Ebla, Nineveh, Constantinople, Alexandria, Ugarit, and Baghdad: six great Middle Eastern cities with a glorious past, six legendary libraries devastated by civilization wars.
Sparkle is the first spark; the one that ignited the fatal blaze which reduced six of the greatest symbols of knowledge to ashes. Both captivating and oppressive, Sparkle pays tribute to those fallen and yet mighty, jewels of ancient times.
The Ebla Tablets, intense and frightening, seems to be a prelude to that fateful destruction. The somberness of the situation is revealed by a deep melody and a stimulating rhythm. Fascinated, we listen to this musical tragedy continuing with King Ashurbanipal.
Soon we discover the legendary library of Constantinople, which was blemished and destroyed during the Crusades. A disenchanted and gloomy atmosphere is slowly building up and nostalgia takes us even further into the fiery sounds of this album.
Our ears on fire, we enter The Royal Library of Alexandria, the epitome of Sparkle. With that track, we fully grasp the depth of despair that we thought was only looming. Cries fill the great library and flames start licking the walls. Fire spreads from walls to shelves and when it reaches the scrolls, our very soul is on fire. One would like to believe something could remain from the ashes, but nothing can escape from this ruthless destruction, nothing may flee these stifling sonorities.
The obsessive background theme builds up a terrible and irreversible atmosphere to the most important and the most accomplished track of this album, not unlike the Library of Alexandria, which was the most famous and the most complete of the Antiquity. Then comes the desolation times. The blaze is finally down, leaving a bleak and ashen landscape: Ugarit. This disaster has left nothing but the memories of a past Gold Era.
Yet, Sparkle represents the spark that enlightens a dark and blurred future. Thus the album concludes with The House Of Wisdom, and turns quite easily the tragedy into Hope.
Bewildering and staggering, melodious and melancholic, harmonious and nostalgic, Sparkle is the stunning witness of the eternal revival of Knowledge, a story we are being told, a dramatic melody we listen to, a ray of hope we keep inside.