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Maneige - Libre Service - Self Service CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.04 | 92 ratings

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3 stars The album's opening is probably rather misleading. Troizix bounces with a simple jazzy hip-hop feel, a deep bass, clap, bass, clap, type of thing. Soon, though, bongos, drums, flute, guitar and piano arise and drown out the bass, clap, repeat, theme, and drive the song towards a jazzier and smoother, less contemporary (though still very much so) song. The album proceeds very differently, focusing on lush flutes, aggressive splashes, and excitingly odd rhythmic complexities. The rhythm section get quite a spotlight appearance here, which is strange, as on their more noted release Les Porches rhythm was quite diluted and the focus was, without shame, the flutes, clarinets, and their lush and beautiful themes.

A second misleading quality of the album is cover. Don't expect dark, sinister, grim, and bleak atmospheres. Expect funky beats, bright atmospheres, and sharp drums.

Though it shapes up to be a pretty decent contemporary jazz release, I find Libre Service to be almost too modern. The production and sound quality are extraordinarily clear, but they also have more of a mechanic feel, as opposed to the really free, organic compositions of Les Porches which really drew me in. That, and some of the feel that distinguished them from other jazz bands in a similar pool is nearly gone completely. Despite these flaws, however, it is a great 'song-based' jazz album with some truly stellar moments, and some very mediocre segments.

Shakespeare | 3/5 |


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