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Alessandro Adriani – Montagne Trasparenti

Alessandro Adriani may not be a household name, but he is the brains behind the Mannequin label, an outlet that has done arguably more than any other to unearth obscure wave and industrial music, often with an Italian focus. While other reissue labels dance across a multiplicity of emotions from the same time period, Mannequin’s default setting appears to rest on the gloomy, morbid and melancholic, witnesses its unearthing of releases like Bourbonese Qualk’s eponymous album and Decadence’s “On and On” –  one of the most tragic pieces of music ever recorded.

Alessandro Adriani - Montagne Trasparenti
Alessandro Adriani
Montagne Trasparenti
Monofonus Press
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This emotional spectrum manifests itself on the choice of releases by modern day artists too, with a Tropic of Cancer 12″ and recent reworks of Musumeci and //TENSE// from An-I and Beau Wanzer respectively all cloaked in a gloomy pallor or exhibiting disturbing tendencies. It’s no surprise then that when Adriani gets time to go into the studio that he doesn’t leave these influences at the door. Having put out material as Newclear Waves, he’s now going under his own name for this album on Monofonus Press (the Mannequin boss and Willie Burns previously contributed a track for the Austin label’s IXTAB compilation last year).

Montagne Trasparenti begins with the whooshing soundscapes and crackling interference of “Fase Lunare I” before moving into the horror soundtrack world on “Verso Lo Zenith”, where tortured shrieks and chains being dragged up a wooden staircase create a real sense of dread. “L’acqua Di Nettuno” and “Pianeta Rosso” take inspiration from EBM / body music; the former rumbles to a menacing bass while the latter is faster, more functional and not entirely dissimilar to Dust or Heinrich Dressel’s contributions to Mannequin.

Clearly, Adriani is keen to cover a lot of ground; the title track revolves around a brooding bass, glassy percussive bursts and a spooky synth riff, but maintains the brooding feeling. It’s only on the electronic disco pulses and soaring strings of “Fuoco” that the mood lightens somewhat, but in the main this is an exploration of electronic music’s darker side.

Richard Brophy 


A1. Fase Lunare I
A2. Verso lo Zenith
A3. L’acqua di Nettuno
A4. Pianeta Rosso
A5. Attraverso le asperitá
B1. Montagne Trasparenti
B2. Fuoco
B3. Rotazione Sincrona
B4. Fase Lunare II