Christine Plays Viola is a four piece Italian Dark Wave band formed in Pratola Peligna in 2008. On March 22, 2014, they released their second full-length album, titled “Vacua”.
Inspired by the “Black Paintings” of Francisco Goya, “Vacua” holds 15 strong compositions, although I am of the impression that the band was inspired by the “Black Paintings” even before recording their EP, “Leocadia”, which was released in 2013. I feel this way because Leocadia Weiss was Goya’s companion and her name was given to a mural by the painter as one of his series of 14 “Black Paintings”.
Rightfully so, 3 out of the 15 songs of “Vacua” come from the EP “Leocadia”: “Leocadia”, “Whoosing Dissolution”, and “Scattered In The Dust”.
The album opens with the haunting soundscapes of the instrumental “Awakening of the Damned” followed by the tribal rhythms of “Wrapped In Spiral”.
“Slaughter of the Black Sun” holds a cute new wave melody on the verse played by Fabrizio Giampietro’s guitar and keyboards, while singer Massimo Ciampani’s vocals on the final verse of the atmospheric “In Silence Withdrawn” takes the song to another level..
Desio Presutti appears to be a bass player that any new wave band would trust with his nicely crafted bass lines.
Giampietro’s guitar style reminds me of bands such as the Sad Lovers & Giants, or The Chameleons, and I think he is the catalyst of this chemical reaction going by the name Christine Plays Viola, since he also plays the keyboards…
Melancholy pours out of “Vacua” with songs like “Rejecting the Limitations of Fate”, and “Appointment with Death”, while mysterious figures are dancing on air to songs like the instrumental “Sublime Ravings”.
Christine Plays Viola is a band whose new album, “Vacua”, takes the term “Dark Wave” a few steps ahead.