"Rio Lapis", Spettro Family's latest release, is actually a 4 song EP that was released back in 2012 in a limited edition cassette format only. Now, this work is re-released and re-invented in cd format, with new artwork and 2 bonus tracks, making itself accessible to a wider audience. In fact, this mini album is the first ever Spettro Family release in cd! All their previous works were released in limited 7'' vinyl and cassette formats, some of which are long sold out.
To those familiar with Spettro Family's musical style, this re-release is a pure eye candy, aesthetically very pleasing and satisfying. Visually, the 4 panel digipack comes with a folded 4 page insert, both featuring well designed artwork based on real model photography. Also included, are extensive liner notes by the artist himself, regarding album's initial conception and making. It is revealed that "Rio Lapis" was actually the name of an existing abandoned hotel somewhere in seaside Italy, that inspired and motivated Steve Spettro (the man behind Spettro Family) to create this album.
Musically, the album runs about 28 minutes, which surprisingly are sufficient to fully absorb the listener to Spettro Family's universe: A musical journey to a mysterious haunted place, full of melodies and sampled sounds, which blend together and seem frightening but also beguiling. A soundtrack to a mystery horror film that makes you travel in time and in your imagination, bringing up old memories and dreams. There you can find many things: weird sound effects, piano melodies, modern synths, children's voices, old italian chants, cinematic soundscapes. I think it's a shame that Spettro Family hasn't done any film soundtracks so far.
Although this album should be listened as a whole, the tracks that stand out are: "Rio Lapis" the album's main track that nicely incorporates all of Spettro Family's elements, "Villa Sarina" a track to be found also on Spettro Family's "Glow in the Dark" LP vinyl album and "Magnetofono" one of the two bonus tracks, that really sounds creepy, like a haunted self-driven tape recorder.
"Rio Lapis’’ is availiable from the american label ANNIHILVS and also directly from Spettro Family. Looking forward to similar cd re-releases in the future!

Review by Stefan Stavrides