14 May 2015
ClassicRockRadio.co.uk New Music Review
|Not A Good Sign - From A Distance (2015)
So I open the padded envelope this came in, and see the cover of the CD. The band's name jumps out at me; Not A Good Sign. My first thought; Not A Good Band Name. My mind works like that. So I played the CD. Didn't matter what they were calling themselves. The music contained jumps out and grabs you. The singing, and lyrics not at first. Grows on you. Can't say I liked James LaBrie (Dream Theater) immediately when I first heard the first Dream Theater he was on; Images And Words (1992). The actual music is what I'm drawn to. The vocals to me have to appear as a natural fit. Deciding the music was too good to let this go, I gave it a few more plays. Some time later decided that the singer, Alessio Calandriello, is a perfect match for the other four in the band. That the music contained within 'Not A Good Sign - From A Distance' is a perfect vehicle for this singer and these lyrics. Much akin to James LaBrie and Dream Theater's 2nd studio offering. Just not as hard sounding.
Research shows that 'Not A Good Sign - From A Distance' CD is their second studio release. Not the same exact band line up here as the first outing. All new to this reviewer. What I hear is progressive rock with influences steering off into the land of King Crimson, and Porcupine Tree. There are some rocking passages, as well as some just some downright beautiful moments.
If a fan of keyboards, then you're love Not A Good Sign's keyboard player; Paolo SKE Botta. His playing, be it the piano, or his choice of keyboard textures and sounds, capable of catching one's attention, and never letting it go. Alessandro Cassani on bass and backing vocals, Martino Malacrida behind the drum kit, make up a solid rhythm section. The guitar playing mostly heard on the CD is by a former founding member of Not A Good Sign member Francesco Zago, with one track (Flying Over Cities) by current guitar man, Gian Marco Trevisan.
Using the star rating system where one star means it blows chunks, to five stars which means it's cool to spend your hard earned cash on, Uncle G rates Not A Good Sign - From A Distance … 5 stars! Main reason is because it demands listening to. Solid Italian progressive rock. Not that I'm an expert. Has a mature, aged sound to it, that I'm certain would be greatly appreciated by all those who dig this kind of music. I for one certainly do.
Important Internet Links
CD Label - AltrOck Productions
Not A Good Sign Official Website
American Correspondent for ClassicRockRadio.co.uk