Lead by Guitarist, Vocalist and former Desert Rider man Alessandro Rizzuto are Wandering Vagrant. Hailing from Perugia Italy, the Progressive quintet also feature a pair of former In Tenebra members in Guitarist Christian Bastianoni and Keyboardist Fracesca Trampolini. The band mention their inspirations as being PorcupineTree,Opeth,KingCrimson and even Genesis. There is a little of each in the album but there is also so much more.
The opening A cappella vocal harmony of “Human Being As Me” before the music starts, may catch you off guard on the first listen. It builds into a mid-tempo Progressive Rock tune with a joyous guitar solo and groove bassline alternating between acoustic and electric guitars. The vocals are sparse throughout the album as a whole, the band preferring to build sonic soundscapes. “The Hourglass” has a more menacing introduction as it builds over it’s 9 minute and 23 second run time. It might be the longest cut on the album but by progressive standards this is pretty normal and the music holds you attention. Remember those early Metallica instrumentals? This one is like that. It sounds like it belongs on the soundtrack to a tense spy thriller in the first half with a tasteful solo and buried keys that set a tone. That all fades in the second half, dropping to cleaner guitar tones and a bright bassline that builds. The vocals start around the 5 and a half minute mark and the male and female vocal harmony is a success while the epic keyboards that close out the track sound like they the belong to a film of a Sea voyage of discovery.
“Struggle” has a Melodic Metal that builds into some more aggressive tones amid more thought provoking lyrics. It’s vocal harmonies work really well, as does the inclusion of more lyrical content. It’s more of a head nodding affair than a headbanging affair but it’s driven nature works really well and in the context of the album helps add to the variety of the offering. There is also clear decision to employ alternative structures to the usual verse-chorus throughout. “Forgotten” has some Jerry Cantrell, AliceInChains guitar stylings with hints at their MTV unplugged album being an influence. There are a couple of minor language issues with pronunciation, Rizzuto singing in English rather than his native Italian, however this adds to the charm of the album. “Get Lost Pt. 1: Fade Away” has some interesting flute like keyboards and bar room chatter in its opening build up. It’s melancholic lyrics pine for a change in life and flow from the melodic clean tones to the more Metallic. This one has the most memorable chorus and has sing-a-long ability.
“Get Lost Pt. 2: The Hunger” is an instrumental and the shortest cut at 3 minutes and 49 seconds and is more of the riffage and vibe that appeared on “Struggle”, accompanied by the same bar room chatter from the first part of the song. It has the sense of the epic as it plunges through progressive metal solo after solo, the delivery of which shows fine skill. “Home” adds an 80s Industrial sound with some programming and a sample that builds to create something that sounds like it belongs in a Science Fiction B-Movie about a post apocalyptic World. The speech sample itself is a snippet of Ed Murrow’s Speech at the 1958 RTNDA Convention and is in place of any vocals as it tops and tails the a song that builds across some fine instrumental work that maintains a sense of urgency in the same why the best of Thrillers do. As an album “Get Lost” by Wandering Vagrant is something of the unexpected, it grows with each listen and fresh nuances appear and by the end it is so much more than the sum of its collective parts. [7.5/10]
“Human Being As Me”
“Get Lost Pt. 1 (Fade Away)”
“Get Lost Pt. 2 (The Hunger)”
“Get Lost” by Wandering Vagrant is out now and available over at Bandcamp.