Exceptional bass player and composer Alberto Rigoni returns with another solo project Three Wise Monkeys. It's a partly conceptual album based on the Japanese story of the three wise monkeys: Mizaru who sees no evil, Kikazaru who hears no evil, and Iwazaru who speaks no evil. In this pursuit Rigoni, of course, is not alone, having a host significant players to assist him. Notable are vocalist Goran Edman on the title track, Twinspirits band mate Tommy Ermolli on guitar, and Kevin Moore (OSI, ChromaKey) on keyboards.
Like the previous Rebirth, this album contains both instrumental and vocal tracks. However, this time the number is split evenly between the two. Three of the instrumentals are applied to conceptual side of the album, specifically three monkeys. Here we find Rigoni and company again exploring his interest in progressive rock fusion with his bass work leading the way. With the fourth instrumental, Between Space and Time, these find Rigoni developing his wistful and experimental arrangements.
On vocal tracks, all of them swing between melodic and progressive rock. Three Wise Monkeys, Free Falling and Blackened Tornado are more on the harder side of melodic rock, and the latter with more progressive nuances. Coming Home and Believe are simply lighter numbers that have some of that cagey wistfulness found in the instrumentals.
While the vocal songs are interesting, in the end, I think I'm more persuaded and entertained by Rigoni's instrumentals. They seem to lend themselves more to Rigoni's adventures into the prog rock fusion, an musical expression I've always find intriguing. Nevertheless, this does not make Three Wise Monkeys a bad or trivial album, but I liked Rebirth more. Otherwise, easily recommended.
Albert Rigoni continues his exploration into progressive rock fusion with his bass work leading the way. Expect an equal balance of instrumental and vocal arrangements across this disc.