ALBUM REVIEW: Georgio ‘the Dove’ Valentino – The Future Lasts a Long Time
Georgio ‘the Dove’ Valentino’s special signature is difficult to define. His work cannot be encapsulated in a certain style as he remains dedicated to making art in its most pure form: personal, authentic, imaginative and continuously inviting to multiple auditions, as the more you listen, the more the magic of his universe is revealed to you. His art is great indeed, but his art is also wise. Always a puzzle to be solved, with references, symbols and a personal touch which doesn’t even expect to be deciphered, remaining mysterious although with the clues in there at sight.
The Future Lasts a Long Time represents a piece of art strongly interconnected with previous own works, with personal heroes’ works, with movies and literature, an artistic statement in an original, and sometimes subversive, way. No matter what the back cover reveals about the song authors, the album is not a collection of covers or of re-imagined songs, at least not in the sense of Lanegan’s ‘Imitations’ or Bowies’ ‘Pin Up’. It’s something completely different, an eternalist vision on pieces of life, erasing the boundaries between past, present and future.
The choice of songs is part of the creative act as well. The reinterpretations of Aztec Camera, Piero Ciampi, Grey Lotus, The Byrds, Mickey Newbury, David Bowie and, last not least, Charles Aznavour, have as fils rouge a beautiful idea expressed by Valentino itself on the album: “Everything I know I learned from records / (Though I often misheard the words)”, one of the best metaphoric explanations of how music enters and alters our DNA ever since a young age. At the same time, it’s a clue to understanding that no matter how Georgio ‘the Dove’ Valentino does his reinterpretations, he is always keeping a trace of the songs core initial artistic message.
The overwhelming message of desperation and loss is the same on the Aznavour’s chanson as it is in the upbeat Valentino’s version. Ciampi’s ‘Sobborghi’ is practically re-written with original lyrics changed but it still keeps the bitter visceral everlasting regret that cannot be hidden. ‘Let Your Love Decide’, ‘Sunshine’ or ‘As the World Falls Down’ sooth the need for good covers by respecting the original or bringing personal tribute to great songs and artists. And as proof of mastership, he even brings a cover within a cover by mashing up ‘Song for Syd Barrett’ with ‘8 Miles High’.
His own songs, ‘The Stranger’ – the first song from Valentino’s debut album (‘You Brought a Knife to a Gunfight’) and ‘Satyros Ironykos’ coming from his latest previous release, built up the perfect container for this ubiquitous transformation of music that is being kept close, under the representation of The Future Lasts a Long Time.
A legion of musicians stands by Georgio ‘the Dove’ Valentino on this release, a full circle of friends, mentors and collaborators are part of the album’s sound and also of the musical scene in which he has performed for the last decade, allowing creative musical arrangements that use various instruments such as violin, saxophone, mellotron, slide guitar vibraphone, 6-string bass, organs and more: Tuxedomoon members Blaine L. Reininger and Steven Brown with exquisite appearances on ‘Let Your Love Decide’, ‘Sobborghi’ or ‘Hier Encore’, members of the Société des Mélancoliques, members of Surf Me Up Scotty, Grey Lotus, 13 Dead Trees.
The album is presented as the last of Georgio ‘the Dove’ Valentino’s career and it’s currently being performed in a farewell tour. In a different universe, the most optimistic minds refuse to believe that a 10-year independent and uncompromising music career comes to an end.
Released independently in November 2017.
Available on Shiny Beast music
Sleeve art by Maria Panourgia
Georgio ‘the Dove’ Valentino – Hier Encore