Article Date: 15/01/2007
Location: Teatro Obihall
PFM (abbreviated: PFM) is an Italian band of progressive rock genre that has had great popularity in the 70's, both in Italy and internationally (in Britain, the United States, but also in Japan). Among the Italian progressive groups of that period, (Banco del Mutuo Soccorso, Area, Perigee, Le Orme), was the only one to have a lasting success in and outside national borders. Musically related to bands like Genesis or the first King Crimson, PFM has been able to evolve your style even in the following decades thanks to the considerable instrumental skills of its members.
PFM is in effect musical and artistic evolution of the ones, a group that in the second half of the '60s, had become known in the environment of the Italian record for quality, preparation and instrumental technique of its components. Drummer Franz Di Ciocco, guitarist Franco Mussida, keyboardist Flavio Premoli and bassist Giorgio "Fico" Square, carrying members of the group, were among the most popular Italian hall musicians accounted for Mina, Lucio Battisti, Fabrizio De André and many others.
It was precisely their technical skills to allow group members to become something more than session luxury men. At the end of the '60s rock was evolving into new forms drawing from almost all other music genres. Progressive rock, which was taking its first significant steps especially in England, required large instrumental and technical skills. They began to impose itself formed by excellent musicians groups, many of whom will become the major virtuosos in rock history. The new genre, rich in classic accents, folk, jazz, etc., Proved ideal for componeti de The ones. It was the idea, the cornerstone of progressive, to communicate primarily with the tools, because the evolution of instrumental technique rock allowed to broaden the musical horizon from the board of the song to that of the movement of the suite or even the symphony work.
The new beginning - I Krel
The turning point, in 1970, was the abandonment of the form - song to switch to more cutting undertaken as compositions. Those I then change their names (even if only for a single) in Krel, from the name of a planet in the story The verdict
It is essential for the transition from Krel to PFM meeting by four musicians with violinist and flutist Mauro Pagani (coming from Dalton). Virtuosity, the care dedicated to the arrangement and improvisation were the elements that the group, expanded to Pagani, was learning from King Crimson, Jethro Tull and by the exponents of the new rock (or pop music as it was then called in Italy with a meaning completely different from today). While continuing to make the session men and to participate in other people's projects (Di Ciocco entered for some time firmly in Equipe 84), I Krel were now devoting completely to the development of their new musical language. Because with their record era house found no space, they decided to follow Lucio Battisti, Mogul and others who abandoned the memories they founded their own independent label, Number One.
With the transition to the new label and the new genre it became necessary to also change its name: among the many proposals, the choice came down to Isotta Fraschini and Forneria Marconi chose the latter named after a bakery Chiari (Brescia) frequented by Pagani, to which they added Rewarded. According to the record the name was too long, but the objection, the group said, claiming that a name was more difficult to remember, most would be hard to forget. In fact the choice was As Well: was very progressive, more engaged content compared to the names of the era beat complexes.
With great courage and insight PFM, thanks to the impresario Franco Mamone and Francesco Sanavio, began a fruitful activity as a support group in the Italian concerts of some of the great foreign bands of the time: Procol Harum, Yes and Deep Purple. It was through these shows that the PFM was able to be known by the then great nation of rock fans.
In 1971 he participated in the "Festival of avant-garde and new trends" in Viareggio with the song The coach Hans, winning the edition tied with Mia Martini and Osanna.
The recording experience
In 1971 they released their first album of PFM, the single Impressions of September / The carriage of Hans, followed in early 1972 from the album of a Minute History. The song Impressions of September (Mussida and Pagani text by Mogol) quickly became one of their strong points and a classic of Italian music. The group decided to record the disc in direct in the studio, not to lose the impact and the energy transmitted from their already famous live performances. Among other things, just with this album for the first time in Italy was used the Moog. It seems that at that time even the PFM could afford it, so he borrowed the original single holding Italian importer.
The first album was a great success. At the end of 1972 came the second, for a friend. The music was more complex, more sophisticated, closer to progressive rock that was played in England at that time. On December 20 of that year, during a concert in Rome for the presentation of the new album, the PFM was heard by bassist and singer Greg Lake of Emerson, Lake & Palmer, who, thrilled, took them to London at the headquarters of Manticore in the presence of the lyricist and inspiration of King Crimson and then producer of Roxy Music, Peter Sinfield.
Peter Sinfield decided to write English texts of the parts of PFM and produce for the international market. also he decided to reduce the group's name in PFM, easier dell'impronunciabile, for English speakers, the original name. In January of 1973 Mussida and companions returned to London to record their first international at the Command Studio album, an English-language edition of the second album for a friend, called Photos of Ghosts and published by Manticore. The first British performances left the local critics rather chilly towards the group, considered "too Italian". Instead, the single from the album, Celebration (English version of It's party) had considerable radio success thanks to the beautiful synthesizer riff that became the group's trademark. On August 26, the PFM performed with great success at the Reading Festival, the most important British rock event of the time (on the same day they performed the Genesis and the French Magma).
After the performance of Reading, Photos of Ghosts entered both the UK chart which, unexpectedly, in the American Billboard. PFM was reported as one of the revelation of the year groups in the referendum of the major British music magazines (the Melody Maker and New Musical Express). The international live performances became frantic: PFM toured Europe with Sinfield and British saxophonist Mel Collins.
In 1973, bassist George Square was replaced by Patrick Djivas, coming from the area, who joined the group shortly before the recording of their third album, The island of nothing, which occurred in 1974 in London. Also this album was made an English version, The World Became the World, which was launched by Manticore in the American market. PFM then set off on his first American tour, which was drawn in 1974 the first official live album of the group, Cook (published in Italy as Live in the US).
Cook entered the Billboard charts. The tour from which the disc is suddenly allowed the PFM to play for 50 dates in the US and also to perform in concerts broadcast on television. This was the magic moment of the PFM, the Italian rock band that was more successful in the world. After four months of continuous activity in the United States alongside Peter Frampton (with whom he shared the management and that at the end of the highly successful series of concerts recorded Frampton comes alive), the components of the PFM began to get homesick and returned to Italy before completing the necessary path to "break through" permanently overseas.
In 1975 he entered the organic singer Bernardo Lanzetti. PFM, in fact, did not have a role vocalist. All, more or less alternately, were dedicated to singing, but this was the biggest flaw of making a little 'anonymous group (unlike the big band in which there was a front man, possibly with a good voice and charismatic presence ). In addition the new singer was familiar with the English language having studied in the United States. With Lanzetti the group began recording the new album, the fourth, titled Chocolate Kings. At the end of the disc promoziale tour, this time made only in the English version, the PFM played at the Royal Albert Hall in London in front of the Queen Mother. At that time, moreover, the group had a big success, even commercial, in Japan, where he went for a successful series of concerts. Subsequently, the PFM returned to the US and Britain for a new tour. Chocolate Kings, received a lukewarm overseas, instead had great success in the UK market. Particularly unfortunate was, from a promotional point of view, the choice of a crumpled picture of the American flag on the album cover.
Returning to Italy, Mauro Pagani, tired of the constant wandering and eager to start a personal musical journey, he left the group to pursue a solo career. With the Pagani exit ends, in fact, the period of greatest creativity and success for the PFM. Meanwhile the interest in the progressive genre began to decline rapidly. Almost all the big British and American bands began discentente parable from an artistic point of view and popularity. PFM also resented the new climate that will bring in a few months affirmation of punk rock and new wave.
The new American adventure
The group decided to still groped again the statement in the US market after a half flop of Chocolate Kings. They signed a contract with Elektra Asylum in Los Angeles. California members of the group were able to listen and absorb a lot of new music, being especially impressed by the jazz rock. During rehearsals for the new album met the Californian Greg Bloch violinist who took part in the fifth disc recording, released in 1977 and titled Jet Lag.
With Jet Lag PFM also founded his own record label, Zoo Records. In any case this record, whose vaguely jazz atmospheres favorably struck the US criticism, was also the last international period of PFM.
In 1978 he came out Passpartù, sung in Italian, who brought the sound of the group to a more traditional size more to the public and to the Italian market. The beautiful cover of the album was entrusted to a rookie Andrea Pazienza. The musical and artistic breakthrough of the group created problems with Bernardo Lanzetti who left soon after, dedicating himself to a solo career, and retracing, at least initially, the way musically most "American" of precendente embodiment of PFM.
In concert with Fabrizio De André
In 1979, the PFM again met Fabrizio De André (with whom he collaborated in the time of the ones for the realization of the album The Good News) and the Genoese singer-songwriter made a tour which will is a lucky pair of live albums ( famous the rearranged version key progressive de fisherman).
As learned with De André was very important for the group, which began to pay more attention to the texts and communicative aspect of their music. The group had meanwhile added multi-instrumentalist Lucio "Violin" Fabbri, while Franz Di Ciocco assumed the role of front man and singer. Di Ciocco was therefore accompanied, during the concert, drummer Walter Calloni who later became a full member of the group.
The new Italian success
The result of this new musical and stylistic incarnation was the album Playing play of 1980. The album was a great success in Italy and PFM was able to carve out a popularity angle even in a time when progressive rock was now "old stuff" . After the release of Flavio Premoli hard, tired of life "on the road," he left the band without being replaced (at least until the exit of Miss Baker, in which the figure Vittorio Cosma keyboards).
the next album too, How are you doing on the banks of the city (1981), had some success. The music is oriented to a more immediate and more rock in line with the tastes of the '80s and, finally, are the members of the group to write the lyrics. Franz Di Ciocco, now man-image, becomes the well-known and recognizable face of this new incarnation of the PFM. In many respects Playing play and how you like the banks of the city anticipate the affirmation of the Italian rock of the following years (Vasco Rossi, Litfiba, etc.). The following long tour, which had a great response from the public, was made into the live performance album (the fourth after Cook and the two with De André), released in 1982.
In later years came Pfm? Pfm! (1984), containing the piece Captains Courageous who obtained a good success in Italy even outside the circle of connoisseurs of the group, and Miss Baker (1987), albums criticized for even a dance approach.
The years of silence and the return
After the experience not exciting last disc, in 1987, members of the PFM decided, by mutual agreement, not to play more in the public and each component sought new ideas in personal collaborations or solo experience: Officially, however, the PFM He has never dissolved.
After a few years, they began to circulate rumors of a possible return on the group scenes. In 1996 he released four times celebratory CD Live 10 Years - 1971-1981, collection of bootleg recorded over the years by the band happy with the very interesting material for fans, from the origins of the group (when its infancy still performed by King Crimson cover, Jethro Tull, etc.) to the international period to period Playing Playing.
The next year, ten years after the last unpublished work, PFM returned with the album Ulysses (1997), which was followed by a number of great live concerts. Ulysses is a concept album dedicated to the theme of travel, inspired by Homer's poem, whose lyrics are by Vincenzo Incenzo.
In 1998, he released the double album live www.pfmpfm.it: Best, taken from the tour followed to Ulysses, who consecrated the return to full success. Training are part of Franz Di Ciocco, Patrick Djivas, Mussida Franco and Flavio Premoli (back in the group after 17 years), accompanied on the tour by supporting drummer Roberto Gualdi (who still works with the PFM), by Australian Phil Drummy on horns and Stefano Tavernese the violin.
In 2000 came the Serendipity album that bears witness to the desire of the group to continue to make music and to experiment with new ideas.
There was a new, long series of concerts around the world that culminated in 2002 with the return to Japan (where the PFM had already been a huge success 25 years earlier). The event was also celebrated with the release of another double-live album, Live in Japan 2002, a record that shows how the PFM still owns his great communicative power and the ability to engage the audience in live performances, from always one of his strengths. The album also contains a precious treat for fans of progressive rock, the beautiful Sea of Memory sung by Peter Hammill (former lead singer of Van der Graaf Generator). In addition to the four official members, the formation of this album contains Lucio Fabbri and drummer Peter MONTERISI temporarily replaced Roberto Gualdi for previous commitments could not participate in the Japanese tour.
On August 29, 2003, part of the "Siena: the aromatic cities" (organized every year by Mauro Pagani), the group met in the "classical" training for a concert in Piazza del Campo. The recording of this concert was released on CD on 21 January 2005. Special edition of the album was also accompanied by a DVD; Curiously, the lineup of the CD and the DVD only partially fit together: Some tracks are missing on one over the other, and vice versa.
For the twenty-fifth anniversary of the historic tour of 1979, in 2004 the band started to tour the show PFM sings De Andrè with which the group paid tribute to the great Faber.
For the new world tour in 2005, PFM has stopped for the first time in Brazil (Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte), then to Bethlehem in Pennsylvania (USA) for participation in the "Night of Legends" a special event dedicated to a great artist of world music. PFM was then performed in Mexico City (two consecutive show for too much public attendance) and in Canada, having a good success to the press and public.
In 2005, the PFM has launched a new project: Dracula, a "rock opera" on the wide-ranging work pattern as Tommy, The Who, and the famous Jesus Christ Superstar by Andrew Lloyd Webber. On October 14, 2005 she released their new album, with a selection of 11 songs taken from the work and interpreted by the same PFM. 4 March 2006 followed Dracula's theatrical debut, produced by David Zard (already behind the construction of Notre-Dame de Paris by Richard Cocciante) which soon will follow the release of a double album containing the entire rock opera starring the voices of theater actors.
Throughout 2006, the band has alternated two shows: PFM sings De André States and imagination. Born from an idea of Iaia De Capitani, manager of the group since 2002, the States of Imagination sees the band playing and improvising on some videos, in the construction of a highly personal and imaginative path, in which music becomes the means to accompany viewers to ' domestic movies. In this way, the music, the intent, goes beyond the role of the soundtrack to rise to poetic moment and instant creativity.
In spring 2006 Flavio Premoli leaves the PFM  and is replaced by keyboardist Gianluca Tagliavini, who had played with the band already in the American tour 2005 and tour in Korea and Japan in early 2006. On 30 September 2006, the Publishers public gathered volume PFM 1971-2006, 35 years of imaginative rock, written by journalist Donato Zoppo. It is a "bio-discography" and is the most comprehensive publication ever written on PFM, with prefaces by Mauro Pagani, Vincenzo Incenzo and Greg Lake.
November 24, 2006 released the double CD album + DVD United imagination, studio recording new songs presented in the homonymous tour throughout 2006. It 'the first album after the second exit from Premoli group, which still figure like author of two of the pieces. As PFM members are credited only Mussida, Djivas and Di Ciocco, with "Special Guest" Fabbri "Featuring" Gianluca Tagliavini.
For the future it is expected the project in PFM CLASSIC. The group should re-read, with arrangements by Alessandro Cadario and improvisations, the compositions of the greatest classical musicians. The project, which would begin in the fall of
- Franco Mussida - guitar, vocals
- Franz Di Ciocco - drums, percussion and vocals
- Patrick Djivas - Low
- Lucio Fabbri - violin, keyboards and guitar
- Roberto Gualdi - second drummer
- Gianluca Tagliavini - keyboards
- George Square - bass
- Mauro Pagani - flute, violin and voice
- Bernardo Lanzetti - voice
- Greg Bloch - Violin
- Walter Calloni - Battery
- Vittorio Cosma - keyboards
- Flavio Premoli - keyboards, vocals
- Piero MONTERISI - second drummer
Studio albums and live
- A minute History (1972)
- For a Friend (1972)
- Photos of Ghosts (1973) (English version of To a friend)
- The island of Nothing (1974)
- The World Became the World (1974) (English version of The Island of nothing)
- Cook (1974) (released in Italy as Live in USA)
- Chocolate Kings (1975)
- Jet Lag (1977)
- Passpartù (1978)
- Fabrizio De André Concert - Arrangements PFM (1979)
- Fabrizio De André Concert - Arrangements PFM Vol. 2 (1980)
- Playing play (1980)
- How's the banks of the city (1981)
- Performance (1982)
- PFM? PFM! (1984)
- Miss Baker (1987)
- 10 Years Live - 1971-1981 (1996) (CD four times)
- Ulysses (1997)
- Www.pfmpfm.it (the Best) (1999)
- Serendipity (2000)
- Live in Japan 2002 ([])
- Piazza del Campo (2004)
- Dracula (Rock Opera) (2005)
- States of Imagination (2006) (CD + DVD)
This page may have been translated using the Google automatic translate engine; please excuse any mistakes this translation might have.