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Didier Bocquet - Voyage cérébral CD (album) cover


Didier Bocquet


Progressive Electronic

4.37 | 11 ratings

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5 stars Intergalactic jellyfish feel

I have spent many a nights watching the glistening star blanket up among the galaxies listening to electronic music. If the feel is there and the music hits me in the right way - the darkened skies suddenly echo oceans and great big fluid surfaces moving about in whatever bobbing rhythmic sequence - lulling me into a beautiful stark black sea voyage.

YES - come on boy!!! We've heard that crap before!!! - I hear you yelling in the back. I often turn to the sea and watery images, whenever I try relegating electronic pieces of music, and especially the Berlin school of sound conjures up these endless pictures of running water. There's a hidden connection there, and even if I mention it a lot, it still doesn't quite put into focus just how seductive and entrancing the music can be, if it's done right. But hey for the purpose of sounding hip, let's just say that it feels like sparkly lemonade or fresh slushing milk...

Whereas the Germans were the main deliverers of said style of music with acts like Manuel Göttsching, Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze, - the French had sculpted a sound and a feel completely in accordance with their own temper. You got the scary zeuhlish theatrics from Igor Wakhevitch, the dangerously sharp and edgy Heldon and then the avant garde antics of Phillipe Besombes. Strange to think that a man like Didier Bocquet then sounded far more German than any of his fellow electronic countrymen. Sure, that may well have something to do with his late debut onto the scene back in 1977 with the self-produced album Eclipse - opening up to hypothesis of him being no more than a mere Berlin school copycat, but to these ears there is far more happening for that to be true. This album is more like a refined wine - something that had to sit awhile before it could be bottled.

Cerebral voyage is the name of the thing, and I couldn't imagine a better name, even if I had a thousand years and my thinking cap on. Much like the early krautrockers did - Bocquet focuses on long psychedelic pieces that slowly but carefully open up like sonic apple blossoms. From brilliantly shimmering synthesisers looping infinitely in ever changing patterns to the more menacing outbreaks - this record more than adequately responds to the ripples once uttered by the old German pioneers - and then some! I find this album closely related to the krautrock scene itself actually - mostly because of its ongoing flirtations with loose instant composition, but even more so because of its incessant trippy soundscapes that quite literally scoops you up - throws you in a starfighter and sends you out into the vastness of space. It's a psychedelic journey that keeps reverberating in your head. It does so while you listen to it, but also when you leave the comfort of your home. One day you'll find yourself staring at a puddle of rain experiencing a strange musical deja vu with echoing churning slices of music. This is down to the memorable characteristic of Voyage Cérébral. Now I am not talking about 'melodies' here, no no no - like I said the mood is one of constantly shape-shifting reverberations and psychedelic fuelled synthesisers, - no I am talking about the memorable shifts. The way a deep bellowing sound cycle suddenly intervenes during the first side - coming off like a controlled aircraft carrier foghorn that shakes the very ground with its buzzing yearning calls. Or maybe the cathartic turnover right at the very end will better explain to you the sheer power of this album - the power of music without a program. This is the soundtrack of huge things - love serenades for giants and Cyclops - an electronic kiss from a killer robot a thousand feet tall.

You won't find much in the way of hooks and solos on this outing, but if you wish to venture out beyond the confines of our little blue planet without ever having to leave your favourite rocking chair, then Voyage Cérébral is a safe bet. I feel like an amorous jellyfish listening to this - like one of those neon beams from 2001: A Space Odyssey - I feel like a submarine in warm waters, - utterly comfortable and bizarrely different from my normal self. The constant bombardment of these enchanting electronic cycles that swirl and sway like huge sonic rings, cradles you and at the same time allures you into a false security. You are not a submarine, and you can't fly, - but you do however have the opportunity to dress up with this little beauty.

Guldbamsen | 5/5 |


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