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Versailles - Blaise et Benjamin CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.96 | 31 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars The last two "Versailles" albums were really good ones. Their symphonic music is mixed with some very sexual oriented lyrics (mainly to be noticed on " Don Giovanni").

This album only features four songs. From nine to nineteen minutes. Plenty of time to be able to develop their ideas. The sound is also harder during the title track. We'll even get some portions fully sounding like "The Knife" (around 4'30"). This song might not have the brilliance of their wonderful epic "Une Saint Barthelemy Dévote" released on "Le Trésor de Valliesres" but some great guitar breaks are really the highlights.

Vocals are somewhat "opera" oriented. I am not very much keen on these ones. This epic probably lacks in the fantasy of their earlier work but the more I listen to it, the more I get into (especially during those "The Knife" moments which are really plentyful). Not original but such a nice trip back to my youth. Actually, since I have just reviewed the excellent "Lycanthrope" from "Mangala Vallis" it is a nice extension. Maybe a good idea to listen to these albums consecutively.

This epic is definitely on the hard side of their music. Very pleasant, I have to say.

The second epic (almost twenty minutes) is more in the symphonic style. Some nice flute, spacey passages are available. Vocals parts are also more "normal". There is an incredible guitar solo (but this album is very much a guitar one). So, if this instrument does pleases you, do not hesitate). Some parts will also remind you "Supper's Readdy" (like during "The Mask" from "Mangala"). Most of this song is instrumental. Some spacey breaks combined to "Watcher" ones for the finale concludes this pure nostalgic track. Even some fluting to complete the picture (but more on the Tull side).

"Poison De Passion" is a good song, but maybe not enough personal. To integrate all of these elements is maybe a bit too much. Still, if you like the music I have been describing, you should like this album.

Now, the last two "short" tracks. Just over nine minutes. "La Haine De L'amour" sounds like the early "Ange" (Caricatures"). This song is more keyboards oriented. It is quieter and fully symphonic. Lyrics are sexually oriented. It's about the discovery of love in a brothel and all its consequences (syphilis etc.). A very good song again. Sounds almost as a Crimson one during some instrumental parts as well as during the closing section.

I feel somewhat sad when I see the very little interest for this band on PA. Please, do yourself a favour. Have a try on "Versailles", you won't be disappointed. It is their last album. My recommendation is their fabulous "Le Trésor de Valliesres". Even if you might not get into French lyrics. But come on you guys from France, and the French speaking parts of Switzerland, Canada and Belgium. Just have a listen and please share your views about their work.

The closing number is also very much "Genesis" oriented. A mix between "Broadway Melody of 1974" (from "The Lamb") and "The Kinfe" again. The fourth good song of this album. Nice vocals and again more keyboards than during the two epics.

This album is the third straight good one of "Versailles". I am expecting my order of their debut album to be able to review it on PA. It should arrive next month. This one is a solid four star work.

ZowieZiggy | 4/5 |


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