sabato, ottobre 16, 2021 12:28

Antonius Rex – Official Bio (Biografia Ufficiale)

In Milan in 1968 the composer Antonio Bartoccetti founded the groups Jacula and Antonius Rex, with a view to transform into music a series of theological-philosophical and esoteric observations, which were the fruit of a close association with the mystic Franz Parthenzy. In London in 1969 Antonio Bartoccetti managed to cut the first “embryonic” LP, entitled “In Cauda Semper Stat Venenum”. Realising that this work would be difficult to market, designer and producer Travers issued just a few hundred copies in a plain black and white cover and gave them away as a symbolic and magical gift to monasteries and made no attempt to get the LP distributed.

In 1972 the same musicians (Bartoccetti vocals-guitar-bass, Norton voice-piano-synthesizer, Tiring church organ), cut the second album under the name Jacula, entitled “Tardo Pede In Magiam Versus”: the album, while qualitatively valid and extremely innovative, turned out to be a commercial flop: Jacula broke up and was reborn at the same time as Antonius Rex. During his military service in 1973 Antonio Bartoccetti thought about a new group and a new album, many songs of which had already been composed by Doris Norton and him in 1971.

In 1974 the two musicians went back to London where they got to know Albert Goodman, an aristocratic practioner of the occult, wealthy owner of country estates with his own castle and indipendent Darkness record label and hobby percussionist. After ten days of intense rehearsal, the three of them, together with engineer Coldweiss, went into the Mondial Sound Studios in Milan, famous for its then state-of-the-art technology and recorded the third album (the first as Antonius Rex), entitled “Neque Semper Arcum Tendit Rex”. Produced by Mr.Albert Goodman…. the six recorded tracks are typically dark-progressive and meticulous to the point of madness. Albert was delighted with the result and spared no expense producing the album, which was recorded in just 38 days, to which can be added another ten for the mixing carried out by the excellent engineer Coldweis.

Albert Goodman went back to London with the master tape, published a demo LP with a really strange black and white cover, including on the front magical symbols and a “diabolical” letter dated 1624. Albert Goodman was good friends with two directors of the Vertigo record label. The label thought the album was great, but they were not so sure about the cover: that cover with those symbols and that letter were just too much! They even suggested dumping the song “Devil Letter”, but the group had no intention of doing that and were certainly not inclined to change a single thing.

Albert was very un happy about all of this…. Antonio Bartoccetti and Doris Norton had a good laugh about it and accepted it as sign of magic destiny. In fact, Giulio Tasnad, the Rumanian esoteric expert, declared publicly in 1975 that, whoever listened to the song “Devil Letter”, read the Letter backwards on a Friday night and put eight of the symbols featured on the LP cover on a table, would be absolutely certain to have a close encounter with the Prince Of Darkness. After this event however, Antonius Rex lost momentum, record company interest waned and the desire to record new music was missing. Even when the wealthy Jewish record company editor, Mr.Daniele, who, together with his two American partners was highly impressed with the album “Neque Semper Arcum Tendit Rex”, wanted Antonius Rex for new albums at all costs: Antonius Rex were just interested in money.

The guiding principle for 1977 became “only money” because as Antonio Bartoccetti explained: “when you have a son, life changes and you have to start thinking about him as well”. For this reason the album “Zora” (pre-recorded in a hurry in a private studio in 1975), in both its first and second editions turned out to be an uninspiring work, decidedly absurd…. songs from the second album “Tardo Pede In Magiam Versus” were included with just the edition of a few drum fills from Albert. Doris Norton played keyboards, but between one recording session and another she was breast-feeding her son, even if the progressive-piano of “Necromancer” is still fantastic. Antonio Bartoccetti played Gibson guitar live in the console, smoking and anxious to get it over and done with. He sang just two words in “Necromancer” but then got his friend Franco Mussita to sing “Zora”.

Tickle continued to dish out money, some of which was used to self produce the album “Anno Demoni”, which the group defined as an appropriate document of electronic-dark…. the same thing happened with the album “Ralefun”, recorded in 1979 at the request of Mr.Daniel in Munich: good compositions but recorded in too much of a hurry and without much care, with a lousy sound and poor mixing (Colin Coldweis was not at the controls)….. the mixing was done without the knowledge of the group. Despite all this the album “Ralefun” enjoyed a certain success. So as not to disappoint their fans, Antonius Rex, with the money got after breaking the contract with Emanuele Daniele, went into the 24 track Zanibelli Regson (Milan) studios in May 1980 and self produced, in a completely indipendent and creative way, their album entitled “Praeternatural”. This album was a limited edition for the Musik Research record label and the musicians sold autographed copies only to fans from all over the world, who came at periodic intervals to visit them in their Convent-Castle.

2004__”MAGIC RITUAL” (DVD side 1, CD side 2)

2005__ Album “MAGIC RITUAL” (only LP)

2006__ Album “SWITCH ON DARK” (LP, digipack) including video Perpetual Adoration

2009__ Album “PER VIAM” (LP, digipack) including video Micro Demons

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