The goal of this concept album is to unmask and reveal the spiitual evil of the modern humanity 's materialist vainglory...
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"This fifth studio effort by Russian outfit Roz Vitalis is one that should please those looking for quirky music of a kind that can only be described as challenging. Not overly advanced, but crafted and assembled in a manner that will test your notions about musicality and melody.
In style we're treated to works of a classical nature, with circulating piano motifs and digital strings central, blended with folk inspired textures alongside spacey sounds and distinctly psychedelic guitar layers. Cacophonic, dissonant parts are served with the same ease as gentle harmonic themes. Rhythmic experiments is something of a red thread throughout, as the band investigate odd and quirky drums and percussion alongside rhythmic melodic sounds, creating motifs with subtle dissonance and disharmony. Even brief ventures into the atonal, helped along by the other instruments.
And while a well made melody is a constant presence, it is the experimentation with the non-melodic aspects of this disc that is the most interesting one. Those who are fascinated by such endeavours should find much to please them on this disc."
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"While this music is generally placed in the avant-prog category it is unlike most music you would expect in that musical world. While most RIO and avant-prog is dissonant and other worldly in its song structure, ROZ VITALIS seems to prefer that a strong melodic theme dominates their stomp through the musical pasture upon which they gallop freely. This is what makes their music quite accessible from the first listen but the fundamentals of the avant-prog world still remain here albeit scattered about in a different manner than most and what i would call a rather avant-symphonic veneer to their overall sound. In other words the melodic keyboards are the anchor into the melodic world that allow the electronic, percussion and wind instruments to go wild around, therefore i could equally qualify this music as being space rock as well as symphonic prog and in the long run would call melodic eclectic prog.
While the music can get wild at times it for the most part remains steady and calculative with sounds slowly creeping in and gaining strength before usurping control for a brief moment. The ratcheting up effect is subtle and effective and there is rarely anything that just jumps out of the woodwork and slaps you in the face. Probably the most avant-garde of the lot is the odd drumming styles that add counterpoints to the melodies. While some artists are simply happy to keep the beat, ROZ VITALIS excels at keeping the percussion a major part of the dynamics that change it up frequently to add an additional zesty layer of rhythm and syncopation.
I've definitely fallen for this band's sound. It is utterly unique in the musical universe, at least the parts i've yet explored. I'm very happy to have found a band that satisfies different musical aspects such as the avant tendencies i gravitate towards all the while dishing out some of the tastiest melodic developments that accompany all the tones and rhythms that seem to be placed perfectly together for the proper effect. Great stuff."
(c) siLLy puPPy
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"I had another of my reviewers take on Roz Vitalis’ previous release, Das Licht Der Menschen, and after reading what he had to say about the band, I was compelled to hear for myself what Roz Vitalis was all about. I decided to take on their new release Compassionizer to review.
Upon listening to the music which is instrumental based that borders between electronic and the more aggressive progressive rock. To me the opening song "Tragic Fate", shows the listener, especially myself, exactly what Roz Vitalis is capable of. What I heard was a brillant mix of modern King Crimson and Univers Zero.
The music throughout the album is very dark moody and at times has that eerie vibe I hear in the first two Univers Zero albums. That being said, I found the music hard to describe but after several spins now and beyond I’m sure to appreciate Compassionizer more and more. If you enjoy dissonant arrangements combined with dark instrumental prog, you owe it to yourself to pick up a copy of Compassionizer as soon as possible."
(c) Ron Fuchs
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ЭCompassionizer by the Russian band (Saint-Petersburg) Roz Vitalis is complex and fascinating. It is serious music that demands many listens to be appreciated fully. My first impression was that it offers us a mix of Gentle Giant and the modern King Crimson with a Van der Graaf touch for the mood. Those references are only given here to help situated what is a truly original progressive RIO group. They had produced many discs but Compassionizer is the first I had the chance to listen to. Its influence and structure seems to me more classical than rock, a feeling I had when I heard for the first time ELP.
When we heard the gong at the beginning of the piece “Tragic Fate”, we knew that something strange is happening. The atmosphere that follows sets the tone for this entire album. It is not truly a concept project, even if it shows a certain emotional unity. They seem to evolve in shades and nuances; few rays of light, lots of grey and some definite darkness. A gloomy walk begins for the attentive listener. Like its title, this piece guides us, after the ambient beginning, to a progression which conveys a sense that someone has met a tragic fate.
“Autumn of Hypocrisy” begins as a modern piano piece (in the like of Eric Satie piano works) and suddenly, like hypocrisy revealed, the piece transformed itself like a M. Hyde mutating in Dr. Jekyll. I like it very much.
The title track “Compassionizer” is the piece that remind me the most of Gentle Giant , but a giant revived by a necromancer, not a joyous character from Rabelais. This piece shows that even from a troubling beginning, the end may be better than anticipated. This composition is intricate and very interesting. After the piano beginning, when the drum enters with the other instruments, a sense of disharmony emerges aided by the sampling and strange sounds. In the end, we return to a more simple tone.
“Elusive Goodness” is a more upbeat track with a pleasing melodic structure. It is a tune in the spirit of ELP or Rick Wakeman. After three gloomy pieces, it offers a break, a small hope, a kind light up the staircase, as is shown on the jacket of this CD.
“Wakatte Kudasai” evolves like a leisurely walk that became more and more intense. I don’t know why, but when I first heard it, it made me think of Alexander Borodine In the Steppes of Central Asia, but revisited by Debussy with a modern electronic spicing…
“Annihilator of Moral Hazard”, what a neat invention! There are so many moral hazards circulating in the world today that help to cope with them is always welcome. So the more heavy notes we heard at the beginning, which are recurring on the track, are those of the moral hazard or of the Annihilator? It is another track with a gloomy feeling and a fine construction. This track reminds me of Frank Zappa works.
With “Dances of Lost Opportunities”, the gloom goes on. For me it’s the saddest piece, in term of feeling of course, on this CD. Opportunity, as the adage says, is hairy in the front and bald from behind! We must seized it when it passes. Otherwise we may regret it sourly for a lifetime.
“Disruption” begins with a nostalgic touch in the dialogue between the piano and the guitar. Then, the voice of each instrument seems to diverge, each in his realm. It is a very quiet track.
“Train of Parting (Compassion Version)” finishes nicely this CD, offering us the complex and intricate construction that seems to be their mark, but with the same sad feeling. Could they do a work as interesting with an optimist stance? That could be interesting. Creation emerges in constrain, so why not choose to compose with laughter and joy…So I challenge you, Roz Vitalis to do a great work of art on the luminous side of life.
To resume my review, their music is challenging, original, more classically oriented than rock and with a touch of experimental and avant-garde music, cast in a gloomy mood. So, in my point of view, it is not for the lover of symphonic progressive rock, metal or even the most popular form of prog, but for those who like contemporary and experimental music, like Random Touch.Э
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"Roz Vitalis is the prog-rock project of Russion musician/composer Ivan Rozmainsky, and Compassionizer is the band's seventh CD release. Ivan handles keyboards, recorders, percussion, and samples on this latest one, and is joined by guitarist Sydius, and Yuri Verba on clarinets. The music of Roz Vitalis is instrumental, and borders between electronic and savage progressive rock. The opening cut "Tragic Fate" is an aggressive piece, somewhat like a collision of King Crimson and Magma, with jagged guitar lines and plenty of synthesizer blasts. A similar ominous & foreboding feel can be heard on "Autumn of Hypocrisy", this time with various keyboard sounds creating the drama. Some of the songs have a more lighter, fusion element floating to the surface, like on "Elusive Goodness" and "Disruption", and the presence of Verba and his clarinet usually contributes a sort of Canterbury flair on some of these tracks. Elsewhere, Rozmainsky's moody and at time eerie keyboard textures steal the show, whether it be on dense & dissonant chamber rock numbers like the title track or dark prog-rock territory such as "Wakatte Kudasai", which has a brooding ambient feel happening as well to go along with the repetitive rhythms and synthesizer blips.
The fact is, much of the music on Compassionizer is very hard to describe initially. It's not till after multiple listens that some of these pieces start to open themselves up a little, and even then, the dissonant and harsh nature of the arrangements don't alwayslend themselves to accessibility. That being said, if you like dark instrumental prog with many layers, this latest from Roz Vitalis will be a good choice to add to your list of future CD purchases."
(c) Pete Pardo
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