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Contraction - La Bourse ou la Vie CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.89 | 36 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
4 stars By the time the second Contraction album was out, their mentor Frank Dervieux was dead and they dedicated their second and final record to him. The line-up stayed pretty stable but by now they had a solid partnership with the Perotte brothers, one of them is producing and the other drumming. The music developed in this album is the logical progression of their debut, not only in songwriting, but also in terms of all around musicianship. Christiane Robichaud is impressive in the imaginative use of her slightly above average but very pleasing voice and still delivering typical Quebecois -tinged French lyrics. Again, most of the music falls under the Laferriere & Lachapelle tandem with Stanley take the forefront with his fluid guitar lines and the occasional flute breaks from Miller. Again the first side is full of shorter tunes, some of them a bit in the radio-song format, but is book-ended by the Jos Coeur. Among the highlights would be a very strange but wonderful adaptation of nursery rhyme A La Claire Fontaine and the play on words of L'Alarme à l'Oeuil (instead of tears in the eye , it is the alert in your eyes).

Yes, you are all waiting to know what the second side sounds like especially the 18 min title track! Mostly by this track is responsible of their inclusion on this site, and the detour is well worth it if you are investigating Quebecois prog. The long instrumental passages are very imaginative , loose (as is generally their overall style) yet full of small surprises, somehow in between more typical French songs , sizzling rock passages , jazzy arrangements and more classical influences mostly coming from the KBs. This is such a climax, that one forgets the last track or more likely includes it as the epilogue into the 18 min multi-movement suite.

Most of these guys will play in other bands such as Harmonium, Toubabou and some in the collective Ville Emmard Blues Band (better known as VEBB) that were anything but blues. Some tracks were foreseen for their third album but only saw the light of the day on bassist Laferrièrre's solo album, La Cuisine Rouge. This album can be seen as one of the most representative of the Quebec prog scene, although it is not among the best coming out of La Belle Province.

Sean Trane | 4/5 |


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