Pretty typical Italian Power Metal is what is found on PROJECTO’s self-titled debut. I could leave it that and most readers will have already made up their minds whether or not PROJECTO is of any interest. For those of you who have stuck around after the opening sentence, please read on.
As I’ve already mentioned, PROJECTO play a typical variety of Italo-Power Metal: speedy, catchy, keyboards-laden and not-to-heavy. Sure, countless bands have done this, but when you see that this album was released in clear back in 1998, you can’t label PROJECTO as simple copycats. In fact, I will go so far as to say that the only reason that “Projecto” is not as big amongst fans of Italo-Power is because it was unfortunate enough to be released in 1998. You see, that was same year that RHAPSODY’s “Symphony of Enchanted Lands” and LABYRINTH’s “Return To Heaven Denied” were released, which just so happen to be two of the biggest breakthrough albums of the scene. So, I think that it is safe to say that “Projecto” was simply overlooked, as it’s really pretty good.
It’s clear from the beginning that PROJECTO aren’t interested in merely rehashing fantasy lyrics, as “Death In Dreamland” criticizes a political mishandling of the environment and “Freedom” is about motorcycles. PROJECTO also set themselves a bit apart from other Italo-Power bands by injecting prog-ish parts into some songs, including “Alone In A Mirror”, “Pantomine” and the instrumental, “Projecto”.
The production on “Projecto” is a little lacking, but that’s the case with most early Underground Symphony releases (and it’s nowhere near as bad as SKYLARK). The vocals of Robert Bruccoleri are a bit untamed and he occasionally reaches out of his range. But this never becomes a big concern. Instrumentally speaking, “Projecto” is sound, with each member showing great proficiency.
“Projecto” is certainly not groundbreaking, but is good for what it is, which is catchy, keyboard-driven, Italo-Power Metal. Fans of the style can check this album out without hesitation. Others may find the non-fantasy lyrics and progressive musical tendencies fresh enough to give “Projecto” a listen. (Online May 15, 2006)