MUSIC, AMBIENCE AND SOUND ART > Independent Music Reviews

My review of "Centurion" CD by Aglaia



Aglaia "Centurion" CD

Highly praised duo Gino Fioravanti and Gianluigi Toso, known as Aglaia, have released their "Centurion" album back in June 2013 on Hic Sunt Leones. As usual, packaged in elegant 6-panel digipak, but this time featuring stunning photos by Mire L'azur, with the artwork executed by Stefano Musso's Hic Sunt Leones.

The track list is quite long with 15 shorter pieces, which follows the footsteps of previous Aglaia album entitled "Otherworldliness". The opening "Azimuth" shifts straightly into remote glacier sceneries, where hissy drone undulations are accompanied by organic oscillations and traversing intensifications. Cinematic desolation meets foreboding sternness. "Calaverna" keeps on meandering through fascinating ice formations, melting oddly circling distant hisses with leading layers of dramatic turnovers, cyber-tech fragments and dwellers of unfathomed depths. "Darkling" hovers on utterly mindscaping spirals, continuously emerging from shadowy mist. "I Listen" tranquilly sneaks through warmer vistas counterpointed with piercing squeaks and ghostly winds. "Airglow", although venturing into quite discordant realms, it masterfully captures the magic of nigh sky adventures. "Recapitulare" sounds slightly more relieving, yet enough mysterious to remain on the shadowy path. The shortest piece, "Arsuram", melts murky drones with eddying dissonances. "Permutazione" safely holds its course through darker terrains with otherworldly nuanced texture, blending more massive drone symphony with persistently peaking elusiveness. A truly mind-blowing listening experience!!! But the journey continues with "Penetranza", monstrously intense dronescape cascading through dramatic peaks and fabulous signature cocoons of expansively euphoric harshness that can only be created by these Italian maestros of embracing atmospheric fantasies. And they couldn't have chosen better track title for this one. "Misteriosofia" baths the listener with deeply pensive soundscape, capriciously wandering. But the gates to the transcendental spheres are still unlocked and I can't imagine better invitation than "Recidere". Breathtakingly mysterious and monolithic drones are guarded by graciously expanding choirs, while sharp metallic sounds constantly tickle the ears. Welcome to the drone paradise owned by Aglaia!!! "Epilogo" is lushly organic and eclectic, although later progressing into warmer, wide-screen range. "In The Open Air" initiates quietly, but joyful drones mesmerizingly circle and increase the intensity and deepness. "Albus" submerges immediately with its minimal structure, where reverberating abyssal hums intertwine with enigmatic twinkles, then quietly swell throughout and converge with arising denser yearns. "Dateless", the closing piece, briskly drifts into monumentally spellbinding and euphoric drone heaven, enhanced by magnificently mind-bending resonations. Only a 4-plus minutes long piece, but colossally transporting, certainly another magnum opus!!! I am just wondering how I would return after a longer journey...

What to add? If you are still searching for the sonic adventure that will blow you faraway, beyond the ordinary, Aglaia is always here to deliver distinctively flavored and tremendously immersing sonic exploration. Aglaia is a well-hidden gem!!! And keep in your mind, except Aglaia, Gino Fioravanti and Gianluigi Toso have released many other albums under their own names or under Nada Experiences. So the journey continues, but that's another story...

Richard Gürtler (Apr 27, 2014, Bratislava, Slovakia)

drone on:
Yes, another masterpiece!  I would note, however, isn't there really only one member of Aglaia (Gino *Fioravanti)?  Toso just does "editing".  Both my limited cdr digipak releases by Aglaia on hic sunt leones are only signed by Gino...

Yes, Chris, you are right, although Aglaia was always officially presented as duo, it seems like Gino Fioravanti handles the composing and performing duties, while Gianluigi Toso does the editing work. As far I remember on older Aglaia recordings Gianluigi Toso was credited also for some additional programming, samples... Anyway, usually it's not easy to find more infos on Aglaia, but after some more detailed search I can give you few links with additional infos about Gino Fioravanti and Gianluigi Toso. Unfortunately info about Gino's yoga and meditation activities are in Italian, but info about Gianluigi Toso aka John Toso can be found in English as well.

John Toso is the director and producer of Italian Way Music, a label on which you can find many other releases published under their own names.

The surfing through that website is rather complicated, mostly in Italian. But take a look at it, definitely recommended!!! You will find there also additional 5CDr recordings as Nada Experiences. Gino Fioravanti is credited on this project, again highly recommended, although the packaging is quite simple, slim jewel cases, but the music matches Aglaia. Here is the link to my Discogs contributions about 5 Nada Experiences albums.

As far I remember, Judd Stephens has contributed several months on this forum many useful informations regarding the availability of Fioravanti & Toso recordings. Here is the link.

Keep on enjoying Aglaia!!!  ;)


I love this release.

Very nice and thoughtful review, Richard.


--- Quote from: chris23 on April 29, 2014, 03:25:08 PM ---I love this release.

Very nice and thoughtful review, Richard.

--- End quote ---

Thanks a lot, Chris!!! :)



[0] Message Index

Go to full version