Assorted, seemingly long-lost bands from the venerable Italian prog scene continue to dust themselves down for an unlikely further foray into the limelight. The latest to do so are second-division proggers Locanda Delle Fate. Locanda released a debut album – Forse le lucciole non si amano piu – back in 1977, before disappearing from view and emerging only briefly over 20 years later, with the toothless Homo Homini Lupus.
Quite what has prompted Locanda’s re-emergence may be unclear, but it is welcome. The Missing Fireflies is not a completely new studio album per se, featuring four new tracks alongside three live ones.
While the live material serves a purpose, the treat here is the new material. Crescendo is a relatively downbeat opener before keyboardist Maurizio Muha demonstrates his virtuosity with the lovely piano with the lovely piano instrumental Sequenza circolare. But the highlight here is the stirring La Giostra with Max Brignolo’s superb guitar to the fore.
While Leonardo Sasso’s rich vocals – sung in his native tongue – may have a touch of Eurovision about them, Locanda’s return is as surprising as it is unexpected. This is melodic prog close to its best.