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Julian Julien - Terre II CD (album) cover


Julian Julien


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.99 | 12 ratings

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RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
4 stars Julian Julien is one of those artists able to fill their music with "feelings". This sequel to Terre is classified as jazz- rock, but it gives me the same sensations that comes from listening to Claude Debussy. The "Prologue" sets up the mood which may appear dark, initially, but it's dreamy and ethereal, like fixing a fire and fell hypnotized. If so, "Terre II" is like waking up in a different land. I imagine the landscape of the cover picture. The Bass clarinet riff is remarkable.

The tracks from Iris I to Iris VI are defined as "interludes" by the composer, but to me they are more than this. I can hear a Floydian influence, too. "Ailleurs" Reminded me a bit to Lucia Hwong's "Secret Luminescence" for the mood and the instruments, but instead of the Asian landscapes I think to the last stanza of Rimbaud's "Le Bateau Ivre", the dark and cold water of a puddle in Europe.

Another Iris then comes. It's excellent with its sort of heartbeat and the noise in crescendo. Then Iris III. Why are they called interludes (by the artist himself)? They are well developed tracks, surely there's more happening in the couple of minutes that every of them takes, than in many "electronic epics".

"Un Attente" is explained by the author as a person, man or woman, waiting for the answer of a girlfriend or a boyfriend. The obsessive percussion on which piano and cello build the melody give the idea. This is the first track with vocals, intended as "dumb singing". Slow and sad, it makes me think, with the obvious differences, to The Snow Goose. The vocal armonies are intriguing.

Another interlude: Iris IV. Not just an interlude for me. The screaming sax gives life to an excellent jazz piece.

The composer says "Doudou" is about Childhood's End. The sadness of living something behind, maybe... The sound of bells reminds to a musical box. Itěs like an alternance of looking backward and forward. Honestly I wouldn't be able to interpret the music in this sense without Julian's suggestions.

Iris V lightens the mood opening the way to the excellent "Non-Sens". Julian Julien says that he's got the inspiration from a picture of graffiti on a wall. Nowhere to go, no way out, and a thought to the Greek people in their deep echonomical crisis. With this subject I would have expected a track full of haste. Instead, the music is introspective and dark. I hear similarities with some parts of Vangelis "Heaven and Hell" but the dreamy atmoshphere brings Debussy again to my mind. The trumpet here deserves a mention. Really a great track.

The last Iris, the 6th, made of bells like Balinese music, then the final: "John Barry". I think it's the composer of the famous James Bond's themeother than a huge number of sountracks for cinema and TV. The kind of sounds used seems to confirm it. A hommage to the composer, nothing like Bond, anyway.

This is "compact" album. It can be enjoyed like a single suite even if all the tracks retain their individuality. Arrangement and production are excellent and if one is in the right mood, it can be perfect: I'm lazying in a dark December afternoon what can be better than this?

4 fully deserved PA stars and one of the best things I've listened to in 2015.

octopus-4 | 4/5 |


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