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Ange - Par les Fils de Mandrin CD (album) cover

PAR LES FILS DE MANDRIN

Ange

 

Symphonic Prog

3.40 | 93 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer
3 stars The title track is rather hard, not really the symphonic Ange we have known in "Caricatures" and "Au-delà Du Delire". It introduces the concept of this album, which is the quest of hapiness by a gang of bandits. This concept (as in their previous album "Emile Jacotey") is rather "thin" and does not allow to develop a strong theme throughout the album.

"Au café du Colibri" has its good but also its poor moments. Some "special" organ effects are not of the best vein. A rather mixed feeling prevails. "Ainsi s'en Ira la Pluie" is a difficult track : during two third, it is a long recitation with some light background music. Absolutely not convincing. Fortunately, the last two minutes are grandiose and belong to the true symphonic Ange that I praise so much. "Autour Du Feu" is a folkish ballad with little flavour. Of course, its title (around the - camp - fire) is an clear indication on its content and the Spanish/Flamenco sound will not raise the quality of the song.

The medieval mood of "Saltimbanques" is rather Tull oriented. But these harpsicord sounds are really too much for me. I've never been a fan of these combinations : mixing instruments from another age with rock music. Being played by Ange or even Tull will not change my opinion. So far, it is rather a flat album (if we except the opening number).

Three great songs will save this album. "Des Yeux Couleur d'Enfants" has this bombastic and vibrant feeling Ange has conveyed during some of their previous albums. "Atlantis" has this scary side so typical for the band. Mystic lyrics (god and devil) that take up again with the disjointed atmosphere we could feel in earlier works (especially the two albums that I have already mentioned and which are my preferred ones from the band). Again, the fantastic instrumental break that closes the track is way too short and ends abruptedly.

The epic track of this album is of course, gorgeous and will be a highlight of their live performances. It is a real hymn (hence the tile), especially the second movement of the song ("Procession"). A wonderful sort of repetitve and hypnotic riff, with extremely passionate vocals (but this is not a surprise). The finale and third movement, "Hymne" is a variation of the second one but even stronger and more powerful. Without doubt, a great Ange song.

To summarize my feeling, I am also missing the absolute craziness and mocking tone of the lyrics of the early Ange. They were really devastating, irreverant; talking against religion, the establishment, praising sex with such a Frenchy and cocky mood. Incomparable. But nothing as such here.

As far as music is concerned, this album is stronger than "Emile" but the omnipresence of the vocals leaves little room for great instrumental parts.

I like Ange a lot and I would have rated this album seven out of ten. I can hardly upgrade it to four stars, so...

ZowieZiggy | 3/5 |

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