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(75:24, Dreaming Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Maman 4:31 2. Je Veux Te Chanter Une Chanson 0:30 3. Enfant Beau Comme le Vent 7:50 4. I Have a Dream 6:04 5. Go Go Go 8:05 6. Tristesse 4:24 7. La Mer Des Larmes 7:13 8. Lever De Soleil 6:28 9. La Tombee De la Rosee 3:56 LINEUP: Rose Marie Denise Doblies – vocals Jean-Christophe Allier – keyboards
Prolusion. "La Rosee" is the result of a collaboration between Swiss opera singer, performance artist and composer Rose-Marie-Denise DOBLIES and French keyboardist and composer Jean-Christophe ALLIER, the latter citing artists like Klaus Schulze and Tomita as inspirations. Their album was issued by the Dreaming label in 2008, a branch of Musea Records specializing in ambient and new age productions with progressive leanings.
Analysis. As far as new age tinged music goes, this production belongs somewhere on the outer edges of this particular type of music. Not so much due to the music itself, but because of the vocals which are the dominating aspect of this excursion. The keyboards of Allier provide the foundation for the compositions with low key ambient passages and electronic rhythms, spiced with symphonic textures on select occasions. The only composition where the musical aspect of these creations really takes off, namely Go-Go-Go, this evolvement is intertwined with vocal delivery and content. Apart from this one exception the synths have a secondary role throughout. Doblies is an accomplished vocalist and skilled rather than talented, as far as my understanding of vocals go her voice is pretty much as developed as it can be. She covers a vast array of ranges and a plethora of different tones and textures, impeccably delivered throughout. If this production were rated on skill and technique, a really high rating would be in order. The main focus on this album is vocal experimentation and improvisation. Doblies gets to showcase all facets of her voice, from aggressive hoarse and angry shouting to gentle whispering, from tear-filled shaky moans to majestic operatic vocals. Her voice is used to convey lyrics spoken and sung, as well as an instrument of its own through tribal-like wordless chanting to just as wordless screams and moans. At best her voice adds emotions and atmosphere by the bucketful, creating soaring, captivating sonic tapestries brilliantly contrasted by the toned down, relatively simplistic synth foundation. At worst, at least as far as my enjoyment of these excursions go, it is summed up in the song I Have A Dream, 6 minutes of one phrase repeated over and over from start to finish, seemingly trying to explore as many different forms of deliveries as possible for the four words repeated: improvised for sure, where the focus seems to be exploring the universe of experimental delivery. This track in particular, as well as quite a few others, made me think of a certain Yoko Ono. Probably quite different in style, but I believe she would have applauded and recognized the approach on these specific ventures. This is a very mixed album overall; many listeners will find a few compositions they like, some will find several, but I'd surmise that the number of people that will truly enjoy all aspects of this creation is highly limited.
Conclusion. "La Rosee" is a production that first and foremost caters to the needs of those who find skilled vocal performances interesting, and in particular those with a taste for highly experimental, improvised vocal deliveries. From a musical point of view it is less interesting – the innovative features used throughout are explored extensively in themselves rather than utilized as elements of a greater whole, thus reducing the creative value at least in this listener's mind. As far as a target crowd goes, I'd suggest that fans of Yoko Ono's vocal performances might be ones most interested in this album, as well as other female vocalists active or with a desire to be active in vocal-dominated music of the avant-garde variety.
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