The name translates almost literally as enlightenment (naturally, this is a concept someone who uses the nickname of bhikkhu can get on board with). It also specifically refers to a philosophical/social/political movement that swept through Europe in the eighteenth century. Generally it is referred to as the Age of Reason. In Germany it was called Aufklärung. The band says that this movement was a cultural break, and they are making a similar break by revisiting a musical movement from the past. However, why a group of Italian guys chose the German form of this term is anyone’s guess.
The band was formed in 1990 from members of a band called The Eclipse, and the prototype of AUFKLÄRUNG. The main lineup for the band would consist of Fabio Guadalupi on guitars, Marco Mancarella on keyboards, Michele Martello on guitars, Massimo Migini on drums, Luciano Rubini on bass, and Edoardo Lecci with vocals and flute. They recorded their first demo, “Jetho Van Hall” in 1990. By 1994, they had enough material for an album, and recorded “De’ La’ Tempesta … L’Oscuro Piacere.” Nine CD copies were made, and strategically distributed. One was given to collector Marco Barcarotti, who then made a tape for Alberto Nucci from Arlequins. Nucci then wrote an article about it. Elio Ribotta followed suit, and wrote an article for Nobody’s Land. Nothing pays off like good press, and they were contacted by the likes of Vinyl Magic, WMMS, Pick Up, and Cygnus Records. That fall, the band was also honored to perform at the Amnesty International prog festival in Terni.
Pick Up records ended up releasing the album, but there would be a shake up in the band. Lecci had a problem concerning military service, and would only be represented as a flautist on the album. The lead vocalist for the band’s only album to date was Asgard’s Kikko Grosso. The current lineup consists of Marco Mancarella, Luciano Rubini, Massimo Migini, and singer Massimiliano Gargiulo. However, the group is currently without a recording contract.
Mancarella’s description of the band and its music are quite eclectic, and philosophical. He also sites just about every style of music, and classic prog band as influences. My take is that you could probably narrow it down to somewhere between Genesis, ELP, the classic Italian bands of the ’70s, and a touch of Pink Floyd. It may have begun in the ’90s, but the sound is classic ’70s.