butterfly” begins with a pleasant and delicate arpeggio of stratified guitars, on which the winds and a deep and supporting bass are inserted. The rhythmic session comes into play, always solid and enriched by the tempo changes, while the intensity increases with the passage of the piece. Between passages with references of Jazz, the very warm male vocal and forays into the 70s Prog mixed with Folk, another very interesting track full of positive ideas. In the instrumental central part the band offers Folk Prog cues of exquisite workmanship, with excellent and very technical soloist inserts. In the second part the vocal returns, to then close with the main theme of the piece in a musical crescendo. “No Man’s Land” begins with a background in organ and the electric guitar, then enters the other instruments and gives a powerful mix of classic Prog and Folk Rock. If we close our eyes we seem to be catapulted into the 70s, the keyboard inserts are excellent, the structure in constant evolution and the vocal very intense. More delicate moments intertwine with other more powerful ones, the vocal recalls Renessaince, the music band like Gentle Giant with their personal and original touch that makes the sound fresh and brings the sounds of the past to the present day. The search for particular sounds and the ability to mix different styles makes tracks like this unique, real jewels of Progressive Rock. “Who’s To Decide?” it is the shortest track on the album, and begins with jazzy bass lines and intertwining of various instruments with an intricate and ever-changing structure. The vocal is stratified and this original and particular track is difficult to categorize with a genre, it would diminish its value, in fact within it we find a winning blend of many different musical genres. The solo parts are always very technical and the tempo changes allow the band to merge all their ideas and propose another very intense and successful passage of the disc. The album closes with the longest track “Queen Of Wishes” with over 12 minutes of duration, which begins with the winds and a more Jazz imprint, and then with a change to develop with Prog Folk plots. Harder sections alternate with symphonic openings, passing through Folk and other Jazz passages where the long duration is exploited to express the full potential of the band. A song that, like the rest of the album, in my opinion falls into the category of the Masterpiece, the 70s meet modern sounds, some passages really made me remember the masters of the genre, congratulations Ciccada. A very intense album, full of pathos with elaborate and technical passages but always accessible and flowing. The band’s ability to mix multiple genres and styles is one of the added values of their sound, managing to pass with ease between Folk Rock, 70s-style Prog, more powerful sounds and forays into Jazz. A band that confirms the good things heard in previous releases, managing to bring the 70s Folk Prog sounds to the present day and project them into the future. In my opinion this album is a masterpiece of its genre, a real must for lovers of both classic and modern Progressive sounds, giving new oxygen to the genre.


01. Eniania (Keepers Of The Midnight Harvest) (07:25)
02. Open Wings (05:28)
03. The Old Man And The Butterfly (07:52)
04. No Man’s Land (08:40)
05. Who’s To Decide? (04:40)
06. Queen Of Wishes (12:39)


Dimi Spela / Vocals
Evangelia Kozoni / Vocals
Yorgos Mouhos / 6- and 12-String Acoustic Guitars, Electric Guitar, Vocals
Nicolas Nikolopoulos / Flute, Clarinet, Tenor & Baritone Saxophones, Recorder, Piano, Electric Piano, Organ, Mellotron, Synthesisers, Harpsichord, Clavinet, Glockenspiel, Backing Vocals
Marietta Tsakmakli / Soprano, Alto and Baritone Saxophones, Backing Vocals
Aggelos Malisovas / Fretted and Fretless Basses
Yiannis Iliakis / Drums, Percussion, Backing Vocals

Ciccada |Bandcamp|Facebook Page|Spotify|YouTube Channel|

Bad Elephant Music |Bandcamp|Facebook Page|Twitter|Instagram|YouTube Channel|

Author: Jacopo Vigezzi

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