FM – The Italian Job
Given that yours truly is a sucker for both live albums and FM’s melodically exquisite 2018 offering entitled “Atomic Generation”, it should come as no surprise that this 17-track live album recorded at the Frontiers Rock Festival in Milan back in April 2018 feels like a most welcome addition to the British rockers’ discography.
The anthemic “Black Magic” kicks things off and from thereon it is a cool and pleasant romp through some of the band’s best and most memorable tunes. It is quite obvious that FM are enjoying themselves and having fun, which is inspiring. Listening to the crowd singing along to “Let Love Be the Leader” is heaps of fun and the inclusion of the atmospheric “Metropolis” half-way through the performance is a great move. The groovy “Over You”, the vibrant “Tough It Out”, and the aforementioned “Black Magic” are the standout cuts and truly reveal just how well-written and glorious many of FM’s tunes are. The melancholy “Someday” is also a treat to listen to and deserves praise.
The sound is sufficiently crisp and clear yet neither lifeless nor sterile, so all is good in that department and every instrument is clearly audible and present in the mix. The vocals courtesy of Steve Overland are strong and FM sound as confident and determined as ever. In addition, the crowd sounds appreciative and enthusiastic, which is obviously a huge plus since we are dealing a live album.
“The Italian Job” is a highly solid and entertaining output and it shows that FM’s particular brand of melodic hard rock works like a charm in a live setting. Good stuff for sure and worth exploring.