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Eider Stellaire - Eider Stellaire I CD (album) cover

EIDER STELLAIRE I

Eider Stellaire

 

Zeuhl

4.03 | 80 ratings

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octopus-4
Special Collaborator
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team
4 stars Similarily to the Magma debut, this Eider Stallaire contains a lot of jazz and fusion elements which make it more approachable. Of course as almost all the Zeuhl it's not an easy listening thing.

The first impact is given by bass and drums, few seconds and we are already very close to Magma, at least to the debut. The electric piano offers the jazz parts while the guitar is more rock-oriented. What in Magma is the brass section, is here represented just by the sax helped by the guitar on medium pitches. "Onde" (Wave) has the only defect of being not conformant with the track's title. Specially in the most chaotic part. I mean that in this jazzy excited track ther's nothing that can make us think of waves of any kind. There's a remarkable guitar riff over compulsive bass and drums. It's the peak of the excited part, then they slow down and leave room to the piano. The track is closed by few guitar notes in a quite sudden end.

The second track, "Arctis 6eme éphéméride" (Arctic 6th Ephemeris) is closer to Magma but even of this track the guitar makes the difference as it sounds very rock. If you like being dragged out by repetitive compulsive rhythms this is your pot. Sometimes it gets more quiet, but even then, the bass is still percussive and obsessive. The main theme is based on four notes only sung by the two vocalists. The track seems to be built around these notes. It's so good that when it ends after 7 minutes I'm unhappy as it could have been extended for more time.

"Legende" is the easiest track. If it wasn't for the typically Zeuhl vocalists it could be considered "fusion". Also in this track there's more jazz and rock than in a standard Magma track. The excellent jazz piano solo is the remarkable thing of this track. The two vocalists are more "soul" and less "operistic" and the guitar is unusually distorted for Zeuhl. However in this track there's room for every instrument. The bass, too, has its moment while the drummer "pumps" throughout the whole track.

"Tetra" is the darkest track, instead, maybe because is based on minor chords. Also in this track there's a lot of rock, specially when the guitar leads. This is a track that can attract fans of other subgenres like Eclectic, Canterbury and JR/F. It features also a very interesting sax solo.

The bonus track "Nihil" is slightly different from the others. I don't know if it comes from a different period or not, but even if it's very good it is more "magmatic" than the rest. The few vocals are more operatic, the track structure and the chords are very jazzy. A very welcomed bonus.

Together with Eskaton, even if not as light as Eskaton, this album helps in defining the Zeuhl as a true genre and not just as a Vander's invention. I don't see it as a masterpiece, but it's an excellent album and fully deserves the four stars rating.

octopus-4 | 4/5 |

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