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Iuliano - Hidden Roots

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Everybody's musical journey is different, but few are as varied as Iuliano's. He's Italian but has worked a lot in the music business in Thailand, of all places. His world travels may be exotic, to say the least, but he nevertheless has strong musical credentials. In fact, he's studied music at the respected Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. He expresses a love for progressive rock, jazz and soul, but it's his love of soul that mostly informs Hidden Roots.

With that said, though, the songs comprising this album might best be described as progressive soul. These are not the typical love odes one usually associates with classic Soul Train R&B music. Iuliano may sing with a soulful falsetto, but a track titled "The Hidden Root" also features a mystically cool, repeated guitar part. And this makes the tune especially progressive.

Another track titled "Who Knows," lays on the vocal experimentation thick. It's the sort of song you might expect to hear from a vocal jazz explorer like Bobby McFerrin, but - of course - it also features a full instrumental arrangement. "Comfortable Lies" is the closest thing this album has to a conventional pop song. It has a 60s rock feel, which is appealing.

Hidden Roots is an album title suggesting Iuliano has musical inspirations concealed up his sleeve somehow, which is not at all true. He wears his influences right out there on his sleeve. And what's in plain sight is a strong collection of inspired, soulful pop gems.

Iuliano - Hidden Roots
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