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 DSD music magazine
http://www.dieshellsuit.co.uk

There’s something very universal about instrumental post-rock, and indeed instrumental music in general. There are no awkward accents or singing in second languages, no unfortunate lyrics, just the international language of music. Penelope Sulla Luna from Italy is a perfect example of how great music transcends borders and countries.
There’s a danger in writing an album of this genre that it can seem staid and clichéd, and it’s a trap many bands fall into, or try to avoid with gimmicks or (shudder) singing. It’s all too easy to just be Explosions in the Sky light, no matter how good your ideas are. And whilst Penelope Sulla Luna do lift some ideas from Explosions (the guitar work is very similar in particular) there is a difference in atmosphere that sets it apart more than any instrumentation ever will. Explosions songs are on the whole gentle pieces, veering from sadness to great joy. Penelope Sulla Luna have the same soaring climaxes, it’s true, but whilst the peaks are similar the troughs are much darker and more sinister, with hints of Mogwai as well as heavier bands like Neurosis and Keelhaul.
My only real criticism is that in a couple of songs there are some slightly odd scratchy noises, that actually sound a bit like corrupt MP3s, and I can’t quite work out whether they’re part of the music or a defect in the CD. Either way, it’s not enough to detract from my enjoyment of what is otherwise a fantastic record, and one that grows with every listen.

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 SUBBA-CULTCHA
http://www.subba-cultcha.com

Post rock for people who don’t like post rock?
Penelope sulla Luna make post-rock…but make no mistake, this statement is not to be read as ‘sound like Mogwai, Slint, Don Caballero dot dot dot etc.’ Oh no, PsL actually make music that is both immediate and rewarding; grafting gentile progressions to chugging chords in what could almost be a single movement.
One thing that Penelope…do have in common with Mogwai is a penchant for bafflingly inappropriate song titles, ‘Space Donuts’ anyone? Yet this is a mere distraction, an irrelevance even – look further than the sleeve what lurks beneath the surface is an enthralling voyage. ‘Butterfly Drama 1′ is a real slow burner, discordant and harmonious it builds to a steady melt down, albeit in the most dignified way possible.
While ‘My Little Empire’ is perhaps more likely to be the bands back yard than a league of small nations it is this humble, but well realised aspect that allows the band to be so expressive. Each track is a pleasure to hear but in your heart of hearts you know that this will never change anything not that that’s ever the point. Still, cracking record though!

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 THE SKINNY
http://www.theskinny.co.uk

Thus the ranks of the heavyweight post-rock genre swell even more as this Italian quintet toss their artistic hat into the ring. Opening full number Back to the Teenage suggests they fancy themselves as something of a doomy outfit akin to Pelican. It works to some extent, although the production here is too polite to really convey the weight and misanthropy required for that kind of sound. The record is far more at ease when Penelope sulla Luna veer towards the more ethereal twiddlings of Explosions in the Sky. They construct numerous pleasant and occasionally seductive swells of noise and the sinister Melodia is a particularly good example of pace and dramatic tension, enjoying more than six minutes of gradual building before emerging into a direct, driving refrain. Though My Little Empire doesn’t quite compete with many of the genre’s leading lights, it is certainly an admirable piece of work and could translate beautifully to a live setting.

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 PENNY BLACK MUSIC
http://www.pennyblackmusic.co.uk

“Penelope Sulla Luna from Modugno, Lombardia, Italy bring a frivolous perspective to the instrumental genre known as ‘post-rock’. No opera, no pasta, not even noodlings as ‘My Little Empire’ leans more on joie-de-vivre than common belief usually holds possible for the genre. The album sleeve looks way too psychedelic for its own good too. These eight tracks were built in linear manner, like Roman roads, but equally lead through gardens of delight.
Wizzing around your ears with touches of loud, melodic extravaganza and with much less lines of explanation, Penelope On The Moon (to give them their English translation) sum up the greatest Mogwai and Tortoise hits, on one single album. Those bands stood at the threshhold of post-rock. Penelope Sulla Luna do not offer much that is new, yet the Italian fivesome elaborate on their ideas with genuine notes in place of sombre and urban drones. There is never a dull moment on ‘My Little Empire’ and it proves a very nice place to hang out.”

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