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Tracklist: 1. Le cri de la terre 5:52 2. Eternite 4:33 3. Tri-un 5:11 4. La Vie du sonora 6:50 5. La porte 1:56 6. Mr. Z 6:16 7. Energies 2:51 8. Horizon pourpre 6:32 9. Aurore boreale 4:32 All music: by A. Chiarazzo, except tracks 5 & 9: by T. Masse. All lyrics: by Denis Carnevali. Line-up: Alain Chiarazzo - guitars, vocals Thierry Masse - keyboards Fabrice Di Mondo - drums & percussion Bruno Ramousse - bass, backing vocals With: Francois Fiddler - violin (on tracks 2, 3, & 8) Produced by A. Chiarazzo & F. Di Mondo. Recorded & mixed mainly by Thomas Ivaldi at "Hyperion" studio, Marseille, France. Mastered at "Studio Translab", Paris. Artworks by Paul Whitehead (also Genesis, Van Der Graaf Generator, and many others)
Prologue. As far as I know, "Le Cri de la Terre" is the fourth album by Eclat. Until now, I was not acquainted with the creation of this band (the name of which, as I assume, should mean Brightness in English).
The Album. On the whole, the music that is featured on this album is more than merely original. So I was really surprised to hear a couple of episodes that rather clearly display the influences of King Crimson circa "Discipline" (on track 7) and Ozric Tentacles (on 8). Fortunately, these are very short episodes. So I'd better forget them because on the whole, I am very impressed by Eclat's music. While generally, Eclat's stylistics on "Le Cri de la Terre" can be defined as Classic Symphonic Progressive with the elements of Prog-Metal, musically, this album is not that uniform. La Vie du sonora (track 4) is the only song on the album. Although it is mostly based on the vocals, the instrumental arrangements flow throughout it. So it can't be called differently than the Classic Art-Rock song. Apart from La Vie du sonora, a brief vocal (choral, to be precise) episode is featured in the beginning of Eternite (2). All of the other tracks on the album are purely instrumental, though three of them differ from the others by various aspects. Mr. Z (6), which represents nothing else but a usual instrumental ballad, is probably the least interesting track on the album. La Porte and Aurore boreale (tracks 5 & 9) were both performed solely by Thierry Masse. The first of them contains exclusively the parts of piano. Diverse, complex, and virtuosi, these piano passages and solos remind me of Classical Academic Music. The last track on the album consists of diverse interplay between passages of a few synthesizers. This is a slightly unusual and very interesting piece of Classic Symphonic Progressive, and it doesn't much matter that the majority of those passages were overdubbed. Well, it's time to describe the best compositions of "Le Cri de la Terre", and these are all of the remaining tracks on the album. The compositions that are similar among themselves in most of the structural parameters are the following: Le Cri de la Terre (1), already the mentioned Eternite (2), Tri-un (3), Energies (7), and Horizon pourpre (8). Stylistically, all five of these compositions represent a hard-edged Classic Art-Rock with the elements of Prog-Metal. Incidentally, on one of them, namely, Energies, also presents a solid dose of Jazz-Fusion. And by the way, the improvisation-like solos of piano are prevalent in the second part of this piece. Generally, the arrangements of each of these five pieces are very complex. The changes of theme and mood befall through the complex time signatures. Most often, these changes are unexpected and, overall, truly kaleidoscopic. Apart from the drums, the solos and riffs of electric and bass guitar, passages of piano, organ, and various synthesizers, as well as interplay between all of these instruments, play a prominent role on all of the said five compositions. The parts of violin are actively involved in the arrangements on three of them: Eternite, Tri-un, and Horizon pourpre. The vibraphone-like solos of synthesizer are featured on Energies and Horizon pourpre. While the passages of acoustic guitar play a truly notable role only on Tri-un. It must be also said that the 'metallic' and symphonic structures are very successfully combined in a single whole everywhere where they 'meet' each other.
Summary. All five of the tracks that I've just described, are masterpieces. However, an absolute winner on the album is, in my view, Horizon pourpre, which is just filled with the wonderful colors of the East. As for the album as a whole, it is Mr. Z 'who ate' the half of a rating star, - not me! And as for me, I highly recommend Eclat's "Le Cri de la Terre" album to all of the lovers of a hard-edged Classic Symphonic Art-Rock.
VM. April 18, 2002
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