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Laurence Vanay - Evening Colours (as Gate Way) CD (album) cover


Laurence Vanay


Eclectic Prog

3.36 | 14 ratings

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3 stars Laurence Vanay is the pseudonym for Jacqueline Thibault, wife of bass player and producer Laurent Thibault (ex-Magma). She released two albums in the 70's that would fit nicely in any french prog collector's catalogue. Evening Colours is her second album and the one I prefer of the two. It's not enough that Laurence Vanay is not the artist's real name but this album was originally released under the fictitious band name Gateway, I guess the record company thought they would sell more copies that way instead of using a woman's name.

Following her 1974 debut album Galaxies, this album marks a step forward in Vanay's vision and ambitious creative song writing. This time the album is completely instrumental and gracefully goes through several genres without stretching too much to unknown territories. Symphonic, folk, rock and even some mild zehul touches (especially in the bass playing) including keys, flutes, piano, acoustic and electric guitars, all contributes to the eclectic feel of the album. The key word here is beauty! The album effectively radiates melodic beauty in the most natural and easiest way, the compositions are relaxed and calm even in the more harder edged songs. Although the album is quite relaxed, there are some rockier moments to be found featuring good fuzzy guitars and a few disturbing melodies which contributes and complements the somewhat trippy atmosphere of the whole album. The album's strength lies on the melodies which ranges from good to gorgeous and on the varied sounds produced by a nice array of analog keys such as the fender rhodes, hammond organ and synths. Vanay certainly has an ear for mixing different sounds, I love the fact that she doesn't stick to one keyboard sound but comes up with a clever combination of a few, plus of course combining them with the rest of the instruments. As I said the album is instrumental so there's a lot of room for playing, some of it is really good and some of it is just ok, there aren't brilliant solos or moments that really manages to transcend beyond the surface, personally I'm missing a few really killer songs. But the album is definitely good and worth to locate if you enjoy the melodic side of prog.

3 stars.

Sagichim | 3/5 |


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