Phoenix Again

March 17, 2023 - Parkvilla Theater, Alphen a/d Rijn (NL)

It seems that the progressive rock audience in the Netherlands really love the Italian band Phoenix Again. Otherwise I can't explain why they have already played three concerts in our country. This is really out of the ordinary for a band which isn't that big and popular in the their own country and the rest of the world. One thing is certain, they really deserve to have an audience here in the Netherlands. Ever since I discovered them, after the release of their debut ThreeFour (see review) in 2011, I have followed their musical career. I even managed to introduce them to the people of the ProgFrog team who let them do their debut concert on Dutch soil. At that concert (see review) it appeared that the people of Serious Music Alphen were present and were impressed by their performance. Since that time they have played twice at the Parkvilla theatre, the home of Serious Music Alphen. This was in 2018 (see review) and 2019. And now a third time .The band had made such an impression during their concerts that people were asking when they will return. As often, a brand new album is a good reason for a performance. Therefore the band made their way to the Netherlands a fourth time to promote the new album Vision (see review). The third time at the Parvilla.

From L to R: Antonio and Sergio Lorandi
(►more pics)
This time around the line up of the band was a bit different compared to the other times they climbed the stage in our country. Marco Lorandi, the son of bass player and founding member Antonio Lorandi, wasn't around anymore to do the introductions in the English language. Therefore the new percussionist Simone Giustini was used as a kind of Google Translate to translate the Italian words of Antonio. Sometimes leading to hilarious moments on stage. Marco himself was replaced on guitar by the guitar student Alessio Bolpagni. Something which he did extraordinary well. The rest of the band were the same as always. Meaning with the excellent drummer Silvano Silva, who cut his hand open while trying to fix a broken cymbal. But also with the two musicians who were responsible for all the exciting solos done on stage. Andrea Piccinelli on keyboard and Sergio Lorandi on lead guitar.

It was obvious that the new album would be in the spotlights during this concert. Most of the first set was focused on the brand new pieces of music. Six tracks could be enjoyed. All done perfectly. Including the King Crimson inspired piece La Fenice Alla Corte Del Re. But also with the song that was dedicated to the Italian TV broadcast company RAI was on the menu. RAI brought them all their favourite programs when they were a lot younger. The song is titled Mamma RAI and has an ending that was in a way taken from the famous Eurovision Song Contest - and international broadcasts tune. This composition ended the first set. Another track from the new album was on the second set. Namely Propulsione. This song ended the second set. During the two sets a lot of songs from their entire back catalogue could be enjoyed as well. Too many to mention I guess. Songs that
Sergio, Silvano and Andrea (►more pics)
in the meantime can be labelled as true classic Phoenix Again songs. Songs which I love to hear during every performance. Such as the opening tune of the second set Adso Da Melk. Of course they started the song again with the sound of monks in a church. But also other classic tunes such as Lindberg, Cianuro Puro and Spring, all taken from their debut album. Also the second album Look Out (2014, see review) has some classic tunes to be enjoyed. Such as The Endless Battle, Oigres and the title track which was played as an encore. Of course the third album Unexplored (2017, see review) has some amazing songs which can be classified as classic tunes of the band. Such as the two compositions which feature some vocal parts. Namely Silver and That Day Will Come. But also the track The Bridge Of Geese, which was on the Decameron album before it appeared on this album.

Not everything that was performed can be found on any of their albums. The second encore Sailor's Hornpipe is only done during concerts. This time around their Dutch fans could enjoy this special piece of music. This kind of traditional folk is a little bit different to the rest of the bands musical stuff. But still worth listening to. The song was a great way to end the band's fourth performance in the Netherlands.

A performance which again impressed me all the way. I guess I will never get enough of such great concerts performed by a band always on top of their game. Even with the two new musicians on stage. So bravo once again to Phoenix Again for delivering the best music possible. I am glad they once again took the long ride from Italy to the Netherlands to bring their Dutch fans in a happy mood. Also thanks to the people of Serious Music Alphen for giving this amazing band a stage in the Netherlands to show all off their talents. Until next time...

Henri Strik (edited by Tracy van Os van den Abeelen)

Setlist Phoenix Again:

Set 1
Moments Of Life
That Day Will Come
La Fenice Alla Corte Del Re
The Endless Battle
Mamma RAI

Set 2
Adso Da Melk
The Phoenix Flies Again
The Bridge Of Geese
Cianuro Puro

Look Out
Sailorís Hornpipe

Pictures Phoenix Again by Arthur Haggenburg

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Click on the picture to enlarge.


Line up Phoenix Again:

(left to right)
Antonio Lorandi:
bass guitar and vocals
Silvano Silva:
drums, percussion and vocals
Simone Giustini:
Alessio Bolpagni:
Andrea Piccinelli:
Sergio Lorandi:
lead guitar and vocals

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