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Octobre - Octobre 1972-1989 CD (album) cover

OCTOBRE 1972-1989

Octobre

 

Crossover Prog

4.08 | 11 ratings

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Vibrationbaby
4 stars Incomprehensibly, the music of pioneer Quebec folk-prog band Octobre has been ignored completely by three supposedly " definitive " works on Canadian music. Not once is the band mentioned in Heart Of Gold : 30 Years Of Canadian Popular Music, The Encyclopedia Of Canadian Rock Pop & Folk Music and glaringly omitted from The Encyclopedia Of Music In Canada from The University Of Toronto Press which manages to mention everyone from Mitsou to Glenn Gould. One even has to search high and low in literature dedicated specifically to Québecois rock to unearth any murmurs about this enormously talented French Canadian band.

With the exception of two of their six albums, "L`autoroute des rêves" and "Live- chants dans la nuit", being briefly released by Sony music on CD in the early `90s (with "Live - Chants dans la nuit" cut down in running time, thus elliminating a brilliant instrumental showpiece entitled Brazilia), their music was left to the mercy of time. Appropriately, in October of 1995 the Québec label Audiogram in association with band leader Pierre Flynn released this superb 2 CD set which encompasses the band`s entire 7 year recording career quite remarkably. Although the band ceased to exist for all intents and puposes in 1980 after the release of the album "Clandestins" they continued to perform up until 1982 and re-united for a concert at The Montréal International Jazz Festival in 1989 with 4 of these tracks being heard at the conclusion of disc 2.

Flynn did a bit of manoevering in order to give a proper overview of the band which is presented chronologically by album. As a result the instrumental piece Baptême de l'air was chopped down to a one minute twenty four excerpt and nothing from the "L'autoroute des rêves" was included. However,this is remedied with two tracks from that album being heard here in live reworked forms from the album "Live-chants dans la nuit" which are actually better than the studio cuts.

To complete this excellent musical synopsis of the band a French language lyric book is provided which also features comentaries from the band as well as photos which brings me to my only qualm with this otherwise sterling package. Although Octobre had more of a local appeal as far as their romantic and intelectual musings went their music was world class and the French only booklet leaves the prospective non-francophone listener with a posthumous interest in the band somewhat out in the cold. So a French-English dictionary is required if you want the whole picture.

Rehensibly abandoned by Canadian music guides and histories Octobre`s less ostenatious folk oriented progressive rock is comparable to anything that was being churned out by early seventies UK prog scene. This reasonably priced anthology, Octobre 1973-1989, is definitely recomended for die-hards who want to delve even deeper into the abyss of that by-gone golden era of prog.

Vibrationbaby | 4/5 |

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