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Present - Le Poison Qui Rend Fou CD (album) cover





4.20 | 112 ratings

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5 stars Following their uncompromising and psychotic debut album, the similary styled "Le Poison Qui Rend Fou" isn't something to joke about either. This time around, Roger Trigaux' songwriting tends to be more diverse and less minimalist sounding, keeping the hypnotic and gloomy moods present on Triskaidekaphobie only with a slightly less demanding approach. Other than that, the line-up remains the same with the exception of bassist Christian Genet (who left the band to join Univers Zero as a full- time member) and got replaced by Ferdinand Philippoi. Among fans, this one seems to be the most appreciated Present album, probably because it's slightly rounder around the edges and displays more melodic songs than before. This album is still dark, scary and of course astonishingly complex from first to last minute and presents some of the most complex works within the post-RIO movement. The centerpiece title track is splitted up in two parts, each being equally as challenging and disturbing musically. This track takes up most of this album's duration and stands out as the strongest track here. Stylistically similar to the material on Triskaidekaphobie, with complex instrumentation and soaring guitar playing from Trigaux and dissonant, pounding notes from the keyboards. The first part of the song features the relatively unknown vocalist Marie-Anne Pollaris who sings some really impressive vocal lines along with the arrangements for a minute. A nice contrast from the band's rather macabre music otherwise. This stands out as one of Present's best tracks in their catalogue.

Ersatz is a calmer tune with a very spooky vibe to it and tricky, whispering percussions from Daniel Denis. This is one of the more fun tracks to listen to here, as it's more upbeat than the rest of the album. It's the most accessible track on here, yet it's quite challenging to listen to. Samana is the only track written by Alain Rochette here and follows similar formula as Trigaux' material, although being more diverse overall, with more focus on dynamics but still with the dark and sinister mood. An excellent song I must say and a worthy finale for this album. The musicianship is as always excellent, with Daniel Denis' drumming being the most impressive. His playing is beyond unique, and he provides incredibly creative and precise drumming, even when the music is at it's most complex. Bassist Ferdinand Philippoi's performance isn't as notable as Christian Genet's brilliant performance on Triskaidekaphobie but still manages to back up the music excellently throughout. Trigaux and Rochette, handling the main melodies, both does some fantastic interplay between the guitar and keyboards and due to all this excellent and complicated instrumentation from the whole band, this albums, like it's predecessor, sounds very dense but organized at the same time. Although it's just slightly weaker then their debut I would still rate this album 5 stars, simply because both albums are essential to any RIO/Avant-Prog fan, In my opinion. No weak spots here, just pure manic and dark brilliance to be checked out by any fan of Univers Zero, Art Zoyd, Shub Niggurath and so on!

Bj-1 | 5/5 |


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