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Questo È Amore

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Album Review

Questo è Amore is a double compilation album, put together by Lucio Dalla himself, that collects some of his favorite and yet less well-known songs, arranged in reverse chronological order from 2011 to 1970. The first disc opens with four previously unreleased recordings: "La Leggenda del Prode Radamès," a 1940s ditty by the Quartetto Cetra, a piano-led take on the achingly beautiful Neapolitan standard "Anema e Core," the brand-new single "Anche se il Tempo Passa (Amore)," and a newly recorded version of "Meri Luis" (originally included in his 1980 masterpiece Dalla album) with guest Marco Mengoni, of the Italian X Factor fame. From that point forward Dalla revisits his entire discography, picking two tracks from every album he made between 2009's Angoli Nel Cielo to 1977's Com'è Profondo il Mare (the first album for which Dalla decided to write his own lyrics), and one from each of his early records (between 1970's Storie di Casa Mia and 1976's Automobili), when he used to work with different lyricists — most notably poet Roberto Roversi. Amazingly, the end product is as good, if not better, than a standard greatest-hits compilation. For one thing, while some of his bigger hits (particularly from the '80s) may have been victims to whatever production technique was considered commercially mandatory at the time, and sound today a little outdated, these songs — minor only in reputation — showcase both a sterling consistency and a uniqueness to Dalla's songwriting that belies the facile generalization that he has been in the creative doldrums since the mid-'80s. "Tu Non Mi Basti Mai," "Mambo," "Tu Parlavi una Lingua Meravigliosa," or virtually any song included here is an exemplary representative of Dalla's true originality as a composer and singer. Obviously, since all the key songs are missing, this may not be the right place to understand either Dalla's popularity or enormous historical importance in Italian pop music, nor could it be deemed an apt summary of his career. Rather, Questo è Amore should be taken as a sort of rarities or B-sides compilation — but an exemplary one at that, one that makes an airtight case for the inimitable talents of Lucio Dalla.


Born: March 4, 1943 in Bologna, Italy

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

As the title of one of his most famous songs states, Lucio Dalla was born on March 4, 1943, and became one of the most important, as well as most popular, figures in Italian pop music of the second half of the 20th century. Dalla's career was a fascinating musical rollercoaster through several distinct periods. More than once he managed to enrapture and then enrage fans and critics with his sudden changes of musical direction, which were, as is often the case in Italy, invariably perceived as sheer...
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Questo È Amore, Lucio Dalla
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